Why should you install a network?
The answer is very simple: Resource Sharing
With a network you can...
After you have a network in place, one area of the many cost advantages is hardware and peripheral sharing. This means that instead of having a separate printer, fax, or modem for each employee, you need only one. By having a network in place, things such as printers, scanners, modems, fax machines, and other hardware can be shared by multiple employees. A network can reduce your costs and increase productivity.
With a network, not only can you share hardware and peripherals, but you can also share software applications. By sharing applications, you can standardize them and run one version instead of two or three different ones. This also allows you to run software right off the server or even distribute the latest version to each computer automatically. Programs such as scheduling software, inter-office/internet mail, and message boards can easily streamline your company by allowing everyone to communicate quickly within your business arena, all via a network.
Having a network gives you access to data with just a point and click, allowing you to instantly share resources among every computer on the network no matter how far apart they are geographically. This includes software updates, new applications, spreadsheets, database files, and the like. All of this can be done from your server, only one computer, rather than going to each machine to update applications or their versions.
Once the decision to invest in a network is made, there are many more critical decisions that need to be made:
- What type of Network Operating System (NOS) will you need to install?
- What type of network topology should be used?
- What type of NICs and HUBs are best for your network?
- What type of protocols will your network require?
- What do you want your network to do?
- Are there any specialized servers or services your network will need?
All of these decisions will seriously impact the network's efficiency and how well it meets your organization's needs. A mistake in the design or setup of your network can be the difference between a tool which saves you time and money, while increasing efficiency and production, or a tool which becomes a major headache and costs more time and money than it saves.
The bottom line is that a well-designed, implemented, and supported network can give your company a competitive advantage in the marketplace!