Peripheral Matters: Buffalo 16-port Desktop / Rackmount Gigabit Green Ethernet Switch (BS-GU2016)
You don't get to be much more of a commodity than to be a dumb switch. Still, remember the motto of Peripheral Matters...don't sleep on the small stuff. I had an issue with the setup in the Geek Command Center. When I stood it up, I only had a 5-port switch to extend my wired coverage from the wall Ethernet port and switch that I had connected on the other side of the room. With smart TVs, consoles, the Roku, a network connected video game capture device, and a 2ndary streaming rig now, I was quickly out of ports to provide the entire coverage I needed. It was time to bring in a second 16-port switch.
While there is not a ton of sexy about the GU2016, I like to remind my readers and friends that cheap, easy upgrades can make a whirlwind of a difference in your tech geeking. In my case, that was the result of finally making a move that had been on my radar for a long time. But, of course, it was not as sexy as a 4K monitor, or a new gaming headset, so it sat on my geek to-do list for a long time.
The GU2016 does a few things. Number one, it looks good. It is very compact for a 16-port switch, as it is a 1/2-width 1U rack form-factor. Consumer 16-port switches tend to be a bit more portly. The subdued black with the red-racing strip was just the kind of aesthetic that I wanted in the tech lab. The Buffalo switch can either be mounted on a desk or mounted in a rack. As you can see from the photos, I have it situated atop on my storage bins.
One feature that this switch has that I like is that it manages itself enough to prevent a netowrk loop, which is sort of like the Event Horizon you create when you (stupidly) create a situation where a network packet has multiple paths to get to a destination, but that pathing is unmanaged, which can result in the packet looping right back to its origin without ever reaching its intended target. I've done this before because I did not know any better, so it's nice to know that I have some help in case I forget. The GU2016 is also a tad more energy efficient than the average 16-port switch, and every little bit helps. It also comes with brackets and mounting gear to be hard-mounted to your desk or the wall.
Like I said, it's not much, but this little switch runs 24-7, barely gets warm, never gets hot, and tells people you are network-serious whenever they come over. Like I said, don't sleep on the small stuff. Peripherals Matter. Stay safe out there and good hunting.
The Buffalo BS-2016 is currently available on Amazon for $69.99 and has a 4.7-star rating on Amazon's 5.0 max scale.