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Andrew S. Baker (ASB)


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Home Network Overhaul 2010 – Conclusion

Current Diagram of My Home Network (as of February 2010)This is the sixth part in a series of articles tracking the implementation of virtualization on my home network.  Planning for the project originally started at the end of 2007, with some equipment purchased in early 2008, but the bulk of the work was completed in the past 2 months.

For those interested in seeing how this all played out over the past 2 years, please see the list of articles below:

Here’s an outline of what was accomplished for this project:

  • Added a Virtual Host server running Windows Server 2008 R2
  • Added a virtual Domain Controller running Windows Server 2008 R2
  • Added a virtual Domain Controller running Windows Server 2003 R2
  • Migrated my Certificate Server to Windows Server 2008 R2
  • Added a virtual File Server running Windows Server 2008 R2 and migrated my previous redirected folders and home directories to it
  • Added a virtual Tools Server to Windows Server 2008 R2 and installed a new antispam server (Vamsoft ORF)
  • Added a virtual test Windows 7 machine
  • Added a virtual test Linux Ubuntu desktop
  • Tested Untangle and eBox-Platform (running in a virtual machine) for gateway security
  • Upgraded server desktops and laptops from Vista (plus on XP system) to Windows 7

And here is my updated network diagram, reflecting all this hard work. :)  

You’ll also need to look at the virtualization diagram, which shows the server configuration of the VMs.

And here’s what didn’t happen…

The biggest item that didn’t make the cut was the iSCSI SAN.  Ironically, although the costs for doing so are now far less than they were in 2008 when I first started looking at it, the costs for direct attached storage are even lower.  Adding 1.5 TB of storage to my virtualization server was so inexpensive that it didn’t make any sense to add another box for the SAN.  Yet.

It’s at the top of my 2011 list, if only because I really need the redundancy in my storage.   And, I’ll go rack mount at that time as well.  It will make more sense at that point.  I might also wait until later in the year to pursue NAC/NAP and DirectAccess.  For now, I make no promises concerning time.

Lastly, I’m definitely going to setup Untangle for production use later – probably as a replacement for my aging Netscreen 5XT firewall.

Despite the change of plans with the SAN, I am very happy with what I did accomplish, and how well the hardware and software has performed.  The flexibility that virtualization provides cannot be overemphasized.  It just makes it far too easy to build, test, deploy or reconfigure systems for a variety of purposes.  And my experiences with Hyper-V in 2008 R2 have been fabulous.

What’s next:

Planning for the next big project should begin sometime in the 4th quarter of 2010.  I’m not going to let the same gap in upgrades occur again.

Let’s see where technology takes us until then…

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About Logik!

Andrew S. Baker aka ASB aka Logik!

Andrew S. Baker is a business-savvy, hands-on IT leader with expertise in mentoring people, mitigating risk, and integrating technology to drive innovation and maximize business results. He creates competitive advantage for organizations through effective IT leadership: implementation of processes and controls, and architecture of robust business solutions.

Mr. Baker has successfully led a number of high-performance technology teams in designing, deploying and maintaining secure, cost-effective computing environments for well-known companies, including Warner Music Group, The Princeton Review, Bear Stearns, About.com, and Lewco Securities.

For over a decade, Andrew has exhibited thought leadership on technology and business topics via mailing lists, technical forums, blogs, and professional networking groups, along with contributions to podcasts, webinars, and over 20 technical/business magazine articles. He also serves on several boards and committees for non-profit organizations, and within the Seventh-day Adventist church.

His personal interests include Astronomy, Basketball, Bible Study, Chess, Comics, Computers, Family Life Ministries, Reading, Strategy/Role Playing games, and Professional Networking...

A summary of Andrew's current résumé is available here, and he can be reached on a variety of social and professional networks, including LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter.