Installation of Shared Network

By kolorproman
Nov 13, 2007
  1. I'm new to my small company (staff of four), and I'm looking for advice on how to install our first shared network. Here is our current network status:
    • 5 operating computers (3 ethernet connected desktops and 2 wireless networked laptops)
    • No shared drives, printers etc. - company files are all over the place
    • We have email and web hosting through and our ISP is currently AT&T (BellSouth)
    I'm basically looking for advice on 1.) best server value currently available 2.) most cost efficient means to back-up data (mirrored drives, external tape back-up) 3.) optimum methods to establish internet connections and email service and 4.) how do I set up the server to host our company's web site.

    I maybe asking very elemental questions, but it's just that I have never done this before and want to make sure I don't screw up!
  2. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    1) I would guess the server hardware is totally irrelevant for you. Even any old PC will do. As for the OS, you would have to pay money for Windows, but it is probably easier to set up. A free OS would be more reliable and wouldn't cost you anything, but the set up is not as straightforward.

    2) That sort of depends on what, how much and how often you want to back up.

    3) Explain

    4) Since you are asking the question, it is probably better if you let someone else to do the hosting.
  3. kolorproman

    kolorproman TS Rookie Topic Starter

    If I do use an old PC, how do I create a shared drive?
  4. AlbertLionheart

    AlbertLionheart TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,026

    You have 5 PCs and 4 users - as Nodsu has hinted you can use one of these machines as a server on which you can store all the common files. As this is a small workgroup, one machine could act as a server and a workstation.
    Given that a backup is to save important files from loss by fire, failure or theft the best backup system allows you to take the copy off site. Do you know how much data you have to backup? = maybe a DVD would handle it?
    You need an ethernet based network which you could probably run off your modem router if you have one.
    Make sure all the computers belong to the same workgroup (control panel > system > computer name > change name.
    File sharing - on your PC you select as a server, create a new folder in the root directory into which you copy all the files you need to share. Right click on it and set to share - give it a name if you like - and it should then be visible to all the other computers providing they all belong and are connected properly.
    Best of luck!
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