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Zero Administration Network - Is it an Ideal or Reality?

The purchase of network system can be the cheapest part of the whole network system. If you do not believe, we can take an example. Company A has brought a network package costing $15,000 from one computer company. The salesperson claimed that it is a full package including all the hardware and software. The computer company kept its promise and installed the system on time. However, Company A soon find that this is the beginning of the real problem.

Company A employed some new staff three days after running the system and it has to add new account to the computer system. They called and called the computer company and finally get connected. ¡§Adding new account should be the responsibility of user but not ours. We make an exception this time to tell you how to do, but not for the next time!¡¨, the computer company replied. Company A then found the smartest guy in the company to listen to the instruction. They talked for about 3 minutes but the guy later worked for 3 hours to solve the problem!

Three months later, the boss of Company A found the confidential information of the company seems leaked. With the help of a friend who is familiar with IT, he found that there is no security at all with the network system. To make it convenient, all staff in his company knows the supervisor password! The boss was angered but his friend asked to think: ¡§Who is responsible to the network system? What is his position? How about his power? What training has he undertaken?¡¨ The boss calmed down and asked his friend what training is needed in order to manage a computer system. The friend listed the training courses and requirements. The boss was greatly disappointed with the answer. It takes more than ten thousand dollars and he has to pay the trainee! Finally he decided to give up the network computer system.

Above is what we called the concept of TCO - Total Cost of Ownership. To introduce a new technology to an enterprise, we cannot consider the price of the system only. We also have to think about the operating cost. This is not a new concept. Many people know how to take the price of consumables into consideration. However, they usually neglect another important factor. It is the price of labour and administration!

It the recent years, many enterprises surprisingly found the TCO of network system is much higher than expected. Zero Administration Network is then introduced. Zero Administration Network and its related problems will be examined in the next passage.

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