Networking Needs – Computer Repair
Networking is a complex technology, so a networker cannot rely on a one-size-fits-all approach to it. Each unique organization’s resources and needs will necessitate a different set of networking solutions. Therefore, an individual or a team that already knows and understands their organization and their relevant options will need to carefully consider the situation in order to determine the optimal network design for their situation. Here are some of the major decision points to consider if you are planning a new network as well as some of the questions you should use as the basis for your decisions.
SEE ALSO: Wired and Wireless Networking
When deciding what your networking needs are, there are a few things that should be considered. You might need to know how many computers and networked devices you or your organization has, what networking infrastructure you already use, the layout of your organization’s headquarters so you or a professional will know where to string the network cables, what applications are most heavily relied on, and how much money is budgeted for the installation and the maintenance of the networks.
Once your network provider has the above information, you can collectively determine what scale network your organization needs to design or redesign. The vendors your organization works with, the technologies your company has on hand, and the decisions you will need to make vary considerably depending on whether you’re building WAN links or LAN infrastructure.
Scale is usually the first and most important determination in network planning because it often determines or influences your other decisions. While there are other scales discussed in networking literature, many companies only need to focus on the two or three network scales that impact small and mid-sized organizations (LANs, WANs, and CANs).
A campus area network (or CAN) connects multiple LANs belonging to the same organization when they’re in close geographic proximity. CANs are usually a consideration for the largest organizations. As with WANs, an organization can build its own CAN, but most opt to lease facilities from their local ISPs. A local area network (or LAN) is usually designed and implemented for a single building or office. A LAN’s primary function is the interconnection of the computing resources within a single organization. In most cases, LANs use Ethernet over twisted-pair cabling or wireless technology. The third common kind is a wide area network (or WAN). A WAN connects a single office or branch LAN to its parent organization’s network as well as all of the millions of networks that together make up the Internet. Most authorities define WAN as a network that crosses one or more jurisdictional boundaries. WAN links usually fall under the purview of ISPs and telecommunications companies. Very few organizations have the resources to build and maintain their own WAN links, and it’s usually more cost-effective to lease them from the local phone or the local cable company. WAN links depend on numerous technologies that vary considerably in terms of speed, cost, and bandwidth.