Reseller deploys wireless for Sydney schools

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Reseller Efficient Data Communications has deployed a Cisco high speed wireless network at 75 Catholic schools in western Sydney.

Reseller Efficient Data Communications (EDC) has deployed a Cisco high speed wireless network at 75 Catholic schools in western Sydney.

The rollout -- with the Catholic Education Office in Parramatta -- will reach 42,000 students and 3500 staff and allows it to manage access points centrally and remotely, generating cost savings.

The network is based on the deployment of more than 80 Cisco Aironet 1200 series access points and other Cisco hardware and software. The access points are 802.11a, b and g-compliant, and operate at up to 54MBit/s.

Andrew Lowy, CEO at EDC, said the network took two months to complete which included defining security requirements, testing and integration with the Diocese's Novell software environment. "It went in without a hitch," Lowy said.

EDC had been working the Catholic Education Office for the past three years installing layer three infrastructure based on Cisco and 3Com switching products, Lowy said.

The Cisco wireless access points had been placed into every school and four schools so far have "total wireless" infrastructure with a further 20 more wanting to go that way too, he said.

The contract was EDC's largest so far. It had also deployed wireless infrastructure at three schools within the Broken Bay Diocese.

The network uses Structured Wireless Aware Network (SWAN) technology, which gives users a centralised platform for managing security infrastructure and the ability to upgrade wireless access points easily, Lowy said.

Andrew Cooper, head of the learning and information technology division at the Catholic Education Office, said the Diocese selected wireless technology so it could build a centrally managed infrastructure and deploy a common wireless platform to all schools.

"This has allowed us to establish appropriate management and security of the wireless network at the outset and extend that network with confidence."

It is believed that IBM and ASI Solutions also bid for the contract.

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