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In over my head - Network design for mountain connectivity

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Oct 22nd, 2001
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I am the IT director for Mountain Air NC. We have a 5000 ft mountain with 3 separate networks in various buildings on the mountian. The only cabling in place is cable tv cabling that has recently been installed.

Can you advise me on the equipment to use at each site to connect the NT servers?

Any help is greatly appreciated!


William Howard

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mbjohnson@thq.com Tue, 10/23/2001 - 10:47
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How far are the buildings from each other? I have done a few wireless installs that worked out great.

Can you give more detail?

wlhoward@yahoo.com Tue, 10/23/2001 - 15:40
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Thanks for responding!

The buildings are about a mile away from each other. I have thought of wireless but the topography of the land blocks direct sight. Each site has a 3com switch and access to the panel that contains the cable tv connection.

gbbromley Wed, 10/24/2001 - 06:59
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Many years ago I came across some ethernet modems that would take Ethernet and fire it down BNC cables, along with TV channels and Voice lines, however I can't remember/find the products.

However on the Cisco side Long Reach ethernet may help you. Whats the Cable TV presented on? BNC? Fibre? other?

wlhoward@yahoo.com Wed, 10/24/2001 - 17:19
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The ethernet cables are an interesting idea. I'll do some research on it. The cable TV is presented on BNC. Thanks

logiczmike Wed, 10/24/2001 - 11:31
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Utilizing the existing cabling would be the most cost affective, but how long are the cable segments and are there other devices placed in line to boost the signals? Coaxial Cable has a max of 500m (500 Meters = 0.31070 Miles) before you need to boost the signal again.

The other question is are you using these servers in a Workgroup environment or are you going to have a WAN connection? This would change your topology. I would ask the Cable company if they have a device that would allow you to split the signals at each location (similar to ISDN channels), then you could run one line to the cable box and the other to your router, switch, or server.

Of course you could spend the money and lay your own cable based on the Cable TV route. Again type of cable used will be based on the distance.

Filters for the cable TV would also be another concern.

wlhoward@yahoo.com Wed, 10/24/2001 - 17:16
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I think your suggestion of checking with the cable company about splitting the signals is a great idea, and a good place to start. Each site is set up as a workgroup with no wan at all. Do you know if the cable company normally install repeaters for the video signal and would they work for data? If you mean we will need repeaters every third of a mile then were talking 9 repeaters to link the first two sites. I know that there is a main trunk (coax) line that is a 2" thick cable that travels to distribution boxes where it is split into multiple smaller (rg58?) lines. Again, thanks for your help.


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