Organizing a local network of small enterprise

Started by lillianmays, Mar 27, 2023, 06:57 AM

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lillianmaysTopic starter

Good day!

I arrived at a small organization, specifically a mini-hotel.

Initial specifications:

There are 6 computers and around 10 regular users, with some computers being shared among multiple users. The operating system used across all computers is Windows.

They have one server that runs 1c software and file management on Windows Server.

Additionally, they have a pair of multifunction printers and a pair of regular printers.

Given this context, I have a few questions based on my experience that I am curious about:

1. Is it worth implementing a domain? Currently, each computer has a single user without a password. What are the pros and cons of setting up a domain in this particular case?

2. What is the most efficient way to organize file storage? Presently, people create files locally and only occasionally transfer them to the server when necessary. How can this process be improved? Should local desktop folders be cleaned up?

3. The antivirus licenses for all PCs will expire at the end of the year. I plan to order new ones, but the issue is that the server does not handle internet distribution. Can I install the necessary antivirus software on the server to secure the entire network?

Apart from these questions, do you have any other recommendations for effectively organizing such a network?


In my opinion, it is indeed worth considering, especially if users need to log in from different computers. Having movable profiles can also be beneficial. It is crucial to enforce passwords and ensure that there is at least versioning (edit history) available for documents.

If there are no immediate plans for implementing a document management system and you prefer not to move profiles, I suggest that the network folder(s) should be located under the enterprise's documents (while personal files can still be stored locally). Regular backups should be performed, and there should be a reliable procedure in place to restore the server in case of hardware failures like a faulty hard drive or motherboard. If users are experiencing slow network speeds, you can explore the option of folder and file synchronization.

Implementing antivirus checks, as well as accounting and blocking of all network traffic and files solely through the server, is technically possible. However, it's important to note that the probability of workstations getting infected will be higher compared to having antivirus software installed locally. This is because the server won't be able to scan external sources such as flash drives or detect packaged viruses.

In my opinion, antivirus solutions for small businesses, especially for mini-hotels that handle personal data subject to various laws and regulations, can be quite expensive. Many places find it challenging to manually collect and process data on paper, as required by these laws and may benefit from automated systems.


One option worth considering is Microsoft's solution, Windows Small Business Server, which already has all the necessary features for setting up a small local network:

- It provides file storage capabilities.
- User access can be easily configured and controlled, including access to the internet, files, and computers.
- Antivirus protection is included.
- Automatic updates are available.
- Backup functionality is provided.
- A mail server is included.
- It also offers a web server for both internal and external organization websites.

Having these features integrated into one solution can simplify the process of setting up and managing a small local network. It allows for efficient organization and ensures that essential functions, such as file sharing, user access control, and data protection, are readily available.


For internet distribution, it is advisable to install a router.
To efficiently manage updates across the network, consider running WSUS on the server and distributing updates from there. It's important to note that relying solely on antivirus software will not fully secure the network; a comprehensive and well-designed setup is essential.

Additionally, make sure to disable any unnecessary services to minimize potential vulnerabilities.
If needed, you can set up OpenVPN for secure connections to the server. Remember to establish strong and complex passwords for enhanced security measures.