Another Netgear device dies… My GS605 Gigabit Switch

I’m paranoid about backups (in case you hadn’t noticed)! I have a LaCie d2 Quadra attached to my Mac Pro via firewire 800 for daily backups. Then I do weekly backups to a D-Link DNS-323 NAS box, monthly backups to a Synology DS210j and ad hoc backups to a Synology DS108j across my home network. Oh and let’s not forget my photos stored in Flickr and other stuff stored in DropBox


Netgear lasted just 10 months...

Now since I started backing up to NAS devices about ten months ago, I decided to go with gigabit for my home network. So the Mac is connected to an Airport Extreme base station and from there a Cat 6 cable runs to a Netgear GS605 5 port gigabit switch in my loft where the three NAS devices are. So far so good and everything was working well, until ten months later the Netgear switch decided it wasn’t going to play gigabit speeds. Despite the lights still showing green (to indicate a gigabit connection), my network transfer rates dropped to pitifully slow speeds. I tried everything I could to persuade the GS605 to behave but it was having none of it. What was also interesting was that removing the switch altogether and connecting the devices directly using the same cabling, everything was normal. There was no doubt about it – the switch was slowing my network speeds to less than a tenth of what they were before. So after mucking around trying everything for a whole afternoon I decided to call Netgear.

Oh dear. Contacting Netgear support very quickly became an exercise in frustration, so I decided that it would be quicker, cheaper and much less


Same features, half the price.

stressful to replace the switch with something else. I checked out Amazon UK and plumped for a TP-Link TL-SG1005D for just £13.67 with free delivery – less than half the cost of the Netgear offering. A couple of days later it arrived and was installed within ten minutes and everything is back to normal. Like the Netgear GS605 the TP-Link TL-SG1005D is a 5 port non-blocking gigabit switch. Like the Netgear it’s a small desktop/home device. Like the Netgear it has a power light plus a light for each port that glows orange for a 10/100 connection, green for a gigabit connection and which flickers to indicate traffic. Unlike the Netgear, the TP-Link has a sensibly small transformer built into the plug, runs very cool indeed and costs under £15.

Aside from this little exercise probably saving me some money, effort and a fair amount of stress, it has reminded me that in some cases there’s little point in paying a premium for the big name brands when the budget ones will work just as well.