Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Upgrading Our Network, Connections and Routers

Our Technology Support Specialist Pavel and I have met with four different companies/contractors in the last few weeks, all of whom have wildly differing ideas on the best way for us to improve our school's network. We currently have a DSL connection. I dunno how we have managed so well this far. Of course, we've had our moments of taking FOREVER to load Web pages when all 18 children in a class are accessing at once. However, we've rarely been down and it does the job most of the time. Our thought was that we should upgrade to a T-1 connection. Almost all of the vendors had thoughts about that:

1. We should have a T-1 with a cable backup.
2. We should have a cable connection with a T-1 backup, or our current DSL backup.
3. We should have just cable.

And that's just the internet connection. I'll have to post another day about routers. I honestly didn't know much about routers before this whole process. I still don't know much about them, but I know that everyone has a different opinion on whether Cisco is worth the time and money, whether Sonicwall is as good, if you can just use refurbished equipment and save tons while losing none of the capabilities. My goodness! And I have until Friday to put together recommendations for the Financial Committee of my school's board. I take comfort in the fact that many have gone before me and they all did the best they could as well.

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