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We want to restrict traffic through a switch to 90% of our total inbound bandwidth in order to reserve the other 10% for another switch running a different internal network. Can this be done without affecting the speed of internal traffic between users below that switch?

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You'll want to provide details on the hardware you're running. What's the make/model of the switch? Unmanaged switches almost assuredly won't be able to handle this, but it's quite possible a managed switch could. –  natacado Aug 16 '10 at 21:50
    
It would be significantly easier to use QoS and prioritize the traffic from the "second LAN" rather than trying to bandwidth limit the first. Also, you can't limit the incoming traffic, you can only limit outgoing traffic (as you don't control the device doing the sending); so what you're switch will do to start is still saturate the connection until it's packet buffer is full. Then it will start discarding packets that it can't send, resulting in TCP retransmits, and more bandwidth used. It's not efficient at all. –  Chris S Aug 17 '10 at 0:19

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Yes it can be done.. but depends on the switch. IE. Cisco models can do it, HP can do it, but a basic nonmanaged switch cannot do it. Most "smart" switches can't do it either, ie. anything that has a web gui but no telnet CLI mode.

Ideally, you would connect both switches together and run different VLANs and set policies that way instead of 2 separate physical networks. It's harder to manage with separate switches, as they can't tell what the other is doing and you can't manage them.

If you have unmanaged switches, you might be able to set QoS/bandwidth limit policies on your router above the switches for each port or ip subnet.

This is a one of the "yes it can be done, depending on what existing equipment you have" questions.

If you have a basic home router and 2 basic consumer switches then no.
If you have soho equipment then yes but might take some playing to get it how you want. If you have "enterprise-ish" equipment like hp/cisco/juniper very easy to do.

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Yes, you can do that if you enable this restriction only to the inbound interface. But without further information a can't help you much

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slaptijack.com/networking/… have a look at it. It may help –  Nikolaidis Fotis Aug 16 '10 at 22:17

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