I have recently started a new job, so have inherited a network.  I have attached the network topology that I have inherited (link at bottom of post).

Switches 1, 2 and 3 are in the same building.  Switch 4 is in a different building connected by fibre (about 20 meters away so not far).  All switches have 1gb fibre sfp's that connected them together.  There is physically a fibre connect between switch 1 (Port 52) and switch 2 (port 51) but have no connectivity lights.

Switches 1, 2 and 4 are Cisco Catalyst 2960S

Switch 3 is a Cisco Catalyst 2960x

My question(s) is, is this the best setup for a 4 switch network?  Should I enable to link between switch 1 and 2 if it isn't already and how would I do it if I need to?

Network Topology


Usually a best practice is to designate one to be the distribution switch. It will prevent network hop

If I take switch 1, that mean all other switch 2,3,4 will uplink to the switch 1.

I have difficulty to imaging a switch (4) in another building that inter-connect two of your switch (1) to (2) & (3).

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  • Unless the switches are configured as layer-3 switches and are routing from switch to switch, they are not really considered hops because the TTL is a layer-3 field, and it doesn't get decremented by layer-2 switches. – Ron Maupin Feb 14 '17 at 16:24
  • @RonMaupin Yes, but if a server is located on switch 1 and another server on switch 2 that talk to each other, the path is not optimal. – yagmoth555 Feb 14 '17 at 16:34

You have no "redundant" links, so if a link between any two switches goes down you'll have a loss of connectivity for some of your network hosts/devices. For example, if the link between switch 1 and switch 4 goes down then all of the hosts/devices connected to switch 1 will be isolated from the rest of the network.

Assuming STP (Spanning Tree Protocol) is enabled on all four switches, then yes, you probably want to link switch 1 and switch 2 so as to create a "redundant" path throughout the network.

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