What is a Switch?What are it functions?

  • Intelligent device  
  • Communicate through MAC address table 
  • Each port works on a fixed band-width 
  • Duplex Communication 
  • Communication works on flooding and unicast 

MAC Address- Hardware Address of the device  

Switch with Ethernet ports connected
Switch Symbol

Switch Operation:-

  • Switch operation mainly depends on the mac addresses of the devices.
  • Switch is a data link layer device.
  • Switches Flood the traffic to every device and depending on the MAC address of the device they start forwarding the data.
  • It works in a store and check the MAC addresses of the devices that need to transfer the data from one source to other destination.
Switch Connected to different Devices


  • The switch receives a request from device 2 to send the data to device 4.
  • Now the switch starts making a MAC address table and register each address of the device and these addresses will be stored to send the data in future between the devices.
  • As shown below the data packet has both the source and the destination.
Switch stores MAC addresses in the table
  • The source address is stored and belongs to device 2.
  • Then then the switch floods the data packets and the destination device 4 received the packet as it intends to receive there, so that the device 4 MAC is been registered in the table.
  • Once the switch has the addresses of the devices, it sends the packets according to the destination address received.

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