General Information

NSrA Project

The Networking and Security re-Architecture project (NSrA) was initiated to redesign and upgrade the Ithaca College computing network infrastructure to meet current user, technology, information and security demands. We are nearing the final implementation stages of this project.

Background

ITS staff, working in conjunction with a consultant, performed an analysis of existing network and security practices in all major areas defined by industry (including Educause) and government best practice. The team met with key user groups, staff and stakeholders from Ithaca College to understand goals, requirements, and business impacts.

According to Educause, projects like this typically examine:

  • The physical network - the hardware, cabling, firewall components, hubs, switches, routers, wireless network 
  • The logical network - how the hardware components talk to each other, including network security and network management
  • The applications infrastructure - the systems that manage and provides user access to data
  • Network planning and governance - creating and maintaining a campus consensus on appropriate network services, capacity, and reliability and replacement

Based on the results of this research, the final network re-design will provide much-needed bandwidth for the current and future data loads, eliminates segmentation, routing clogs, switching bottlenecks, and maintains the ability to scale for future campus demands. Security, performance, redundancy, resiliency, scalability, manageability, and economy are all priorities of the new design.

Sub-projects

The NSrA project is actually comprised of approximately 50 sub-projects, many of which do not directly impact the user community. Each project has its own goals and objectives, schedules and target completion dates. Some of these sub-projects include:

  • Creating the Active Directory structure which will replace Novell
  • Implementing a new IT governance (e.g. change management) process
  • Overseeing cable remediation in many campus buildings
  • Installing new network hardware
  • Defining remote access solutions
  • Developing operating system standards
  • Deploying campus-wide wireless access

Progress Report

To date:

  • The cabling has been upgraded in many buildings
  • New network routers and switches are in place
  • The campus is fully wireless
  • "n-capable" wireless technology (for better performance and coverage) has been deployed
  • New security hardware has been purchased and installed
  • The new Active Directory (AD) structure has been designed
  • Labs and eclassrooms are on the new network
  • All users and the majority of workstations and printers are on the new network
  • Moving files stored on Novell file servers to Active Directory file servers

What's Left

  • Migrating the servers to the new network