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Beginner

Small business needing to expand and deploy a network

HI,

I hope this is the correct forum to post this question.  If not, please move it to one more appropriate.

We are a small company currently working from home but now have a need to expand into an office due to winning a contract with a large international organization.  We offer web market research services utilizing Web 2.0 techniques.  Our current 'network' infrastructure if you want to call it that is based around a standard home office scenarion - 24Mbit DSL 4 PC's, a couple of laptops, Dlink gigabit switch and the router from the telecom company.  Our printers are networked via the switch and we run Windows 7.  We have servers hosted in the Rackspace Cloud and with Amazon S3 but no current physical server.  Email is via a hosted Exchange package.

Due to the new contract we will have to hire two to three additional personnel taking us to 7 staff in total and that requires a move to a dedicated office.  That wouldn't be much of an issue if we only needed to setup an office LAN but the crunch comes within the security protocols we are required to meet in the new contract.  We'll be storing customer data on servers and we'll require an audit of our systems once in place.  We will be scanned by our new client and expected to install a scanner appliance to be deployed on our internal network which will allow our new client to periodically scan us for network vulnerabilities.

The key issue is that we have to have physical sight of the server that is holding the data, which also needs to have WAN access.  This server must reside on a network independent from our office LAN.  We'll need VPN access to this server.  The requirements document also demands a hardware firewall.  The new office has Cat6 cabling that routes back to a server room.  Apart from that, this room is empty.

It's a bit of a daunting task and I'd like to know what equipment we'll require to setup two independent networks with WAN access.  The two new servers will probably come from Dell and will be rack mounted.  I'm sure we'll need the services of a network professional but I'd like to be clear in my own head about what components we will need to purchase to deploy this network, and what would be a suitable internet network connection.  The server for the new project will need to run a web and MySQL server and it will be accessed by around 600 people across Europe and the USA each month.  I can't give a clear figure on total bandwidth but the 600 people will be accessing a pretty standard WordPress site.  The number of users will increase to 6000 per month within 6 months.  On top of that office staff will be sending emails and using web services on a daily basis.  The office server will run Windows Server 2008 with 10 CAL's.  We have an initial capital budget of about $12,500.  Within 6 months we will need to deploy our own SharePoint server for this project.  A dedicated remotely hosted SharePoint solution will not be acceptable to the client.  More budget will be available for this.  Support will be delivered by Dell for the servers and network maintenance will be contracted out.

Any help in making this a little less daunting would be much appreciated.

Thanks in advance.

2 ACCEPTED SOLUTIONS

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Hall of Fame Community Legend

That's a steep ask.

No offense here, but the price of your switches and routers (if you are going with Cisco) will be dependent entirely upon the Cisco authorized reseller. The Cisco reseller can offer you discounts.  For example, Cisco currently have cash-for-clunkers if you trade in your old routers, switches, access points and PABX.  Another example is that if your purchases hit a certain mark (dependant on the reseller), they might throw in a few units of Cisco Telepresence.

This is why I can't give you an answer as to what items you can get for a budget of $12,500.

Don't be too hasty.  Your Cisco kits will be dependent upon your network design.  Get this first step right and you will get your bang-for-your-buck.  By the way, you forgot the following items for your "wish list":  Wireless LAN (WLAN) and Voice over IP (VoIP).

Hope this helps.

View solution in original post

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Leo has given you some excellent advice ie. you cannot choose a kit list until you have a design. It just doesn't work the other way around. If you don't have the experience to design the solution then you can't really be choosing the kit. Otherwise when you do hire your consultant he might well be constrained by the kit already chosen and you will not get the best solution for your needs.

Please don't take any of this the wrong way. NetPro is a great forum for helping people out with technical and design issues with Cisco equipment but there are times when NetPro is not the best solution and this is one of them. We could each give you a kit list of what we "think" is the best solution but that really should come from the designer.

Jon

Leo - will you please stop losing your points oops, and now they are back again

View solution in original post

7 REPLIES 7
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Hall of Fame Community Legend

Looks like this can be complicated.  I'd recommend that you look for consultant to assist and recommend a design of your future IT network. 

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Thanks for the reply leolaohoo.

That is something we'll definitely do.  I don't have the skills to implement this hardware solution.  I was more thinking along the lines of what equipment do I need and if the budget of $12,500 would be enough (exc consultant fees) to put a secure solution in place.

The current list I have is:

NAT Router (do I need more than one if we have to have a separate network for the new client)

A couple of switches.

Two servers

Rack

UPS

Hardware Firewall

I was planning on using Cisco kit but there is so much to choose from I was wondering if someone could be specific in what models might be suitable.

Cheers

Highlighted
Hall of Fame Community Legend

That's a steep ask.

No offense here, but the price of your switches and routers (if you are going with Cisco) will be dependent entirely upon the Cisco authorized reseller. The Cisco reseller can offer you discounts.  For example, Cisco currently have cash-for-clunkers if you trade in your old routers, switches, access points and PABX.  Another example is that if your purchases hit a certain mark (dependant on the reseller), they might throw in a few units of Cisco Telepresence.

This is why I can't give you an answer as to what items you can get for a budget of $12,500.

Don't be too hasty.  Your Cisco kits will be dependent upon your network design.  Get this first step right and you will get your bang-for-your-buck.  By the way, you forgot the following items for your "wish list":  Wireless LAN (WLAN) and Voice over IP (VoIP).

Hope this helps.

View solution in original post

Highlighted

Leo has given you some excellent advice ie. you cannot choose a kit list until you have a design. It just doesn't work the other way around. If you don't have the experience to design the solution then you can't really be choosing the kit. Otherwise when you do hire your consultant he might well be constrained by the kit already chosen and you will not get the best solution for your needs.

Please don't take any of this the wrong way. NetPro is a great forum for helping people out with technical and design issues with Cisco equipment but there are times when NetPro is not the best solution and this is one of them. We could each give you a kit list of what we "think" is the best solution but that really should come from the designer.

Jon

Leo - will you please stop losing your points oops, and now they are back again

View solution in original post

Highlighted

Thank you both for your replies - very helpful, and of course, totally correct.

I have a meeting with a network consultant for next week so hopefully we'll be underway pretty soon.  Having looked through the forums there are definitely some great topics.  I'm sure I'll be back once we're established.

Thanks once again.

Highlighted
Hall of Fame Community Legend

When the time comes when you have a fairly good idea of the Cisco kits you need, do not hesitate to ask for discounts from the authorized Cisco reseller.  You  have no idea how many don't know.

Highlighted
Hall of Fame Community Legend

Jon,

Thanks for the ratings.  According to Dan, it could be an issue with my web browser if my points would "fade".  He he he ...

Happy Thanksgiving.

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