The Principles of Network Design – Part 3
As discussed in Part 2, Top-Down Logic is used for the process of Preparation, Planning, Design, Implementation, Operation, and Optimization (PPDIOO). In addition, network designers must determine the Scope of Design prior to the collection of data and planning. Part 3 will cover Business Requirements, Continuity, and Elasticity.
Figuring out what an organization needs requires having an understanding of its current objectives, mission statement, and future plans. Knowledge of these should guide the business-driven aspects of the network design. Using a top-down approach, a business’s goals, drivers, requirements, continuity, and strategy will determine its business applications, technical and functional requirements, and network infrastructure solutions.
Business continuity is a company’s ability to continue doing business after a system outage caused by a man-made or natural disaster that has damaged a data center. An organization needs a disaster recovery plan to develop its resiliency in the face of such disasters. Various parts of its network may need to be more resilient due to regulatory compliance.
Elasticity is an organization’s level of flexibility when responding to business developments. This typically refers to a change in business objectives or conditions, including growth, recession, merger, acquisition, etc. Therefore, a company’s network design must have adequate flexibility in order to fulfill its business requirements and strategic goals. A designer’s comprehension of the overall trends of the organization’s business sector will provide valuable guidance in the design’s features that provide flexibility.
The design of a network must give an organization the flexibility that will allow it to perform integrations with other networks. This will usually be required when mergers and acquisitions take place. It is important to note that during a merger or acquisition, the network may undergo considerable growth during a very brief period. In such circumstances, the most daunting challenge for network designers is having to handle the various design principles, conflicting control plane protocols, and overlaps in IP address spaces of the networks being integrated.
Part 4 will cover “How IT Enables Business Innovation.”
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