Cisco Switch Connection Question

I have been using an 8 port Cisco 2960 switch for around 6 months, with no issues. When I received it I connected it up in a similar way to my previous BT switch as shown below. However I saw a picture posted somewhere on this forum that had an Ethernet cable connected into the far right port which I have question marked.

As a result I tried connecting my internet connection to that port, without knowing if this was the correct thing to do, as shown below. All still works with no issues but I wonder which is the correct connection method as I cannot find any guidance on the web. Can anyone help with this?

Stick with what you had in the first place. It’s fine for what you are doing.

1 Like

That’s what I suspected. Cheers HH.

The dual purpose port on the right is normally a GB port, whereas the others will only be running at 100MB. So your current configuration is probably the best, if your connection to the router is the busiest. Of course, if you have a slow ADSL service, this may not be the case.
Other than that, you can use any port you like for any connection.

Edit: I’ve just noticed that the switch in your picture is a 2960G, in which case all the ports are GB, so the above may not be relevant?

The generally accepted thing to do is to connect as per picture 2. Connecting to WWW (router/modem?) via the uplink port. Which according to your picture can be either cable or optical.
All the others are referred to as downlink ports.
As mentioned previously though, it makes little difference for your application. Either way will work.

1 Like

I have two 2960G gigabit switches. I use port 8 to link the two together, but it really doesn’t matter. You can plug into any of the 8 ports.

I’m not sure if the dual purpose ports on the Catalyst switches are technically ‘uplink’ ports, and I believe all ports autonegotiate, making it a more or less obsolete function. So in practice, as you say, any port should work, assuming the switch hasn’t been configured otherwise.

Thanks for the replies. As I initially stated, it seems to work ok either way. I just wanted to check I was not doing something wrong, which it seems I’m not.

The only advantage I see is you gain one more port on the switch if use the dedicated uplink port. I use it as I am using all 8 ports so would have to loose a device.

Good point @CrystalGipsy, thanks.

And there you have it.
There are differences in available configuration options between up/downlink ports. Most of which are way beyond the scope of audio enthusiasts.

Anyone buying a preowned Cisco 2960 series switch should reset it to factory defaults first thing. There’s no guarantee it’s been done already, and it might have a configuration that won’t work on your network. That was the case with both of mine. Hold the mode button down for 20 secs while powering it on at the least, or get a console cable and follow the instructions here:

Now you have gone and done it… cue the what if questions


I bow to your expertise and will refer all questions on the subject to you. :joy::joy:
But … the stock answer should be ‘don’t worry about it’. :joy:

Indeed, :grinning:. btw on a 2960 other than physical options, the uplink points are identical to the regular ports in terms of config options.

On these switches - can I just do a factory reset? Or do I need to do any more configs after that?

Just clear the config. A factory rest does this.
These devices default to a standard switch.

If your IT skills aren’t up to it, this may be a little more complicated than you expect. You need to console into the switch using a suitable cable into the blue console port on the front, log in, and reset it using the CLI. If I can manage it, anyone can, but it takes a little more effort than just pressing a reset button.

You can reset it by holding down the mode button for 20 secs when you power the switch on.

You can, but if your problems are caused by a previous user’s configuration, you will not reset those settings without consoling in and doing a reset with the CLI.