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  • Remote Office Solutions

    Hope you can help.

    We are a small to medium sized business that has between 60 - 90 staff. 20 of these work remotely scattered throughout the UK. And an additional 10 of these staff work in a remote office in London and currently access our network through remote desktops into our terminal server.

    The remote workers currently -

    a) access to network drives
    b) access to a database (shared on a network drive)
    c) access to emails etc
    d) general web browsing etc

    The whole problem with this is that our HQ office that holds the terminal server is out in the middle of the countryside and we can only provide a 'fair to middlin' ADSL line (690kbs upload and 6 meg download) - this is the best service available. This causes a problem because the remote workers (London staff especially) complain a lot about how SLOW their speeds can be at certain points throughout the day.

    Stage one of the plan is to help the London office...

    My options are:

    1) Purchase a leased line at HQ office to allow symmetrical upstream and downstream speeds - unfortunately, not economically viable

    2) Setup ADSL Bonding Solutions at the HQ Office. Probable 4 x ADSL using Cisco 2811 Router. This would allow for our upload to be significantly stronger...

    or

    3) Install a dedicated server (I have one spare with Server 2008 Standard) at the London office. It would be used to store the London based data and as it would be operational on the same local network as the London PCs data access times would be at the standard network rates.

    The London server could be accessible by the Gloucester Office staff if required. The London Office staff would still have access to the Gloucester servers if required.

    Data would be accessed in both directions via a secure VPN tunnel between the two sites.


    Your thoughts would be appreciated as Ideally I would like to implement just one of these options, initially.

    Or... if you have any other suggestions please feel free to add...

  • #2
    Re: Remote Office Solutions

    Option 3 covers most of your bases except the dB access
    What email server are you using?
    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: Remote Office Solutions

      Hi Ossian,

      We are using Exchange Server 2003...

      The database system we use is ACT Premium 2007 and a London database (only relevent to that office) could be setup and shared locally...

      If option 3 then would the data being accessed via the VPN prove to be slow because of our bandwidth at HQ?

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Remote Office Solutions

        Databases over VPN (or any WAN link) are generally not recommended, but ACT will advise you better. A local one will be fine.
        Exchange 2003 supports RPC/HTTPS so access over the internet will not be a problem.

        You could make the London server an RODC to speed user authentication etc.

        <shameless plug>should you require any consultancy/support, I will be very happy to help</shameless plug>
        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


        • #5
          Re: Remote Office Solutions

          Thank you very much for the reccomendation.

          I think initially the best plan is to set up the RDOC in London Office and plan for a better solution to the HQ bandwidth - hey, we can all do with more.

          I think I'll wait a few months before the bonding solution but feel it is a good step...

          Many thanks,

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          • #6
            Re: Remote Office Solutions

            We used to use Act prior to version 2007 and it was very bandwidth intensive.

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