New Office Installation – Mac Based Network

A client wanted me to setup an office for 30 people in a brand new building. When I got there it was totally empty, no structured (Cat5/6/Ethernet/Network/Telephone) cabling and not a single power socket it was just a shell of an office.

Freelance Mac Systems Project Manager

I managed the entire researching, purchasing and installation of:

  • Telephone System.
  • Computer Network.
  • Server.
  • Workstations.
  • Software.
  • Internet Connection.
  • Domain Names and Hosting.
  • BT Fiber and Copper.

The client introduced me to the managing agent of the complex and left me to liaise with them.

As time was short the first thing I did was order BT to install new services to the office. This was incredibly involved as the cable route was over 400m from BT’s communications room in the basement. The cable route went about 300m in ceiling cable trays in the basement car park, up a level through a riser into a gym, then up another level into an occupied office, under their floor, through a wall, under the floor of a communal hall way for about 20m and then through another wall into the office.

I had to co-ordinate with BT, a BT sub-contractor, managing agent, gym owner, occupied office owner and our next door neighbour who saw me and asked for some help getting BT Copper into his office (a good deed). I had to get ‘Method Statements’, ‘Risk Assessments’, details of engineer qualifications, reinstatement of fire stopping certificate and insurance certificates from BT Subcontractors circulated to the various parties and as the complex was still a building site I had to get the BT Subcontractor engineers on a ‘Site Induction’ with the developer! It was not that easy!

At the same time as the BT install I contacted three telephone companies, briefed them and got them to quote for the structured cabling, power circuits, telephone system and data cabinet.

I gave the client a brief on the different suppliers and summarised the pros and cons of each. We chose a supplier and then I did some haggling with them.

I managed the installation of everything, I met with the BT engineers and with the telephone company engineers to let them in and out. I liaised with the clients accountant to arrange payments.

I even waited in for the carpet fitters to finish so I could lock up!

As I have been working with this client for a few years it was easy for me to quickly work out what they needed. I specified a server, network, backup equipment, workstations and all software with only a small amount of discussion with the client. I then shopped around for the equipment, made the order and accepted the delivery.

The entire office was brand new, every piece of equipment!

Mac Server Setup

I set up the following services on the network:

  • MacPro converted to a 10.5 server.
  • Server Services Configured:
    • Open Directory.
    • DNS, DHCP
    • Hot Desking.
    • Desktop to Server Synchronising of home directories.
  • Sony AIT-3 Rack Mounted Backup System.
  • Rumpus FTP / Extranet Server.
  • Cinema 4D Render Server.
  • Kerio MailServer.
  • ADSL Connection.