Years In Business - 30 Years Experience with Computers - 25 Years with
Networks & Security
oldest system builder in the area, maybe in the state!
Labor Rate in the Area, $25 Shop, $40 Outside
The Minimum Network Requirements
The following is general guidelines for PCs that will
be networked and general advice for such. These recommendations are
described here to help you maintain better productivity on your future
network and less down time or major catastrophes.
Attaching a computer to a network later has 1 of 4 possibilities.
First, it will work flawlessly. Second it will not work at all. Third,
it will be slowwww or fourth it will work irregularly or cause other better
computers to work in the same way.
100 MHz Network card, good name brand like 3 Com, Intel,
not the no-names at Slopples.
All computers must have the newest and most up to date anti-virus
program, especially on Microsoft networks.
Adequate RAM, 512 MB for XP Pro. (XP
Home is for HOME!)
"Middle of the road" or better computer. Networked PCs drop
10-40% in speed over non-networked PCs. The cheaper the PC,
the slower and more unstable they become, generally speaking. Be sure the
PC is workstation grade; not the lower end home PC.
Never buy the "Nationally Advertised" special. They are always
the lowest of everything the manufacturer builds. (ISC's cheapest
and biggest / badest are just different options not actually any quality
difference. In most cases the same motherboards are used in all AMD or
Intel processor ranges.)
Never a Celeron or Duron processor (most low end processors
have even worst main boards and general specs). They bog down quickly when
networked. They can drop over 50% in speed.
AMD Sempron, Athlon or Pentium 4 Processor; any dual core
Cheap Network PCs are like cheap windows; only the
very rich can afford. (Because of the heating bills. Because of the service
calls or productivity failures.)
No on-board VGA card. These most often share main
memory that can give you more grief after networking them.
A computer that has a clean Windows on it before the PC was
connected to the network. (This is very important. AOL or MSN preinstalled
is a nightmare sometimes to remove and get the Windows back to normal for
use on a DSL line. Some of the major manufacturers' proprietary software
or their own scaled down version of Windows costs you lots of money in
configuration time and trouble. True Story: A brand new Gateway
laptop took longer to get on the network and install the other network
software than the other 5 PCs in the building. Even sadder is that it was
the fastest processor in the building.)
Keep consistency in the overhaul network helps overhaul network
performance and reliability. Having only 1 or at most 2 different
brands of network cards and hubs can save you lots of money in the long
run. Keeping the low end discount store computers out of the system can
keep everyone else working better.
Creative Sound Blaster sound cards are far more compatible
with network cards than other sound cards and all on-board sound.
Non integrated computers, in networks we have installed
or maintain, have had far less failures on networks then all the Major
Brand computers like HP/Compaq, Gateway, Dell put together, about 5 to
In multiply server environments, keep network software
in locations that require the least amount of multiple logins or drive
Gateways, then Dells are the worst for crashes or just plain
not working correctly on Novell networks. If you have these, about $300
to make them descent compatible computers. (True story: In
one corporate business that we do some work for, the 11 Dell Dimension
computers (given to them by their main headquarters) have had more serious
problems and more down time then all the other 73 non-integrated computers
in the building ranging from 8 years old to 16 months in the past year.
The Dells are the newest also, 16 months old or less at this writing. The
Dells also can not be used in "Mission Critical Areas" because their failure
rate is so high after loading lots of "non Microsoft" software needed by
this particular business.) (True story #2: In one business that
we acquired from one of our competitors. The 1 Gateway cost the company
more in one year in service calls and restorations of Windows 95/98 then
the computer was worth. When they moved into their new facility the Gateway
was replaced by an ISC computer that in now going on four years without
one single problem.)
Bottom line... don't buy a PC blindly. Do some research. It is sad
that American has been in the computer age over 18 years and the normal
buyer doesn't know the difference between on-board video and a video card.
If you want to stay ignorant of hardware, then buy a non-integrated PC
from a company that does Novell or Linux networks like us. It is unlikely
they would sell a computer they could not connect later to a network.
If you are a business with over
3 computers you probably could save money by letting us install a Network
(LAN) in your business. With 5 or more computers, the savings is
almost guaranteed in every case. Changing over to DSL Internet from dial
up can save the cost of the network in one year.
pages on this website written by employees of ISC, © Copyright 1999-2015
by Butch Walker, all rights reserved.
not copy or use in any way without written permission from Butch Walker.
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