SOHO network and SOHO Router in computer networking?

The full form of SOHO is Small Office and Home Office. On a technical level, they are both similar networks. A small or home office network consists of a limited number of network devices connected to the local area network (LAN) and having access to the Internet.

Small business networks, for example, may consist of only a few PCs, one printer, and a few additional devices. This tutorial will discuss the SOHO network and the specific router for setting up a small home and business network.

What is the SOHO network?

The internet connection we receive from our Internet service provider brings a simple and small network to our home or office. The network consists of one router having a few LAN ports, a WAN port, and a wireless access point that provides connectivity over Wifi.

The WAN port router connects to the ISP for the Internet and LAN ports for internal connectivity. If we have PCs attached to the LAN port and a device on a wireless channel, the PCs and wireless devices can communicate using private IP addresses.

The above is sufficient for browsing the internet and printing papers etc.

But what if we want to use the same network for a small business or need to convert it to a SOHO network? The network needs to be expanded to include more PCs (for example, a maximum of 5), printers, a VoIP phone, etc. Running a small business network may require a firewall, a DHCP server, and other functionalities. In this regard, the existing basic network is insufficient, as it lacks sufficient LAN ports for PCs and other devices and does not have a firewall for security reasons.

A SOHO network needs switches, firewalls, Access points, and DHCP servers. So along with the Internet, computers can access other resources over LAN.

What is a SOHO Router?

Before letting know about the SOHO router from Cisco or any other vendor. Let’s understand where the SOHO router fits. For residential use, a simple ADSL router works well. In addition to the essential functions of a router, enterprises require additional functions such as firewalls, VPNs, etc., and each should be able to support very high capacities.

The SOHO router falls between these two types. In terms of price, it is a little more expensive than residential but less expensive than enterprise. While covering nearly the same functionality as a large company’s network, it is tailored for the needs of small businesses.

This system consists of all devices (such as a switch, router, etc.) in one router. It features an easy-to-use web interface rather than a command-line interface.