February 24, 2015

Wireless or wired networking setup and configuration for home or office


Networking can be confusing for most people. Mainframe Computers is here to help. We can design, build, install or reconfigure your existing network and can get all of the devices on your home or office network up and running. We know how data works and will get it working for you.

We offer many different networking services:

  • Wireless network setup, design, and implementation
  • Wired network setup, design, and implementation
  • Sharing a printer over a network
  • Connecting wireless devices such as iPods, iPad, Smartphones, Android Tablet, and other wireless toys.
  • Introduce a central backup solution over the network, such as a NAS (Network Attached Storage) device or off-site backup.
  • Installing Linux and Windows Servers, and implementing DNS, DHCP, active directory (where available), roaming profiles, ISS (Windows), Apache, FTP, HTTP, MySQL and a myriad of other services my brain is too tired to think up.
  • As always, free High Fives! are available to all customers upon request

And if you have no idea what I just listed, perhaps this very basic guide on the most common types of network hardware will be of use to you.

Network Switch – A network switch, also known as a switching hub, is what you plug a computer into to connect to a network. A switch’s primary purpose is to send data through a network. They can sometimes be thought of as “network splitters” since they allow multiple connections to a network. There are 2 basic types of switches:

Unmanaged Switch – An unmanaged switch is basically a splitting device and has no user configuration. It needs no configuration before introducing it to the network.

Managed Switch – A managed switch allows greater control of the data that is being passed through it. Managed switches are usually much more expensive than the unmanaged type and typically much more reliable.

Router – A router can be thought of as the dispatch unit of a network. Wherein a switch passes traffic, through a network, a router finds the best available path for the data to travel over the network. In other words, it routes the data. Most routers also have built in switches so that multiple devices can access the router.

Wired Router – A wired router, or standard router, can only access data through wires. Typically CAT5 or CAT6 wiring is used in most modern networking applications. CAT5 and CAT6 cables consist of 4 pairs (8 total) of small gauge wires and is shielded to prevent interference from other electronic devices. This makes it more reliable than a wireless signal.

Wireless Router – The primary difference between a wired and wireless router is the presence of an Access Point. Wireless routers have a built-in access point or AP. An AP can be thought of as the central transmitter and receiver of Wi-Fi radio signals. They convert the wireless signal into usable data that can then be read and passed on to its appropriate destination.

Modem – A modem connects a traditional network (using CAT5 or CAT6 wiring) to the Internet through an Internet Service Provider or ISP. Since CAT5 and CAT6 wiring are not usable for more than about 100 meters, an ISP must use different types cabling to get data from the internet to and from your home. The high speed data and cabling outside your home isn’t suitable for direct use, so modems convert that data into a signal traditional network equipment can use.