DES: Network Improvement at Kagumo Teachers Training College
KENET engineers visited Kagumo Teachers Training College on February 2018 to assist in improving their network. The one-week visit at the College located at the Central Kenyan Highlands, Nyeri entailed activities that resulted in a strengthened network and improved wireless coverage. A brief survey on the network was done to diagnose problems and administer effective and long-lasting solutions. The network was enhanced to ensure staff and especially students at the College, who amount to roughly 90% of Internet users, have better access to their network. KENET engineers conducted three major activities that boosted the College’s network.
Improving Network Security and Efficiency
One of the major activities that was done was the installation of a firewall, pfSense. pfSense is an open-source firewall which is quite effective in mitigating attacks and only requires a simple server machine. Upon installation of the firewall in their servers, KENET trained the ICT team at Kagumo Teachers Training College on how the firewall works. Firewalls protect campus networks from external attacks, and KENET usually recommends that each institution implements a network firewall that incorporates vulnerability database updates provided by the firewall vendor as a subscription.
Network traffic at the College was decongested by conducting a Network Address Translation (NAT), a process which routes traffic between private addresses and conserves public IP addresses. Their private IP address consumption was reduced as exhaustion of the IPV4 IP addresses can affect the efficiency of a network. By rerouting an IP address space, the network congestion at Kagumo Teachers Training College was reduced and traffic flowed easily. Hence, the activity had two effects, improved security on the network and network efficiency.
Increasing Wi-Fi Access Points
In order to better the experience of students and staff at Kagumo Teachers Training College, KENET configured some existing inactive access points and installed five wireless access points at the College. The access points were strategically placed at the library, student center, staffroom and offices. The placement of the access points was done at the buildings where high number of students and staff normally access Internet. This has improved Wi-Fi projection around the College and a week later, more users have been recorded to use the Internet.
“The network has been working very well and we are quite happy. We always integrate ICT in our learning and host ICT workshops and outreach programs, and good connectivity from KENET has enabled us to achieve this,” says Mr. Kiboi Mwatha, Head of ICT at Kagumo Teacher’s Training College.
After every DES, KENET usually empowers the capable ICT teams at the Institutions. Monitoring tools as were installed at the College so that the ICT staff can have visibility of their networks and monitor network usage. In addition, KENET staff offer continuous online support even after visits to ensure that all connected members have efficient access to facilitate learning, research and collaboration.
“I was glad to be a part of improving the Internet experience of the Kagumo community. Most of the users access the Internet via Wi-Fi, and the DES increased its coverage on campus for both staff and students. We also thanks also to Kagumo for their hospitality in the week that we were there,” remarks Jeremiah, one of the KENET engineers who visited the College.