So I finally made the leap from 100Mbps to 1 Gbps at home with the purhase of a new Dlink DGS-1216T Gigabit Web Smart Switch (www.dlink.com/DGS-1216T). I liked it because it is low power, low noise, has web management and the ability to do VLans. The alternative seemed to be a Netgear box but I have been singularly unimpressed with Netgear kit so keeping away from it for now.
The DGS-1216T is a great switch but the doco is not so good. Being only slightly better than a novice when it comes to configuring VLans I found it quite challenging to find out how to configure it and the docs were next to useless.
What I wanted to do was separate 12 ports onto one Vlan for general home use and 4 ports on an isolated VLan for testing use.
So I configured it using the web interface so that I had the first 12 ports tagged on the default Vlan 01, and I created a second Vlan 02 and tagged ports 13-16 on that Vlan. What I found was that none of the ports VLan 02 could see each other and VLan 02 was not separated from VLan 01. There is something really strange about vlan tagging that I don’t yet understand.
Anyway I found a post (which I can’t seem to find again) that gave me a hint for the answer.
The DGS-1216T supports "Port Vlans" which is different to tagged VLans and appears to provide the "hard" isolation that I wanted. To enable Port Vlans you first need to enable Asymmetric Vlans in the web interface, then create the 2 Vlans that you want. All ports must be "untagged" and you "hard code" the required Vlan number for the ports as required.
There is a default Vlan 01 that you appearently don’t touch, so all ports are listed as untagged in the default Vlan as well. No idea what this means or how you would use it. I suspect it is some sort of Mgmt Vlan.
Its working now and I’m probably not going to mess with much more. One day I will take the time to learn about tagging andhow to use it.