Network Topology

Create high-level diagrams of your network topology that include any available information listed in Table 7.6. The larger or more complicated your network topology, the more diagrams you need.

Table 7.6 Gathering Data on Network Topology

Network topology

Data needed

High-level WAN/LAN architecture

Links, gateways, geographic locations, firewalls, and extranets or virtual private networks, where applicable

Network size

Number of servers and clients at each location

Network bandwidth

Link speeds and available bandwidth, including any known bandwidth issues

Network usage and traffic patterns

Light, moderate, heavy - times of day when network usage is heaviest (peak times) and scheduled times for backup and maintenance (non-peak times)

Network types

Windows NT, Windows 2000, or Novell NetWare and other third-party network operating systems

Network protocols

TCP/IP, NetBEUI, IPX/SPX, AppleTalk, DLC, DecNet, Banyan VINES, etc., and name resolution methods such as DNS and WINS

IP subnet structure

The IP subnets on your network by subnet ID

Active Directory site structure

Active Directory organizational units, site names, trees, and forest

Later, after you make decisions about your SMS site structure and site system hardware requirements, you can determine whether any equipment upgrades or additions are necessary before your SMS deployment.

Network diagrams are also helpful when you create a representative test environment for your test lab and pilot project. Ensure that your network diagram is detailed and specific. If your network is large or complex, consider creating a similar but separate diagram for your domain structure and server topology.

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