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Netgear ProSAFE GSS108E Click Series 8-port Gigabit Switch Review

Netgear ProSAFE GSS108E Click Series 8-port Gigabit Switch Review

Right side up, upside down, screw it, or Velcro it; you can put this little low-power ProSAFE Click switch from Netgear wherever you want.

@ChrisRamseyer
Published Wed, Feb 11 2015 9:17 PM CST   |   Updated Thu, Jul 30 2020 4:20 PM CDT
Rating: 93%Manufacturer: Netgear

Introduction & Specifications, Pricing, and Availability

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VIEW GALLERY - 37 IMAGES

Until now, most of our switch reviews have been datacenter models that helped build our enterprise test racks, but at this year's CES, Netgear peaked our interest in something new. The new Netgear Click Switch product family consists of two models, the eight-port model we're testing today, and a larger 16-port model.

We've all owned small, low-cost switches that are not much larger than a few decks of cards, and we've all ran into the same problems with them. The cable tension provides more force than the weight of the switch, which lifts the switch off the table. If you are in a conference room, the deck-of-cards switches always seem have the ports facing the wrong way too, which makes your conference room table look like a spaghetti factory.

Netgear lists the new Click Switch products in the business portion of the company's website, but with a price of less than $70, and an exciting feature list, we can easily see this as a crossover product. The Click Switch products ship with a mounting plate that can be screwed into place, or mounted with the included straps. To put the icing on the cake, Netgear designed the switch so users could choose the power cord exit location.

When I first saw this product, my mind immediately drifted to home theater installations. Most of the devices I've purchased over the last few years have been connected, and many of the devices can connect via Wi-Fi, but the reduced bandwidth makes browsing through thousands of folders and files quite painful. If others are also using the same Wi-Fi channel with Netflix streaming or other activities, then your music files will show up slower than the time it takes to play the song. If you are serious about accessing your audio collection over a network, then wired is the only way to go. The Click Switch products are also managed so you get VLAN and QoS features.

Specifications, Pricing, and Availability

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The feature list is extensive for a switch that sells for this low of a price.

Netgear ProSAFE GSS108E Click Series 8-port Gigabit Switch Review 03 | TweakTown.com

Some features are model specific. The eight-port model we're testing today includes two USB ports for charging portable devices. The 16-port model also has an exclusive feature; it supports link aggregation of up to eight members per team.

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Netgear's Flexible 1-2-3-4 mounting system gives you choices when placing the switch, be it in your conference room, home theater, or Leviton Media Enclosure.

We found the new Click Switch eight-port model at Amazon and Newegg for $69.99, and the larger 16-port model at Newegg for $149.99. Both models fall under Netgear's ProSAFE Lifetime Hardware Warranty.

PRICING: You can find the Netgear GSS108E for sale below. The prices listed are valid at the time of writing, but can change at any time. Click the link to see the very latest pricing for the best deal.

United States: The Netgear GSS108E eight-port model retails for $69.99 at Amazon.

Canada: The Netgear GSS108E eight-port model retails for CDN$100.38 at Amazon Canada.

Netgear GSS108E

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Netgear ships the GSS108E in a full retail package.

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Netgear goes into a lot of detail on the package to show different ways to mount the Click Switch.

Netgear ProSAFE GSS108E Click Series 8-port Gigabit Switch Review 09 | TweakTown.com

In the package, you will find an Installation Guide, and a software disk that contains the ProSAFE Plus Configuration software and a digital installation guide.

Netgear ProSAFE GSS108E Click Series 8-port Gigabit Switch Review 10 | TweakTown.com

In the package, you also receive the switch, special power cord, the mounting bracket, and two Velco like straps.

Netgear ProSAFE GSS108E Click Series 8-port Gigabit Switch Review 11 | TweakTown.com

Here we get our first look at the GSS108E eight-port switch.

Netgear ProSAFE GSS108E Click Series 8-port Gigabit Switch Review 12 | TweakTown.com

This model has two USB ports for charging devices, and eight gigabit Ethernet ports. On the far right side of the ports, a green LED shows when the switch is powered on, and each port has two LEDs. One LED shows connectivity, and the other shows activity.

Netgear ProSAFE GSS108E Click Series 8-port Gigabit Switch Review 13 | TweakTown.com Netgear ProSAFE GSS108E Click Series 8-port Gigabit Switch Review 14 | TweakTown.com

One of the main features is on display here. The power cable can be rotated to face the bottom of the switch, or out of the side.

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On the back side of the switch, we found a factory default button recessed inside the switch.

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The bracket is just as important on this product as the switch is. This is the side that faces the wall or desk. Two rubber pads keep the bracket from marking the wall, but also keep the switch from moving around on a desktop.

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Mounting options for this switch include using the supplied screws to secure the bracket to a solid object, or using the slots at the top and bottom for Velcro straps or zip ties.

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Here we see the supplied Velcro straps through the tabs.

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The Velcro strips can also act as straps for cords. A hole on one end allows users to put screws through the strips.

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Here we see the switch mounted to the bracket facing outward.

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The switch can be mounted to the bracket two ways. Tabs shown above allow you to mount the switch with the ports facing outward, or parallel with the mounting surface.

Inside the Configuration Menu

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Netgear's ProSAFE Plus Configuration Utility allows you to find and connect to the switch.

Netgear ProSAFE GSS108E Click Series 8-port Gigabit Switch Review 24 | TweakTown.com

You can configure the switch with a dedicated IP address, or allow the DHCP server to assign an IP address.

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Once inside the switch via the IP network, you have full control over the available settings.

Netgear ProSAFE GSS108E Click Series 8-port Gigabit Switch Review 31 | TweakTown.com

Several options are available, and there are more than most users will actually configure, but if you need to tweak the settings, the options are available to do so.

Netgear ProSAFE GSS108E Click Series 8-port Gigabit Switch Review 32 | TweakTown.com

Everything is configured to work right out of the box, so users that don't understand every option can just plug everything in and the switch will work.

Netgear ProSAFE GSS108E Click Series 8-port Gigabit Switch Review 33 | TweakTown.com
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The help section of the IP settings page allows you to look at the user guide, and even get support for the Click Switch products.

Test System Setup and Testing

Test System Setup

Netgear ProSAFE GSS108E Click Series 8-port Gigabit Switch Review 200 | TweakTown.com

Today we're using one of our NAS multi-client test systems to connect to all eight ports of the Netgear GSS108E eight-port Click Switch. To test the switch, we passed data through each port in both directions at the same time.

Benchmarks - Port to Port Throughput

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Here we see two test results. The green line shows one computer sending IxChariot's ultra-high performance workload to another. The second test shows the same workload running in both directions. When running the bidirectional transfer, we did observe a small loss in performance. The second test shows the average of both transfers.

Benchmarks - Full Mesh Throughput Average

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For this set of tests, we use every port on the switch, and pass data to and from the ports. The mesh looks like this:

10.0.10.5 -> 10.0.10.6

10.0.10.6 -> 10.0.10.7

10.0.10.7 -> 10.0.10.8

10.0.10.8 -> 10.0.10.9

10.0.10.9 -> 10.0.10.10

10.0.10.10 -> 10.0.10.11

10.0.10.11 -> 10.0.10.12

10.0.10.12 -> 10.0.10.5

The large drop in performance at the start of the test should be ignored. The test starts with one transfer, and then ramps up another pair milliseconds later, until all pairs are transmitting data. The scores are still averaged for all transfers, and not just what is transferring data at the time.

Final Thoughts

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At $69.99, the Netgear GSS108E 8-port model we tested today is an affordable managed switch that offers line rate performance in a convenient form factor. After looking around, we found lower cost managed switches on the market, but all were larger than the GSS108E. We also found several low-cost unmanaged switches, but they were too small to keep the wires from changing location.

The real standout feature of the Click Switch products is the ability to change the orientation and mounting configurations. This feature makes these products versatile so you can put a managed switch where you might normally have issues. With a small modification, you can even use the switch in a Leviton Media Enclosure when building a wiring closet or "wiring box." Many new homes are built with the central point for wires that spread throughout the home, but the switch options are limited at this time.

On the performance side, the GSS108E provides the bandwidth you would expect from a Netgear business class product. The extra managed features like quality of service are nice if you spend the time to configure them. Most users will just plug the GSS108E in, and start using the switch; since the GSS108E is configured to work out of the box, we found this route an acceptable option as well.

PRICING: You can find the Netgear GSS108E for sale below. The prices listed are valid at the time of writing, but can change at any time. Click the link to see the very latest pricing for the best deal.

United States: The Netgear GSS108E eight-port model retails for $69.99 at Amazon.

Canada: The Netgear GSS108E eight-port model retails for CDN$100.38 at Amazon Canada.

TweakTown award
Performance93%
Quality including Design and Build93%
General Features96%
Bundle and Packaging92%
Value for Money91%
Overall93%

The Bottom Line: Netgear's Click Switch products allow you to place a switch in places that might normally be inaccessible. They are silent, but offer line rate performance in a configurable form factor.

PRICING: You can find products similar to this one for sale below.

USUnited States: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon.com

UKUnited Kingdom: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon.co.uk

AUAustralia: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon.com.au

CACanada: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon.ca

DEDeutschland: Finde andere Technik- und Computerprodukte wie dieses auf Amazon.de

Chris Ramseyer started his career as a LAN Party organizer in Midwest USA. After working with several computer companies he was asked to join the team at The Adrenaline Vault by fellow Midwest LAN Party legend Sean Aikins. After a series of shake ups at AVault, Chris eventually took over as Editor-in-Chief before leaving to start Real World Entertainment. Look for Chris to bring his unique methods of testing Hard Disk Drives, Solid State Drives as well as RAID controller and NAS boxes to TweakTown as he looks to provide an accurate test bed to make your purchasing decisions easier.

We openly invite the companies who provide us with review samples / who are mentioned or discussed to express their opinion. If any company representative wishes to respond, we will publish the response here. Please contact us if you wish to respond.

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