First of all “What is a router ?”
Router is a device that transfers data packets along different networks. Not necessary that the network is bounded with wires. It can also be a wireless network. Routers are placed at gateways. Gateway is a place where two or more networks are connected.
“What is a switch ?”
A switch is a smaller hardware that connect different computers to form a network.
Difference between router and switch
Routers and switches are devices that allows you to connect one or more that one computer to different other computers or networks. These contains different connectors known as ports where you can insert cables to form a network.
ROUTER is a most complicated and smart working part of networking in today’s world. Routers are available in all sizes and shapes right from a 4 port to 64 ports. 4 port routers are generally used in broadband connections while the larger port routers are highly used in big industries, ISPs which drive the internet itself. The largest producers of Routers is CISCO:- we built human networks. Traditional routers are designed to connect multiple networks (LAN and WAN). The basic function of router is to understand, manipulate and route the packets and signals they are asked to transmit. Router consists of a console port where the switch is connected. Router can be accessed using different commands eg: telnet. But accessing a router is not so easy as it is highly protected with the help of firewalls. Router are the devices which can connect two different work station situated at different places. eg if a XYZ company is situated in India and ABC in USA the router of XYZ can connect to ABC and share all rights and privileges.
SWITCHES are of small specifications than that of routers. Switch is a device that only connects different computers available in the workstation. eg, i have a cyber cafe ABC which has 10 computers. It is not possible to create a connection similar to peer-to-peer connection, because in this case it is not possible to create an entire workstation. Hence switch is used, it enables us to connect all the computers and access each computer by each other computer individually. Switch pays attention to the traffic and manages it accordingly.
Benefits of routers
- Integrated security
- IP Communications
Benefits of switches
- Converged services support
- uninterrupted access
The pic below will help you in understanding in detail the exact connection of a computer, switch and router.
This article is a part of a unique series to know about networking and building your own network at home. Check all posts in Learn Networking Series.