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Formulating a Strategic Network Infrastructure Plan through Cisco Training
Any organization's IT network infrastructure comprises the technology that underpins a company's operations, processes, and software. It enables an organization to deliver efficient IT services to employees. As ITIL defines it, the network infrastructure is a combination of software, hardware, facilities, networks, and more. It is utilized to develop, monitor, test, deliver, support, and control IT services.
To formulate a strategic network infrastructure plan, it is important to input careful planning - including evaluation of new technologies - and build a networking system that offers futuristic flexibility.
In addition to relying on analyst reports for gauging the market and outlining goals and strategies for your team, an organization must also consider Cisco certification as an effective approach to enterprise networking. With Cisco training, an organization is in a better position to understand the specific business requirements to build a strategic roadmap to networking.
The 2017 report released by Garner stated how creating a roadmap for network infrastructure opens up the doors to the future, to enable a company to explore what it holds for it. Moreover, by drafting a roadmap, the IT leaders can easily identify areas that need more focused efforts. And not to forget, the results of the report perfectly aligns with Cisco's technology, vision, and strategy.
The Key Components of a Strategic Network Infrastructure
From an architecture perspective, is it important that a network is simple, more automated, and agile. The trend of leveraging virtual, software-based network solutions is here to stay and keeping up using more and more automated service delivery is the best way to implement a strategic network infrastructure.
Here are the main components of network infrastructure:
Switches and Routers
Routers are responsible for connecting different networks of your infrastructure, which enables communication between systems. While setting up routers, it is important to set a margin for spare capacity for future usage and growth. Having that spare capacity allows easy deployment of projects. On the other hand, switches perform the task of connecting systems to keep a network active. With smaller capacities, there's always a risk with both switches and routers to escalate to a bottleneck situation. This could affect the network performance and takes more effort for clients to deliver messages on servers of different networks.
Even if the router and switch are able to bear the load, keeping the capacity to a mere limit can affect the network performance. Thus, it's important to upgrade these components to improve personnel and network productivity.
Firewall Access Control
Firewalls are adjusted between an application server and a router to provide access control. Initially, the role of firewalls was only to protect your trusted network (your own) from the Internet (untrusted network). But with more security threats to application servers (isolated, trusted) from untrusted networks (the internet), it has become extremely important to protect these servers. This is where firewalls come in.
The trained employees carry out router configuration to add to the collective capability of the firewall by screening collected data. A detailed configuration on the router can block various undesired services - including NIS, NFS, and so forth. Moreover, the firewall can offer packet-level filtering to keep the applications protected from untrusted networks or hosts.
Moreover, some server environments encourage the minimization of application for improved security and access control. Minimizing the software packages according to a server environment protects the application without losing the support required for hosting. Achieving minimization in applications, libraries, and services, an organization can improve security and decrease the requirement of maintenance of the several subsystems.
Additionally, it is also important to set up an effective Site Security Policy to deal with such issues.
Storage Area Networks
The next component of formulating a strategic network infrastructure is SANs. The trained individuals can understand the data requirement of the storage system to ensure successful project deployment. Moreover, SANs are also used to improve the independence of storage from the servers, which are usually utilized in conjunction.
Deployment of SANs can also be seen as a decrease in time to recover from an outdated or non-functional server. Storage Area Networks allow the replacement of a machine without relocating the storage drives.
The growing load on your application or web servers can be a matter of concern. Load balancers are the ideal way to distribute the load and according to the demand of the project or task. If you are already working with several dedicated applications and servers, the load balancers can be used to distribute the load according to the type of application as well as the demands of the user. For multiple data centers, an organization can turn to geographic load balancing. This one can distribute the load according to site capacity, demand, and location of the end-user.
Implementing load balancers in a network infrastructure roadmap can provide a solution for reading contents and headers of incoming products. It enables you to balance application load according to the type of information the packet holds. The trained individuals can investigate the communication of load balancer with the server to respond to it accordingly.
Domain Name System (DNS)
Some organizations need to implement DNS servers to keep up with heavy usage of Domain Name System queries. Keeping your specific requirements in mind, allocate hostnames according to functions such as mail-relay-out, mail-relay-in, mail-store, and so forth. This policy is important even if the hostnames are all stored on a single machine. Due to system configuration, service relocation can minimize the impact of the change.
When formulating network infrastructure, the system should provide more than what it is currently providing - especially regarding connectivity. It should be able to offer insight based on the available contextual data to improve both IT and business. Moreover, it needs the assurance to have better visibility through intelligence and context driven by the intent to cater to the organization's needs. With Cisco certification, the IT analysts and other leading networking vendors use the network infrastructure visions to work on the future of networking as well as the ultimate vision of the organization.