What You Need to Build A Wide Area Network

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Thinking of building a Wide Area Network? You’ll need several things – we talked all about the tools and devices you’ll need below. Read ahead.

Bandwidth

Depending on the telecommunication providers around, the WAN services you could get a hold of would differ. Considering the choices available, the most common would be T1 and Frame Relays.

Switch

For any WAN, you’d need switches. They are devices that are plugged to the computers in the Local Area Networks. The switches connect them to the routers, which then connects them to the WAN.


As there is a variety on the market, each of them comes with a different number of plugs and ports. To make things more cost-productive, look for one that has the most entries – you don’t have to buy many switches then. How to configure Aruba switches is something that’s not commonly asked, as the devices are wireless. They might be the best choice if you’re not tech-savvy.

Router

You won’t be able to build the network without routers. Switches connect the computers in the LANS to each other, while routers connect the devices in the LANs to the internet. Many confuse routers to modems and network hubs. The truth is, they do what modems and hubs do, in the form of one piece of equipment.

Ethernet Cables

How will you connect the PCs in a Local Area Network to a switch? Most have ports for ethernet cables. You want the connection between the devices to be fast. That’s why you shouldn’t use old cables.

As discussed earlier, you could go the wireless switch route, and opt for cisco wireless products. They’re more expensive than their wired counterparts. However, the lack of ethernet cables make them safer to be around, as well as easier to set-up.

Firewall

The data being shared between the PCs in the WAN can be compromised. You may be a successful company, which is why the chances of intruders trying to get your data are high. Something that would protect the servers would be a firewall.

You’ll have to pay to get a hold of one. You’re advised to not be cheap with it, as ample security is what you want.

IPS

Why just use a firewall? You can make the network more secure by getting a hold of an intrusion prevention system. It’d keep an eye out for anyone trying to break into your network. If it detects anything, it alerts you. But it also fends off any attempt of an attack.


Intrusion prevention systems are great. However, they aren’t the most reliable. That’s why they’re best paired with firewalls.

You may be a business with many branches – establishing a Wide Area Network between the sites would be smart. To build it, you would need several things. Most importantly, a WAN connection between the LAN networks. You’ll have to go to your local telecommunication provider for this. The bandwidth you’d get would differ. You would have to purchase equipment to connect the devices in the local area network as well, like switches and ethernet cables. The data passing through the WAN must be safe as well, which is ISP and firewalls should be invested in.