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Dead Drop

Symptom: A PC, phone, access point or printer is connected to the wall jack and the connection is not activated. The switch port does not show a link light, nor does the network adapter.

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Using the right diagnostic tool

The second step in isolating performance problems is using the right tool: one that’s portable, integrated and comprehensive, meaning it provides insight into the entire network. A variety of alternative tools are available, from fixed enterprise monitoring and troubleshooting hardware and software, to free or low-cost open-source software you can run on a laptop. The difficulties of these tools include hardware that’s mounted in a rack and not portable – more likely than not your problem will occur where you don’t have a probe. Portability is important because you want to go where the problem is, the root cause of problems could be distributed across the network infrastructure, so you need to be close to the source to solve the issue effectively.

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Software slow down hinders shipments

The shipping department of a manufacturing company complained that the ERP (enterprise resource planning) software used for entering and tracking shipments sometimes slowed way down at seemingly random times, generating a “waiting for server” error message when the problem occurred.

As a business-critical application, it was essential that the problem be solved as quickly as possible, but the random nature of the error made it extremely difficult for the network engineer to be in the right spot at the right time to diagnose it.

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New accounting software performs poorly

Shortly after implementing new accounting software, management started to get complaints from users that it was much slower than the old application. With both application and web servers in the local server farm, it was simple to show that network issues were not the cause of the problem – but was the problem server related (which one?) or the application?

To find out, the network engineers focused on the communication between servers, capturing transactions by mirroring the traffic to a laptop protocol analyzer. They quickly realized that their analysis was hampered by the laptop analyzer dropping a significant number of frames, consequently missing much of the traffic. Efforts to filter out extraneous traffic were stymied by not being able to isolate down to one particular client’s session, as multiple sessions were occurring between the web and application server nearly simultaneously.

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DNS problems slow down manufacturing

A manufacturing company with multiple worldwide sites had recently consolidated all their servers at the headquarters datacenter. Rather than use dedicated hardware or software load balancers, they decided to use “round robin” DNS load balancing. Users at a remote manufacturing site were complaining that the network was slow because it took a significant amount of time to access and download bar code label files which were required during the manufacturing process.

The server group at the data center insisted that there were no problems with the application or database servers and the network team had already checked all the network infrastructure and WAN links for over utilization and errors. The network engineer decided to investigate the traffic to and from the application server cluster and in doing so noticed an unusually high level of UDP traffic which was predominantly attributed to the Domain

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Network Security

The IT department uses the latest technology and techniques to maintain the highest level of security possible, but we can’t do the job without your help. Every employee plays a critical role in keeping Remodel Works computer network secure. When you log on to your computer, send an e-mail, share a file, or use an instant messaging program, you can help or hurt network security.

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Introduction to Exchange Server

You can get email access almost from any source on the internet. But you have to consider a few things that are fundamental for every company.

According to a recent study by Symantec and Gartner (http://www.itworld.com /Webcasts /bytopic/3/index.html), most companies consider email to be a mission critical application. In addition, the study stated, up to 75% of a company’s intellectual property resides in email and other messaging applications. Likewise, 75% of fortune 500 litigation involves email related discovery, and at the time of the study, 79% of companies accepted email messages as confirmation of transactions.

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Understanding the common root causes of application problems

When a user claims the network is slow, the network professional must first determine if it really is the network or if an application is performing poorly. To determine the cause of a slowdown, the network professional first should understand four common root causes of application performance problems and how to resolve them.

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Ten Tips to Keep Your Computer Virus-Free

  1. Install reliable antivirus software. It's the most important step you can take towards keeping your computer clean of viruses. Antivirus software scans files regularly for unusual changes in file size, programs that match the software's database of known viruses, suspicious email attachments, and other warning signs. It runs continuously in the background of your computer, providing constant protection from viruses, Trojan horses, worms, and other malicious code.

  2. Don't automatically open attachments. Be sure your email program doesn't automatically download attachments. This will ensure that you can examine and scan attachments before they run. Refer to your email program's safety options or preferences menu for instructions

  3. Read more: Ten Tips to Keep Your Computer Virus-Free