Jun 15, 2009
Evening everybody,

I have been looking through the internet but I got even more confused and haven't seen an answer I liked. My dilemma is that I have a router/modem combo but I already ate up my 4 slots and while I like wifi, I want to be able to plug in more items to it around 6-8.

I have been reading that the problem with Hubs is that it'll let internet pass through but after plugging in more than a few it won't know where to send different packets. (please correct me if I am wrong)

So the next obvious thing was to just get a switch since it would be able to handle and reroute traffic. However, as I kept reading some have suggested to hook up a second router, I really don't think I want to do that since with just one it's so hard to diagnose why sometimes the internet goes down.

I wanted a suggestion and if you could maybe send a link or a trusted brand.

Thanks in advance, much appreciated.


No Lifer
Aug 25, 2001
A (NAT) router, allows you to share a single public global IP address, with multiple machines on your local LAN, each with it's own local reserved IP address.

A router, generally has a switch built-in. That allows multiple switched ethernet connections to the router. Note that a consumer switch is an L2 device.

If you simply need more switch ports than your router provides, then get a second separate switch, not another router.

However, if you want wifi in a second location, a distance from the first, and there is a wired connection available for this 2nd router, then you can connect it (wired) LAN-to-LAN, and disable NAT/routing, and DHCP, and set it up as an AP.


Golden Member
Apr 13, 2010
I thought that hubs have been phased out a long time ago, when switches became cheap.
Yes, if you do need more ports, then get a switch. 5, 8, and 16-port versions are common (on the cheap end).

It makes no sense to buy a router to act as AP, when better quality APs (made for that very function: AP) are available at almost same price.


Platinum Member
May 14, 2002
Yes lots of good advice already. Just buy a switch. I'm partial to the 8 port unmanaged metallic case TP-Links that look identical to the Netgear 8 ports. Those have been on sale 3-4 times in 2017 for around $20. The unmanaged Netgear metal case 8 ports are fine, but it's missing IGMP snooping. IGMP snooping is not a big deal if you do not use IPTV. IPTV is not the same as Internet streaming (Netflix, Hulu, YouTube, etc). It's just the price for the two are the same and Netgear is missing that feature. For Netgear I do recommend their managed 8 metallic case port switch. It can be had in the low $30s and has many of the same features as their fancy dancy 8 port Nighthawk switch.

I have been seeing newer plastic case models more friendlier looking from TP-Link and Netgear and have no experience. My co-worker at work who is a db admin has been using some of the cheapest 5 port gigabit switches from Tenda I think. $10 from Microcenter. Yes, I know. He runs them 24/7 to get more ports in his cube and pushes a ton of data. He's had zero issues. Just use good cables with gigabit networking. Not expensive... good.