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Thin Client or Workstation PC for Network

June 18, 2011 at 17:04:59
Specs: Windows Server 2003
I am setting up the network for the computer institue I work for. We are discarding the old network and are going for a new network.

There will be 2 Computer Labs with 60 computers in each Lab. The staffroom will have 20 computers. The Accounts department will have 5 computers. All the departments are in the same building with just 2 floors. It will be a wired network. All computers should have access to the Internet. There will be a printer each in the 2 Labs, staffroom & accounts department which has to be shared with their respective network. The Lab computers will run MS Office, Adobe software etc. Likewise the the staffroom and accounts department computers will also have to run MS Office and probably Adobe software as well. We will be using Windows Server 2003 and are inclined to use IBM servers due to a partnership. Cost isn't a major issue and the management is willing to spend to set this up rightly in the first place.

My main question is whether we should go for a thin client network with everything running in the main servers. In that case how many servers should we have and what would be the ideal config of those servers.
If we go for workstation PCs for each user if cost isn't an issue then what are the benefits over thin client computers

Do we have to have a seperate server for data?

What would be the ideal setup for the whole network?

thank you
Frank Thompson

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June 18, 2011 at 17:33:11
Since you are partnered, take advantage of that...
Get IBM to help out. Take it to the cloud

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June 18, 2011 at 20:51:07
Unfortunately the IBM Servers come as a partnership with a local company rather than a direct partnership.

So please give me your feedback on the questions I have asked.

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June 18, 2011 at 23:14:05
You say that cost isn't an issue, but the management want to get things right first time. You need a proper analysis of your network and the future requirements. If you are unable to do this then pay a professional who understands these things to advise you.

Don't rely on advice from unknown people on an Internet forum to make this decision.

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June 18, 2011 at 23:38:51
You are right on that.
The problem is I got a promotion due to the acquisition and I am entrusted to submit a proposal. The proposal will be reviewed by the management before any decision is taken and I have also indicated to them that I am not equipped to deal with this. So after review a consultant will be brought in before this is setup.

So I need help to prepare the proposal. After thorough research we have decided to go for PCs rather than a thin client solution conisdering the management want the client PCs to be powerful enough to run on it's own in case of any problem with the server / network as well as the fact that most of the users of the lab would be graphic designer students.

So can you give me a rough idea for the equipments needed for the labs, staff and accounts dept and how the connections should go.
As for the servers will a single server be enough or is it better off to use 2 servers for the 2 labs. Then what about the staff and accounts dept?

Please give me your thoughts.

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June 19, 2011 at 03:35:27
I'm sorry, but it's impossible to answer that question without surveying your network and determining your users' exact requirements.

You seem to be continually saying that you do not have the knowledge or capability to do this. Any reasonable employer will prefer to be told that than for you to try to bluff your way through. Be honest with your bosses and tell them that this is beyond your capabilities. If they are worth working for they will thank you in the end. If you try and wing it something will come back to bite you in the end.

If money truely is no object then the best thing that you can tell the management is to get a professional to make the proposal, not someone who is picking up scraps of information from a man he met in a bar (or a man he met on an Ineternet forum).

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