New 3Com switches provide POE to smallest offices

3Com is filling out the lower end of its workgroup switching gear with the introduction of two switches designed for small offices in large corporations that need to manage the gear remotely.

Office Connect Managed Switch 9 and 9 FX are eight-port desktop workgroup switches that offer full SNMP support for IT staff to manage them from a central location.

They also provide Power over Ethernet (PoE) through four of the ports to support other technology such as VoIP and Wi-Fi by providing power for IP phones and wireless access points, the company says.

If customers need more PoE ports, they can connect the ports on the switch to 3Com IntelliJack switches, four-port switches that fit into standard Ethernet wall cutouts to provide individual desks with more jacks, 3Com says.

The switches also support traffic shaping and rate limiting that can give voice traffic priority over other traffic. It can automatically identify voice traffic generated by 3Com's NBX VoIP system via tools that come standard. It can be integrated with other vendor's VoIP gear via manual configuration, the company says.

These switches offer an alternative to unmanaged but inexpensive switches from the likes of Linksys and D-Link or from buying larger and more expensive switches from 3Com. A 12-port 3Com SuperStack switch costs US$700 to US$800 and is designed more for a site that has a wiring closet, says John Sheedy, a 3Com LAN infrastructure product marketing manager.

The Office Connect 9 costs US$500 with a copper Gigabit uplink port and US$700 with a Gigabit fiber port.

By comparison, a managed Cisco Catalyst 2940 eight-port switch costs about US$800 or US$1,000, depending on whether it has a copper or fiber Ethernet uplink port, and it lacks power over Ethernet.

Customers likely won't buy these 3Com switches unless they already run 3Com shops, says Matthias Machownski, an analyst with Infonetics. "This fills in a hole in 3Com's portfolio," he says.

The new switches also support port security that associates a port with a specific device as defined by its MAC address. If a device with another MAC address plugs into that port, it is blocked from connecting to the network. Each switch can define up to 40 virtual LANs.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Tim Greene

Network World (US online)
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?