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Selection factors for industrial Ethernet switches Apr 14, 2017

Industrial Ethernet switches are used to connect Ethernet devices. It first receives a frame of data emitted by a device and then transfers the frames to the appropriate switch ports connected to other Ethernet devices. As it transmits these frames, it learns and grasps the location of the Ethernet device and uses this information to determine which ports to transmit frames. This helps reduce the network occupancy rate.
According to an ARC survey — Industrial Ethernet Equipment Market surveys involve the global Industrial Ethernet switch market, predicting its composite annual growth rate of 49.9% in the next 3 years. 2004, the industrial Ethernet equipment for the whole year 840,000 sets (Taiwan), to 2009 will reach 6.7 million sets (Taiwan).
What kind of industrial Ethernet switches are the best suited for your factory's current application? This is really a troubling thing, because there are many factors that need to be taken into account, such as the working environment, whether redundancy, network management and non-network management, future maintenance and scalability, etc.
The factors that need to be considered before purchasing are:
Work environment considerations: including temperature range, EMC electromagnetic compatibility, protection level, installation and power supply. Industrial Ethernet switches are designed for environments that are unsuitable for commercial switches, such as the environment with extreme temperatures, high vibrations, and strong electromagnetic noise.
Select Network Management type or non-network management switches: If the network is relatively simple, can choose Plug and Play non-network management switches; If it is convenient for the future maintenance, you may need to choose Network Management type, only the network management switches can achieve the ring-type topology connection.
It is also necessary to meet the relevant industrial standards: such as marine switches should conform to the standards of the ship structure, if the application of hazardous occasions, to meet the corresponding certification standards; Rail transit and road transport industries have their own standards.

Network management and non-network management type
One key issue when choosing an industrial Ethernet switch is to select a network management switch or a non-network-based switch. Although network-based switches are usually more expensive, it provides some additional power. The network management switch includes the characteristics of the non-NMS switch.
Network management switches generally support Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP), of course, most network management switches have not only this (SNMP) characteristics. Basically, a NMS switch allows you to control the network, whereas not a network management switch typically allows only Ethernet devices to communicate. The network management switch also allows you to monitor the Web. Through SNMP, you can view various network states, including the number of bytes received/sent, the number of frames received/sent, the number of errors and the port status. All of this can be viewed by port.
Network-management switches also have some advanced features that can improve your network control. Like Quality of Service (QoS), virtual local area network (VLAN), port mirroring, IGMP Snooping, redundancy, and SNMP, typically only network management switches are available, most of the advanced features of network management switches are:
QoS is the ability of a switch to use high-priority for a specific data frame.
VLANs allow switches to logically group devices, and even if all devices share a single physical switch, they can isolate traffic between these device groups.
Port mirroring allows a port of the switch to monitor traffic sent or received by one or more ports of the switch. This feature facilitates real-time monitoring of communication data and is a common fault lookup method for Ethernet.
IGMP Snooping automatically sends multicast frames only to devices requesting these frames, which prevents multicast frames from being sent to devices that do not request these frames.
SNMP is a simple Network management protocol, which allows network management applications to communicate with switches, requesting state information and setting configurations. Some vendors also provide network management programs that translate SNMP data into the OPC data used in the system.
Ring network redundancy is a common feature of network management industrial Ethernet switches. Many industrial switch vendors have created their own private ring network redundancy protocol.

For transport media, most industrial Ethernet communications are carried out through twisted pairs, but sometimes they need to be used. Optical cables are required when the signal transmission distance exceeds 100 meters supported by the twisted pair. The communication distance of multimode fiber can reach 2 kilometers, and the communication distance of single mode fiber can reach 15 km. Because its communication is not susceptible to electric or magnetic field, optical cables are generally used in high noise environments.