To be able to apply for a grant in the first place, it was first necessary to draw up an analysis of the current situation of the existing network. During the summer holidays of 2020, Rosenberger OSI, an expert in the field of fiber optic-based connection technology, worked with the school’s inhouse electrician and an IT service provider to examine the existing infrastructure and draw up the inventory required for the grant application and, at the same time, to perform feasibility planning which could serve as the basis for the preliminary cost estimate. Following a restricted public Request For Proposals, the contract was signed at the end of 2020 and implementation of the measures was able to start in January 2021.
Previously, the school building had only been partially cabled. One network with separate Internet access covered the administrative block with the headmaster’s office, deputy headmaster’s office and secretarial office, as well as the staffroom. An internal IT training room equipped with PCs was covered by a second network, which also had a separate Internet connection. A third network was intended to connect the chemistry and physics rooms. However, even though a copper LAN cable had been laid here, it had not been activated.
Redesign for low cable use
Rosenberger OSI played the leading role in plan-ning the new cabling solution based on the PreCONNECT® smartNET cabling system. This con-cept offers a number of advantages. The band-width can be extended without difficulty and data rates can be assigned individually to different departments and processes. Thus, for example, it is possible to ensure that the IT training room always possesses sufficient bandwidth. Currently, 10 Gbit/s are used in the school’s backbone. 40 Gbit/s could be achieved without any difficulty.
At the same time, the infrastructure makes do with a minimum of cabling. This is achieved by using so-called office distributors (OD) to replace the commonly used floor distributors. They can be redundantly integrated in the network in a ring or radial configuration.
The school network in Erdweg was designed in such a way that existing and new satellites (office distributors) are redundantly connected from a central node in a radial configuration. In this way, it was possible to include the three existing stand-alone networks in the new design and integrate them in the overall concept without the need for large-scale structural measures.
In addition to the planning, Rosenberger OSI was also in part responsible for coordinating the measures with the two project partners. Cooperation proved to be very successful, the various parties involved were perfectly coordinated and the structural measures were completed earlier than actually scheduled.