Home/Small Office Switch Getting Started Guide

Tom Yao
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Introduction In today's digital age, a reliable and efficient network is essential for homes and small offices. A key component of a robust network infrastructure is a switch. In this buying guide, we will explore how to choose a switch for your home or small office that will ideally meet your networking needs.

What is the Function of a Switch?

A network switch is a device that connects multiple computers or smart home accessories, playing a vital role in setting up a small office network for seamless connectivity. Acting as a central hub, switches enable multiple devices to connect and share resources. With a switch, you can easily access the internet, share files, and ensure smooth data transfer between devices.

What Does a Switch Do?

Specifications to Consider

Before purchasing a network switch for your setup, here are some important specifications to keep in mind:

Type of Ports

When selecting a switch for a small office, the number and type of ports are crucial considerations. Switches with 4, 5, 8, 16 and 24 ports are commonly available. More ports allow more devices to connect, providing greater expansion capability. If you anticipate adding more devices in the future, opt for a switch with more scalability. Additionally, if you have specific requirements like Power over Ethernet (PoE) support for IP cameras or VoIP phones, look for switches with PoE ports, which can provide both power and data connectivity through a single cable.

Power Considerations

Power over Ethernet (PoE) is a significant factor when setting up a SOHO (Small Office/Home Office) wireless network. PoE technology enables devices connected via network cables to receive power without needing separate power lines. Determine if your connected devices require PoE, such as IP cameras, wireless access points, or VoIP phones. Different switches have varying power supply capacities; some can only power a few PoE devices, while others can support multiple devices simultaneously. Ensure the switch you choose matches your power requirements.


Managed or Unmanaged

For most homes or small offices, an unmanaged switch is usually sufficient. It provides wired internet access to multiple devices without requiring any configuration, making it easy to use. However, if you need more control and flexibility over your network, consider a managed switch. Managed switches offer advanced features and network management capabilities such as VLANs (Virtual Local Area Networks), QoS (Quality of Service), and link aggregation. These features allow you to optimize performance, enhance security, and prioritize network traffic.


Network speed is a critical factor when choosing a switch for a small office. Current network switches support data transfer rates of 10Mbps, 100Mbps, and 1000Mbps (1Gbps), which are typically sufficient for home use. However, for those needing higher speeds, switches with 1G, 1.25G, 2.5G and 10G Ethernet ports are available to meet varying network requirements. A 1G Gigabit Ethernet port is ideal for faster data transfers, particularly for large file transfers or high-definition media streaming.

Recommended LINOVISION SMB Switches

Linovision offers a wide range of SMB switches that are suitable for home and small office environments. Here are a few recommended options:

  • Industrial Series: This series offers 4, 8-port options, equipped with multiple 10/100/1000BASE-T RJ45 ports, these switches are compact, straightforward, and require no configuration, making them perfect for seamless connectivity in small networks.
  • Managed Series: This series includes 8 and 24-port smart managed switches designed with a compact form factor. Highly scalable and flexible, these switches support remote management and monitoring capabilities. They also feature QoS/ACL functions to bolster network security.
  • Cloud Managed Series: This line features 8-port L2+ PoE+ switches renowned for their space-saving design. These switches enable remote monitoring and PoE port control through Linovision RemoteMonit.com or third-party cloud platforms. They support a variety of secure and reliable management methods. With a fanless design and low-noise operation, they excel in quiet environments, making them the top choice for FTTR (Fiber To The Room) solutions.


Selecting the right switch is crucial for establishing a reliable and efficient network in home/small office environments. Consider factors such as the number and type of ports, power requirements, management capabilities, and connectivity options. Linovision offers a range of SMB Switch including both unmanaged and managed options, to cater to different networking needs. By choosing the appropriate small office switch, you can ensure seamless connectivity, resource sharing, and optimal performance for your home/small office network.