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Bringing Heterogeneous Networks Together: A Fictional Case Study

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Abstract
Introduction
Introducing Terra Flora
Terra Flora Corporate History
Organization of Terra Flora
Reengineering the Terra Flora Network
Creating the Information Plan
For More Information

Abstract

As network administrators attempt to make heterogeneous systems work together, they find that the different network operating systems do not "speak" the same standard protocols and that there may be nonstandard or proprietary protocols in use in various parts of their networks. Administrators need to discover ways to connect these networks together, enabling them to interoperate and complement each other. To illustrate problems and solutions for interoperability, this white paper examines a real network for a fictitious company called "Terra Flora, Incorporated," an international corporation in the floral industry. This example shows how to devise and implement a plan to bring diverse information systems together in a way that is consistent with the company's business operations and objectives.

Introduction

In the early days of networking, there was only one type of network and operating system. Communication was not an issue: When the computers were connected, they communicated. It was relatively slow and very expensive, but it worked.

Today, corporate computer environments are often heterogeneous, that is, they have at least two different network operating systems on their standards list that must interoperate with both newer, intranet client/server environments and legacy computers and applications.

As network administrators attempt to make these systems work together, they find that the different network operating systems do not "speak" the same standard protocols and that there may be non-standard or proprietary protocols in use in various parts of their networks. They need to discover ways to connect these networks together, enabling them to interoperate and complement each other.

To illustrate problems and solutions for interoperability, we put together a real network for a fictitious company we call "Terra Flora, Incorporated." We imagined this company to be an international corporation in the floral industry. Terra Flora will serve as an example of a company with heterogeneous networks and of how to devise and implement a plan to bring these information systems together in a way that is consistent with the company's business operations and objectives.

Terra Flora is a totally fictitious corporation. The names of companies, products, people, characters, and data mentioned herein are fictitious and are in no way intended to represent any real individual, company, product, or event, unless otherwise noted.

Introducing Terra Flora

Terra Flora is an international corporation specializing in retail flower in the United States and Europe. The main business functions of Terra Flora are listed below.

  • Operating nurseries that grow flowers, and purchasing exotic varieties of flowers from local growers under contract.

  • Manufacturing trademark "Terra Flora" brand terra cotta pots and vases.

  • Distributing the grown and purchased flowers and manufactured terra cotta products to the retail stores.

  • Obtaining and filling customer orders at the retail level.

  • Delivering flower orders.

Terra Flora Corporate History

The business originally consisted of a single retail outlet, located in Sacramento, California, that began selling flowers in 1970. The business grew significantly, so the company purchased other retail florist shops across the United States, including major retail stores in New York City and Los Angeles. These two stores installed order desks with toll-free phone lines. Customers could place orders by phone and have their purchases delivered anywhere in the United States, with guaranteed delivery times and schedules.

The flowers originally came from a local Sacramento nursery. As the company grew, it contracted with two European nurseries, in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, and Seville, Spain, to provide exotic flower varieties. The retail company purchased all three nurseries in 1988 and set up distribution procedures, which effectively turned the nurseries into supply and distribution centers.

In early 1990, the chain incorporated and offered ownership shares on the stock market. Using the capital generated from selling stock, the corporation purchased a manufacturing plant located in Sacramento that manufactured various styles of award-winning terra cotta pots and vases. The pots and vases have become the corporation's "signature" product and are used as part of the flower arrangements sold at the retail stores.

At the same time, the company began opening retail shops in upscale malls instead of purchasing existing florists. Currently, the company continues to focus on this strategy for expanding its business.

In December 1991, the corporation renamed itself "Terra Flora Incorporated."

In 1993, Terra Flora began selling flowers internationally. The corporation formalized the setup of supply and distribution centers in Amsterdam and Seville by purchasing office space near the supply farms. Terra Flora modeled the centers on the Sacramento operation, which had changed significantly over the years. More U.S. distribution centers were purchased in Dallas, Texas and Boston, Massachusetts.

Organization of Terra Flora

Terra Flora is now organized in three major divisions: Retail Services, Supply and Manufacturing, and Nursery Products. Corporate and divisional headquarters are all located in Sacramento. Each division has business operations in North American and European locations.

  • The Retail Services division manages the operations of all Terra Flora retail stores. The division is also responsible for the regional retail-distribution service centers in Sacramento, Dallas, Boston, Seville, and Amsterdam, and for the major retail centers in Los Angeles, New York City, and London, England.

  • The Supply and Manufacturing provides the terra cotta pots. The original manufacturing plant is in Sacramento, and a remote site is in Amsterdam.

  • The Nursery Products division has remote sites in Seville and Amsterdam in addition to the Sacramento nursery.

Until now, each division of Terra Flora operated as a separate company, implementing policies and procedures that the divisional managers felt were necessary to perform the various business functions. The autonomy of each division was the result of rapid growth and the fact that the procedures that were in place in each division worked well enough, in spite of some inefficiencies.

Each Terra Flora division also operates separate, heterogeneous computer environments that separately track and record various business functions, including sales, ordering, accounting, inventory, and division-specific information. Information is sent to division headquarters in Sacramento, where it is consolidated. None of the networks in any of the divisions communicate with the computers in other divisions. Consolidating information for the entire company means entering the same data several times into different computer systems.

The disadvantages of the situation are clear. It is costly, and information is redundant. Management reports are prone to error because synchronization of information is difficult. The heterogeneous networks must interoperate if the Terra Flora divisions are to merge and operate as a single business unit, relying on a centralized information database.

To meet this challenge, the company hired a new Chief Information Officer, who had managed the implementation of a similar strategic plan for another corporation before joining Terra Flora. As a first step, the CIO has asked each of the divisions to submit a list of the computer hardware and operating systems for analysis, along with descriptions of the major divisional business processes. The list would indicate the computer and manual interfaces into the processes. Each division has also been asked to supply network diagrams and brief descriptions of the databases and software applications that run on each computer. Analysis will be performed on each division in an attempt to decide which computer hardware and software from each division best fits the corporate strategy.

The immediate goal is to connect and maintain the existing systems necessary to continue business operations. In the long term, Terra Flora plans to migrate the existing systems applications to less costly and lower-maintenance client/server applications. More analysis of the custom applications must be done to determine the best features of those products and to create a plan for implementing the necessary client/server applications.

Retail Services Division

Because the Retail Services division grew by purchasing other florist shops, the division acquired those shops' computer equipment and software systems as part of the purchases. That computer equipment was then incorporated into the division's network.

The Retail Services Network

The retail division was relatively slow to computerize. The division purchased the Sun server, currently named CASUN25ENT01, early in the 1980s. Custom applications were written, which are still updated and further customized as needed.

Distribution was incorporated into the Retail Services divisional operations when the distribution center in Dallas was purchased. A Banyan server was obtained as part of that purchase, which provides file and print services to the division.

Workings of the Sun Server

This server runs the Solaris SPARC version 2.5 operating system. The ORACLE database focuses on retail sales information, with emphasis on distribution and inventory information. Customized business application systems on the Sun server include an inventory-management system, accounting system, customer-ordering system, product-ordering system, point-of-sale application (including a custom exchange rate application to calculate the monetary differences in international customer orders and purchases), distribution software, and delivery-truck scheduling.

Workings of the Banyan Server

The Banyan server runs a Banyan VINES 6.22 network operating system. The server provides file and print services to the Retail Services division headquarters in Sacramento. Banyan mail messaging is provided through Beyond Mail.

Whenever Terra Flora purchased a retail store, the store was connected to the Sun server and then given access to appropriate information stored on the server. The retail stores are provided file and print services for management reports and sales tickets through printers on site in the stores.

Business Processes of the Retail Services Division

The business processes in Retail Services fall into two categories: dealings with consumers and dealings between the distribution centers and the retail stores.

Interactions with Consumers

  1. The retail store receives customer orders in a number of ways:

    • A customer can walk into a retail store, place an order, and either take delivery or have the order delivered within a specified time.

    • A customer can phone or fax an order to the retail store and request delivery within a specified time.

    • A customer can phone in an order using the 1-800 phone lines. The order is forwarded to the appropriate retail store for delivery within the specified time.

  2. Except for orders taken over the 1-800 lines, customer orders are entered into the system on the SCO computer, named CASC050DSK, which appears on the network diagram in the California domain at the Desktop level. This entry is made through an X/Windows front-end application. Orders that come in on the 1-800 phone line are entered on the SCO computer by the customer-service representative at the time the order is placed, while the customer is still on the phone.

    The order data is posted to an ORACLE database running on the Sun server. This automatically triggers a division-wide examination and analysis of inventory and delivery schedules, and then triggers other business applications on other computers to perform the following functions:

    • If the customer order is placed in a retail store and the retail store can fill the order within the time frame specified by the customer, the inventory is relieved and a customer invoice is printed at the retail store on the local printer for delivery with the product.

    • If the customer order is placed in a retail store and the store cannot fill the order, the inventory of the retail stores in the area is examined. If an area retail store can fill the order, the order is forwarded to the delivery-schedule application of the area store for scheduling delivery within the customer-specified time frame. The inventory of the area store is relieved and a customer invoice prints on that store's local printer for delivery with the product.

    • If the customer order is placed in a retail store and neither the retail store or any area store can fill the order, the customer's order is placed on a product order to ensure that the order will arrive at the retail store and be delivered within the specified customer time frame.

    • If the customer order is placed over the 1-800 phone lines, the customer order is forwarded to a retail store that can fill the order within the customer's specified time frame. The inventory of the retail store is relieved and a customer invoice is printed on the local printer for delivery with the product or to give to the customer who chooses to pick up the product.

  3. Standard accounting information is posted to the accounting database as a result of the customer order.

  4. Automatic product orders are generated based on sales of product. The store manager reviews the order, accepts or changes the information on the order, and faxes the order to the proper distribution centers.

  5. Delivery-truck schedules are produced and printed on local printers at the retail stores that are responsible for delivering customer orders.

Interactions Between Distribution Centers and Retail Stores

The Retail Services division is also responsible for the distribution of product from the distribution centers to the retail stores.

  1. Each day, the ORACLE product-ordering database records the product received at the distribution center.

  2. Distribution schedules are printed at corporate headquarters and the distribution sites, indicating which retail stores are to receive what products, based on the product orders submitted by the retail stores.

  3. New product orders from the retail stores arrive by fax or telephone.

  4. The product orders are entered into the ORACLE database on the Sun server.

  5. Inventory is examined. If the products ordered are in stock, inventory is updated, product pick tickets are generated, and correct shipping labels and customs documents are printed at the proper printers in the distribution centers.

  6. Accounting information in the ORACLE database is updated, as appropriate.

  7. Orders for the flower products to be distributed are automatically generated and tracked in the ORACLE product-order database and then faxed or phoned to the proper nursery in the Nursery Products division or to the plant in the Supply and Manufacturing division.

Supply and Manufacturing Division

The Supply and Manufacturing division is responsible for the manufacturing of the signature terra cotta pots and other standard economy pots, as necessary. The division is also responsible for distributing the pots to the retail stores, based on stock and special orders placed by those stores.

The Supply and Manufacturing Network

The manufacturing plant was essentially an IBM shop when Terra Flora purchased it. The sale included the ES/9000, which was running various business-operations software. These software applications did not communicate with each other. The pot manufacturer had purchased an IBM AS/400 and had begun working on a plan to customize and migrate business operations from the ES/9000 to the AS/400.

Upon closer analysis, it was discovered that due to the specialized applications running on the ES/9000, such as the sophisticated money-exchange rate application, migration was not cost-effective. At that time, software was implemented on both servers to allow transfer of necessary information on a fixed schedule between the two machines.

Functions of the ES/9000

The ES/9000 is running Virtual Machine/Enterprise Systems Architecture (VM/ESA). All the division's accounting applications and the sophisticated money exchange application run on the ES/9000.

Functions of the AS/400

The AS/400 is currently running V2R3 operating system; the databases for business operations are written in a combination of DB2 and RPG/400. The AS/400 runs applications including inventory management and control, a distribution-scheduling system, a production system, and the order system for raw materials for the production of the terra cotta pots and other lines of product.

Supply and Manufacturing Division's Business Processes

The business processes at the Supply and Manufacturing division are described below. Each process is numbered, and the process flow is documented using numbers and arrows on the network diagram.

  1. The Supply and Manufacturing division receives product orders from their customers (the retail stores and distribution centers) by phone or fax.

  2. An employee inputs the orders on a Warp client through a front-end application to a DB2 product-ordering database on the AS/400.

  3. Exchange-rate information is automatically posted to the accounting database on the ES/9000.

  4. A product order summary is printed, and the production manager schedules the production of pots for the day, based on the product orders received.

  5. The production staff makes the scheduled product.

  6. The daily production is entered into the production DB2 database on the AS/400.

  7. The daily production is automatically posted to the accounting database on the ES/9000.

  8. The production system on the AS/400 generates recommended stock orders, based on the raw materials used for the day's production. The orders are printed for the plant manager to review and, upon approval, are faxed to the suppliers of raw materials.

  9. The production system updates the DB2 retail-store-customer ordering system. This updates on-hand inventory and then automatically recommends filling the outstanding product orders from the retail stores and distribution centers, based on production and the date on which the orders were submitted.

  10. The retail-store-customer ordering system automatically sends appropriate accounting information to the accounting database on the ES/9000.

  11. The retail-store-customer ordering system updates the DB2 distribution database about which orders are to be filled.

  12. The distribution system prints product pick tickets, shipping labels, and necessary customs papers.

Nursery Products Division

Operations at the Nursery Products division are simpler because all the customers of the Nursery Products Division are in the Retail Services division.

The Nursery Products Network

When Terra Flora purchased the Sacramento nursery, a DECaxp150 running DEC UNIX and PATHWORKS version 5.0 was included in the purchase. All the applications are UNIX and include the following programs.

  • Accounting

  • A product-order system, for contacting the proper supplier for specific flowers

  • A customer-order system, for tracking orders placed by the retail stores

  • A delivery system, for tracking shipments to the retail stores and calculating the expected delivery of the products to the retail stores

The Sacramento nursery is the only one that is computerized.

All business operations for the Nursery Products division are tracked in databases on the DECaxp150 server running DEC UNIX, which are listed below.

  • A customer-order database that lists the retail stores

  • A product-order database, from which product orders are calculated

  • Accounting

  • An order-delivery database, which prints product pick tickets for the shipping department

  • A labeling program, which prints package labels and international customs papers

Nursery Products Division's Business Processes

The following list describes the process for the Nursery Products division.

  1. Customer orders for products are received by phone or fax from retail stores.

  2. The orders are input on any NetWare client into a front-end NetWare application.

  3. Throughout the day, customer orders are processed by an ORACLE database on the DEC UNIX server.

  4. A summary, based on the days orders, is printed and input into the accounting database on the UNIX server.

  5. The bookkeeper posts the accounting information.

  6. Inventory is checked, and those customer orders that can be filled are filled; then product pick tickets are printed and given to the shipping department.

  7. Orders are boxed, and shipping labels and customs documents are typed on an IBM Selectric typewriter.

  8. A daily summary of customer orders is printed for the nursery manager. Based on the inventory stocking levels, the manager phones the local or international farms to order enough stock to fill the retail customer orders.

  9. The nursery manager records the items ordered from suppliers in the ORACLE product order database.

Reengineering the Terra Flora Network

Having summarized the main facts about the operations, current network usage, and business processes of each division, the CIO begins an analysis of the business and technical problems at Terra Flora and to create a plan. The planning will occur in three phases: studying the current network, organizing goals into priority levels, and developing a way to integrate the networks in a service-based model.

Understanding the Current Network

To understand the existing Terra Flora network, the newly hired CIO must go through the following steps.

  • Identifying all hardware on the network, including clients, workstations, and servers. This information should be sufficiently detailed to help determine what equipment must be upgraded.

  • Identifying the geographic extent of both the local area networks (LANs) and the wide area networks (WANs), including the media used for the LAN and to create the WAN.

  • Identifying the location of the network components and operating systems.

  • Identifying bandwidth information.

  • Identifying specific user activities, the numbers of users doing those activities, and the usage patterns on the network.

  • Identifying specific tasks, such as storing files, server backups, posting data to a database, data replication, and application distribution.

Realigning and Prioritizing the Goals

The business goals can be organized into the following priority levels.

  • Business-critical goals

  • Strategic goals

  • User-benefit goals

  • Wish-list goals

Business-critical Goals

Business-critical goals are goals that are required to do business. These goals must be accomplished as quickly as possible. Terra Flora identified the following business-critical goals, to be accomplished in no more than three months.

  • To physically connect the three networks

  • To migrate to the same network protocol

  • To recognize security credentials, for authenticating network logons

  • To allow users to share appropriate files and printers

  • To reduce training requirements

  • To do business on the Internet

Strategic Goals

Strategic goals provide a clear benefit to the business. These goals can be accomplished within three to six months without harm or loss to the business. Terra Flora has the following strategic goals.

  • To centralize user accounts

  • To centralized network administration and backup

  • To centralized application distribution

  • To extend the Terra Flora network to all employees

  • To create central information stores and applications

  • To allow dynamic IP addressing in the network

  • To give all employees electronic mail

  • To electronically distribute corporate-wide information

User-benefit Goals

User-benefit goals provide a clear benefit to the user by enhancing productivity or increasing efficiency. These goals can be accomplished within six to twelve months without harm or loss to the business. Terra Flora has identified the following user-benefit goals.

  • Internet access for Terra Flora employees

  • Dial-up, telecommuting capabilities

Wish-list Goals

Goals on the wish list are amenities, but are not required. These goals can be accomplished at any time. Terra Flora has one item on its wish list, to integrate the DNS name space, using fully qualified domain names, such as mariag.terraflora.com.

Integrating the Networks Using a Services-based Model

The services provided on the network must be viewed independently of the divisional network structure. The integrated-network model groups the computers by the services they provide to the company rather than by division. The services can be grouped into four categories, called layers: Enterprise, Division, Department, and Desktop.

Table 4.1 Layers of the Services-based Network Model

Network Level

Services provided

Users

Enterprise

Support for the global network (such as centralized user accounts and network services) and providing master copies of common information across the organization

40,000

Division

Centralized file, print, and application services, focusing on business operations

100 to 1,000

Department

Local file, print, and application services

25 to 100

Desktop

Local file and application services

1 to 25

The new model also enables productive change in the following other areas.

  • Integration of the information staff

  • Centralization of network support

  • Budgeting and tracking capital expenditures

The next sections describe the network services at each level and show how these will help create an efficient network at Terra Flora.

Enterprise Services

Servers at this level focus on supporting the global network (such as centralized user accounts and administration) and providing the master copy of common information across the organization. Enterprise servers are directly connected to the corporate or remote backbone, are kept in protected environments in the work area of the network administrators, and usually operate at 100 MB per second (such as by FDDI, CDDI, or Fast Ethernet). An Enterprise server might provide networking services for up to 40,000 users.

Local availability of the servers can affect which services exist at which level. When remote distances separate the servers and the users, backbone traffic can make timely access to these services difficult. Communications across WANs can be slow and costly. This makes direct, corporate-wide access to Enterprise services impractical. It makes sense to set up the servers at this top (Enterprise) level to maintain and update information, which users would access at lower levels.

For example, a server can be the master distribution point for site- or corporate-licensed software, standard corporate applications, and employee information. The master source servers would store the master copy, which would be used to replicate sources and download to servers on the Division level. This ensures that they are synchronized with the master corporate copy. Since Division-level servers are local to the users in the division, this replication and synchronization reduces both the network traffic on the corporate backbone and the cost of WAN communications.

Enterprise servers can also host the master copy of the distribution packages deployed by Microsoft Systems Management Servers.

The services typically offered at this level include the following items.

  • Logon authentication

    This service ensures that users can log on to the network and perform the tasks for which they have permission. NetLogon is the Windows NT service that performs this function.

  • Replicated user account database

    This service allows a copy of the Directory Database (formerly called SAM) to be replicated on other servers, effectively distributing the logon authentication process. Under Windows NT Server, NetLogon performs this function.

  • Centralized network services

    These services allow an administrator to configure network services that affect the entire network and to make any administrative changes from one site.

    For example, a Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) server can be added to the network and configured to allow centrally defined global and subnet TCP/IP parameters for the entire internetwork. When a workstation computer moves between subnets, it is automatically reconfigured for TCP/IP at system startup.

  • Name resolution

    This service centralizes the resolution of the unique user names and TCP/IP addresses that allow access to computer resources on the network.

    For example, a server running the Windows Internet Name Service (WINS) server software would perform this function. WINS servers maintain a database that maps computer names to IP addresses, allowing users to communicate with other computers and gain all the benefits of using TCP/IP.

    As another example, a DNS server also provides dynamic mapping of domain names to IP addresses and is the commonly used name-resolution service in environments running a UNIX operating system.

  • Backup

    Servers at any level typically provide backup services for the next lower level of servers. Enterprise servers perform this function for the servers on the Division level, which, in turn, perform backups for the Department-level servers. Enterprise servers do not usually back up for the Department level.

  • Limited protocol service support

    To reduce network traffic across the Enterprise backbone, servers at this level might support only one or two networking protocols. Frequently, the choice is the TCP/IP protocol.

  • Internet Services (using the Internet Information Server service)

    These servers can be used to create web sites that the public can access for corporate information and customer-focused marketing.

  • Intranet Services (using the Internet Information Server service)

    These servers store information that is to be available to all employees on the internal corporate network, but not to users outside of the company or organization. This might include corporate standards, employee benefits, corporate events, and other information, such as job listings. These Enterprise-level servers typically host references to the Division-level servers. For example, an Enterprise server might refer to a Division web site for the company's retail operations.

  • Site

    These services affect organization sites but are hidden to the users. For example, the Enterprise servers can act as storage and master source for distribution of organization-supported software. The replicator service distributes the software to the Division level for distribution to the lower levels.

Division Services

This level typically contains the centralized file and print application, focusing on business operations. Division-level servers often provide networking services for up to 1,000 users, although they can be scaled to support larger numbers of users.

If the location of the division or region requires connecting over slower WAN links, then Enterprise services may be supplied at this level.

The Division level usually include the following services.

  • Heterogeneous file and print interfaces

    These interfaces allow interoperability with other servers including UNIX, NetWare, LAN Server, and Banyan VINES.

  • Integration

    This level may provide heterogeneous protocols, such as TCP/IP, IPX/SPX, SNA, and VINES IP, which allow integration with services offered on UNIX, NetWare, or mainframe Enterprise servers.

  • Intranet Information services (using the Internet Information Server service)

    These servers provide corporate information that focuses on the division or region. For example, project plans, schedules, reviews, presentations, and background information for the division are stored here. Data sheets, product reviews, product comparisons, and product specification sheets may also be stored here for easy access and distribution to field sales and marketing personnel.

  • Backup

    Servers at any level typically provide backup services for the next lower level of servers. For example, Division servers perform this function for servers on the Department level.

Department Services

Servers at this level focus on the business tasks. These servers provide local file, print, and application services. They also provide temporary file storage for workgroup projects, home directories, and scheduled-backup directories. In a typical scenario for this level, servers are organized by workgroups or departments to provide networking services for 25 to 100 users.

At the Enterprise level, a limited number of high-cost, high-performance servers address the centralized needs of the entire organization. At the Division level, less expensive servers provide adequate performance to a smaller group. At the Department level, a server may be a workstation-class machine, such as a 486 computer with 16 MB RAM running Windows NT Server.

Department-level servers typically provide the following services.

  • Departmental or branch-office projects

    Information is stored about the department tasks and workgroup projects. Enterprise and Division servers can access this information to compile reports.

  • Intranet Information services (using the Internet Information Server service)

    This information is specific to the Department. Status reports and the supporting information may be posted here for everyone to browse through at their convenience.

  • Internet services (using the Internet Information Server service)

    At this level, project web sites may be created and posted to the Internet.

  • Backup

    Servers at any level typically provide backup services for servers or computers on the next lower level. Department servers perform this function for Desktop computers.

Desktop Services

In most corporations, the desktop computer is the productivity platform, running either Windows 95 or Windows NT Workstation with various applications, such as Microsoft Office and custom programs for specific business needs. The focus here is to provide services to remote, mobile-networking, and desktop clients. The logical grouping of the desktop groups may include small departments of 5 to 20 people, or may include thousands of desktop computers. The services offered include the following functions.

  • Local, personal file storage

    The Desktop provides local storage for personal files and application data for business applications.

  • Local applications

    For productivity desktops, the local applications might include Microsoft Office Professional. For developer-class desktops, this might include Microsoft Visual C++ compilers and debug versions of the operation systems. For Internet Information Server service (IIS) developers, this might include IIS and SQL applications.

Creating the Information Plan

The 12-month objective at Terra Flora is to accomplish all the business-critical goals and as many as possible of the strategic goals.

Windows NT network services and some third-party services will be implemented to integrate the systems. Windows NT Workstation, Windows NT Server, or Windows 95 will be installed on any new equipment the company purchases, as appropriate to the role that the equipment will play in the Terra Flora network.

The information plan identifies the technical solutions for reaching the business goals as outlined in Table 4.2.

Table 4.2 Solutions for the Terra Flora Business Plan

Goal Priority

Business Goal

Technical Solutions for Information Plan

Business critical

Physically connect the three networks

Purchase routers and switches, as necessary to connect the network efficiently.

Business critical

Allow users to share files and printers as appropriate

Windows NT file and print (or, FPNW for NetWare clients; PCNFS for UNIX clients; Banyan File & Print for Windows NT for Banyan clients).

Business critical

Integrate all existing systems that facilitate business processes

Use SNA server to connect to the ES/9000 and AS/400.
More analysis of the custom applications must be done for two reasons: to determine the best features of those products, and to create a plan for implementing the workstation and server applications necessary to effectively operate the business.

Business critical

Reduce training requirements

Provide a consistent, easy-to-use user interface for both desktop and server platforms. Allow connectivity to heterogeneous systems through a consistent interface.

Business critical

Do business on the Internet

The Terra Flora marketing department wants the corporation to create web pages for the Internet. These pages would feature images of popular floral arrangements. Customers would click an image to order it directly from the nearest retail order desk. Web pages would also list retail store locations and operating hours, the history of the company, product information, appropriate inventory data, and marketing information, such as seasonal specials. Internal departments responsible for maintaining web-page information would be given access to the pages.

Business critical

Migrate to the same network protocol

Install and configure TCP/IP on all platforms.

Business critical

Recognize security credentials and centrally authenticate network logons

Windows NT Network logon service will be used to authenticate credentials and provide single network log on.

Strategic

Centralized user accounts

Use Windows NT Server directory services to provide enterprise-wide user names and passwords.
Trust relationships will be set up between domains, creating a single network logon.

Strategic

Centralized network administration and backup

Using Windows NT replication service for Enterprise-level databases, WINS, DNS, and DHCP services. For online backup, deploy Octopus for Windows NT. For the backup of data and software master copies, use Seagate Backup Exec for Windows NT.

Strategic

Extend the Terra Flora network to all employees

Use the built-in Windows NT RAS to connect mobile users.
Use Windows NT Server PPTP to connect remote sites across the Internet, using a secure link.
Create a secure communications link between the Seville site and headquarters in Sacramento.

Strategic

Create central information stores and applications

Analyze software applications to maintain the best ones, and program what is missing. Automate the manual tasks, as appropriate, such as the production line and distribution centers.

Strategic

Allow dynamic IP addressing in the network

Use Windows NT DHCP Server, and enable all capable DHCP clients.

Strategic

Give all employees electronic mail

Migrate to Microsoft Exchange.

Strategic

Electronically distribute corporate-wide information

Use Internet Information Server and Internet Explorer to distribute corporate-wide information.

Terra Flora Network Systems Diagram

The diagram inside the back cover of this book provides an illustration of the new network model for Terra Flora. All primary services and computers systems for Terra Flora are shown. For brevity, only a representative sample of worldwide retail operations is shown.

Naming Conventions

Each computer is labeled with a name that includes the following information.

  • The computer name for the server

  • The server IP address

  • The services running on that computer

The first line below each computer icon lists the computer name, which has 12 characters. These follow specific naming conventions, with each character representing additional information about the computer.

  • Characters 1 and 2

    The first two characters indicate the domain of which the computer is a part. Terra Flora uses the following domain symbols.

    • NE, which represents the North East domain

    • EU, which represents the Europe domain

  • Characters 3-7

    The five characters following the domain symbol represent the operating system that the computer is running. Table 4.3 lists the five-character codes and the systems they represent.

    Table 4.3 Codes for Operating Systems

    Operating System Code

    Operating System Description

    NTS40

    Microsoft Windows NT Server 4.0

    NTW40

    Microsoft Windows NT Workstation 4.0

    BAN62

    Banyan 6.22

    SUN25

    SPARC 2.5

    NW410

    Novell NetWare 4.10

    WPS30

    IBM OS/2 Warp Connect Server 3.0

    LMN22

    Microsoft LAN Manager 2.2c

    NTS35

    Microsoft Windows NT Server 3.51

    NW312

    Novell NetWare 3.12

    WIN31

    Microsoft Windows 3.1

    WIN95

    Microsoft Windows 95

    SCO50

    Santa Cruz Operations Open Server 5.0

    WPD30

    IBM OS/2 Warp Desktop 3.0

    MSD62

    MS-DOS 6.22

    MAC70

    Macintosh Operating System 7.0

    KIOSK

    Santa Cruz Operations Open Desktop 5.0

    CAPENT

    DEC UNIX, with PATHWORKS 5.0

    RAINIER

    IBM AS/400

    MAC 400001701100

    ES/9000, with Virtual Machine Enterprise Systems Architecture (VM\ESA)

  • Characters 8-10

    These represent a three-character code for the service level.

    • ENT, which represents the Enterprise level

    • DIV, which represents the Division level

    • DPT, which represents the Department level

    • DSK, which represents the Desktop level

  • Characters 11 & 12

    These characters are the identification number for the computer. A computer number can be any number between 01 and 99.

Computer Software

Various software was installed on different computers. This software will be used to provide services to the computer network. The first text line in the diagram is reserved for the computer's name, and line two is reserved for the computer's IP address. The remainder of the text indicates the software loaded on each computer. The following table lists the codes and descriptions of the software represented by the code.

Table 4.4 Codes for Software

Software Code

Software Description

IIS (Internet)

Internet Information Server for connecting to the Internet.

PPTP

Point to Point Tunneling Protocol used to create secure communications over the Internet between Seville remote site and Sacramento site.

Deployment Server

A big server owned by the IS department of Terra Flora. It is typically used for projects. For example, all the documentation and files for the current migration project are stored on this server.

IIS (Intranet)

Microsoft Internet Information Server for Intranet internal, corporate network.

F&P

File and Print software. Specific to providers installed on the network.

Banyan F & P

Banyan VINES 6.2 allows file and print sharing with Microsoft Windows NT.

Banyan Vines Mail

Messaging service compatible with the Banyan Operating System.

Member Server

A server running Windows NT 4.0 that is neither a PDC or a BDC.

Backup RAS

A Microsoft Windows NT system running more RAS, fault tolerance, and authentication services, to relieve tasks from the primary RAS Server.

SNA

Protocol software used on the network to connect to the mainframe ES/9000 and AS/400.

SMS Central Site

Microsoft Systems Management Server 1.2 Central Site.

CA PDC

The California PDC which is used to authenticate logon access to the network and network resources.

DHCP

Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol, used to dynamically lease IP addresses to computers when they change subnets.

WINS

Windows Internet Name System, used to dynamically provide name resolution from NetBIOS names to TCP/IP addresses.

DNS

Domain Name Space, used to provide name resolution from fully qualified domain names to IP addresses.

CA BDC

The California Back up Domain Controller, used to provide fault tolerance and to replicate the directory services database through which users are authenticated. Also will perform logon authentication.

RAS

Remote Access Service provides secure dial-up access to internal network.

GSNW

Gateway Services for NetWare enables NetWare clients to access files from Microsoft Windows NT.

FPNW

File and Print Services for NetWare enables NetWare clients to share files and print resources on servers running Windows NT.

IM3

Intelligent Messaging mail service from Banyan.

Intranet Server

Internal corporate-network server used on corporate network to provide interactive information services to users through Internet protocols, such as HTTP, FTP, and Gopher.

Warp Authentication

Authentication for Warp Clients.

Lotus Notes Server

Groupware application.

Services for Macintosh

Allows Macintosh clients to authenticate to Windows NT directory services and access file and print services on Window NT Server.

ORACLE NLM

ORACLE NetWare Loadable Module.

LM 2.2 Client

LAN Manager 2.2c client software, providing network access to MS-DOS clients and MS-DOS-based Windows Operating systems. Also allows logon authentication to Microsoft Window NT Server Directory Services.

Banyan client

Client on the Banyan VINES Network.

TCP/IP-32 for WFW

32bit Protect mode stack for Window 3.11.

Rmode NW redir

Real mode NetWare redirector allows MS-DOS and Windows clients to access resources on NetWare servers.

MS Net Client

The generic network client allows basic network access to Microsoft Windows NT Services.

Novell Net Client

Novell network redirector for accessing File and Print Services on NetWare servers.

X/Windows

Windowing environment for UNIX systems in an alternate client/server model.

Warp Connect

Network enabled Warp server.

MS-DOS 6.22

Microsoft DOS version 6.22.

Microsoft Windows NTW

Microsoft Windows NT Workstation.

NFS Redir

Enables connectivity with a server providing access to the Network File System (NFS), typically UNIX Systems.

Extra! For NTW

Terminal-emulation application for mainframe host connectivity 3270/5250.

MPR

Multi-Protocol Routing allows IP packets to be routed across subnets.

NE BDC

North East backup domain controller used for authentication and replication of the directory database stored on the PDC.

EU BDC

Europe backup domain controller used for authentication and replication of the directory database stored on the PDC.

For More Information

For the latest information on Windows NT Server, check out Microsoft TechNet or our World Wide Web site at http://www.microsoft.com/ntserver and the Windows NT Server Forum on the Microsoft Network (GO WORD: MSNTS).

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