The back story: We have a building with 6 separate companies all using the same network to access the internet/print. All we have is an asdl router/firewall connected to a hub and then patched in to various ports around the office. We can have ~30 computers on the network at anyone time so if we run out of ports I just uplink another hub...end of!
We are just about to by a nice and shiny new server for our network and I heard (via a friend) about vlans and the possibility of splitting the network in to smaller networks (1 for each comp) but still share resources (internet/network printers). Please correct me if wrong.
So the question is what do I need to achieve this? I've looked in to managed switched and 48 port ones are pretty damn expensive, do I need this? or, could I essentially get a 12/24 port and uplink another switch/hub/something without messing up the vlans?
Any help and advice on how to achieve this is greatly appreciated.