Member Discussion

Wall-Mounting 28 Port Cisco Switch?

Due to lack of space, I had to design a skinny, longitudinal server cabinet, and was planning on using this Wallit Box to wall-mount a Cisco SG300-28MP switch. However, when I received the switch, I saw this blurb in the manual: "Only the 8-port models of the switch can be wall mounted." Huh?

I'm thinking that Cisco is simply saying that only the 8-port model can be wall-mounted without additional hardware, but it was too late to contact Cisco today. While I await Monday, I figured I'd ask the IPVM community if anybody had wall-mounted a Cisco switch larger than 8 ports? Am I missing any consequences from such an installation? Lastly, why would having the ports facing to the side be an issue? (see manual page below)


Cisco Switch Manual

...wall-mounted a Cisco switch larger than 8 ports? Am I missing any consequences from such an installation?

It sounds like they are saying you can only mount the 8-port one on the wall, the other ones should not be, whether you have hardware or not. The reason most likely has to do with heat dissapation, due to component density.

Notice how all the other switches in the series have double rows of ports, except the eight, which has one.  Even more telling notice how the 8 port one is the only which has an external power supply, removing the heat from the chassis.  Let's see what they say; maybe if you can mount it with a half-inch offset for air-flow they will be "cool" with that.

Lastly, why would having the ports facing to the side be an issue? (see manual page below)

Not sure why but the 200 series manuals have the same verbage but with one extra sentence, shown here:

You think that ports facing up would cause a simliar amount of strain. Though I could see avoiding either and going ports down... Still, I wonder why they took the dependent clause out of the that sentence? 

Yeah, I thought of the heat issue, but the vents & fans for the switch are on the sides (no vents on top or bottom). Seems to me if you wall mounted it and had the air flow from bottom vents to the top vents that would be best, but I'm no electrical engineer.

In regards to the strain on the connectors, there should not be much strain with proper cable securing/management. But, in the end, I will do whatever Cisco wants to avoid any warranty issues. Only problem is that I will have to reorder two smaller switches & stack them, or order multiple 8-port switches and wall mount them. Either way, if Cisco says no-go, this one has to go back since it will not fit flat in the server closet. :o(

Oh well, rookie mistake I guess. I'll chaulk it up to knowledge building. Still will follow-up with Cisco on Monday.

Thanks for the input.

Seems to me if you wall mounted it and had the air flow from bottom vents to the top vents that would be best, but I'm no electrical engineer.

It sounds like its mostly CYA, though looking at it from their point of view, they don't know exactly what kind of wall it is (and what's on the other side) and what's its heat conduction properties might be. And let's face it, some of them higher density ones get pretty hot, as well as loud. Have you fired it up yet? Are most of the ports spoken for already? If not, if memory serves me, you can disable the POE on the ones you don't need right now to make it run cooler and quieter.

Want a different answer? This guy doesn't seem concerned... :)

Anything heavier than an 8-port switch would likely pull the included drywall anchors out of the wall.

Not for a least a couple years though right? Maybe more if you don't skimp on the foam tape...

sg300's are a consumer / soho grade switch and have IIRC fewer mounting bracket options. Try using a 2960 or other (actually Cisco not Linksys) Cisco switch. and I agree there are likely cooling issues if you put it in a small enclosed shelf vertically with too little venting.

Just to play devil's advocate here: how would Cisco know where and how you mounted their switch? It's not like you would be screwing the bottom of the switch to the wall.

I've seen many devices mounted in vertical, wall-mounted racks. If you mount the switch in a vertical rack, which have horizontal rack rails, the switch is still correctly mounted to the rails.

Okay, I talked to Cisco this morning & they did not have an issue with rack-mounting the switch vertically. Not sure why they have that verbage in their manual then. Like a fool though, I forgot to ask them why wall-mounting was a no-no. I imagine it must have to do with weight to housing strength issues.

Not sure why they have that verbage in their manual then...

Was there something in there specifically about rack mounting it vertically? Or do you just mean the straight up or down verbiage? And for the record can you say exactly how you ended up mounting it, ports facing how? Just curious...

I've put plenty of larger switches on the wall, including SG300-28Ps. Just turn the rack ears 90 degrees and screw into the switch normally (so the ears are parallel to the top or bottom of the switch), then screw to the wall. I've put them with ports up, down, and to either side, never had an issue - usually it's whatever orientation suits that particular installation. And for the life of me, I can't find any pics of one of these installations...

If there's a stud handy, one ear can screw into that, and an anchor on the other end to "stabilize" the whole thing; usually, I use EZ-Anchors rather than drywall plugs - most versions are rated minimum 50lbs., more than enough for a couple of them to support a 24-port PoE switch.

I've also built a custom vertical "wall rack" with some plywood and 2x4s/2x6s/2x8s (depending on the depth needed - at 3.5" width, a 2x4 fits 2U perfectly; in this pic, 4U = 7" which fits a 7.5" 2x8 with a little room to spare):

$4000 worth of gear held in place by $7.50 worth of plyboard.

Lot sturdier than most $100 wall racks, too - this would support my weight, and probably yours as well.

What is the break-even ratio on rack vs. gear cost? Rack should be minimum 1/20th the cost of the gear it's holding? 1/10th?

BTW, stopped by one site with a directly-wall-mounted switch and snapped a picture - on the left is the wall-mount DVR:

switches larger than 8 ports have genuine cooling requirements. make sure there's cooling. the raid array photo in the mesage thread looks scary because with all that plywood there's no apparent airflow. yes, a sound fan/venting arrangement would make the plywood deal reasonable.

I wouldn't use the SG, it's soho-grade (fails quicker, bad management, good way to get hassled by the local IT staff, genetically it's a Linksys (read: junk) design.

The plywood doesn't go to the floor - the back end of the RAID is pretty much flush with the bottom of the fixture. Plenty of airflow, thanks.

You use the switches you want, I'll keep using the ones that provide me a suitable cost/performance/reliability balance, thanks. Haven't had an SG fail yet, and don't need all the fancy management stuff, so... yeah.

I'm guessing the keyhole slots on the back of the switch are perpendicular to the sides with the ports. Thus the recommendation is for mechanical reasons--in theory it could fall off the wall if gravity is not holding the switch down in a narrow end of a slot. I've seen other devices with the same recommendation (for the same reason) such as an APC UPS I was wallmounting recently. I've got a little Cisco SF100D in my garage I had wanted to mount "sideways" for cleaner cable management, but needed to mount up/down as recommended due to the arrangement of the keyhole slots.

I doubt it has anything to do with convection/heat dissipation.

With good quality anchors, this is a wonderful product for what you need (the 2U is cheaper yet).

I have used it in a few installations already without issue. As others have said, make sure the fans can do their thing to keep the inside cool.

I don't know if this was mentioned but just use the Middle Atlantic DBLX/VBLX wall mount lock boxes. You can vertically rack mount the patch panel and switch or just the switch and pull everything into the enclosure. It comes with accessories like temp controlled fans etc. I've put all sorts of gear in these, switches, NVR's, UPS's, etc. in all orientations with no issues. If you want a more cost effective option, VMP makes a lower quality one that will fit the bill. I don't believe it has rack rails but just turn the rack ears 90 degrees on the switch and screw it into the back of the box.

We don't do any residential. We do everything we can to install a purpose-built 19" data rack or cabinet on a fire-rated and painted plywood backboard. We always terminate cabling on patch panels, too. There are tons of options for wall mount cabinets/racks, to include low profile, side mount rails and top mount rails. Your customer and all competent IT professionals will appreciate the quality install. It will cost more, though. We've installed Cisco small business series and Catalyst switches vertically and in side mount configurations. We've had no issues whatsoever. Ensure cabling is supported and there is airflow.

I am late to the discussion and haven't read all of the replies, but this is a simple misunderstanding. Cisco simply meant that they only provided a wall mounting option for the 8-port model. Anything larger is intended to be rack mounted. This has nothing to do with heat or directional mounting. It is just the way they designed the chassis.

If you need to vertically wall mount the switch, they make simple brackets for that. 1U Wall Mount Patch Panel Bracket – 19 in – Steel - Vertical Mounting Bracket for Networking and Data Equipment (RK119WALLV): Electronics

Didn't realize this old thread was still being kicked around.

I forgot to update way back when that I ended up using the same solution suggested by Jon (see pics below). Works beautifully and looks professional. These pics were taken prior to final cable management, so please disreguard their messy nature.

Cisco Wall MountCisco Wall Mount