GarrettCom enhances Ethernet switches

07 March 2007

GarrettCom Europe has made its standard two layer Ethernet switches available with IGMP (Internet Group Management Protocol) software.

The manufacturer claims this will reduce the cost of Ethernet traffic management in data intensive video applications, employing multiple cameras.

The IGMP L2 option allows users to employ standard Ethernet switches instead of layer 3 switches and routers across much of the network, often requiring only a single layer 3 router to be used as a master.

Applications such as networked security, building surveillance and traffic management often make use of multiple video or CCTV cameras, transmitting data at rates as high as 5Mbps. This multicast traffic can quickly exceed the bandwidth of a standard Ethernet network, but the IGMP protocol provides a means to manage traffic. IGMP is a standard defined in RFC1112 and RFC2236, and specifies how a host can register a router to receive specific multicast traffic. Without IGMP support, multicast traffic is transmitted to all of the ports in each network switch, creating unnecessary traffic that floods the interface and bogs down the network.

Furthermore, IGMP combines the video-over-Ethernet traffic stream from cameras with other typical LAN data traffic, enabling a single, common LAN system to be used for both types of traffic.

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