Help me Please! Connecting offices together
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Thread: Help me Please! Connecting offices together

  1. #1
    AO's MMA Fanatic! Computernerd22's Avatar
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    Help me Please! Connecting offices together

    Hello fellow members of AO. It's been a while since I posted a thread on this forum.

    And I have just a couple of quick questions. Heres the scoop; The Doctors office my

    girlfriend works for would like to connect both Doctors offices together. Both offices

    are exactly 8.79 miles apart from one another. In the Cape office they are using an

    Embarq Business ADSL account for their ISP. In the Fort Myers office they are using

    Comcast (cable) for their ISP. Both offices are running Windows XP with SP2. Also,

    both offices consist of two desktop computers and one notebook computer. They are

    using Medisoft & Altapoint for medical billing, insurance claims etc... The Cape office

    is currently running a WLAN network. (notebook is using wireless and desktops are

    using CAT5 cable plugged into an netgear router.) Now, in the Fort Myers office they

    are using a Linksys WRT54G v.5 router. Their orginial IT tech sold them a Dell

    Server (not sure make or model) but it did cost over $2000.00 from what I was told.

    Anyways, the Purpose of the Doctors wanting to connect both offices So they can

    have access to each other schedule for customers, book appointments etc... Heres

    the question what exact hardware do they need to achieve this? Switches, router,

    server(s) etc... Also, what software should be used to do this (I assume) Windows

    Server 2003 perhaps? Correct me if I'm wrong please. Also, what would you guys

    recommend hardware wise / software wise? All help is greatly appreciated.


    Computernerd22

  2. #2
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    You're looking at it the wrong way. You've got the who, what, when, where and why, but you completely missed the how. How do they manage their schedules? How do they book appointments? And how do they want to share this information? Do they use a software app installed on their machines? Does it currently support information sharing between other machines running the same software or is it completely stand alone? Are they open to the idea of moving their appointment & scheduling to a web-based solution? If the only reason they need to link up is to share those two things, then a web based solution where they simply sign on to a website would be both efficient and cost effective. They could even sell some of the hardware they don't need (like the server) to pay for it.
    Last edited by xiphias360; March 21st, 2008 at 06:18 PM.

  3. #3
    AO's MMA Fanatic! Computernerd22's Avatar
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    Thank you for replying to this thread. Greatly appreciated.


    How do they manage their schedules? & How do they book appointments?
    They use Medical software called Medisoft to make/book the appointments. They can do this within the Medisoft program.

    Do they use a software app installed on their machines? Does it currently support information sharing between other machines running the same software or is it completely stand alone?
    Yes, Medisoft. Medisoft acts as a server/client software. We installed Medisoft on the server (the old one) and use the rest of the computers as the clients to connect to the medisoft server. We have it setup like this in both offices.


    Are they open to the idea of moving their appointment & scheduling to a web-based solution?
    Due to some people in the office who are complete novice with computers they want to keep it as simple as possible. So maybe the web based method would be a bit much for some of them. Their original IT Tech sold them a Dell server that cost $7,000.00. I think the tech sold them software/hardware they don't need. They would like to connect both offices together. The cape coral office & the fort myers office. I'm not sure of all the details (shes at work now and so am I) however i do know they would really like to achieve this. So if we need extra hardware or software to make this happen btw, money is not an issue.

    If the only reason they need to link up is to share those two things, then a web based solution where they simply sign on to a website would be both efficient and cost effective.
    Not exactly sure what you mean by this, how could this be achieved? Meaning, how do we set the Medisoft software on the website? We also, have to consider H.I.P.P.A since it's in a medical enviroment. Thanks cn22
    Last edited by Computernerd22; March 21st, 2008 at 08:37 PM.

  4. #4
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    Okay, with HIPPA in mind, a web based solution may not be your answer, lol. But, by that I mean switching from a computer installed program to a web based program. Instead, I'd say go with a VPN. If you need some reading, just hit the web: http://compnetworking.about.com/od/v...t_is_a_vpn.htm

  5. #5
    Master-Jedi-Pimps0r & Moderator thehorse13's Avatar
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    And your answer is...

    site to site VPN tunnel.
    You need:
    2 VPN concentrators, 1 at each office. Once they are running, you can pass *all* traffic between offices, encryped, over the intarweb. Oh yes, and this meets your HIPAA needs as well (for data transport between providers).

    Have a look at the low end offerings from Juniper.

    --TH13
    Our scars have the power to remind us that our past was real. -- Hannibal Lecter.
    Talent is God given. Be humble. Fame is man-given. Be grateful. Conceit is self-given. Be careful. -- John Wooden

  6. #6
    AO's MMA Fanatic! Computernerd22's Avatar
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    And your answer is...

    site to site VPN tunnel.
    You need:
    2 VPN concentrators, 1 at each office. Once they are running, you can pass *all* traffic between offices, encryped, over the intarweb. Oh yes, and this meets your HIPAA needs as well (for data transport between providers).

    Have a look at the low end offerings from Juniper.

    --TH13
    Perfect. Thank you for the reply, greatly appreciated. BTW, curious you have an idea of how much something like that would cost? Thanks again.

  7. #7
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    Hey Hey,

    Since TH13 suggested juniper, I'm going to counter with Cisco.

    I'd recommend the ASA5505. I've heard nothing but good things from the people who use both the 5505 and the 5510. The 5505 is the SOHO solution and while I've seen it for as low as $550... It's on NewEgg right now for $650. If you get two of those, you'll be in business.
    IT Blog: .:Computer Defense:.
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  8. #8
    Master-Jedi-Pimps0r & Moderator thehorse13's Avatar
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    Cisco and Juniper are competitors. It comes down to preference/existing contracts in my mind. I've seen gear from both companies and both are excellent. The Juniper gear is priced pretty close to the Cisco gear. Beat up your sales guy and I'm sure you'll get a nice deal. You're not talking major cash here. Maybe $1,200 - $1,500 and perhaps a day worth of time to get everything running and tested.

    On the Juniper end, have a look at the SSG series. Depending upon your throughput needs, you can go from the SSG20 and move up the platform to meet your needs. They also bundle all the security bells and whistles in there such as AV, IDS and so on.

    http://www.juniper.net/products_and_..._slash_ssg_20/

    --TH13
    Last edited by thehorse13; March 23rd, 2008 at 02:12 PM.
    Our scars have the power to remind us that our past was real. -- Hannibal Lecter.
    Talent is God given. Be humble. Fame is man-given. Be grateful. Conceit is self-given. Be careful. -- John Wooden

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