A managed network switch can be an important part of any home office network. It allows you to control the flow of traffic on your network and can help you troubleshoot problems. A managed switch can also help you improve the performance of your network by allowing you to prioritize traffic.
Switches fall into 2 categories:
- Unmanaged – Just plug it in and it works. No configuration necessary, but all no configuration is available. Great for Simple setups.
- Managed – Setup requires more than just plugging it in. Configuration is required to take advantage of the additional features such as: specify priorities and network speed of ports, turning on/off ports, and preventing looping.
This is a review of the TP-Link Easy Smart Switch with 8 ports. The model number is TL-SG108E. It is a managed switch for a home or small office.
For more suggestions to help with your remote work office, check out the Complete Guide to Remote Work Products.
Pros of the TP-Link Easy Smart Switch
- Easy Initial Setup: Just plug it in and it works.
- Disable Ports: The ports can be Enable/Disable via the installed software.
- Speed Limits: The ports can have a maximum speed limit specified. This helps to distribute bandwidth appropriately.
- Light: The power light can be easily enabled via the software.
Cons of the TP-Link Easy Smart Switch
- Software: The web Interface was clunky and crashed. Therefore, I installed the EasySmart Configuration Utility from TP-Link. It worked much better.
- Scheduling: It would be very beneficial to have the ports be disabled for different times during the day or night. Unfortunately, this is not an available feature.
- App: No Mobile App is available. TP-Link WiFi products have the Tether app which is great, but this switch does not work with Tether.
Final Thoughts and Recommendation
The management was challenging and not super helpful for what I needed. Unless you really need to specify speed limits, I think most remote workers would be better off with an unmanaged switch like the 8-port from Netgear or TP-Link.