So, your Network is Slow... - Part 1: Subnets
Updated: Aug 14, 2019
Throughout my entire career, I have been seeing the same challenges at different companies. Companies start small and grow in stages. The IT infrastructure grows in stages as well. And, at some point, network performance begins slowing down. Users reports how slow their apps load, poor internet speeds, disconnections, freezing, spotty Wi-Fi, etc. These issues can be tough to track down, and sometimes they are tough to fix. Usually, there are multiple factors that contribute to poor network performance.
In this first blog post, I want to discuss subnetting.
The main problem I see in slow networks is that subnetting is not properly implemented. Small companies tend to build small networks. They use IP schemas that might work fine for 50 users, but they scale poorly once 200 users need to connect. Choosing a good IP schema that can scale out easily is about understanding subnetting and binary numbers. Subnetting is about creating groups of IP addresses. Choose IP scheme that allows you to spread out your users and devices into separate subnets and leave plenty of open space in between for growth.
I prefer to work with 10.X.X.X addresses for internal schemes. Use your second octet for geographical zones and locations. For example, your Columbus Office uses 10.0.X.X and your Cleveland Office uses 10.4.X.X. I am leaving 10.1.X.X through 10.3.X.X open for future growth. If a second Columbus office opens, I am going to need to use the 10.0.0.0/14 group to add another site into my schema.
Use your third octet for separating functional groups of devices. For example, it is always best to keep printers on their own subnet/vlan. Printers are chatty and annoying because they constantly broadcast over a suite of protocols. I also like to keep separate subnets for VOIP (physical) Phones, Wired PCs/Laptop, and Access Points. I tend to create several subnets for Wireless devices, and Server subnets. Reserve blocks of 4, 8 or 16 networks when splitting up your third octet. 0 through 15 is the first block of 16 subnets. I like to save this group for Routers, Switches, Access Points, Servers, and Printers. For example, 10.1.0.0/24 is for Firewalls, 10.1.4.0/24 is for switch management, 10.1.8.0/24 is for Servers.
Once a network is properly subnetted and given room for future growth, you can begin to take care of the second biggest issue...
I can design a new IP subnetting schema for your business that properly allocates enough addresses for every device on your network.
Contact me for more information via email: firstname.lastname@example.org