Best Core Switch for Home Network and Lab

Hello all,

I currently have an older Netgear 24 port switch as my core switch, that powers my home network and home lab. I would like to move this to a currently supported switch. I do not need L3 functionality, although it might be good for lab work. I could segregate this traffic at my OPNsense firewall through a physical NIC.

I do not need PoE in the core. I have been using Mikrotik 5 port edge switches, that come back to the core via OM3 fiber(yes overkill for now). If SFP+ came with the core switch at a crazy good price I might consider it for future proofing the core.

What are my options for reasonably priced core? 24 ports is good, although its a bit overkill. If there was a 16 port variant that would be ideal, with 2 or 4 SFP/+ ports?

I just replaced my unmanned switch with a managed switch that supports link aggregation.
Three TrueNAS systems connected to the switch with LACP.
26 ports total, 2 SPF ports. Can never have too may ports!

If 1Gb is fine something like a Cisco Catalyst is a great option. Here is one for less than $50 (USED Cisco WS-C2960CG-8TC-L Switch 8 Port 10/100/1000Base-T 2x SFP 882658347948 | eBay).

If you want 10Gb, then the Cisco Nexus 5010 is a great option for less than $150. (Cisco N5K-C5010P-BF Nexus 5010 20 Port Gigabit Switch w/ Dual PSU N5k-PAC-550W | eBay)

Is the 5010 still getting firmware updates?

No, it has been EOL for awhile, but as long as you don’t expose it to the internet you should be good from a security standpoint. I own a few myself and have had no issues.

That’s cool…might make me connect my Internet service and the outside of my firewall onto a current small switch and connect the inside ports of my firewall onto the 5010.

What I mean by exposing it to the internet is by port forwarding your mgmt interface or something like that. If you are only using it for L2 you would be fine.