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What's the difference between a L3 switch and a router?

I need to know what is the difference between a L3 switch and a router, and why routing through the L3 switch is faster than the router.
With current routing and switching features and power that is packed there does not remain virtually any difference between the two. Only difference is in functionally. Switches do more of switching than routing and the router does more of routing than switching. In all of the routing there is an algorithm that is run before making a routing table and routing decisions are based on that. Whereas in switching a mechanism switching table is built based on the Mac address of the source that arrives on a particular port. Flushing of the routing table is based on various factors whereas in switching tables it's merely a function of time. These factors make switching faster than routing but they both have their uses depending upon the scenario you are using.
This was last published in May 2003

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