The FortiSwitch 424E PoE, FPoE, and Fiber switches

The new FortiSwitch 424E PoE, FPoE, and Fiber managed switches are Layer 2-3 networking appliances. We are going to look at it’s performance, but first, a few words on switches generally.

A switch is a device that takes in packets (of data) coming from devices that are connected to its physical ports and sends them out again. However, it sends them only through the ports that lead to the devices the packets should go to. In other words, switches connect Ethernet IP devices and forward information between them.

On the other hand, a managed switch will communicate across multiple networks while simultaneously providing built-in network security and improving the network’s bandwidth by prioritizing packet requests.

Why a managed switch?

There is no ability to configure an unmanaged network switch because it lacks a “brain.” A managed switch gives you the ability to manually configure, monitor, and manage the devices on your network.

The reason an organization would spend good money on a managed switch with all these heavy-duty features is simply this: managed switches give you greater security, more features, and flexibility. Consequently, you can configure them to custom-fit your network. With this greater control, you can better protect your network and improve the quality of service for those who access the network.

And why PoE?

Power over Ethernet delivers electrical power to PoE-enabled devices using your CATx (CAT-5, CAT-6, etc.) network cables. Since you don’t need to run electrical wiring, PoE saves money in materials and install time. It’s also flexible, especially for remote applications, since it doesn’t require a nearby electrical outlet. These and other benefits have led to a big increase in PoE’s popularity in recent years. However, the limiting factor has always been power.

The way PoE works is simple. Ethernet cable that meets CATx standards consists of four twisted pairs of cable. Simply put, PoE sends power over these pairs to PoE-enabled devices. First PoE standards use two twisted pairs to transmit data, while the remaining two pairs are for power transmission. However, the new PoE standards allow power and data to go over all four twisted pairs.

Standard PoE provides 15.4w per port. It is compatible with Gigabit Ethernet ports. On the other hand, PoE+ will provide up to 30w per port. It is backwards compatible with PoE. It can also negotiate the power output it supplies to end devices. Essentially, it has a greater power budget that ordinary PoE.

How do I manage all these functions?

A good switch should be simple to set up and manage. The FortiSwitch 424E PoE tightly integrates into the Fortinet Security Fabric via FortiLink, an innovative management tool. This allows any FortiGate firewall to seamlessly manage any FortiSwitch. At that point, you can manage the FortiSwitch directly from the familiar, easy-to-grasp FortiGate interface, providing complete visibility and control of users’ devices no matter how they connect.

These are pretty inexpensive switches that can be sent up directly to a Fortigate, functioning as if they are ports on the same fabric. So any individual port can be it’s own separate routed interface and belong to a zone. Pretty cool.

Features and performance of the FS-424E PoE

The FortiSwitch 424E PoE family has 24 GE SFP, and 4 10GE SFP+ ports. It delivers 128 Gbps of Switching Capacity. It pushes 204 Mpps Packets per Second. Lastly, it supports 4000 VLANS. A FortiGate firewall will be able to manage anywhere from 8 to 300 FortiSwitches, depending on the model.

There are also FPoE and Fiber models available (read more about PoE and PoE+ here).

Who is the FS-424E PoE designed for?

The FS-424E PoE is ideal in converged network environments; enabling voice, data and wireless traffic to be delivered through a single network. Specifically it will suit threat conscious mid-sized businesses and branch offices.

And building a small to medium-sized business network is not possible without switches to tie devices together. So if you have any questions, give Corporate Armor a call at 877-449-0458 or email us at [email protected].

FortiSwitch 424E PoE family At-A-Glance

24 GE RJ45 ports, 4 10GE SFP+ ports
Integrated directly into the Fortinet Security Fabric
128 Gbps of Switching Capacity
204 Mpps Packets per Second