How Stackable Switches Elevate Network to New Heights


PoE+ Switches are an advanced version of POE switches. Being the next generation of PoE switches, PoE+ can reduce network complexity and overall costs and make data and power networks easy to manage and upgrade. These switches are an excellent choice for networks requiring high power consumption. These switches return exceptionally great output to many SMBs (small- and mid-sized businesses). This is only possible when you stack these switches into one logical device. Are you intrigued to know what stackable PoE+ switches are? This post discusses stackable PoE+ switches in detail. So, stay tuned.

What is Stackable Switches? 
The stackable switch is a type of network switch that can function as a standalone device as well as a part of an integrated system with multiple switches stacked in a single unit. When one switch is stacked upon another one, it forms a modular switch.

How to Connect Stackable  PoE witches? 
These switches are connected using a single dedicated cable through a stacking port for further expansion of the network. Stacking of switches benefits the network in multiple ways. One of the main advantages is that there is only one internet protocol (IP) address for remote administration of the stack. Mostly, stackable switches are rack mounted with fixed data ports on the front. Some modules are designed with extra slots to add extra ports to the base unit. The best examples are 24-port and 18-port models.

Know Stacking Technologies in Detail
The stacking of switches enables configuring multiple switches as a single unit and acting co-operatively. This can be achieved by connecting uplink ports at the front or linking the switch backplane. Stacking is mainly applicable for access layer switches. It is much simpler and easier to configure and maintain. Stacking can be used at small-sized facilities wherein control planes are not required for the full functioning of the network. Stacking can be classified into two types.

  • Backplane Stacking or BPS: As the name implies, stacking can be done on the back of the switch. In this type, specific stacking modules are used with cables based on the application requirement.
  • Front-plane Stacking (FPS)-VSF: In this, standard Ethernet ports are used to build the stack. Here, standard Ethernet cables are used to establish a connection between switches.

Why Use Stackable PoE+ Switches?
Here are some notable benefits of stackable POE+ switches, making them the preferred choice of businesses across industries. So, let’s have a look at them.
  • The first and foremost important benefit of using a stackable POE+ switch is that it simplifies network administration. Multiple switches when stacked together logically constitute one device. The network administrator can configure and manage the stack through a single IP address. This helps simplify network setup and operation as well as reduce the number of cables and complexities.
  • With stackable POE+ switches, one can easily create copies of the data and uplinks across devices if data loss occurs. So, when hardware fails, it will only bring down the physical interfaces of that particular switch. The redundant backup of the data and uplinks will remain online. Thus, the forwarding of the services can be ensured when POE+ devices or switches fail. This helps improve the network reliability.
  • With the increasing demand for security cameras, wireless access points, and VoIP phones, the demand for POE+ devices has risen. Stackable POE+ switches are well-known for network expansion and enhancing the capabilities of the system.
  • Another important benefit of using stackable POE+ switches is their deployment flexibility. These switches can operate independently or together with other stackable switches efficiently. The stacked switches can be used in a single site or run individually at different locations depending on the requirements.

Selecting PoE+ switches for your network may be overwhelming sometimes due to the network complexity and device compatibility issues. This is because they are available in different specifications to fulfill the network needs. In addition to these factors, the network's performance depends on the quality and performance of PoE switches. Therefore, it is important to source these devices from reliable, authorized, and certified manufacturers and suppliers. If you know what your network demands, you can find the right switch without exceeding the budget.


Rich Tull

R.W. Tull is the President of Versitron Inc. He works closely with clients to review layout diagrams and drawings in order to ensure that the best fiber optic solution is achieved for a particular project.

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