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Essential Items Creating Small Business Network Yourself

Essential Items Creating Small Business Network Yourself

9 Essential Items When Creating a Small Business Network Yourself

Essential Items Creating Small Business Network Yourself

When designing a computer network for a small business these following items must be considered.  When all pieces are in place, you will have a network that is reliable, scalable, and efficient.

Network Switch

This is what makes the whole thing work.  All devices that will be connected to the network connect to this piece of equipment.  This device is crucial for allowing more than one network device communicate with other network devices.  This can also include wireless access points that allow wireless network devices to connect with the network.

Firewall/Router

This device is what connects your network to the Internet and protects your local network from Internet traffic.  These can be separate devices.  Most simply put, the router directs all network traffic.  It takes information from one computer and knows how to make that information go to another computer. The firewall is the device that determines what the information is and if it should allow information to go from one computer to another.  The firewall and the router are two separate entities; however you will often see these packaged in one single device.

Server

A server is the central computer that handles the needs of all the network devices.   In most cases a server acts as a central file location.  It can also perform the duties of a database, an email server, and a print server.

Disaster Recovery Plan and Devices

Disaster recovery consists of having backup devices and plans in place in case something does go wrong.  This will usually include one or more backup devices. When creating a disaster plan, you must consider 2 separate possibilities

  1. What happens if the data in your office is destroyed with something such as a ransomware vulnerability? In this case you’ll want the data nearby and able to be quickly restored. This won’t necessarily be a time when you’ll need to restore in the cloud or on new hardware as there wasn’t a natural disaster that occurred
  2. What happens when there is a natural disaster? Where is your data currently, and where are you going to restore that data to? In this scenario you may need to recover to cloud servers while you acquire new replacement hardware.

I’ve went into the specifics of creating a disaster recovery plan in this article. You can read more here.

Security Software

This component of your network is responsible for making sure that no malicious threats infect any of your network devices.  This software consists of antivirus, antispyware software that will block and remove other software that attempts to render your computer and your network useless.  Additionally, viruses and spyware have the ability to track information that is sent across your network and to the Internet.  Installing this software on all network devices as one of the first steps in building your network is crucial in ensuring that none of these threats enter your network.

Network Devices

Typically, these are largely comprised of workstation computers.  However, any device that uses the network, either hard wired or wirelessly, is a network device.  These days many different types of devices are connected including such devices as mobile phones.

Internet Connection

Your internet connection connects your network to the Internet and is provided by an outside vendor.  Typically you will receive this connection through DSL or cable provided by either your telephone or cable provider, respectively.  A cable or DSL connection will also usually be your least expensive option while at the same time is most available and most practical for your network.  Other connections in order of speed may consist of dial-up, satellite, line of sight (such as wireless from a provider with an antenna), T1, and fiber optic.  These options vary in price but usually the faster the Internet connection, the more expensive exponentially.

Support Personnel

Problems can happen.  When they do however, you will save yourself lots of time and money if you have someone available to resolve any issues you have to make sure that you minimize your downtime.  You also will want to have someone available to answer any questions when it comes time to add additional items to your network.  There are many people available that provide these services and some of these companies will also be able to provide services for you that will monitor your computer network and alert you before any problems arise.

With careful planning, make sure you have all of the above, and you will be able to have a solid functioning computer network.