Problem solve Get help with specific problems with your technologies, process and projects.

Network three buildings at a reasonable cost

I want to networking three buildings with 10, 15 and 5 employees working on the computers respectively. The networking must provide Web server, e-mail, Internet, sharing of hardware resources and external storage for backup. The network setup should provide more bandwidth for all members and permit multiple simultaneous links to the Internet through one line. It should also accommodate easy upgrading. Which Internet connection shall I use? This should all be within reasonable cost. Is there any other extra hardware to be purchased?
While I don?t know all the particulars of your situation I would question how close the buildings are located to one another? Do you own the land in-between? If so, you might want to consider fiber. A fiber backbone offers excellent speed and bandwidth. As for your servers you may want to install switches with gigabit ports. Gigabit switches have fallen in price and the network cards are under $100 now.

Several questions come into play when evaluating Internet connectivity options.
1. What's available?
2. What are you connectivity needs?
3. How much money do you have budgeted to accomplish your goals?

Have you investigated the options? They might possibly include: T1, Frame Rely, or DSL. Depending on the needs of your 30 employees DSL might work well for you. What amount of traffic will be required by your employees? I would suggest that you put some controls in place to limit access. IPChains, TCP Wrappers, and Snort are three possibilities. Snort will even run on a Windows box!

You may even consider having more than one connection to add fault tolerance. Even without a fixed IP address or dedicated web hosting provider many options are available. Services such as www.noip.com can track and maintain a connection to your dynamitic IP. Finish up the network with a web based email program and you should be well on your way. Good luck!

This was last published in April 2003

Dig Deeper on Campus area network

Start the conversation

Send me notifications when other members comment.

Please create a username to comment.