Of importance to this particular project was Data Networks’ Elite partnership and advanced certifications with Juniper Networks, including Ingenious Champion-level engineers. Data Networks demonstrated how these solutions would not only dramatically and immediately increase user productivity at the college, but also would scale in the future when needed.

Data Networks collaborated with JSCC to document the current network and produce a detailed design document which included:

  • IP addressing, VLANs, routing and any security configurations
  • Juniper switch hardware and software configurations
  • Network and Internet connections for new switches
  • Junos Wireless LAN Controller hardware and software configuration
  • Wireless access points (WAPs) placements
  • WLAN configuration
  • Detailed implementation plan

“Our detailed design documents are always very crucial parts of our client projects. It is a way for us all to achieve clear consensus before the project, and is also a point of reference and a means to communicate required changes during the project ” said Dwayne MacKenzie, Data Networks’ Principal Architect

Simplicity through centralization – JUNOS Space

For the JSCC project, Data Networks planned the implementation so a single instance of each vital network hardware component could be created, configured and tested at the Data Networks Staging and Configuration Center (SCC). Then, still at the SCC and using a JUNOS Space Virtual Appliance, engineers copied the “master” component settings to replicas prior to delivering and installing them at the various sites. “Our practice of using a single installation appliance to configure our technology to client specifications pre-delivery at our own SCC helps guarantee correctness and consistency of the final configurations when we deliver onsite,” says MacKenzie.

Since the project required LAN equipment replacement, outages had to be properly managed. First, the new Juniper LAN equipment was installed, replacing all current equipment. Next, during designated outage periods, Data Networks engineers moved existing network connections to the new Juniper Ethernet switches until all were cut over.

Once completed, engineers built JSCC’s new wireless network, installed the pre-configured Juniper switches and integrated all new hardware together with the existing cabling, all without outages of any kind.

Installation was followed by end-to-end testing and quality control. Data Networks leads a checklist-based onsite testing effort to ensure the entire network functions according to customer specifications. A final knowledge transfer for JSCC IT staff reviewed the configurations and installations performed at each site, and confirmed they met or exceeded promised project scope and requirements.

“Working with Data Networks has been really great, and their recommended solution was right on point. Now we have the network performance and headroom we need to support important student programs well into the future,” said Gail Henry, Associate Vice President of MIS for James Sprunt Community College.

Click here to view the PDF version of the Creating a College-Appropriate Technology Network for Enhanced Learning at James Sprunt Community College case study.