As the speed and memory capacity of personal computers, workstations and servers grows the need for technology also increases. The applications have become more complex with greater reliance on graphics and video, this calls for greater speed in delivering data to the processors and personal computers. The superior need of communication means that the Internet and intranet appliances are becoming more technological to meet demand and also widespread. (PC World, 2008).
This article discusses this issues of the digital world mainly Internet growth in relation to resources, the features and benefits of Internet server appliances in general, and addresses the additional benefits that accrue when the entire WAN connectivity package is integrated into the appliance.Transmission mediumOne of the most significant technological breakthroughs in data transmission has been the development of practical fiber optic communication system. It already enjoys a considerably wide range of use and growth in long distance telecommunications, due to continued improvements in performance and decline in prices. Today, dense wavelength-division multiplexing (DWDM) technology continues to develop (Corning Cable Systems, 1994). As the demand for data bandwidth increases, driven by the phenomenal growth of the Internet, the move to optical networking is the focus of new technologies. Data transfer involves the transmission of voice, data, or video over distances of less than a meter to thousands of kilometers. Other than high degree of security from eavesdropping optical fiber do not radiate energy so there is little interferences from impulsive noise, cross talks or with other equipments. (Corning Cable Systems, 1994).
Fiber optic cable from Corning Cable SystemsInternet serversInternet servers are powerful programmable server platforms that provide a combination of services starting with network address translation (NAT) and dynamic host configuration protocol (DHCP), but usually support additional features that may include fire walling, spam blocking, URL and content filtering, virus protection, e-mail services, domain name service (DNS), virtual private networking (VPN), and many other security, ASP, or Internet related services. (Mandelstam, n.d.). For most of these servers are based on PC technology, although as headless devices, they normally look much more like routers or other black boxes than traditional PCs. The processors that these devices use run the gamut from simple microprocessors, up to the latest in Intel or AMD high-end PC processors.
They may or may not include a hard disk and often boot from Flash ROM. Since the ISP administers most of these machines remotely, the customer can enjoy their benefits without having to invest in the additional expertise needed to properly manage them. The servers are almost always Linux-or FreeBSD-based, as these operating systems provide a combination of cost, flexibility, performance, and robustness in the networking role that make them ideal for this environment. (Mandelstam, n.d.).The WAN connectionConventional Ethernet may connect the Internet side of the server to the WAN through the conventional hub, router, or modem. As an alternative, all the WAN support can be made integral to the appliance by adding an internal WAN adapter.
WAN cards are devices that provide support for the line protocols such as ATM. the cards are either intelligent devices, which unload the communication overhead from the host server.Better managementThe combination of an Internet server appliance and WAN adapter simplifies installation and management of the WAN link for both the customer and service provider.
There is no separate operating system to learn for a router. Software and utility tool kits provided by the WAN card manufacturers make it easy to seamlessly integrate the WAN and line management tools into the management system of the rest of the server. The WAN card manufacturers also use the power, speed, and memory of the Internet server when necessary to automatically run line debugging when network events occur. These programs pinpoint the causes of network problems by means of logical analysis of the card, and line statistics, and they present useful results in an easily understood form. Where reconfiguration can solve the problem, it automatically does it.
It is like having a network administrator watching the network 24 hours a day. (Mandelstam, n.d.
).ConclusionFor the ISP considering the deployment of Internet servers, the combination of an integrated WAN adapter and Internet appliance opens up additional sources of revenue and profit. In initial capital outlay, the internal WAN cards are usually a fraction of the cost of the equipment they replace. The savings are so great that the ISP can increase both revenue and margins while simultaneously reducing costs to the end user. Everybody wins. And on a recurring basis, the service provider now has access to the annual router management fee normally collected by the router manufacturer.