Riordan Manufacturing Telecommunications
Riordan Manufacturing is a global manufacturer of plastic products and custom plastic parts. Headquartered in San Jose, California, Riordan has manufacturing facilities in Albany, Georgia, Pontiac, Michigan and Hangzhou, China. Riordan wishes to continue the company’s position as an industry leader within the plastics industry through a mission that includes maintaining an innovative, team based working environment, providing support and information for employees and sustaining the long-term profitability of the company. In order to fulfill its mission, Riordan is requesting a review of the company’s telephone and data networks. The review will include a discussion of the existing telephony and computer networks. The review will also provide the advantages and disadvantages of the current system, recommendations for improving the telecommunications and data networks that will improve the business efficiency and capabilities of the system. Existing Data Network
Riordan uses a wide area network (WAN) to connect its business locations together. The headquarters in San Jose is the main hub for the WAN. The Hangzhou, China manufacturing facility connects to the San Jose facility by a satellite link, while the Albany and Pontiac facilities connect to San Jose through fractional T1 circuits (Apollo Group, 2006, Information technology – Networks: Overview). Note that a T1 circuit identifies a digital circuit with a capacity of 1,536 Kb/s. A T1 circuit includes 24 64Kb/s channels and can carry 24 voice connections, 24 data connections, or a combination of voice and data channels drawing from a channel bank. The channel bank is responsible for digitizing voice signals and mapping the digitized voice or data information onto the appropriate channels in the T1 (Watchel, 2008). Both fractional T1 circuits for Albany and Pontiac have a 256 Kbps committed information rate (CIR) and a 1,536 Kbps burst CIR, where CIR is the bandwidth--expressed in bits per second--of a logical connection (Soudry, 2006). The Albany and Pontiac T1 circuits terminate on a single T1 in San Jose. The current configuration will not allow both Albany and Pontiac the full burst CIR simultaneously; one location’s use of the full T1 bandwidth will be at the expense of the other. The Riordan WAN is currently using CSU/DSU’s from multiple manufacturers and multiple router models from Cisco. The San Jose local area network (LAN) includes three servers, a network attached storage (NAS) system, and 35 workstations connected to a 100 Mbps backbone through two Cisco switches and a Linksys hub. The San Jose LAN also has a research and development network including 15 workstations connected to a 1 Gbps backbone. Two gateway switches provide interconnections for the network backbones. The satellite base station for the China facility and the T1 router for the Albany and Pontiac locations connect to the 100 Mbps backbone in San Jose (Apollo Group, 2006, Information technology – Networks (San Jose)). The Pontiac LAN includes 45 workstations and 4 servers connected to three Nortel 10Mbps hubs. The hubs are interconnected using bridge modules in each hub. The T1 router for the Pontiac location connects to one of the LAN hubs. The Pontiac LAN also includes a Nortel 10 Mbps hub, which connects to an IBM RS\6000, for data connections on the manufacturing floor (Apollo Group, 2006, Information technology – Networks (Pontiac)). The Albany LAN includes 20 workstations and 4 servers. The workstations and servers connect to the network through two 100Mbps switches. The switches are interconnected using a stacking cable, creating a 2.4 Gbps backbone. The Albany LAN includes a Nortel 100 Mb/s switch, which connects to a HP-UX server, for data connections on the manufacturing floor. The T1 router connects to the network through the Cisco switches (Apollo Group, 2006, Information technology – Networks (Albany)). The Hangzhou, China LAN includes 40...
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