Let’s jump straight into this shall we:

In Cisco Switch, Uplink is used to describe a wireless connection that is made from a Local Area Network (LAN) to a Wide Area Network (WAN). It can also be referred to as a port that is used to connect toward the core of the network.

Downlink, on the other hand, is the direct opposite of uplink.  It is a connection made in the opposite direction of an Uplink from an outside network to a local network. For example, internet downloads travel through downlink to the device while uploading travel through an uplink connection.

Most computer network hardware has uplink ports that are designed for plugging external network cables; these ports enable the network to have a direct link and communicate with other outside networks. For example uplink ports on home routers allow the user to connect to broadband moderns and the internet.

Generally, Cisco Switch Uplink ports are made of gig and copper fable; they can be used for connecting broadband to a home router, while Cisco downlink ports are usually dual speed copper ports.

The downlink ports connect the user’s host while the uplink port takes the traffic to the rest of the network.

Now here is the cool part – There really are no technical differences between a downlink and uplink port on a Cisco Switch. They are really just definitions to identify which port is doing what function. You can configure the ports yourself to be uplink or downlink.


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