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  • Connecting 2 offices....

    I have a client that would like to connect 2 of it's offices that are 30 miles part. Both locations have about 10 people - and both are in a peer to peer.

    What is the best way to connect these offices so that they will be able to share files?

  • #2
    Re: Connecting 2 offices....

    What sort of internet connectivity do you have?

    If its ADSL, I would suggest router to router VPN, which would give you secure, reasonably fast connections, without the issue of opening different ports for different tasks.

    Note that Windows XP will not allow more than 10 simultaneous connections to any machine, so you may run into problems unless you are using a server OS.

    Personally I would recommend SBS at the "main" office with an additional DC at the secondary one.
    Tom Jones
    MCT, MCSE (2000:Security & 2003), MCSA:Security & Messaging, MCDBA, MCDST, MCITP(EA, EMA, SA, EDA, ES, CS), MCTS, MCP, Sec+
    PhD, MSc, FIAP, MIITT
    IT Trainer / Consultant
    Ossian Ltd
    Scotland

    ** Remember to give credit where credit is due and leave reputation points where appropriate **

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    • #3
      Re: Connecting 2 offices....

      Depending on the linespeed I would suggest to setup a Site-to-Site VPN connection between the 2 offices.
      Marcel
      Technical Consultant
      Netherlands
      http://www.phetios.com
      http://blog.nessus.nl

      MCITP(EA, SA), MCSA/E 2003:Security, CCNA, SNAF, DCUCI, CCSA/E/E+ (R60), VCP4/5, NCDA, NCIE - SAN, NCIE - BR, EMCPE
      "No matter how secure, there is always the human factor."

      "Enjoy life today, tomorrow may never come."
      "If you're going through hell, keep going. ~Winston Churchill"

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Connecting 2 offices....

        Yes, that's exactly what I was wanting to do!

        What kind of router do you suggest? I'd like the try a Linksys - but I'm sure you'll say Cisco....

        So I would put in a SBS2003 server at the main office - what would I put in at office 2? 2003 Server? Exchange is not needed at either location - btw.

        1 more. If Office 1 had a SBS server, could office 2 log into office 1's server?

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Connecting 2 offices....

          OK, if Exchange is absolutely, definitely not needed (now or in the future) you may be cheaper going for 2 x Standard Edition. Check your local pricing first.

          Most routers support VPNs -- Cisco is the "creme de la creme" but Vigor, for example, do an excellent job for much less (or $$$)

          btw, we're all assuming you have some high speed internet connection at both sites -- would you care to confirm that?

          And yes, with the VPN, either office will be able to log onto the other ones server, just much slower than locally, hence my suggestion of two servers
          Tom Jones
          MCT, MCSE (2000:Security & 2003), MCSA:Security & Messaging, MCDBA, MCDST, MCITP(EA, EMA, SA, EDA, ES, CS), MCTS, MCP, Sec+
          PhD, MSc, FIAP, MIITT
          IT Trainer / Consultant
          Ossian Ltd
          Scotland

          ** Remember to give credit where credit is due and leave reputation points where appropriate **

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Connecting 2 offices....

            Although vigor does a nice job (Called: Lan-to-lan) I would suggest the Cisco 800 series. Depending of you're interface.
            Marcel
            Technical Consultant
            Netherlands
            http://www.phetios.com
            http://blog.nessus.nl

            MCITP(EA, SA), MCSA/E 2003:Security, CCNA, SNAF, DCUCI, CCSA/E/E+ (R60), VCP4/5, NCDA, NCIE - SAN, NCIE - BR, EMCPE
            "No matter how secure, there is always the human factor."

            "Enjoy life today, tomorrow may never come."
            "If you're going through hell, keep going. ~Winston Churchill"

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Connecting 2 offices....

              Yes, high speed in both locations.

              Correct Exchange is not needed.

              Will each location need a staic IP?

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Connecting 2 offices....

                yes both locations needs a static IP.
                Marcel
                Technical Consultant
                Netherlands
                http://www.phetios.com
                http://blog.nessus.nl

                MCITP(EA, SA), MCSA/E 2003:Security, CCNA, SNAF, DCUCI, CCSA/E/E+ (R60), VCP4/5, NCDA, NCIE - SAN, NCIE - BR, EMCPE
                "No matter how secure, there is always the human factor."

                "Enjoy life today, tomorrow may never come."
                "If you're going through hell, keep going. ~Winston Churchill"

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Connecting 2 offices....

                  Another vendor to consider is Adtran especially if you are familiar with Cisco IOS. The price point is much less then Cisco, the initial purchase price includes service and technical support and the router comes with a five year warranty at no additional cost. IOS upgrades are also part of the service. You could set up a VPN with IPSEC between the two offices. You would need static IP addresses to create the tunnels. You would not need to run a routing protocol since this shoudl be fairly easy to route with static routes.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Connecting 2 offices....

                    for connecting two offices for file sharing, when security isn't much of an issue, setting up an FTP server (or SFTP) is much more simple and cost effective.

                    moreover, some offices are perfectly ok with just emailing the needed files over.

                    another free VPN solution is hamachi. it doesn't require static IPs, and is SSL secured.
                    ________
                    Hot penny stocks
                    Last edited by DYasny; 6th March 2011, 18:11.
                    Real stupidity always beats Artificial Intelligence (c) Terry Pratchett

                    BA (BM), RHCE, MCSE, DCSE, Linux+, Network+

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                    • #11
                      Re: Connecting 2 offices....

                      Security is always an issue. I can't imagine that any company would loose their data.
                      However, I can't see TS needs and because TS doesn't respond anymore I'll leave the thread.
                      Marcel
                      Technical Consultant
                      Netherlands
                      http://www.phetios.com
                      http://blog.nessus.nl

                      MCITP(EA, SA), MCSA/E 2003:Security, CCNA, SNAF, DCUCI, CCSA/E/E+ (R60), VCP4/5, NCDA, NCIE - SAN, NCIE - BR, EMCPE
                      "No matter how secure, there is always the human factor."

                      "Enjoy life today, tomorrow may never come."
                      "If you're going through hell, keep going. ~Winston Churchill"

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Connecting 2 offices....

                        We use Vigor Draytek 2800 routers for just this sort of thing - cheap and easy to setup a LAN to LAN and only the "main" office needs a fixed IP, because the other one needs to access the main office by fixed IP but the main office does not care about the public IP of the sub branch, so that one can be dynamic. Setup the head office as "dial in" and the sub branch as "dial out". I can help you with the settings if you like (just post here).

                        Also, make sure that the main office has one network IP, such as 192.168.0.x and the sub branch has a different one, say 192.168.1.x

                        If you have SBS at the main office (SBS can be cheaper than Server 2003, you just have to add up the CALs on top of the price of the OS) then the other office can login to it no problem. We have dual-office customers that have no server at the sub-branch, just an SBS box at the main office, and it seems to work fine. But while textbook best practice says you should have a DC at the sub branch, the wallet may disagree! You may opt to have the sub-branch simply logon locally, as peer-to-peer and use fairly simple quick-and-dirty file sharing on the server so that the sub branch can access the SBS folders at the head office - this saves on the tight budget and seems to work ok if you are prepared to fiddle about with usernames and paswords more than you would have to if you had a DC in the sub branch.

                        I'm not saying you shouldn't have a DC at the sub-branch, but you don't have to if funds are tight.
                        Best wishes,
                        PaulH.
                        MCP:Server 2003; MCITP:Server 2008; MCTS: SBS2008

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