Switch Router

What Does Switch Router Mean?

A switch router is a device that combines the abilities of both switches and routers for routing data around and between networks. This device is able to forward data based on a device’s physical address, as a switch, as well as forward packets based on the location of the next hop address as a router.


Techopedia Explains Switch Router

Switches operate at the Data Link layer or the second layer, while routers operate at the Network layer or the third layer of the OSI Reference Model. However, switch routers perform mostly in the second layer as well as many of the layer 3 functions that routers do. While most routers perform packet switching using software running on a microprocessor, switch routers implement routing using application-specific integrated circuits (ASIC). That is a type of IC specially made for single-purpose dedicated processing, as it is only meant to do one thing, and in the case of switch routers, that is data packet routing. Unfortunately that makes them less flexible than dedicated routers.

An example of a switch router is the label switch router. This type of switch router uses labels in order to perform routing. It is found at the middle of a Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS) network and is in charge of label switching to route the packets being carried in the network.


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Margaret Rouse

Margaret Rouse is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical, business audience. Over the past twenty years her explanations have appeared on TechTarget websites and she's been cited as an authority in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine and Discovery Magazine.Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages. If you have a suggestion for a new definition or how to improve a technical explanation, please email Margaret or contact her…