LD7082: The Cottonwood Hill Library has been Serving the Local Community for Over a Decade: Computer Networks & Security Assignment, NU, UK

Learning Outcomes Assessed in this assessment

This assignment will assess the following learning outcomes:

1. Demonstrate a comprehensive understanding and critical evaluation of essential network design principles and security implementation at all OSI layers.

2. Design, implement, test, and document a small LAN involving the use of routers and switches.

3. Critically analyze the main goals and concepts of network security and apply techniques to support message integrity, confidentiality, authentication, and network access.

4. Critically appraise social, ethical, and accessibility considerations in network and security design solutions.

Scenario Description: Cottonwood Hill Library

The Cottonwood Hill library has been serving the local community for over a decade. The library holds a vast treasure of books, journals, reports, magazines, movies, audio, and e-books. Students and professionals of all ages benefit from this library. To meet the increasing demands, the library is growing and expanding every year. Up till now, all processes were handled either manually or with the help of very simple spreadsheets.

To keep up with the escalating needs of the community, the library is going through a refurbishment and modernization, thus introducing a coherent and integrated system, to manage all running operations of the library. The new refurbishment plan includes setting up two computer labs (consisting of 10-15 computers) on each floor. The design should follow a topology that all the computers should be centrally administered by a server machine for authentication purposes and should be able to access the Internet to access the library online portal from any computers.

Users should be able to utilize printing services from any machine. The proposed computer lab should consider network security paramount for the availability of the network to minimize any downtime. Considering these computers will be available to users on a first come first serve basis for a limited period of time thus management belief computer network security, reliability, scalability, and performance are imperative for the user experience as well as managing the networking robustly and securely.

For this purpose, you are hired as a Network Engineer, to analyze the requirements of the Cottonwood Hill Library for a robust solution to their existing problem.

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Section 1: For network design, there is no one “good network design,” and there is certainly no “one size fits all.” Good network design is based on many concepts, some of which are summarized by key general principles: Critically appraise network design principles to achieve performance, scalability, and security at different layers of the Open Systems Interconnection (OSI) model.

Section 2: For a given scenario, students are required to design, configure, and troubleshoot network using virtual equipment and simulate topologies, connections, protocols, and implement security configuration. Design and configuration evidence should be included in the report as a walk through snippets.

Section 3: Critically evaluate your design implementation effectiveness in terms of access control, user privileges, and effective use of IPSec VPN, hardening the devices, security features of hardware devices such as firewalls, switches, and routers.

Section 4: Computer security designers should act in a professional manner and show due diligence to comply with legal obligations particularly related to the CIA. Critically discuss social and ethical considerations to be addressed to protect the proposed network design from any cyber threats.


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