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dlewis23

my Apartment Builds network

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the apartment that i live it has about 1200 units in it, and about 430 of them are served by the complexes provided internet, about another 300 are served by bellsouth, and the rest eather don't have internet or have the our crappy cable provider. I was in the office about 2 weeks ago, droping off the rent and there were about 4 people complaning about the internet that they provide. The complex has a dedicated 10/3Mbps connection, but at around 6-11pm speeds are like 30-50Kbps, and these people pay $30 a month extra for internet.  So i told the owner that i could make the internet faster for everyone for only about $200. and this is what I came up with.

P0003720_thumb.jpg

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#1 is a Dell Optiplex GX110 : $30

#2 is a old linksys firewall : $Free

#3 Is a Linksys WRT54G : $50

#4 is a Netgear NAS w/ 160GB HD : $110

The computer i got off ebay for only $30 it is a Pentium 3 667MHz 384MB of Ram 30 GB HD. I loaded this with Windows Advance Server 2000, and softperfect Bandwidth manager, i set it up with a set of about 30 rules, so it distributes the bandwidth evenly depending on the time of day and how many users are online, i also have it set to not allow any 1 user download more then 500mb in 1 hour. This also has a 20GB web cache, so downloads are much faster. I used a old linksys firewall that i had with a new linksys wrt54g router to protect users distribute the internet. I bought a netgear SC 101 NAS with 2 80GB harddrives as network storage, each user gets 250mb of remote storage.

With all this ive taken the internet speeds from this:

:::.. Download Stats ..:::

Connection is:: 149 Kbps about 0.1 Mbps (tested with 1013 kB)

Download Speed is:: 18 kB/s

Tested From:: https://testmy.net (server1)

Test Time:: Tue Jan 24 2006 21:01:09 GMT-0500 (Eastern Standard Time)

Bottom Line:: 3X faster than 56K 1MB download in 56.89 sec

Diagnosis: May need help : running at only 27.75 % of your hosts average (116.216)

Validation Link:: https://testmy.net/stats/id-TJDF3ZVQR

:::.. Upload Stats ..:::

Connection is:: 83 Kbps about 0.1 Mbps (tested with 97 kB)

Upload Speed is:: 10 kB/s

Tested From:: https://testmy.net (server1)

Test Time:: Tue Jan 24 2006 21:02:58 GMT-0500 (Eastern Standard Time)

Bottom Line:: 1X faster than 56K 1MB upload in 102.4 sec

Diagnosis: May need help : running at only 38.79 % of your hosts average (116.216)

Validation Link:: https://testmy.net/stats/id-TYDM8B6FL

To This:

:::.. Download Stats ..:::

Connection is:: 415 Kbps about 0.4 Mbps (tested with 2992 kB)

Download Speed is:: 51 kB/s

Tested From:: https://testmy.net (server1)

Test Time:: Tue Jan 24 2006 20:05:09 GMT-0500 (Eastern Standard Time)

Bottom Line:: 7X faster than 56K 1MB download in 20.08 sec

Diagnosis: May need help : running at only 73.19 % of your hosts average (116.216)

Validation Link:: https://testmy.net/stats/id-0A96ENB7Y

:::.. Upload Stats ..:::

Connection is:: 272 Kbps about 0.3 Mbps (tested with 97 kB)

Upload Speed is:: 33 kB/s

Tested From:: https://testmy.net (server2)

Test Time:: Tue Jan 24 2006 21:01:54 GMT-0500 (Eastern Standard Time)

Bottom Line:: 5X faster than 56K 1MB upload in 31.03 sec

Diagnosis: Looks Great : 15.74 % faster than the average for host (116.216)

Validation Link:: https://testmy.net/stats/id-2DF3YXGAW

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You might get even faster if you put a router that is meant to handle 430 clients.. Linksys doesnt have the processing power.. How are you serving 430 client with a router that only support 254? 

Windows Advance Server 2000 and a computer for $30 bucks nice job! 

What are you running to connect these units? please tell me that you are not daisy chaining switches together!?! 

That is an improvement but still not where it should be..

if you have a 10/3 connection over 400 people unless they are download movies.. they should be getting about, my guess would be, 1000kbps.. Just little things like the extra firewall can eat bandwidth slow down a connection..  Again it comes down to processing power..

If you are trying to limit bandwidth.. i would take a look at the ports that ALOT of traffic is moving though and figure out what programs run on that port..

All in all nice job.. for $200 bucks..

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seems like we have an engineer over here dlewis23

nice job, yeah tell us more about the network design, how you distributting the network via what type of switches and ...

well basically whats the network design over there ?

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Nice job.  Well done on a budget, that's talent.

I agree with Swimmer, though, you could probably do away with the firewall.  I'm assuming you're running 100BaseTX UTP, and using switches as repeaters throughout the building, like one per floor?  How you workin that?  What about software, how are you managing the network that way?

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The main office has something very close to this, (we just don't have the 2 1000mbps conectors) http://www.netgear.com/products/details/FSM726.php

Then each of the 17 buildings has another one in it, that connects to the main office, each apt. has a eathernet port in it, that people can eather plug there computer into directly, or plug a router in to it.

What are you running to connect these units? please tell me that you are not daisy chaining switches together!?! 

Basically Swimmer we are just daisy chaining switches togeather, but i did not build that part, the switch system was set up about 8 months before i moved in. It seems to work good though.

I agree with Swimmer, though, you could probably do away with the firewall.  I'm assuming you're running 100BaseTX UTP, and using switches as repeaters throughout the building, like one per floor?  How you workin that?  What about software, how are you managing the network that way?

I am going to get rid of the firewall once i get my old pentium 200mhz up and running with smoothwall correctly, then the linksys router and linksys firewall will be gone.

There is 1 switch per biulding 18 in all, i am using softperfice bandwidth manager to limit and manage the bandwidth depending on the server load and the # of users online. Im also using SoftPerfec Traffic Meter to find out how many users are online, and who is using the most bandwidth, and then SoftPerfect Network Protocol Analyzer, to find out what the traffic is, so i can block traffic to a specific user name, ( a perental control)

to make the internet faster for everyone, im using a cache proxy server, with 20gb of cache space.

In a few weeks when i have more time i am going to setup a email server program on the server, so i can block spam, and email viruses.

any othere questions.

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Wow sounds like you got a sweet setup, so this is the apartment that you live in also?

You think you could give me a basic walkthrough/guide cause that sounds like something I want to do for my network. Is all I need an old pc and a switch, or do I need the nas too?

Yes its the one i live in, and now i get $100 off my rent :D

on a smaller scale, this is a very easy thing to do, for a home network all you need is a cheap PC http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=8749374700&ssPageName=MERC_VI_ReBay_Pr4_PcY_BIN_Stores_IT

and smoothwall http://www.smoothwall.org/

Smoothwall will do almost everything i am doing except the bandwidth managment. But has one of the best cache servers ever. and a very good firewall. If you can get it to work correctly, its a great tool.

You don't need the nas, i have one here to offer alot of people a way to back up there files.

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Smoothwall is like an operating system of sorts correct? So you install it as the main os and within that you can configure proxy server, firewall and other things. Can it also do nat so I wouldn't need a router?

Edit:This may interest you if you didn't know already but the smoothwall corporate server includes:

SmoothTunnel

IPSec and L2TP VPN Gateway module (for site-to-site and mobile "Road Warrior" user connections)

SmoothGuardian

Web content filtering module (block pornography, violence, racial-hatred, non-work related content etc.)

SmoothTraffic

Bandwidth Management (Quality of Service) module to maximise Internet connection performance

SmoothMonitor

Firewall monitoring and reporting module

SmoothRule

Internet Access Control module (block access to non-work related services like games and instant messaging)

SmoothHost

Server hosting support module

Edit: how would isa server be vs smoothwalls proxy solution?

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