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Table Of Contents  CertiGuide to Network+
 9  Chapter 1001: Networking in the Real World

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IX  Troubleshooting
(Page 5 of 5)

Implement a Solution

Finally! You are fairly sure what is causing the problem, and you take appropriate action. Perhaps you replace a network cable, or reboot a workstation, or adjust configuration data on a DHCP server, or power cycle a modem or hub. An important thing to remember here is to try only one potential solution at a time. If you implement multiple potential solutions at the same time, you can’t be quite sure which one actually solved the problem.

Test the Result

An important step that is too infrequently followed is testing and follow up. Due to the nature of networking, the pressure to complete and move on to the next battle is fierce. Logic clearly dictates that it takes less time to test and ensure the challenge is resolved before you must re-trace your steps back to an area you were already at.

Be prepared to see that your first guess as to the problem isn’t correct. In that case, choose the next-most-likely cause of the symptoms you’ve seen, and go back to the Implement a Solution step.

Recognize the potential effects of the solution

The solution may, in fact, cause other problems. For example, if you opted to solve a capacity issue by increasing the speed of a network segment, be aware that that can cause more traffic on the main backbone of your network (since the stations on that segment can now transmit packets more quickly), which might cause your network to slow down.

Document the solution

There are multiple reasons for documenting the solution to a network issue. One is, simply, to maintain a record of all changes you make to a network, such as swapping out a NIC, reconfiguring a DHCP server or replacing a router with a bad port. The other is to maintain your own log of information for future troubleshooting purposes. The idea behind documenting the symptoms you observed and the solution is to enable you to solve the problem even more quickly, the next time it occurs. Finally, good documentation is part of being respectful of those you work with, and for… and your eventual replacements. You may remember a solution, or remember that you have swapped out NIC’s on that PC 3 times (what IS that user doing?), but coworkers who didn’t have a part in the problem resolution might not. Documentation provides them with a trail of clues to follow in their troubleshooting efforts.


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