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Can you help me design the best network for this company?

By jaley ·
I am a student, yes this is an assignment, however, I am allowed to collaborate with professionals because the teacher said getting help from experienced people is a good way to learn and a good way to see how its done.
A consulting firm located in Chicago. Fifty people work in its home office. An additional 25 employees work from remote locations. They are adding another 25 employees by opening a second location in Detroit. The new building in Detroit was purchased with its existing technology infrastructure intact. I am trying to evaluate their existing infrastructure and recommend the best approach to integrating the data communication, computer networks, and telephone systems of the three locations. Hopefully, with your help, we can create a company wide technology infrastructure which supports seemingly seamless connectivity and data flow.

This is what we know:
Home Office

Staff:
50 employees. The IT operation is housed here.

Networking:
Four departmental LANs:
Business and Finance Office, Staff Consultants, Administration, and HR.
These LANs run Windows 2000 Advanced Server with several NT4.0 Servers. 25 Remote workers have dial-in access to the network through a modem pool.
E-mail service runs on a Microsoft Exchange Server using Outlook as the client software.

Phone Service:
The local and long distance phone service from Local Telephone Company through a leased PBX. Phone services include Voice Mail, Call Waiting, Call Forwarding.

Internet Access and Usage:
All departments at the home office have Internet Access through the network via a DSL line to the company's ISP, Sharethenet.com.

Software Applications:
All employees are provided with Microsoft Office Professional suite of applications including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Access.
The Company's financial systems run on Great Plains Accounting Software. Great Plains is used for personnel information, payroll, inventory, accounts payable, accounts receivable, quarterly
and annual reports, and tax documentation.

Detroit

Staff:
connectivity and data flow

Networking:
The network consists of a single LAN running under Windows 2000 Server.
E-mail Service is via a POP3 client through the Internet to the home offices Exchange e-mail server.

Phone Service:
The local and long distance phone service from Local Telephone Company through a leased PBX. Phone services include Voice Mail, Call Waiting, Call Forwarding. This service is not connected directly to the Building A system.

Internet Access and Usage:
All offices in Detroit share Internet Access through the network via the company's ISP,Sharethenet.com.

Software Applications:
All employees are provided with Microsoft Office Professional suite of applications including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Access.
The Detroit location is unable to access the Great Plains financial software directly, and uses FTP to upload data weekly from an Access database.

1. The local area networks are to be interconnected.
2. The networks in both are to be interconnected.
3. The new building, Detroit, is to be inter-networked with the other locations using its existing technology infrastructure wherever possible, though some changes may be made if absolutely required for smooth integration.
4. Employees in all locations are to have access to the Internet through a dedicated line to a single ISP.
5. Telephone service for the buildings is to function as a single system so that any phone in any building may reach any other phone using only the extension.
6. All employees are to have voice mail.
7. All employees are to have e-mail through the exchange server in the home office including the remote workers.

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My input on this:

by jaley In reply to Can you help me design th ...

We know there are four departmental LANs: Business and Finance Office, Staff Consultants, Administration, and HR:

To me, that means there are four separate LANS with their own basic infrastructure (I.E. routers and switches).
I don?t have to graphically show all 50 workstations. (I can just show 4 LANs, each with multiple clients).

It says that: These LANs run Windows 2000 Advanced Server with several NT4.0 Servers.
25 Remote workers have dial-in access to the network through a modem pool.

I think, I can use a separate server call a routing and remote access server to accomplish this. This server can also assign IP addresses to the remote clients, for use on the internal network, if I use a VPN.
Do you agree?

Please help, I am not sure how to diagram this thing at all. Show me the way. Teach me.

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why should we teach you?

by CG IT In reply to My input on this:

School is about learning... so what have you learned?

Better yet, for me, all I can do is offer suggestions... seeing how it's the weekend and I'm on holiday, here's some suggestions:

Come up with a design, maybe some here will pipe in with suggestions.

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Response to CG IT

by jaley In reply to why should we teach you?

I have a design made up. I have learned many things from school, however, this is my first time to do it. Enjoy your holiday, why should you teach me? Because someday you may need help just like I do. I didn't really mean for you to teach me but I did ask for help. Enjoy your holiday Sir.

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ok so what's the design?

by CG IT In reply to Response to CG IT
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My Design

by jaley In reply to ok so what's the design?

Is there a way you can see my diagram, can I send it to you?

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I'll add...

by boxfiddler Moderator In reply to My input on this:

Play with your flow-charting software if diagramming it is your problem. If, after having done so, you still can't figure out how to diagram it, maybe you should think about another discipline. One that doesn't require visualizing and diagramming things that are connected.

Please help, I am not sure how to diagram this thing at all.

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Response to boxfiddler

by jaley In reply to I'll add...

I can diagram it, your a good teacher, the best I ever came across in my whole life, thanks.

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Let me guess

by santeewelding In reply to Can you help me design th ...

You are not learning how to do this, but, that, how to set others upon how to do this, washing your hands of and prepared to condemn them for failure, in your course of study dealing with Chief Executive Officer.

I am CEO. I can tell you that I would have you taken out back and shot, idiot.

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Response to santeewelding

by jaley In reply to Let me guess

Very nice, thank you. CEO, so is my father! He says that you obviously suck at your job. Enjoy it while you have it.

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too many questions

by olu akinsola In reply to Can you help me design th ...

there are too many questions to be answered...

is it a real company, if so, is there a budget...

thereafter, i would suggest going logically through what the requirements are and adding infratructure to handle it. look at the network and decide how it needs to operate and then plug in kit that meets the requirement. look at the required server side services and decide how to meet those needs. look at the other anciliary services, i.e. voicemail etc and decide what sort of system you want to meet that requirement with, voip/standard pbx/MS UC...

other questions to ask would be around how much of the current kit you need to keep and how much can be discarded or upgraded. if its a real company, you also need to look at staff at each site as it might inform what technologies you deploy at each site.

this site isn't really geared up for something of the nature you've introduced. if you asked a directed question you might get more help. e.g. what would be the best UC tech... cisco/MS etc. people's opinions might then inform your choices. i dont think anyone is going to sit down and design your network for you.

good luck.

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