The Anatomy of a Great IT Network

Your IT Network infrastructure is the foundation of your business information management. Discover what are the best practices around IT networks.
by Wayne Roye

by Wayne Roye

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A great internet network is the backbone of almost every modern business. It isn’t an understatement to say that a bad network can bring your company to its knee, while a good one on the other hand can give your firm an advantage over your competitors.

Technology and connectivity are unavoidable tools in today’s business, but best practices must come with them to stay effective and profitable.

At Troinet, we stay on top of the best network practices so we can give you the best solutions. We equip ourselves with the current challenges of organizations in New York and New Jersey so we can provide highly-relevant advice.

The challenge most businesses have is understanding what should be the best practices around implementing technology into their company? What are some of the foundational things that need to be right before they spend money on software, cloud applications, and features?

Using technology in a business depends on the computer technology and the network that it runs on. Think of it as building an empire. Most great cities are only as good as the roadways that they have.

The network for the company is the roads and highways. If the road and highways are built poorly. It does not matter how fast or how fancy the car is there will be problems.

The thing that is the most important is the thing that is least understood and the least amount of money is spent on.

So let me give you, from the business perspective, the (4) best practice network Design for a company.

1. Internet service

The internet is the road to the outside world. It is the ability a company has to navigate, communicate and transact business via computers. If your business is reliant in the ability to communicate out and transact business via the internet then you should have not one but two qualified internet services. 

Time is money and for the cost of a second service it pays for itself on the day that one service is down and you are still able to keep running because you have the second.

2. Router and Firewall

These are the gateway to the internet. The router is like crossing the US boarder coming in from or out to another country. It verifies who you are and checks where you are going. It is meant to make sure that no one illegal can come in and nothing illegal can cross the boarders. 

This is what protects your business from the outside. This is where you should make a good investment on a qualified router/firewall. It needs to be business class. The router from your internet provider is not adequate.

3. Switching

Switching is the connecting device that allows everything to communicate to each other. Think of it how a power strip works. if you have one outlet and you want to plug in 5 things you can use a power strips and now they can all connect together. It’s the same for a switch it allows all of the computer technology to connect together. 

All companies should be investing in switches that have something called POE. That is Power over ethernet. Most devices do not need to plugged into a power outlet and then another line into a network jack on the wall. It only requires one line to the network jack in the wall and that is do to poe. This reduces cost of running electricity to every location you need a device.

4. Wireless

A switch and wireless are the same in function. The difference between the two is one needs to be wired and the other does not. That’s why we call it wireless access points. It gives you access without having to attach a wire. 

More and more devices are connect to company resources and internet via wireless. We are looking at laptops, mobile phones, IOT devices, Thermostat, security system, etc. A well designed and robust wireless is needed even for a small business. Every wireless installation needs to have a qualified engineer do a wireless survey. 

The wireless should be set up with a secured and sandbox wireless segment for gusets and separate company account that uses a secure authentication method like a radius server and then additional wireless segments can be created for departments like accounting. Wireless needs to have extra measures put in place to make sure breaches are minimized. An additional measure is to minimize the distance the wireless signal travels. You do not want hackers sitting in your parking lot and reaching your wireless network.

These 4 items are the foundational components for your business’s highway for success. Your highway needs to be invested in and built right before you even think about the cars that will run on it like the computers, servers, applications, etc.  Also security can not be implemented properly if ther isn’t a good foundation to build on.

Most Network hardware has a life cycle of 5-7 year, depending on industry and workload on hardware. So this is an investment that can be written off for depreciation and if done right, pays for itself on being able handle the workload of the business. 

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