Reacting to Accelerated Network Growth
In recent years, the growth of networks everywhere has accelerated as many organizations move into the international business arena and join the Internet. This expansion has continued to drive the development, refinement, and complexity of network equipment and software, consequently resulting in some unique issues and exciting advances.
Can you imagine modern business or life these days without computers, fax machines and services, e-mail, Internet commerce and access, automatic teller machines, remote banking, check cards, or video conferencing? Even more importantly, today s children will think that these tools are commonplace and that business cannot be done without them.
Nevertheless, many of these tools are used to track, process, and perform the day-to-day business of today s organizations in a variety of different ways. The need for the newest and best technology appears to be the solution to growing organizational requirements. As this newer technology becomes available, it must be implemented, immediately.
Perhaps the most frustrating issue in dealing with unrestrained network growth is the reactive management required as opposed to the more effective proactive style. This issue is further exasperated by the melding of many different technologies.
Managing Accelerated Network Growth
To properly manage the current and future needs of a rapidly growing network, you must have the necessary tools and techniques at your disposal.
Part IV, Network Security & Future Expansion, discusses some of the emerging tools and technology in further detail. Some of the things you need to consider doing now in order to effectively manage your network s growth, include the following:
Network growth can impose heavy new loads on your infrastructure. Financial data or inventory reports, for example, can be extremely popular when initially released, resulting in an increased network load. Within a week, network performance is back to normal. It is during these surges that your planning is extremely important. Chapter 6, Advanced OSPF Design Concepts, discusses methods to partition and load balance your network.
Extending Network Reach
Extending network reach seems like an issue that is never ending in intranets the world over. There are always new sites to add or another feature that needs to be implemented. Many networks have kept pace with the growth on their backbone but have sites located away from the backbone that must also be considered. Intranets require that users at one site have transparent access to resources located at any other site. In the yet to be discovered perfect network, local and remote connectivity and performance must be considered equally.
You can strive for equality in the network s performance, response time, and reliability, between local and remote users by following a few steps:
Controlling Your Intranet
It is essential that you keep control of your intranet. Without control, the dangers and issues can result in a loss of connectivity to a full network crash. This book covers some of the more common problems and issues relating to accelerated growth. The proposed solutions have been tested in network after network, and through the use of OSPF, you will be able to address the many different problems. First, you build the structure of a network.
To monitor and evaluate reliability, baseline measurements, capacity planning, and network monitoring ensure controlled network growth. This is much more desirable than allowing uncontrolled network growth to be the norm for your intranet.