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uk.comp.home-networking (UK home networking) (uk.comp.home-networking) Discussion of all aspects of computer networking in the home, regardless of the platforms, software, topologies and protocols used. Examples of topics include recommendations for hardware or suppliers (e.g. NICs and cabling), protocols, servers, and specific network software. Advertising is not allowed.

Thoughts on 5 PC setup

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Old July 25th 03, 08:58 PM posted to uk.comp.home-networking
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Default Thoughts on 5 PC setup


I plan to network 5 PC's in order for all to access our ADSL connection.
PC's will be in individual rooms throughout a rather large house with the
intention to put RJ-45 wall sockets in each room, these sockets will connect
into a patch panel via Cat5e solid core cable, patch cable connects the
patch panel ports into a Switch, ADSL Modem/Router also connect to Switch.

Here's what I think I need:

ADSL Modem/Router
Patch Panel
Wall Sockets x 5
Cat5e UTP Solid Core Cable (~120m)
Cat5e UTP Patch Cable (~20m)
RJ-45 connectors

Does this sound about right? Have I forgot anything?

What about PC security, how is it controlled? I assume it will be up to each
user to control what they choose to open up to other users on their own PC.

Also, without a Proxy Server is there anyway to stop users viewing porn etc.
? Can this software be built in to the Router?

Any idea on what sort of cost I'd be looking at?



Old July 26th 03, 12:02 AM posted to uk.comp.home-networking
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Posts: 1
Default Thoughts on 5 PC setup

Thanks for the comments guys.

Gaming is quite likely, it's something I'd like to be prepared for. We have
3 PC's in our main house which I want to connect up, could well play games
using these. Another 3 rooms which we will be letting will need a connection
each - if we get the right people in, they may want to use it for gaming too
(univerity students most likely).

I also have the problem of ensuring the people leasing our rooms don't use
their PC's to host appz/warez or whatever using our connection, I assume
this can all be controlled in the router though?

Regarding saving money on wall sockets, I'd really like the users to have as
little chance of destroying any components as possible, it may be a bit more
expensive to start with but I think it's safest in the long run.

Thanks again for the input.


Old July 26th 03, 06:11 PM posted to uk.comp.home-networking
Mike Yates
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Posts: 32
Default Thoughts on 5 PC setup

Rob Morley wrote:
You could get away without a patch panel by plugging the cables
straight into the switch, as long as they were neatly run so they
weren't going to get snagged or strained. You might find it less hassle
to buy the patch leads ready-made - they're quite cheap in quantity from
the right places, and save you buying a crimping tool.

Yes, I meant to put both those points in my message but forgot - thanks.

Some routers include limited keyword/domain blocking in their setup, but
I don't suppose it would be very effective considering how many
different ways and places there are for obtaining dubious content

Even the cheapest have some form of logging, preferably downloadable for
analysis. The best method I've found of preventing excessive abuse is by
deterence with demonstrable traceability. Just occasionally analyse the
log and then ask the users if they enjoyed the "Hot Teen Photos" they
were looking at fron 23:34 to 01:12 last night or where one might pay
for Wagner's entire Ring Cycle like the one they got from Kazaa.
It works wonders.

www.screwfix.com do a good range of cabling kit at reasonable prices
www.lanshop.co.uk isn't a bad place to start looking at routers and

As a quick rough guide (off the top of my head):

ADSL modem/router 80
5/8 port switch 30
(patch panels from 30)
10 patch cables 15
(cable testers from 40)
300m Cat5e 40
10 RJ45 plugs 3
(crimping tools from 10)
punchdown tools from 3
RJ45 wallboxes 20/5

Most of these prices are "reasonable" - some you could search around and
pay less, but by the time you include carriage charges it's probably
best to get everything from just a couple of suppliers. Get a router
from a "big name" manufacturer (D-Link, NetGear, 3Com, Linksys, SMC etc)
if you want any chance of decent support for it.

I would add that, having chosen your router from the specialists with
their reviews, you should check prices at
http://www.insight.com/uk/index.php or http://www.dabs.com who might to
deliver too. Even see if http://pcworld.co.uk/ stock your model so you
can save time and maybe a fiver by going to get it.

I repeat, if you have an old 200MHz PC to spare, a Linux router (e.g.
Smoothwall) on it is better than any of those.

Have fun,
http://fonehelp.co.uk - PC support, no fix, no fee!

Old July 28th 03, 12:09 PM posted to uk.comp.home-networking
Bernard Peek
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Posts: 202
Default Thoughts on 5 PC setup

In message , James

What about PC security, how is it controlled? I assume it will be up to each
user to control what they choose to open up to other users on their own PC.

If security is really a problem then users can put a personal firewall
onto their machines. That's a good idea for other reasons too.

Also, without a Proxy Server is there anyway to stop users viewing porn etc.
? Can this software be built in to the Router?

You could install a Linux based proxy server that could be set up to do
some filtering. There isn't any way to filter out all unwelcome traffic
so there is no foolproof solution. You could do the same job with a
hardware router, but a machine able to do lots of fancy filtering
wouldn't be cheap. Don't try to intercept users' e-mail or you could be
in big legal trouble.

You might also consider an extra file-server system up in the loft
space. That makes it easy for each user to backup data. If the place
gets burgled it's unlikely that a system in the loft would get nicked.
There are other uses for a server too.

Bernard Peek
London, UK. DBA, Manager, Trainer & Author. Will work for money.


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