Difference between Hub, Switch and Router.

What is Hub ?

A Hub is a simple and inexpensive networking device that connects a bunch of computers in a Local Area Network(LAN). It is similar to the multi-plug unit and it has no in-built intelligent capability. When a packet (information) arrives at one port of hub it automatically sent the copy of packet to all ports of the devices connected to it. Hub acts as a common connection point for devices in a network.

Features of Hubs

1. Hubs are extremely cheap compared to switches and other devices in the network.
2. Hubs offer & support only half-duplex transmission mode. Means only one device at a time transmit or receive data.
3. In hubs packets collision occur when data transferred from one device to another device.
4. While transmitting data, hubs waste lots of bandwidth.
5. Hubs make network insecure because it shares the data to all connected devices.

What is Switch ?

A Switch is also a networking device operates at the layer 2 (data link layer) of OSI model. Switch connects a bunch of computers or devices in a network. Switch is smarter than hub, it makes decision based on MAC address. Switch can easily find out which device is connected to which port by using a MAC address. So, when a packet (information) arrives at one port of switch it forwards the packet to those ports of the devices connected to it and does not waste data.

Features of Switch
1. Switch has the large number of ports needed to connect the nodes available in a network.
2. Switch offers & supports full-duplex transmission mode. Means a device can transmit and receive data at the same time.
3. Switch is capable of handling multicast packets but Proper designing and configuration of the switch are required.
4. Switch lowered the chances of packet collisions, which increases the overall performance of the network.

What is Router ?

Router is used to connect two or more networks (LANs or WANs) to form an internetwork. router is basically placed at gateways, the places where two or more networks connect. Router operates at layer 3 (network layer) of OSI model. Router makes decision based on IP addresses instead of MAC addresses. Among these only router has the capability to analyze and modify the packet while transferring it over a network.

Features of Router
1. Router support dynamic routing algorithms, so it can choose the best path to forward the packets.
2. Routers have the capability to filter out the unwanted interference.
3. Router allows the users to setup the port as per their requirements in the network.
4. Router is smarter than both hubs & switch because it contains central processing unit (CPU), flash memory, RAM, Non-Volatile RAM, web console & interface card.
5. Routers have low bandwidth because of their dynamic router communication.

Hub vs Switch vs Router

Device TypeHub basically is broadcast deviceSwitch is multicast deviceRouter is a routing device used to create path for packet transmission.
OSI LayerHub operates at layer 1 (Physical Layer)Switch operates at the layer 2 (data link layer)Router operates at layer 3 (network layer)
Data Transmission FormData transmits in form of electric signal or bitData transmits in form of frameData transmits in form of packet
Transmission ModeIt support half duplex transmission modeIt support full duplex transmission modeIt support full duplex transmission mode
Connecting Port4/12 ports24/48 portThe LAN, Ethernet, uplink, and WAN ports are used in the router.
IntelligenceThere is no intelligence circuitry in itSwitch is smart device as compared to hubRouter support dynamic routing algorithms. So it is smarter as compared to both
CostHubs are inexpensiveSwitch is costlier as compared to hubRouter is expensive device.
MAC & IP AddressHub does not store mac &IP addresses of devicesSwitch stores mac addresses of devicesRouter stores IP addresses of devices
ManufacturerIt is developed by Cisco & OracleIt is developed by Cisco & D-Link.It is developed by Cisco.

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