Key Features - Stacking
I would be remiss if I didn't mention the stacking feature of the 728TS, which Netgear believes sets it apart from the competition in its price range. Stacking is primarily an administration convenience, since it allows up to six switches to be accessed at one IP address. Figure 17 shows how the Zoom view changes to reflect two stacked 728TS units.
Figure 17: Zoom view with two stacked switches
(click image to enlarge)
Setting up stacking is a breeze, since each switch comes with the two right-most gigabit ports set to stacking mode. All you need to do is connect a patch cable between the switches' stacking ports, as illustrated in Figure 18, and the switches talk among themselves and sort out the whole Master / Slave thing. Of course, if you want to override any of their decisions, you can access the controls you need via the Stack Management admin feature.
Figure 18: Stacking cabling methods
This illustration, taken from the 728TS Hardware Installation guide, doesn't correctly reflect the actual stacking port placement. However, it does show that you can connect a stack with a "ring" topology, which provides redundancy should a stacking connection (or more likely, a switch) fail.
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