How to create a network documentation

Network documents can provide service providers with valuable insight when it’s time to troubleshoot problems. Follow these 10 steps for a smooth documentation process.

How to create a network documentation

Editor’s note: Channel partners spend a lot of time learning about their customers’ data center environments and network infrastructure. It stands to reason: You’ll have a difficult time getting to the optimized “to be” promised-land if you don’t have a grasp of the “as is” IT estate. A comprehensive network diagram and collection of network documents will help you get there. This network documentation checklist summarizes best practices for detailing network devices and other key aspects of customer networks.

Although network documentation is always a good idea, it’s especially important for service providers and value-added resellers. Documenting your customers’ networks can make the troubleshooting process much more efficient when problems arise. These same network documents can help you spot areas of your customers’ networks that may need to be upgraded, possibly providing you with extra revenue. Finally, good network documentation proves that you adhere to industry best practices, and it could be your best defense should a customer ever file litigation against you for something network-related.

Here’s a 10-step network documentation checklist to help you get started.

A network documentation policy should detail what aspects of a network need to be documented, especially each server. A documentation policy also communicates to each administrator exactly what is expected of them regarding the documentation process.

Ideally, you want this map of the network’s topology to include each network segment, the routers connecting the various segments, and the servers, gateways and other major pieces of networking hardware that are connected to each segment. For larger networks, you may have to create a general segment map and make more specific maps of each individual segment.

While the information included in a network topology diagram is not necessarily specific, there is certain information that you should include for each server, even if that information has to be placed in an appendix. For each server, list the server’s name, its IP address and the role the server performs (domain name system, Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol, mail server, etc.). Keep in mind that a server may be assigned multiple IP addresses or have multiple network interface cards, so you should document that information too.

When a server fails, the failure can often be traced to a recent change. As a part of the network documentation, consider making a log book for each server for documenting changes such as patch and application installations and modified security settings. Not only will the log help you troubleshoot future problems, but it can also help you rebuild the server in the event of a catastrophic failure.

Document the applications and their versions running on each server. You might also include a copy of the software license or a receipt within this documentation just in case your customer becomes involved in a software audit.

How to create a network documentationDocumentation helps visualize network topologies, such as this software-defined network.

I have talked about documenting individual servers, but it’s equally important to document switches, routers, gateways and other networking hardware. The documentation should include information such as the following:

  • How is the device connected to the network?
  • How is the device configured?
  • Does a backup of the configuration exist?
  • What firmware revision is the device running?
  • Is the device configured to use a password? Don’t include the actual password, but you can include a password hint or a reference to the password being written in a notebook that is stored in the safe.

I could probably write a book on Active Directory documentation, but here are a few things that you should consider documenting:

  • The names of the domains in the forest.
  • The Active Directory site structure.
  • Where the various servers exist within the Active Directory hierarchy.
  • The location and contents of each group policy.
  • Any external trusts that may exist.

Backup is your customer’s best defense against a catastrophe, but it will do little good if nobody can figure out how to use it. Be sure to document the backup software used and its version (very important). You will also want to document the tape rotation scheme, a general description of what’s included in each backup job and where the backup tapes are stored.

I once had a client ask me to do a consulting project for them. They gave me a thorough and well-written copy of their network documentation to review ahead of time. But when I got on site, I realized that none of the hardware was labeled. All of the servers looked identical, and there was no way to differentiate between them.

Get a label maker and label all servers, critical hardware components (gateways, routers, etc.) and the most important cables. This will make it easy to identify the various pieces of hardware listed in your network document.

The last step in this network documentation checklist is to evaluate your documentation to make sure it’s sufficient for you and your customer’s needs. Think of your network documentation as a critical part of your disaster recovery strategy. When the first draft of your documentation is complete, you must ask yourself if it’s good enough to help someone with no prior knowledge of the setup to rebuild the network from scratch in the event of a catastrophe. If the answer is yes, then you’ve done a good job on the documentation.

Readers looking to supplement their knowledge beyond this network documentation checklist can find an additional resource on automating network documents and topology mapping, as well as information on process documentation.

Documentation plays an important part in Information Technology. Work instructions, help desk scripts, knowledge bases, and vendor instructions are only a few examples.

The key to writing good technical documentation is in the format of the document. No matter how good the information is, if it is not well formatted it can be difficult to use. Documentation should be easy to read, easy for the reader to understand and well organized. Writing good technical documentation is time consuming, but well worth the effort.

Steps to Good Documentation

There are some essential steps to take in order to produce quality documentation.

What Is The Purpose?

Determine what the purpose of the documentation is such as work instructions, vendor instructions, knowledge base or other type. This will help you define the content, the format and in some cases the media you will use.

Who Are You Writing For?

Knowing who will be reading the documentation will help you determine the depth and word usage. You want to write the documentation at the level of the person reading it.

Collect Information

Even if you are an expert in the area gather all of the information you can find on the subject. You may need to interview or get the assistance of others to help you gather the needed information. Manuals, user guides and online resources are very useful.

Write an Outline

Start with an outline of the document indentifying the different sections of the document. This will help guide you as you fill in the blank spaces with more detail.

Write The First Draft

Working from the outline begin to fill in each section with details. Don’t worry about formatting or editing at this point. Here you want to get down all of the information that will be in the document.

Revise and Format

Now it is time to polish the document and format it. A good rule of thumb is you will end up removing more than you add if you wrote the first draft correctly. Wait until you have a final draft before you format the document.

The Four Essential Parts

Depending on the subject most technical documentation should be broken down into four areas.

  • Title
  • Section
  • Steps
  • Appendix

The Title

The title is what the documentation is about. For example

Network Support – Troubleshooting Connectivity Issues

The Section

The document should be divided into sections. Each section contains detailed step-by-step instructions.

Section 1 – Ping The Remote Station

Section 2 – Examine Event Logs

The Steps

Each section will contain detailed step-by-step instructions on how to perform the action for that section.

1.1 Use the ping –t command to ping the remote station

1.2В Watch the ping statistics. If you detect lost packets go to Appendix 3

The Appendix

The appendix is used to place more information or detailed instructions on how to deal with specific issues. For instance in the above example if lost packets were detected when you ping the remote station you would refer to Appendix 3. Appendix 3 would detail what to steps to take when lost packets are detected.

By using this approach you keep your steps clean and easy to follow. You do not want to clutter them with detailed instructions on how to handle each problem or issue that may arise. Use the Appendix for that.

Key Points

Always Use Numbered Steps

When writing documentation you should always used numbered steps. They are easier to follow and allow you to better support the documentation when used by someone else.

For instance you create installation instructions for a vendor. They call in and ask about a step in the process they are having a problem with. Without numbered steps you may get a question like “where it says to connect the light blue console cable, included with the router…”.

With numbered steps you would get the question “At step 3.4 it says connect the light blue console cable, included with the router…”. Now you do not have to hunt through the document looking for what the caller is referring to. You know they are at step 3.4 which is easy to find.

K.I.S.S.

Yes, keep it simple stupid. A very important philosophy when it comes to writing good technical documentation. Do not go into long detailed explanations or steps. Documentation should be short, clear and easy to follow. This makes it easy for the user and helps eliminate possible errors due to details that are not needed.

Use a Template

Part of a good documentation system is consistency. By using a template for each type of documentation you write your readers will find it easier to use. Software such as Microsoft Word allows you to save a document as a template. Once you have a good template use it for each new document you write. It will save you time and will produce consistent looking documentation.

Organize With a Reference System

Now where is the documentation on trouble-shooting connectivity issues? Maybe it is under N for network, or C for connectivity. Avoid this problem by using a letter and number reference system for your documentation.

As you create documentation keep a log sheet. Assign each set of documentation with a letter number system. For instance NS-21 Network Support – Troubleshooting Connectivity Issues. NS for network support and this is document number 21 in the network support reference library.

You can generalize such as PR – process instructions, WI – work instructions, AP – administrative processes, GP – general processes and so on. Log each set of documentation including the reference number (NS-21), the title of the documentation (Network Support – Troubleshooting Connectivity Issues), the location of the soft copy of the document, the author of the document and the last revision date.

When you print out your documentation you can put it in a binder and label it.В By having a reference system you can line them all up NS-1, NS-2, NS-3 and so forth. Put a copy of the log sheet on the location the documentation is stored for easy reference.

Take Away, Literally

There are many reasons to document something. One of the most important reasons is to retain the knowledge of key personnel. If someone leaves the company they take all of their knowledge of your systems with them. Having documented processes and procedures helps you retain some of that knowledge.

I would suggest that you identify key personnel and task them to document their processes and procedures now. Even if they have poor writing skills you can always give the information to someone else to revise. The goal is to document their knowledge so you may retain it.

What are your network diagram needs?

Contents

  • How to make a network diagram in Excel
  • Network diagram template For Excel
  • More on network diagrams

Network diagrams visualize the connections between devices and hardware in given a computer network. Symbols, shapes, and icons are used to depict devices such as laptops, routers, desktops, and servers. Whether you are mapping out a personal home network or multiple networks as part of a larger organization, a well-made network diagram simplifies and clarifies complex systems. This step-by-step guide will explain how to create a network diagram template in Lucidchart and integrate it into Excel.В

Want to make a network diagram of your own? Try Lucidchart. It’s quick, easy, and completely free.

How to make a network diagram in Excel

It easy to organize large amounts of data into neat rows and columns using Excel, but it’s diagramming features are limited. Excel lacks the specific shapes necessary to create a network diagram without spending hours creating custom shapes from scratch or paying for additional extensions. That’s why we have outlined the steps to create a network diagram in Lucidchart and import it into Excel.

1. Sign up for a free Lucidchart Account

Before getting started on your network diagram, you’ll need to register for a free Lucidchart account—all it takes is an email address! Once registered, you’ll be all set to move on to the steps below.

2. Create a new document and add basic shapesВ

When you create a new document in Lucidchart, there are two options: starting from scratch or using a template. Templates are a great option if you want to save time, but don’t be deterred by creating your own from scratch— with Lucidchart both options are simple and straightforward.

Starting from a template

Lucidchart offers several pre-made network diagram templates in its library. To find the right template that fits your needs click “+Document” or the “More Templates” button. Then select “Network” from the panel on the left. You can also use the search bar in the upper lefthand corner and search “network diagram.” For additional information on the different templates, click it once to read more about it.

How to create a network documentation

All Lucidchart templates are customizable—move, add, or delete shapes and arrows until the diagram suits your needs

Starting from scratchВ

If you would rather create your own network diagram using the shape library, open a blank document by clicking “+Blank” at the top of the homepage.В

3. Add shapes and linesВ

It’s easy to quickly add all the shapes, lines, and text you will need when you use Lucidchart.

First, you will need to add the correct shape library to your shape menu. To do this select “+Shape” in the bottom left of the shape menu. A pop-up window will appear. In the left panel scroll down until you find “Cisco Network Icons” and select it. A checkmark will appear in the box indicating that it was added to your shape menu. A preview of the shapes will appear to ensure that you selected the correct library. Exit the window.В В

How to create a network documentation

Drag and drop shapes onto the canvas to start diagramming. To connect the shapes, click and drag your cursor drawing a line between them.В

  • Connect the red dots with lines to keep the shapes linked.

How to create a network documentation

4. Add textВ

Now that you have your network diagram mapped with the appropriate devices and shapes it is time to add text. Double-click the shape to add text and begin typing.

To add text to your arrows double click the arrow and begin typing.В

It’s just as easy to edit text—simply repeat the same process. Modify the text size, font, color, and more using the properties bar at the top of the editor.

How to create a network documentation

Once you’ve finished you will have a complete network diagram. Continue to move and add device shapes as needed if your network grows.

Diagramming is quick and easy with Lucidchart. Start a free trial today to start creating and collaborating.

Network diagram template For Excel

More on network diagrams

To learn more about network diagrams, check out our summary of network diagram icons and symbols, or get another free template on our wireless network diagram page. You can also peruse Lucidchart’s community library for thousands of templates for all kinds of diagrams. Make mind maps, flowcharts, org charts, circuit diagrams, activity diagrams, ERD, and much more.

Additional Resources

  • Visio Network Diagrams & Examples
  • How to Draw a Network Diagram
  • Network Diagram Symbols and Icons
  • What is a Network Diagram
  • Why you should visualize your cloud infrastructure

For more storage space and diagram choices, sign up for a free trial of a Pro account. It’s risk-free, no credit card required!

Want to make a network diagram of your own? Try Lucidchart. It’s quick, easy, and completely free.

Network Glue is the tool you need to gain complete and comprehensive visibility into your clients’ networks. Equipped with automatic discovery, documentation, and diagramming, keeping your clients’ networks up to date is effortless.

How to create a network documentation

Leave the site walks to us. The Network Glue collector detects all devices on your clients’ networks regardless of vendor. It even discovers Active Directory environments including the AD role of each workstation and server, and automatically brings in AD users from on-premises or hybrid environments.

Say goodbye to hidden devices. All network devices and all on-premises and hybrid Active Directory users are automatically documented and updated in IT Glue. This includes virtual components of networks for Hyper-V and VMware.

We can’t all be artists. Let Network Glue generate comprehensive network diagrams for you. Unique icons help to quickly interpret network diagrams, and are fully integrated with IT Glue so contextual information is pulled up when a device icon is clicked.

How to create a network documentation

Strategic Network Planning

Be proactive, not reactive. The information Network Glue provides empowers you to advise your clients on high-stakes issues like security.

How to create a network documentation

Quarterly Business Reviews (QBRs)

Knowing your clients’ networks means that you know their areas of inefficiencies, too. You can then leverage QBRs as an opportunity to offer your strategic vision.

How to create a network documentation

Onboarding New Clients

Speed up your onboarding process. Remotely. And with just a few clicks. The more documentation you have off the bat, the greater levels of service you can provide.

How to create a network documentation

Troubleshooting

Visualize your clients network and interpret areas of weakness. Network Glue diagrams make identifying and troubleshooting issues simple and efficient.

Remotely install the Network Glue collector on your clients’ networks, and watch the magic happen.

How to create a network documentation How to create a network documentation

Once installed, the Network Glue collector detects all devices on your clients’ networks, such as (but not limited to) printers, routers, and switches, regardless of their vendor.

Discovery

How to create a network documentation How to create a network documentation

Not only does Network Glue automatically document all network devices, but it ensures that these devices remain up to date by refreshing the network periodically.

Documentation

How to create a network documentation How to create a network documentation

Network Glue generates comprehensive network diagrams, allowing you to visualize your clients’ networks without any of the manual effort.

How to create a network documentation

There’s no question that an accurate infrastructure diagram is invaluable to your cloud team. Whether you’re a cloud architect looking to redesign existing infrastructure, a devops engineer tasked with implementing a design or a project manager making sure the roll out has been executed according to the scope, an accurate diagram makes life easier at every step of the project.

In the past, the thought of having to create network diagrams was never met with a rush of excitement or enthusiasm. In reality it was a bit of a nightmare. Hours and hours dragging and dropping icons, checking and rechecking console settings, trying to logically arrange things so they could easily be understood and connecting the resources, so you could tell what was going on.

Then you would always be second guessing yourself. Did I miss something? What are the other teams rolling out in this environment that i’m not aware of yet? Have any resources been added or removed since the initial design.

If you’re working in a fast paced dev environment, you may have even avoided creating documentation, until of course the CTO asks why the cloud spend increased by 50% this quarter.

The biggest challenge with diagramming cloud infrastructure, apart from finding the time to do it in the first place, is keeping it up to date. Especially with dynamic components, autoscaling resources and the need to build in acceptable redundancy into the network designs, the ever changing cloud configuration presents an ever moving target that can be expensive and time consuming to document.

Enter Hava.

hava.io provides both a cloud based or self hosted solution to automatically document your cloud environments by:

  • Connecting your Azure cloud account via Service Principle Credentials
  • Automatically generating diagrams in a logically laid out 100% accurate format
  • Tracking changes and auto generating a new set of diagrams
  • Archiving fully interactive diagrams ‘pre-config change’ so you can audit if required
  • Providing a full list of resources and attributes (including cost estimates per resource)
  • Providing API access to build documentation into build pipelines
  • Providing the ability for easy creation of custom cloud diagrams

How to create an Azure Infrastructure Diagram using Hava

To import environment diagram data from Azure, you will need to access your Azure Portal at https://portal.azure.com , create a new Service Principle and retrieve a set of credentials for your account.

Open the Azure Portal and launch PowerShell from the top menu bar :

Creates a network policy.

Only security administrators (i.e. users with the SECURITYADMIN role) or higher or a role with the global CREATE NETWORK POLICY privilege can create network policies.

Syntax¶

Required Parameters¶

Identifier for the network policy; must be unique for your account.

The identifier value must start with an alphabetic character and cannot contain spaces or special characters unless the entire identifier string is enclosed in double quotes (e.g. “My object” ), Identifiers enclosed in double quotes are also case-sensitive.

ALLOWED_IP_LIST = ( [ ip_address ] [ , ‘ ip_address ‘ , . ] )

Specifies a list of IPv4 addresses that are allowed access to your Snowflake account. This is referred to as the allowed list. Snowflake automatically blocks all IP addresses not included in the allowed list.

Note that if the parameter is specified with an empty list, the network policy allows no IPv4 addresses to access Snowflake.

Optional Parameters¶

Specifies a list of IPv4 addresses that are denied access to your Snowflake account. This is referred to as the blocked list.

Set this parameter only when you are allowing access to a range of IP addresses (specified in ALLOWED_IP_LIST ), but want to deny access to one or more IP addresses within the range.

Default: No value (i.e. no IP addresses in ALLOWED_IP_LIST are blocked)

Specifies a comment for the network policy.

Default: No value

Access Control Requirements¶

A role used to execute this SQL command must have the following privileges at a minimum:

CREATE NETWORK POLICY

Only the SECURITYADMIN role, or a higher role, has this privilege by default. The privilege can be granted to additional roles as needed.

For instructions on creating a custom role with a specified set of privileges, see Creating Custom Roles .

For general information about roles and privilege grants for performing SQL actions on securable objects , see Access Control in Snowflake .

Usage Notes¶

Each ip_address can cover a range of addresses using Classless Inter-Domain Routing (CIDR) notation:

When a network policy includes values for both ALLOWED_IP_LIST and BLOCKED_IP_LIST , Snowflake applies the blocked list first.

Do not add 0.0.0.0/0 to BLOCKED_IP_LIST . Because Snowflake applies the blocked list first, this would block your own access. Additionally, in order to block all IP addresses except a select list, you only need to add IP addresses to ALLOWED_IP_LIST . Snowflake automatically blocks all IP addresses not included in the allowed list.

The maximum number of characters for the ALLOWED_IP_LIST list is 100,000. Snowflake returns an error message when this character limit is exceeded.

After creating a network policy, you must associate it with your account before Snowflake enforces the policy. You can associate a policy with your account through the ALTER ACCOUNT command, which must be run by a user with the SECURITYADMIN role (or higher).

For more details, see Parameter Management . Note that NETWORK_POLICY is currently the only account parameter that can be set by users with the SECURITYADMIN role.

Before associating a network policy with your account, your current IP address must be included in ALLOWED_IP_LIST ; otherwise, the ALTER ACCOUNT command returns an error. In addition, your current IP address cannot be included in BLOCKED_IP_LIST .

Customers should ensure that no personal data (other than for a User object), sensitive data, export-controlled data, or other regulated data is entered as metadata when using the Snowflake service. For more information, see Metadata Fields in Snowflake .

Examples¶

Create a network policy named mypolicy1 with the following properties:

Allow all IP addresses in the range of 192.168.1.0 to 192.168.1.255 (via CIDR notation 192.168.1.0/24 ), except 192.168.1.99 , which is explicitly blocked.

Deny all other IP addresses.

Create a network policy named mypolicy2 that allows only the IP addresses 192.168.1.0 and 192.168.1.100 to access your account:

Ansible Network modules extend the benefits of simple, powerful, agentless automation to network administrators and teams. Ansible Network modules can configure your network stack, test and validate existing network state, and discover and correct network configuration drift.

If you’re new to Ansible, or new to using Ansible for network management, start with Network Getting Started . If you are already familiar with network automation with Ansible, see Network Advanced Topics .

For documentation on using a particular network module, consult the list of all network modules . Network modules for various hardware are supported by different teams including the hardware vendors themselves, volunteers from the Ansible community, and the Ansible Network Team.

  • Network Getting Started
    • Basic Concepts
      • Control node
      • Managed nodes
      • Inventory
      • Collections
      • Modules
      • Tasks
      • Playbooks
    • How Network Automation is Different
      • Execution on the control node
      • Multiple communication protocols
      • Collections organized by network platform
      • Privilege Escalation: enable mode, become , and authorize
    • Run Your First Command and Playbook
      • Prerequisites
      • Install Ansible
      • Establish a manual connection to a managed node
      • Run your first network Ansible command
      • Create and run your first network Ansible Playbook
      • Gathering facts from network devices
    • Build Your Inventory
      • Basic inventory
      • Add variables to the inventory
      • Group variables within inventory
      • Variable syntax
      • Group inventory by platform
      • Verifying the inventory
      • Protecting sensitive variables with ansible-vault
    • Use Ansible network roles
      • Understanding roles
    • Beyond the basics
      • A typical Ansible filetree
      • Tracking changes to inventory and playbooks: source control with git
    • Working with network connection options
      • Setting timeout options
    • Resources and next steps
      • Documents
      • Events (on video and in person)
      • GitHub repos
      • Chat channels
  • Network Advanced Topics
    • Network Resource Modules
      • Network resource module states
      • Using network resource modules
      • Example: Verifying the network device configuration has not changed
      • Example: Acquiring and updating VLANs on a network device
    • Ansible Network Examples
      • Prerequisites
      • Groups and variables in an inventory file
      • Example 1: collecting facts and creating backup files with a playbook
      • Example 2: simplifying playbooks with platform-independent modules
      • Implementation Notes
      • Troubleshooting
    • Parsing semi-structured text with Ansible
      • Understanding the CLI parser
      • Parsing the CLI
      • Advanced use cases
    • Validate data against set criteria with Ansible
      • Understanding the validate plugin
      • Structuring the data
      • Defining the criteria to validate against
      • Validating the data
    • Network Debug and Troubleshooting Guide
      • How to troubleshoot
      • Troubleshooting socket path issues
      • Category “Unable to open shell”
      • Timeout issues
      • Playbook issues
      • Proxy Issues
      • Miscellaneous Issues
    • Working with command output and prompts in network modules
      • Conditionals in networking modules
      • Handling prompts in network modules
    • Ansible Network FAQ
      • How can I improve performance for network playbooks?
      • Why is my output sometimes replaced with ******** ?
      • Why do the *_config modules always return changed=true with abbreviated commands?
    • Platform Options
      • CloudEngine OS Platform Options
      • CNOS Platform Options
      • Dell OS6 Platform Options
      • Dell OS9 Platform Options
      • Dell OS10 Platform Options
      • ENOS Platform Options
      • EOS Platform Options
      • ERIC_ECCLI Platform Options
      • EXOS Platform Options
      • FRR Platform Options
      • ICX Platform Options
      • IOS Platform Options
      • IOS-XR Platform Options
      • IronWare Platform Options
      • Junos OS Platform Options
      • Meraki Platform Options
      • Pluribus NETVISOR Platform Options
      • NOS Platform Options
      • NXOS Platform Options
      • RouterOS Platform Options
      • SLX-OS Platform Options
      • VOSS Platform Options
      • VyOS Platform Options
      • WeOS 4 Platform Options
      • Netconf enabled Platform Options
      • Settings by Platform
  • Network Developer Guide
    • Developing network resource modules
      • Understanding network and security resource modules
      • Developing network and security resource modules
      • Examples
      • Resource module structure and workflow
      • Running ansible-test sanity and tox on resource modules
      • Testing resource modules
      • Example: Unit testing Ansible network resource modules
    • Developing network plugins
      • Network connection plugins
      • Developing httpapi plugins
      • Developing NETCONF plugins
      • Developing network_cli plugins
      • Developing cli_parser plugins in a collection
    • Documenting new network platforms
      • Modifying the platform options table
      • Adding a platform-specific options section
      • Adding your new file to the table of contents

Available with Network Analyst license.

Once you have developed your network dataset design, you are ready to create a network dataset.

There are three exercises in the Network Analyst tutorial that step through creating a network dataset. You can link to them from the “Related topics” section of this document.

There are five main steps in creating a network dataset:

  1. Prepare the feature dataset and sources.
    • If you are creating a geodatabase-based network dataset, all feature classes participating as sources in a network should be present in one feature dataset.
    • If you’re creating a network from shapefiles, you need to organize into the same folder all the feature classes that will participate as sources.
    • You may need to create new feature datasets or new feature classes, and you may need to edit features.

  • Prepare the sources for appropriate roles inside the network dataset.
    • Be sure your sources have fields that represent your network impedance values—distance, travel time, and so on. For best results, name these fields as the units of your impedances, since these fields will automatically be detected by the New Network Dataset wizard—for example, you might want to name your travel time field Minutes. For edge sources, if the impedance values differ based on direction of travel, provide a separate field for each direction of travel, for example, FT_Minutes and TF_Minutes.
    • If you are modeling one-way streets, be sure that your edge sources have a field specifying one-way street information. The New Network Dataset wizard recognizes a string field named One_Way or Oneway, creating evaluators that interpret its values as follows:

      • FT or F indicates a one-way street permitting travel only in the digitized direction of the edge.
      • TF or T indicates a one-way street permitting travel only against the digitized direction of the edge.
      • N indicates a street that does not permit travel in either direction.
      • Any other value indicates a street that permits travel in either direction.

      If your data uses z-elevation or z-level values to model overpasses and underpasses, be sure this information is stored in a pair of integer fields—one field for each end of the edge. If the fields are named either F_ELEV and T_ELEV or F_ZLEV and T_ZLEV, the New Network Dataset wizard automatically detects these fields.

      If you plan to generate driving directions text from your network analyses, be sure that your edge sources have fields containing the information needed to generate driving directions such as road class, street names, highway shields, and boundary information.

      If your turn information is stored in an ARC/INFO or ArcView GIS turn table, import the turn table to a turn feature class.

      If you do not have ARC/INFO or ArcView GIS turn tables but want to use turn information for network analysis, create a new turn feature class and add new turn features to store that information.

      When you create a network dataset or edit an existing network dataset, it must be built. Building is a process of creating network elements, establishing connectivity, and assigning values to the defined attributes.

      I’m not sure how to ask this question, since I’m not in the field. Say you’re a network admin and you leave your job. How does the new guy know where to start?

      19 Answers 19

      It depends on the size of the network, number of users, number of nodes (computers, servers, printers, etc.) and the size of your IT staff, among other things.

      It also depends on your goal. Are you documenting the network for training and maintenance purposes, insurance/loss prevention, etc?

      Personally, I document my networks in such a way that I know I can derive any missing information based on what is documented. From a practical stance, there is a point of diminishing returns when your documentation gets too granular.

      A good rule of thumb I use is that there should be documentation in a known location that is thorough enough that if I get hit by a bus tonight, another administrator can keep the core network running while he/she fills in the missing pieces over the next few days/weeks.

      Here is an overview of what I think is most important about one of my networks. For the record this is a Windows-only shop with about 100 users and 5 offices.

      • Administrator credentials for all servers. Obviously this should be kept secure.
      • IP Addresses and NetBIOS names for any node on the network with a static IP address, including servers, workstations, printers, firewalls, routers, switches, etc.
      • Basic server hardware information, such as Service tags or equivalent, total disk capacity, total RAM, etc.
      • Major roles of each server, such as Domain Controller, File Server, Print Server, Terminal Server, etc.
      • Location of backup tapes/drives.
      • Information about the account numbers and credentials for services like remote office voice and data providers.
      • External DNS for websites and routing.

      If there was anything strange about a setup or workflow that would not be immediately obvious to a new administrator, I would write a short “brief” about it as well.

      How to create a network documentation

      A company’s IT network is the backbone of its business as it connects all its computers and related devices together, allowing staff to work more efficiently across the organization. With something so mission-critical it’s crucial it is designed and set up properly. If you’re wondering how to design a network, this blog aims to help you understand the basics of good network infrastructure design.

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      Get up and running quickly with RMM designed for smaller MSPs and IT departments.

      What is network design?

      How to create a network documentationNetwork design is the planning phase a company’s IT infrastructure must go through before it is implemented. It involves evaluating and understanding how all the elements of the network link together (from routers, switches, and servers to desktops, laptops, and printers) and how they can be made to run as efficiently as possible. A well-designed network can bring increased operational efficiency. Network design is a task that is usually performed by network designers, IT administrators, and other related employees.

      To help with the physical implementation process, the network design should be drawn out as a network diagram, which then acts as a guide for when the engineers come to install it (to find out more about network diagrams and the tools you can use to help create them, read this blog Why You Need a Network Diagram Tool).

      There are a number of details your network infrastructure design should show, these include:

      • A clear map of the network
      • The structure and layout of the cabling required
      • The quantity, type and location of all devices on the network
      • Your IP addressing structure
      • Details of your network security architecture and processes

      Network design best practices

      How to create a network documentationTo ensure you deliver the best network design possible, here are five network design best practices to help ensure your network will run well, be able to scale with your business, and ultimately help the company perform better.

      1. Don’t skip the actual design phase
        When you’re initially looking at network planning and design you might think it’s pretty simple to link all your devices together. That might be true if you only have a handful of things to connect, but everything that is added to or removed from the network will affect your network’s performance, so as you have more devices it becomes more complex and more important that you get things right. One of the biggest mistakes you can make when building networks is to neglect to look at the whole picture. You can’t just build the network from your head; you need to have a physical plan and structural diagram. This will ensure you have the most efficient network and can also plan for new deployments and equipment.
      2. Plan for the future
        A key part of network planning and design is selecting systems that will grow with your business. Being able to visualize the current infrastructure as well as generally outline any new hardware and software you plan to adopt is crucial to help ensure you don’t end up with an inefficient Frankenstein’s monster of a network a couple years down the line.This links nicely to a second point here, and that is that network infrastructure design is not just about planning the hardware! Every new application or piece of software you deploy will impact the performance of your network as it will require processing power, electricity, support, and space for storage. So when you are considering any new software, spend time setting out how it is likely to impact the network. For example, if your new software is mission-critical, does it need high-speed, solid-state drives to achieve the highest performance?The final part of any future plans should be about bandwidth growth. As we continue to embrace technologies like the internet of things (IoT), video conferencing, and collaboration tools, network bandwidth demands will also keep growing. You need to think about these future scenarios and plan accordingly.
      3. Embed security in your design
        Network security is no longer something that can be considered as a bolt-on or afterthought. It is instead something that needs to be embedded at the very heart of your network design. On top of this, it must have clear guidance and policies for how it is enforced. Some network security design best practices include paying particular attention to the edge of your network. This is the point at which users and devices—including mobile and IoT—look to gain access, because this is where they can be identified, authenticated, authorized, and stopped if necessary. Something else you should carefully consider is how your network is segmented. For example, keeping areas that link your operations, employees, suppliers, and customers separate means that you can help prevent any potential attack from spreading across your whole network.
      4. Monitor your network
        There’s an old IT truism: You can’t fix what you don’t know is broken—or even what is about to break. This applies as much with networks as it does with anything else that fits under the IT banner. So when designing your network, make sure to plan for network monitoring so you know exactly what is going on. This will help you see problems—often before they occur—and ensure nothing compromises either the performance or security of your network. So think carefully about the systems you need to put in place to do this.
      5. You’re never finished
        Finally, while the initial design process will get you up and running, the job of building a solid, reliable IT network that helps support a business in delivering its goals is an ongoing process. As technology evolves, what you may have seen as a great solution when you did your initial network design may be much less appealing further down the line. While you shouldn’t change direction every time a new technology comes on the market, you should design your network to be flexible enough to be able to quickly adapt to what you see as useful new tools, so you can take advantage of the benefits sooner rather than later. That way you can ensure that your network becomes a competitive advantage for your organization.

      Check out the rest of our blog to read through other information regarding network design.

      In order to view the flow of funds in your accounts, on the Polygon Network, you will need to configure Polygon URL on Metamask.

      There are two ways to do it:

      Using Polygonscan#

      Please make sure you have already installed !

      • Polygon-Mainnet
      • Mumbai-Testnet

      Please follow the steps to add Polygon’s Mainnet:

      • Navigate to polygonscan.com

      • Scroll down to the bottom of the page and click on the button Add Polygon Network

      How to create a network documentation

      • Once you click the button you will see a Metamask Notification, now click on Approve. You will be directly switched to Polygon’s Mainnet now in the network dropdown list. You can now close the dialog.

      If you are facing any issue, Add the Network Manually(steps given below)

      Add the Polygon network manually#

      • Polygon-Mainnet
      • Mumbai-Testnet

      It will open up a form with 2 tabs on the top, Settings and Info. In the Settings tab you can add Polygon Mainnet in the Network Name field, URL https://polygon-rpc.com/ in the New RPC URL field, 137 in Chain ID field, MATIC in Currency Symbol field and https://polygonscan.com/ in Block Explorer URL field.

      How to create a network documentation

      Once you’ve added the information click on Save. You will be directly switched to Polygon’s Mainnet now in the network dropdown list. You can now close the dialog.

      You have successfully added Polygon Network to your Metamask!

      How to create a network documentationA Business Requirements Document (BRD) is a formal contract between the organization and the customer for a product. By describing in full detail all the processes that should be implemented, a BRD is used through the entire cycle of the project to ensure that the product meets the detailed specifications and that the project gains value and achieves the desired results. If it is prepared for a technical product, the BRD also includes technical specifications.

      Objectives of a Business Requirements Document

      A Business Requirements Document includes explicit specifications of how a system should perform and how much it should cost depending on what it is expected to achieve. The main goal is to deliver quality by taking into consideration the inputs and outputs of each project phase, the functional and non-functional system specifications as well as any possible upgrade that can assist the project manager to achieve the desired objective.

      A BRD makes a clear distinction between the business objective and the technical objective. The business objective answers the question “Where does the organization want to be?” meaning “What is the organization’s mission?” The technical objective focuses on the provision of a solid basis on which the business objective can be met. In this context, the most common objectives of a BRD can be summarized as follows:

      • To be universally accepted by the stakeholders
      • To provide an appropriate solution to meet the customer/business needs.
      • To provide a detailed description of which customer/business needs will be met by the selected solution.
      • To provide input between the phases of the project.

      Key Elements of a Business Requirements Document

      The author of a Business Requirements Document – a business analyst or a project manager – should have a thorough understanding of the business processes and the key objectives of the project to ensure proper implementation of different requirements and different elements within the requirements.

      The most important element of a BRD is the scope of the project, which includes any restrictions and constraints that need to be considered during the development process. The scope is a functional requirement that basically answers three questions:

      • What is the problem that the organization needs to solve?
      • What are the restrictions that need to be considered?
      • Is the time and money invested in solving the problem worthwhile?

      Besides the scope, the key elements of a Business Requirements Document cover a wide, yet not exhaustive area of project management documentation, as follows:

      • Business Problem Statement
      • Current Business Process
      • Scope Statement
      • Key Business Objectives
      • Project Completion Criteria
      • Risks & Limitations
      • Assumptions
      • Functional & Non-Functional Requirements
      • Cost and scheduling parameters
      • New/Modified Business Process
      • Training
      • Stakeholder List
      • Quality Measures
      • Checklists (Process and Requirements)

      Each and every requirement should be clearly described to ensure proper implementation of each process and smooth transition from one phase to another.

      How to Write a Business Requirements Document

      The first step is to collect information through brainstorming and interviews with various sources, including developers, customers, engineers and end-users. The collected information should be documented in a clear and concise way, familiar to the business user, to ensure successful product development and high-quality end-product. Documenting the information enables the author of the document to identify any conflicting steps early in the lifecycle of the project.

      The second step is to describe the key attributes of the product to provide a thorough idea of how the end-product should be to meet the customer needs.

      The third step is to clearly state the scope of the project, in order to avoid poor management and to provide guidance to the developers to meet the key objectives.

      The fourth step is to identify the phases of the project. By ensuring that the key objectives and goals can be met and that the scope of the project is accurately reflected, the project manager to reach a formal agreement with the stakeholders.

      The fifth step is the proper evaluation of the project with the use of a detailed process map. All the phases of the project are described, including the start and end points of each phase, any changes required in specific areas, the cycle-time and capacity of each step of the process as well as each Critical-to-Quality (CTQ) step. The goal in this stage is the identification of any necessary changes to meet the key objectives.

      The sixth step is to include an impact assessment diagram to identify the possible impact on the processes, the technology used, the people involved, the product, or even the facilities and the machinery and equipment of the organization.

      Bottom Line

      A Business Requirements Document includes all the planning strategies to ensure a formal contract that involves understandable project phases. A well-structured BRD improves collaboration between large-functional teams and creates a positive consensus. It also implements business strategies with the aim of transitioning from one stage to another in a controlled way so that stakeholders are satisfied and their needs are met. Finally, high quality requirements ensure a project success and can lower the costs of the project.

      Need Help?

      Business Conultants can help companies create business requirement documents. Find business consultants in Cardiff, Milton Keynes, Newcastle and throughout the UK.

      For more information see this power point presentation (note: this is a downloadable file).

      Requirements Network – Serving Your Business Requirements
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