Implementing a switched network

Implementing a switched network is a project that network administrators should plan properly. If successfully implemented, a switched network can offer many advantages, most important of which is the ability to prevent denial-of-service attacks from affecting the entire network. Here are some procedures you should consider when implementing a switched network:

  • The most vulnerable stage is when network components set up. For example, if someone were to try browsing the Internet or setting up file and print sharing when configuration changes to the firewall have not been implemented, this can place the entire organization in a vulnerable state.
  • Using Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) to manage the distribution of IP addresses on the switched network means DHCP services will have to be set up on a server. Ensure not only that this server has updated antivirus software, but also that the network server does not contain confidential information that can jeopardize the organization if such information were to be received by unauthorized personnel.
  • Modify the existing firewall configuration to protect the network components attached to the switched network and actively investigate any firewall alarms received from the switched network.
  • Monitor security logs on the DHCP server attached to the switched network to ensure that security is not being compromised.

About the author
Adesh Rampat has 10 years experience

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with network and IT administration. He is a member of the Association of Internet Professionals, the Institute for Network Professionals and the International Webmasters Association. He has also lectured extensively on a variety of topics.

This was first published in May 2001

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