An Onsite Observation: Microsoft Networks – WiFi vs. Wired – and Data Security

June 23, 2008

Last week a new Onsite Computer client called for service to his existing Microsoft business network.  His network ‘seemed’ very slow and his Quickbooks accounting data periodically experienced data corruption.  Additionally, as an Onsite system engineer was examining the recalcitrant network, there were several lightening strikes causing power surges for businesses along the Tchoupotoulas business corridor.

Upon a closer examination, our Onsite network team identified several elements that acted as network impediments.  The client’s network was a combination of WiFi wireless and Ethernet wire.  The Ethernet nodes joining their seven PCs are connected via a 10/100 hub. 

The WiFi segment was accessed by several wireless devices, including from three to seven laptops (only two laptops belonged to our client), four WiFi cameras, and a hand-held mobile device.  And although their server was equipped with battery-backup and surge protection, their cable modem, router, desktops, laptops, and WiFi cameras were only using surge protection.  Upon further questioning, Onsite’s engineers identified the ‘architect’ of the network:  the owner’s brother-in-law who works as a plumber during the day.

Today we present a proposal to eliminate the network and data corruption issues with this client’s network.  Of primary concern is their use of WiFi technology.  Although there is a place for WiFi technology in businesses, wireless technology should not be used as the core networking technology.  Wireless networks are limited in capacity and security. 

Industry standard Ethernet cabling, when installed properly, provides total reliability for secure communications and the capacity required for large data files and video images from network cameras.  The use of a network 10/100 switch in place of their present hub will improve network capacity for each Ethernet node.  Additionally, protecting their modem/router from power surges and spikes with a battery-backup should eliminate unnecessary reboots following most power failures. 

On the WiFi side of our client’s network, their insecure network will be configured with WPA (WiFi Protected Access), and eliminating DHCP with static IP addressing will eliminate unauthorized access by neighbors.  Additionally, we plan to suggest Ethernet connections for laptops accessing the accounting system.  Onsite believes securing our client’s network and eliminating their data corruption is not a problem or a huge expense.  How’s your business data and network operation?  Are you receiving the best return for your business IT investment?  Call Onsite for a Microsoft businesss and technology assessment.

If you’re searching for New Orleans computer service or repair of your Microsoft based system or network, then call the Microsoft specialists at 504-469-6991. Onsite Computer Services, Inc. in New Orleans

You may also be interested in Onsite Computer’s Blog.

This New Orleans On-Site Computer Service post was provided by Eli Lucas. Eli can be reached at eli@onsitenola.com. Onsite Computer serves the Microsoft computing needs of small businesses throughout the Greater New Orleans area including Uptown, Lakeview, Broadmoor, Mid-City, Metairie, Jefferson, Kenner, Westbank, French Quarter, and the Warehouse District. Please visit our website for New Orleans Computer Service.

 

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