This morning, I’d like to drop one for a really great piece of equipment that did everything I asked of it without complaint and died before its time: the Unifi 8-Port POE Switch, model US-8-150W. Goodbye dear switch. You were a real person, and a glancing blow took you from us too soon.
I made this switch back in January of 2016, when I was ramping up my quest to replace my shaky home Wi-Fi with something a little more enterprise. The results, overall, were positive (you can read about how this endeavor came about in this article here, which contains a lot of thinking about the consequences — good and bad — of overusing home networks), and this little 8-port switch proved to be a A key enabler of the design I settled on.
Why? Well, it’s a nice enough device – having 802.3af/at and also Ubiquiti’s 24V passive PoE option made it universally compatible with anything I wanted to connect it to. But the main feature was the two SFP slots, which technically makes this a 10-port switch. I have a detached garage, and wanted to connect some PoE security cameras in there, as well as an additional wireless access point. The simplest solution would have been to run an Ethernet network between the house and the garage, but this is not a simple solution at all, as an Ethernet network can be run underground between two buildings. Electrical problem Unless it’s done by professionals with professional tools, which I certainly am not. Some estimates from local companies told me that digging a culvert between my house and garage would cost several hundred dollars, which was more than I wanted to spend.
But fiber optics doesn’t have any of the electrical problems that copper does, and it works great between buildings. All it takes to connect my garage is some cheap Gigabit SFP transceivers (I’ve certainly used those These are here) 40 metres Aqua coated multimode fiberAnd a $75 appointment with a contractor to actually run the fiber. Then I had to install the switch, and suddenly, the garage was officially part of the network.
The reason this switch required a front-page write-up is the sheer confidence with which it handled the ridiculous amount of heat-related abuse it had to endure. During the summer — which in Houston lasts about 10 months of the year — the garage temperature can exceed 120 degrees Fahrenheit (about 50 degrees Celsius) and stay that way for 10 or 12 hours, and the CPU temperature rises 8. 150 watts. The sensor spent most of its operating life reading between 70° to 80° C. This little switch has eaten those temperatures every day, without complaint Nearly eight years.
This is a very good thing, in my opinion. In fact, the switch would have remained in place, happily doing its job, had it not been for a lightning strike near my house a couple of months ago. The hit caused a host of problems, one of which was jamming the Switch’s brains.
Even after the strike, switch He still won’t die. Two ports stopped working completely, and two others were no longer producing PoE, but the US-8-150W kept working for another month while I looked for a replacement.
In the end, the only thing I could find to replace the US-8-150W ended up being another US-8-150W – and that’s what now hangs in my garage, in the same place its predecessor was. Kudos to Ubiquiti for producing this tank – whatever the company did, good or bad, the US-8-150W was one hell of a turnaround. That’s it, and this is the US-8-150W I’m replacing it with. If you can get eight more years out of this one, it will certainly be money well spent.
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