LAN Bandwidth

I'm so excited! I'm replacing all my CAT5 with CAT5e and I've moved the 16-port 10/100 Ethernet hub that was the backbone of my home network to it's periphery, and replacing it as backbone with an 8-port 10/100/1000 switch.

Currently, my network is essentially in three parts: office, living room, and wifi. In the office I have my main workstation. Currently that's a PowerMac G5 hooked up via 100 megabit ethernet to the old hub, and the hub is plugged straight into the LAN port on my AirPort Extreme Base Station. In the living room, I have an old Dell running Xubuntu, a Mac Mini that's hooked to my HDTV à la AppleTV, and my Dish DVR which needs to be on the network to save me $5 a month on my bill. All three of these are connected via ethernet to my Linksys WRT54G which is the remote WDS node on my wifi network. On the wifi, we have my 17" PowerBook G4, my iPhone, and the Wii. Since my living room devices are bridged to my office via wifi, my transfer speeds between the G5, the Dell and the Mini are abysmal.

But all that is about to change. It's all still in process as I get components and as I wait for a chance to pull two 50ft CAT5e cables under the crawl-space of the house from the office to living room, but when it's all said and done, we'll have this gigabit switch hooked directly to my workstation, mini, and the old ethernet hub (now relocated to the TV cabinet). The Dell and the DVR will plug into the hub and end up with half-duplex 100baseTX onto the network. Not a bad speed boost for the Dell though it's primary purpose is my son's main computer for looking up Star Trek Wikis. As a bonus ,though, since I'm hardwiring the Dell, the DVR and the Mini to the network, my wifi won't have to carry their traffic, anymore.

Meanwhile, the Mini and the Workstation will now enjoy full-duplex flow controlled 1000BaseT between each other, and when I finally replace the G5 with a Mac Pro, the G5 will simply be moved into a corner of my office as a headless file/media server and will still enjoy full speed gigabit with the mini and the new workstation. Currently I have ripped some movies and TV shows from DVD and put them on the mini to watch on the HDTV and my iPhone. All those media files are going to be moved to the G5 and the mini will simply run them from the network. The mini only has 80GB of disk space, the G5 currently has 750GB, and will have more once I make it a server and do some HD swapping.

I'm extremely excited about upgrading the network. Now I just have to save up and get that mac pro...