Ok, so we are setting up our asterisk system in the office. 30 users on aastra phones. We are on a 100mb network. Would you recommend a managed switch? We are using analog external lines with a tdm card so I am only worried about our local network bandwidth. Our users wouldn’t tolerate choppy calls. Would upgrading to gig switches be good enough? If I managed switch is necessary what one do you recommend? And do you just prioritize your rtp ports above the rest or whats involved in the setup?
Yes you should use a managed switch that way you can setup a VLAN for your voice traffic. 100mb is fine from clients to switch and is adequet for switch to swicth and swicth to server.
I personally like the HP Procurve switches, they offer very good performance/reliabilty for a decent price. Cisco switches are great but way overpriced. I would avoid Linksys and Netgear unless you have no other choice. I have 5 Procurves in my current network and have had about 30 over the last 10 years - never had an issue with any of them. I have had way less than 10 Netgear/Linksys switches in the last 10 years and had at least 3 of them fail on me.
The HP procurve 2650 (about $850) will give you 48 10/100 ports and 2 10/100/1000 ports so you can do 1GB interconnects and at least a 1 GB connect to your Asterisk Server.
Setup your phones and Asterisk server in a seperate VLAN and then set that VLAN to a higher priority.
we need two switches, one in each building, And we were hoping to get them around $400 each. I think we are going to have to go with the linksys. I don’t see where you can set priority to a VLAN is it possible with the linksys? Also I would like to avoid using a vlan just to keep everything simple, could I just prioritize a set of ports like my rtp ports 10000 to 20000 and 5060? Wouldn’t that assure qos? Is it possible to set priority to a range of ports like that? With the linksys switch?
Honestly, I say don’t worry about it.
I’ve got about 35 phones hooked up over our previously existing 10/100 network. They all terminate to a ProCurve 3000-series managed switch which is currently unmanaged, with a 10/100 crossconnect to our Asterisk Box, and we’ve yet to have a single call quality issue due to network latency (can’t say the same of our T1, but that’s another story).
Now, certainly, if your switch does not have enough switching bandwidth, you can have a problem, but a managed switch or dedicated VLAN with QoS, etc, is certainly not necessary.