Building an Enterprise WLAN | Free Essay Example

Building an Enterprise WLAN

Words: 3120
Topic: Tech & Engineering
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Introduction

Wireless communication technology is advancing at an alarming rate boosting business growth. Currently, the world’s biggest business organizations use Wireless Local Area Network (WLAN) in running their businesses. From mobile communication to IT systems used in the banking industry, WLAN continues to attract suitors from all fields. Soon, all business entrepreneurs and government agencies will adopt WLAN as an efficient wireless communication system that provides wide network coverage. It all started with a dispatch from analog to digital communications. Network structures are now changing from cable connections to wireless communication systems. This is one of the many advantages associated with mobile communication. A wireless system allows for efficient data and voice transfer worldwide.

All IT systems around the globe can connect through ubiquitous access thus allowing business expansion and globalization of communication systems. Surprisingly, WLAN allows businesspersons and internet users to receive and send high-speed data over long distances. Some business firms depend on data for outsourcing their business activities. Therefore, with the availability of WLAN, these firms can receive information and use it for entrepreneurial purposes. (Akyildriz & Wang, 2005, pp. 459-476).

Numerous organizations all over the world require WLAN so that they can run their businesses smoothly. Indeed, WLAN provides solutions to the traditional wired LAN system, which is not only slow but also, limited within a certain environment. The paper will examine the requirements and planning procedures for deploying a Wireless Local Area Network (Wi-Fi) for an enterprise firm of 100 employees. The paper will also examine all equipments and a favorable site for deploying Wireless Local Area Networks in an open construction area, its requirements, costs, and effectiveness.

Network Design Process

Perhaps one reason to ponder with is the value of WLAN to a business environment. To construct a wired LAN for 100 employees, there are obvious requirements and outcomes expected during and after the development is over. For a wired LAN to function properly, the site must support network connectivity and offer wide coverage which will reach all 100 employees of the enterprise. One advantage associated with Wireless Local Area Networks is its mobility. Mobility is the potentiality of WLAN to reach many people through space. Wired LAN is able to connect to other networks through the air without much difficulty. This will ease communication from one office to another hence, cover the targeted persons.

For example, if a university wants to connect its IT system all over, WLAN will be advantageous as all records and information can be found everywhere within the campus. A similar case applies to an enterprise firm where 100 employees will use the network system. With WLAN, Voice WLAN phone communication is possible from one office to another. Additionally, WLAN offers network security by protecting it from hackers and malware. On management issues, WLAN provides the easiest platform of system and network management. (Kull, 2003, para.1-4).

Characterizing WLAN

As the system changes from cable connections to wireless connection, its complexity increases. Not only does complexity increase, but also, its deployment cost. Therefore, engineers ought to be careful not to underestimate or overestimate the cost of planning and purchase of equipment. One point to consider is that, WLAN can be an agent of pollution by tampering with airwaves. This will affect diversified usability and make the system less effective. Therefore, there are factors to consider when deploying a WLAN on a given area. Indeed, there are three poignant parameters to take into consideration while on the verge of deploying WLAN. The first parameter is application mix equipment. This refers to the amount of data to send and receive within a traffic system. In this case, 100 employees will access information at one particular time.

Secondly, the expectations of the organization in terms of receiving and sending data are also paramount. Without realizing this option, the system is as good as nothing is. Lastly, engineers will want to design a system that is performance oriented. The requirements of an individual or an organization should be a reality for the system to count success. If these three requirements are satisfied, the system now deciphers into useful deployment mechanisms like coverage and the rate at which it sends and receives information. (Oppenheimer, 1998, pp. 3-43).

Application requirements need a better quality on experience for any WLAN system, to work effectively. The quality of experience deployed in constructing a wireless local area network is the ability of that system to guarantee a user an opportunity to work on intended purpose. Both targets and performance metrics are beneficial with regard on the type of application system. (Rappaport & Rappaport, 2001, pp.38-78).

Data Privacy and Applications

Data application of a WLAN system should be efficient and fast. For example, a good system should allow less time in processing information between the time of instituting a command and the time when the information feedback will retrieve. Some users may demand to have a system that gives an immediate feedback from a single click. Usually systems like this operate at a speed of 400ms connected from end-to-end and round-trip delays. The complexity of this system is due to a good network serialization, better wave propagation over space and orderly delays, which do not interfere with one another.

The process mechanism within traffic rail is also smooth and orderly courtesy of transmissions and timeouts. In this way, a better quality of experience relinquish within the system hence fast information processing. Timeout delays and retransmissions not only provide a better quality of experience but also, a wireless link free from interference and cross-linking waves. If one is constructing a WLAN for email and browser services, the amount of data transferred will be larger as compared to system processing information. Notably, users expect a delay in timeouts whenever a case like this happens. In other words, for a user to receive a feedback, delay occurs due to massive data. A designer need to consider deploying connections, which will allow faster data transfer. (Starling, 2003, pp.8-42).

Engineers should take into consideration the link quality and transport protocol, which allows a system to process massive data over a single time. The link should also minimize data loss and regulate the rate of transmission over traffic. The main reason of keeping data transfer loss as low a possible is to make TCP high enough so that the link can operate at a higher speed. This can create high data transfer protocol on a single train.

Voice

Another area to consider is the voice within a traffic train. Voice determines the rate of delay, packet loss and network jam. At least every WLAN should have a clear communication lines free from interference. To realize this, constriction of the system can be end-to-end operating at not more than 150 milliseconds. If the system operates at say 200 milliseconds, there will be delays due to constructive interference. The advantage with WLAN over other cable systems is that, it can only use one packet of the deployed 150 milliseconds. The quality of voice experience deteriorates with packet delay. Other factors that derail voice transmission include payout and propagation delays. A good WLAN communication requires 50 milliseconds as part of the deployed 150 milliseconds. Multiple channels do not occur in a wireless local area network.

Quality of Service, Topologies, Standards, and Protocols

This is one of the most important application measures, which ensure WLAN functions properly and free from interference. The environmental conditions of a place determine the quality of service of the Wireless Local Area Network. Different mechanisms are available to choose from, to give a better and working wireless network. They all depend on WLAN environmental conditions.

Wi-Fi Multimedia

This quality of service helps in registering a clear voice diminutive of interference. Wi-Fi creates hot points for connectivity purpose. The device operates under a mechanism that allows distribution frequencies according to channel access. In many occasions, WMM allows data to divide into, video, voice or traffic. An advantage associated with this quality of service is that, VoWLAM phones receive no interference.

Call Admission Control

WLAN services support end-to-end communication protocol. For this reason, an equipment IEEE 802.11e Call Admission Control controls the calling capacity deployed in a system. Thus, this device is a mode of coherence within a system. CAC assigns voice channels different bandwidths. The system is automatic as it follows a queue under instruction of first come basis. Hardly can the system allow interference from roaming channels as it has power to cancel an interfering channel. Every cell protects the next one from overtaking by automated load points. (Crow, Wadjaja, Kim & Sakai, 1997, pp.115-124).

VLANs

At times, voice and data can mix to cause delay in the system. When a situation like this occurs, VLAN play an important separation role. Although VLAN offer scalability and security to the system, they also provide a platform for voice and data separation. What happens is that, two VLAN lines each with SSID separate interfering voice traffics. The result is new channel traffic of higher quality of service than the former.

Network Optimization

Any organization constructing a wireless communication system ought to choose mobility first. Wireless Local Area Network has higher mobility where coverage exhibits in a wide area. Companies chose mobility because; the network coverage is great and non-interfered. The only risk involved in coverage is always checking whether the subnets are free from obstructions. VoWLAN demand an access point, which runs from one pot to another on the same subnet. If there is unwanted roaming around a subnet, the system looses connectivity and as a result, data delay is experienced hence, calls drop. (Liang & Yee, 1994, pp.2742-2747).

When buying vendor infrastructure materials that counter roaming, organizations should exercise much care, as some do not work properly. Properly constructed WLAN system has an IP subnet connected to VLAN. Largely, this is going to eliminate roaming over subnets and leave the system to work properly without interference. Thus, in deploying a WLAN, the whole vendor infrastructure ought to construct above a VLAN to increase mobility, manageability and scalability of a Wireless Local Area Network.

Denser deployment of access point infrastructure will offer sensitivity and allow faster data and voice transfer. For example, if an organization is structuring WLAN in a building of three storeys, engineers should deploy only two access points. One should be the first storey and the other on the third storey. Other infrastructure equipments to deploy inside and outside the building include internal and external antennas, to enhance radio propagation. Depending on the type of house, radio signals penetrate easily on wood material than cement. (Mathias, 2008, Para. 1-5).

WLAN Standards and Testing

Wireless Local Area Network comprises of set standards that organizations should be familiar with before deploying the system. For example, a deploying organization needs a Wi-Fi standard tool popularly known as IEEE 802.11to characterize media access control (MAC).

MAC supports the operation of WLAN in detaching communication channels between hot points and radio network cards. For a high-speed connection, IEEE 802.11b is required to operate at a relatively higher frequency for faster data transfer. Other models include IEEE 802.11a which allows WLAN to exhume mobile communications under 3G technologies. This WLAN standard also supports orthogonal frequency division multiplexing (OFDM) – a standard of WiMax and other wireless technologies. (Planning IEEE 802.11 Wireless Networks, 2005, Para. 7-28).

Developing an enterprise a wireless local area network requires capacity planning. Whether an organization will use dual technology that divides data and voice into spectrums, it is the role of this company to first access how 100 employees will be connected at al times without loss of connectivity. Engineers need more access points to minimize interference of AP’s and VoWLAN. When organizations or individuals do expenditure, they should give more priority to these infrastructures so that their system will process, transfer and send data quickly. The type of equipments bought will determine the speed at which the deployed WLAN system works.

Site Survey

The success of WLAN depends on the site chosen. Like in any business setting, before deploying WLAN at a given area, organizations should identify who their users are. Site survey allows a sense of familiarity in terms of coverage patterns, mobility, deploying obstacles, and the type of WLAN standards to use. The information gathered from the field can help in determining the operation bandwidth, VoWLAN and access points. With the availability of WLAN, internet service providers now offer wireless internet access by creating hot points. (Kull, 2003, Para. 6-9).

During the survey, engineers should establish the weakest links. This will be beneficial especially in deploying a radio frequency system and antennae, which will boost connectivity. If radio cards works well within that environment, well and good, if not, another criteria can apply. In essence, if for example one uses a laptop covered by radio antennae to examine the site, the results gotten can never be the same as those from a VoWLAN phone.

If the site has poor channel access, then designers need more access points. Moreover, 802.11 require less access points. Automatically, engineers will use another WLAN standard, which will do away with all interferences. Other notable signal barriers include, metal ceiling boards, concrete walls, metal furniture, trees bushes and water.

Wireless Network Security

No individual or organization can deploy Wireless Local Area Network without first considering its security. WLAN provides an inherent security as compared with the Wired LAN. Salient feature with WLAN like data encryption and network authentication are protective measures that add value and vigor to a wireless system. A good system provides security to data stored, information under processing and future data. Radio signals require protection from eavesdropping and survey from detractors whose intention is to create their own system based on other a nearby system. Through survey, the site should be able to support a high percent security just like other places.

However, in deploying a Wireless Local Area Network there is obstacles that hitch the whole system. Unless such an organization becomes extra careful, its WLAN security will be under threat. Information managers have a problem when it comes to choosing the right communication system composed of multiple forms of data encryption and system authentication. These two factors determine system security. Encryption and authentication depends on the strength of equipments used. Thus, for a better and secure system, the network equipments should have numerous points of creating a variety of access points. These access points integrate easily with all network designs giving WLAN the needed security, hence system security.

On the other hand, some large organizations including mobile telephony companies have their WLAN composed of numerous access points and a number of base stations. By joining servers and authentication dial-in-service popularly RADUIS, more servers arise giving the system the desired protection. The major concern however is, the purchased network infrastructure can provide better encryption modalities. Network authentication provided by these infrastructure, should ensure system security by making data private and out of reach. Additionally, using this infrastructure, system security features like access control and authentication will not be under threat.

In the past, wired LAN used to apply Wired Equivalent Protection to unleash system security. To a larger extent, this security guaranteed by this system did not control the mixing of voice and data. As time went by, static keys used by this network equipment weakened and easily broken into. Nevertheless, wired Local Area Network is highly susceptible to hijacking and cracking, the reason being; only one line of authentication applies when using this equipment.

So far, research carried out by scientists has led to the development of equipments which reverse this anomaly. The two equipments are IEEE 802.11i and IEEE 802.1X. These equipments increase access point and RADIUS connections within Wired Local Area Network. As a result, there is improved encryption authentication giving wired local area network extra security boost. (Gerla & Tsai, 1999, pp.255-265).

As far as network security is concerned, the type of infrastructure determines system security. Weak network infrastructure results to a poor system security. If the system is insecure from any form of attack, an organization risks its data privacy, authentication and finally data loss can result. Therefore, before deploying a Wireless Fidelity, engineers and organization officials should first do corporate planning. Corporate planning helps designers in building a secure, fast and efficient wireless communication system. Nevertheless, in open area construction projects, the existence of workable system security and coverage supports the deployment of Wireless Local Area Network powered by Wireless Fidelity.

In an insecure location, Virtual Private Network (VPN) becomes efficient in providing the system with security. Many IT managers opt for this connection because; they do not want to risk data loss or system hijacking. Although many clients and mangers prefer this WLAN connection, it is some times cumbersome to handle due to managerial reasons. Imagine of a situation where, every client wireless at a single time.

There will be encroachment on the system thus demanding additional system work force. A fully protected WLAN allow only authorized users into the system, and can prevent crackers from interfering with the network. IT managers are in a position to track malware and security threats ready to attack the system. Nevertheless, a properly deployed standard WLAN is able to unleash its WLAN security measures to curb intruders and attacks.

Conclusion

Deploying a Wireless Local Area Network is not an easy task. It encompasses rigorous cooperate planning and surveying the expected area of deploying such a network. When purchasing infrastructure equipments, engineers and organizations should exercise maximum care so that, any purchase made, will benefit the deployment of this network. Emerging wireless technologies go hand in hand with newly developed infrastructure. Though infrastructure can at times prove to be expensive, the WLAN deployed has more advantages that surpass deploying costs. If an organization is intending to deploy a WLAN which will support the application of data and voice, the WLAN infrastructure base must compile different equipments.

A good WLAN should have the capability to attenuate voice and control data and voice cross linking. In addition, WLAN depends on equipment capability to carry out proper authentication and encryption. With these two factors under consideration, the output is an efficient voice quality. WLAN connection should be end–to-end for a better quality of service. (Oppenheimer, 1998, pp. 123-178).

The expectations from a WLAN are many such as, to have a system with pervasive coverage, faster data transfer, network security and reliability on transmissions. Wireless Local Area Network (Wi-Fi), has many advantages over wired LAN ranging from mobility, coverage, security and efficiency in data and voice transmissions. If organizations or individuals deploying a WLAN on area covered construction projects follow these descriptions, 100 employees will not have any problem in executing their responsibilities as IT attendants.

Reference List

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Crow, B., Wadjaja, I., Kim, G., & Sakai, P. (1997). IEEE 802.11 Wireless Local Area Networks. IEEE Communication Magazine, 35(9), pp.115-124. Web.

Gerla, M. & Tsai, T. (1999). Multicluster, mobile multimedia radio network. ACM Baltzer Journal Wireless Networks, 1(3), pp. 255–265. Web.

Kull, J. (2003). University Deploys a WLAN. TechRepublic. Web.

Liang, S. & Yee, J. (1994). Locating Internet Gateways to Minimize Nonlinear Congestion Costs. IEEE Transactions on Communications, 42, pp. 2742–2747. Web.

Mathias, C., 2008. Predict Wi-Fi Performance and Plan your Wireless LAN. TECHWORLD. Web.

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Stalling, W. (2003). Data and Computer Communication. 7th ed. Harlow: Prentice Hall. Web.