[Last Call] Learn how to a build a cloud-first strategyRegister Now

x
  • Status: Solved
  • Priority: Medium
  • Security: Public
  • Views: 543
  • Last Modified:

What's in a server room?

I have a hired some premises that have an old server room, that contains some equipment. I'm not at all familiar with this level of equipment, so I'd like to get some information together so I know what I'm talking about before I go and hire someone!

The old server room contains a thick yellow coax cable (12-15mm). On the cable there are three identical boxes, each with a 15 pin plug (looks a bit like a serial plug).  The lettering on the boxes is: h4005, 30 VDC 100MA MAx. I believe this is a broadband cable.

Also in the server room is a mass of Category 5e network wires that come from the offices, and these feed into a large glass cupboard with what looks like a telephone switch board in it. I think this is a patch panel.  On top of this is a device with some network sockets in it, and the following text: Baystack 350-24T switch.

Would appreciate more info on these items from those in the know, and also, would be great if I could get a simple schematic plan as to how all these things connect together in a linear sense. Please include in this schematic one CISCO hardware firewall, the server (my domain server), clients and switches.

How is it best to handle DHCP? Should I let Window2003 server handle it, or get a hardware device to do it?






0
Jason210
Asked:
Jason210
  • 7
  • 6
  • 3
  • +5
5 Solutions
 
nodiscoCommented:
Heres a brief overview of what you speak of:

The cat 5e cables that come from the offices (probably at floor points or wallboxes) are being terminated at patch panels in your comms room.  The Baystack 24T is a network switch for connecting ethernet devices to.  Windows 2003 will handle DHCP better than a hardware device - its easier to maintain, make changes to and configure.
Basic sample network layout:

                                                 Internet
                                                       |
                                                       |
                                               Router (Cisco 1760 for example) Routes traffic to internet
                                                       |
                                                       |
                                              Firewall (Cisco PIX 506e for example) - Blocks inbound attacks
                                                       |
                                     --------Baystack 24 port switch------------
                                     |      |          |          |          |              |
                                     |      |          |          |          |              |
                                    PC     PC       PC       PC        PC          Windows 2003 server (also providing dhcp)

This is a very basic diagram which would change depending on exactly what you want out of your network - connection speed, filesharing, webserver hosting, VPN, etc etc                                                                  

H4005 is an ethernet transceiver - possibly legacy equipment from previous company
0
 
Jason210Author Commented:
Thanks nodisco for that valuable information. I'm asking a few questions like this at the moment, poised slightly differently, so I can form a good picture. So if you see a similar question in this thread, you know why!


It's starting to make sense now.

One last thing. You mentioned a VPN. I'd like to be able to access the server remotely, as if I'm actually there in the server room, so I can fix any problems with accounts, check the event viewer, make changes to the privilages when need be. I believe the VPN is the way to do it. How would this system fit into your diagram, and where would I configure it?

Many thanks.
0
 
rindiCommented:
The best place for a VPN would be the firewall. So get a firewall with builtin VPN. Make sure you are allowed enough concurrent connections before you buy. They are usually limited, often you buy further licenses later.

It would also be possible to use windows 2003 server's built in VPN, but that is by far not as secure in my opinion.
0
 The Evil-ution of Network Security Threats

What are the hacks that forever changed the security industry? To answer that question, we created an exciting new eBook that takes you on a trip through hacking history. It explores the top hacks from the 80s to 2010s, why they mattered, and how the security industry responded.

 
Vladan_MOBTELCommented:
Jason,

Since you said that you will have Cisco HW firewall, you will get VPN functionality per se, but with DES encryption. If you check CISCO site, you could be able to upgrade free of charge to 3DES : https://tools.cisco.com/SWIFT/Licensing/jsp/formGenerator/Pix3DesMsgDisplay.jsp Click on the link given

YOu have to register (you can do that from www.cisco.com). Then you fill out some forms, and you have it.

The best way for teleworking is through VON client. You ask your CISCO reseller to give you CISCO VPN client (free of charge, but you can not download it from CISCO site).

Fixing is really easy.

The other thing confuses me, we used to have BayStack switches, I do not remember that they support thick Ethernet (yellow cable). DO you have any modules on this device installed? Where is this cable starting and where is it ending? Do these servers have other network cards?

If you do not have CIsco PIX (HW firewall) you could opt for FW option with VPN in the IOS (operating system of the CIsco router) for 17xx on the picture by nodisco.

If you are just starting, I would suggest checking cables (where are they leading to ad from), as well as changing the switch, it is very old... If the yellow cable is not used, get rid of it.

Rgds,
Vladan

0
 
Jason210Author Commented:
Ok, we can get a new switch - no problem. It's just that that one was there so I thought we could use it, but only if is ok. If it's old we skip it.

But the yellow cable comes out of the ground, ie, out of the concrete, it's coiled up a few times, and has these boxes hanging off it, and then it goes through the roof, presumably in a circuit around the company hotel. I'm not sure where it ends, but I guess it just stops somewhere. This is a thick Coax cable (about 15mm thick). I can't think of what else it could be other than a broadband cable of some sort.
0
 
nodiscoCommented:
Sounds like BNC coax cable - was used for networking before ethernet became popular - the bad old days!
0
 
Vladan_MOBTELCommented:
it is definitely Thick Ethernet cable, the question is what is it used for. COuld it be that it is not used for data transfer at all, but for something else (video)?
0
 
minmeiCommented:
No - it's thicknet - 10base5 - and the transceivers are vampire taps - haven't seen or used those since about '95.

Worthless (10mbps) unless you want to start a museum.
0
 
Vladan_MOBTELCommented:
I agree that it looks like that, but the boxes to which it is attached are what, Jason?
0
 
minmeiCommented:
AUI connectors.  Older style Ethernet had big db15 connectors called AUI.

Again, not useful for anything unless you need a big shared 10mbps ethernet across the building.
0
 
Vladan_MOBTELCommented:
You could see those (AUI) on Cisco 25xx routers, even now... These connectors are not connected to anything, then?
0
 
minmeiCommented:
Use the baystack 350 - still a reasonably good switch, unless you need power over ethernet or some other newfangled thing.

If not, I'll pay shipping and you can send it to me :)
0
 
CaseybeaCommented:
Oh my god-   thickwire coax (10base5) with working vampire taps?   Definately museum stuff.    That would have been the ORIGINAL ethernet network installed there, likely simply not removed when the bay hub was installed later.  
0
 
Jason210Author Commented:
LOL ... well I least I know what it is now. It's fun isn't it, with old comms rooms. Never know what you might find....

Since I've never seen broadband cable, I assumed that this was one, since it was coax. Question now is, where is the broadband cable? What are these like generally (Coax, fibre optic? Dunno mate), and what would I be looking for? And since this large yellow cable goes into thr ground, where does it actually go?
0
 
PennGwynCommented:
> The old server room contains a thick yellow coax cable (12-15mm). On the cable there are three identical boxes, each with a
> 15 pin plug (looks a bit like a serial plug).  The lettering on the boxes is: h4005, 30 VDC 100MA MAx. I believe this is a
> broadband cable.

10Base5.  Hey, we've still got bits of that around, although most won't survive when the buildings they're in get renovated, or sooner if it breaks....



0
 
Tim HolmanCommented:
Can you post some photos up somewhere ?
0
 
Jason210Author Commented:
Thanks everyone.

There's a lot of stuff in that old comms room. The Baystack switch was just standing on top of patch cupboard - presumably not connected to anything. There's a few other bits and pieces in there.

Just for a final description of that cable. It's thick, and yellow, and the boxes on it (the taps) were not connected to anything. The boxes must be be attached by some form of clamp that cuts through the wire to make with the cable.

The only thing that puzzles me is that descriptions I've read of 10base5 systems is that the cable is 10mm thick. This cable was definitelt thicker - like 15mm. Still, I'm certain from what I've read that the yellow cable is indeed a 10b5 system, an obsolete relic that's somehow survived in this room.'

By the way, now that we've got the keys I've found some boxes in there with other stuff in, like old network cards and stuff, and old motorola stuff. Looks ancient.
0
 
Jason210Author Commented:
Oh yeah, and a white box thingy  - I think it might be some kind of firewall. It's got a read golden gate bridge logo on it.
0
 
Vladan_MOBTELCommented:
Coudl it be a cisco sign? www.cisco.com
0
 
rindiCommented:
Thanks.

I'd also say that is some cisco device.
0
 
Jason210Author Commented:
It is Cisco but the logo is different to Ciscos so perhaps it's an old logo. And it's not a firewall, it's an ASG router. Any good for anything?
0
 
Vladan_MOBTELCommented:
COuld you take a picture of it? I would appreciate that a great deal...
0
 
Jason210Author Commented:
Keep subscribed to this thread I'll let you know when I've uploaded the pix somewhere.
0

Featured Post

Upgrade your Question Security!

Add Premium security features to your question to ensure its privacy or anonymity. Learn more about your ability to control Question Security today.

  • 7
  • 6
  • 3
  • +5
Tackle projects and never again get stuck behind a technical roadblock.
Join Now