basically, as a rule of thumb, the ports of your switch to which you have servers connected should be set to fixed speed and duplex settings, and the same should be the case for the respective server NICs. User ports, that is, switchports to which your desktop or laptop users connect to, should be left at the default (autonegotiate) speed and duplex settings.
Since you have disabled spanning tree (for your only VLAN, VLAN 1), make sure that there are no loops in your network.
As for the 'switchport mode access' command, you actually might want to configure that on all your ports, not only the ports connecting your switches to each other. Since you are not using any trunks, any DTP (Dynamic Trunking Protocol) packets exchanged have no use anyway.
This document also contains a lot of information on how to best configure switchports and switches in a LAN switching environment, check if that helps you:
First of all thank you for the reply and the links.
I started thinking about the "switchport mode access" more after posting and thought that might be the best thing for desktops as well etc. So it's good to hear from someone else about it. Also I then discovered the Ciscos "Smartport" macro's loaded on the IOS (very cool) and it had that enabled in the dekstop one! :)
As for servers etc. I already do set our NIC/Ports. I went through some IOS problems dependin on which one was loaded I got better results not forcing etc. However that's been solved via downgrading a few switches. :)
As for the "STP", thank you for your adivce on checking for loops. While we don't have redundant links....I know it's easy for somebody to get in a closet and create one! So until we learn to setup STP correctly we'll keep an eye out. We had to turn it off globaly from having Appletalk issues.
I'm sure it's possible to use STP (if setup correctly) with Appletalk but for now that's why we've disabled it.
Once again thank you for you time. Much appreciated.
I think the 'spanning-tree portfast' command on a switchport will allow Appletalk to work properly.
If you decide to implement spanning tree, you can also tune the forward-delay and max-age timers (which should be done on the root bridge). Let me know if you need help with this, should you decide to use STP.
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