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We have a WAN that includes all 10 of our buildings.  We have fiber connections between some buildings, T1 lines between some, and DSL lines to others (some are point-to-point, some are VPN connections).  You really have to see what is available and what makes the most sense.  We have found that is more economical to share servers with PPP T1 lines then to run separate servers.  Our supervisory union shares several services and servers such as:

Student management software
Special Education Uniform IEP Development
Special Education Student Database
NetStorage * staff/student access from home
Virtual Office * threaded discussion forum for staff/students
K * 4 Report Card
Internet Content Filtering
Anti-Spam
Anti-Virus
Secure backup of files and documents (some over the wan
Web server with mapped drives for users to easily upload school web pages
CESU assessment database and reporting tool (VCAT)
Internet access
Firewall
Email system
FitnessGram physical education software
InfoCentre library card catalog
Help desk software
Patch management software
Library automation software
Directory Services
File/print services
Zenworks workstation management/imaging services

We have found that the using a terminal server environment (RDC or Citrix) uses the least amount of bandwidth and works best for slower client/server apps (we use this for our filemaker databases ie SpEdDoc, Report Card, etc).  

We are in the process of adding an additional T1 line between some schools to increase bandwidth (so there will be two T1s multiplexed).

What types of technologies are available in your area?  What is the distance between your schools?

If you want to chat give me a call.

Jeff

-- 

Jeff Wallis
Chief Network Engineer
Chittenden East Supervisory Union
Phone: (802) 899-4690 x501
Fax: (802) 899-4281
E-Mail: [log in to unmask]

>>> On 11/30/2005 at 9:53 am, in message
<[log in to unmask]>, [log in to unmask] wrote:
> Bill,
> 
> Do you use a full T1 between buildings? We have been given a proposal of a 
> 1.5 Mb frame split between three buildings. I nervous that this is not enough 
> bandwidth.
> 
> Doug
> 
>>>> [log in to unmask] 11/29/05 1:48 PM >>>
> Doug -
> 
> In LSSU we have had a WAN set-up for two years now on T! lines and we
> use remote desktop (microsoft) to use applications (speddoc, Student
> management systems, other databases (both filemaker and access), limited
> printing, and limited file access,  remotely from different sites.  It
> has been working very well for us.
> 
> Bill
> 
> Bill Kimball
> Information Technology Director
> -----Original Message-----
> From: School Information Technology Discussion
> [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Doug Reaves
> Sent: Tuesday, November 29, 2005 11:45 AM
> To: [log in to unmask] 
> Subject: WAN considerations
> 
> We are investigating the implementation of a WAN that would link the
> supervisory union and its school districts together. In its initial
> phase, the plan is to centralize administrative servers and software and
> to create a means by which the supervisory union and the schools within
> to share curricula, standards, and student data (for the su only). The
> shared applications would be accounting (NEMRC), special ed (SpEdDoc),
> and maybe student administrative software.
> 
> I have very little experience using applications over a WAN, so it is
> hard for me to know what this experience would be like for the user. Our
> users are accustomed to accessing applications and data from the LAN
> where response time is quick. It may be hard for them to see the long
> term benefits of consolidation, if they see a degradation in the speed
> of their programs.  Bandwidth must be an important consideration in
> addressing this issue. Can anyone recommend minimums in bandwidth based
> on approximately 40 concurrent users? Are there other stumbling blocks
> that those of you with WANs have had to address?
> 
> Thanks,
> 
> Doug Reaves
> Bellows Free Academy
> Fairfax, Vermont

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