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What is the diference between a switch and a router ?

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A router essentially determines which way is the shortest or fastest in a network, and routes packets accordingly. It works at layer 3 of the OSI model, moving packets from one port to another based on L3 addresses - ie. IP addresses, IPX addresses, etc. A router (which often includes a built-in switch) allows you to connect multiple computers to each other (the switch part) and also allows them to share a single Internet connection (via the router part).

A switch connects one point to another in a network temporarily by turning it on and off as necessary. It works at layer 2 of the OSI model, with some intelligence (there are also some layer 3 switches, that essentially have routing capabilities). A switch only allows you to connect multiple computers into a local network.

Note: you can expand the number of LAN ports on a router/switch by connecting another switch to it with a crossover cable or via an uplink port.

  User Reviews/Comments:
by emami - 2006-03-22 13:47
You consider only switch layer 2 but it is more important that "What is difference between A router and A layer 3 sitch?" case they are the same layer device .
And about the difference between switch layer 2 and a router is fierst is a layer 2 device and second is layer 3 device .
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