I'm going to be networking a youth camp consisting of 6 buildings. The main office (internet location) is about 100 yards from the first building, four other buildings are in a zig zag line with the first building, ranging from 30 yards to about 100 yards. So the first building is 100 yards from the office, the second building is 30 yards from the second, 130 from the office... so on and so on... The last building a new building still under construction is about 1,500 feet from the main office off in a totally different direction.
Here's the questions....
Can I run Ethernet from the main building to the 2nd - 5th ones. Putting a switch at each building to re-amp the signal? Basically a daisy chain... More than likely there will be an access point in each of these buildings to provide Internet access and that's all that they will be used for.
As far as running cable the only obstacle is a paved golf cart trail that connects the buildings. I was thinking about burying the cable in PVC conduit.
I know I'm going to have to go wireless to the last building (1,500 feet away). The entire camp is on about 25 acres and it is heavily wooded so going wireless between all the buildings I don't know if it's possible.
Thanks for any help or advice of what I might need.
Your options are basically CAT-5/6, fiber, wireless, or HDSL. You don't mention what sort of budget you have but I'll assume it's not great. PVC is a great conduit and definitely recommended wherever you can lay it. If possible, consider hiring/renting a ditch witch to dig a narrow line across the paved road, which can easily be repaired.
Copper Ethernet is obviously the simplest solution, and the easiest to interface with any existing equipment. The biggest drawback is the distance limitation, though there are ways around this (look into Long Range Ethernet). Daisy chaining each switch to the next isn't ideal, of course, but shouldn't cause any problems provided you can make it between buildings without exceeding the 100m limitation too much.
Fiber is considerably more expensive and probably exceeds your alloted budget, but effectively negates any distance problems. Rugged fiber is available (again, at greater cost), but conduit is recommended. Keep in mind you'll most likely need media converters or GBICs to interface with switches in each building.
Wireless may be problematic as you note, because a mostly clear line of sight is needed. However, this is proportional to the length of the shot, and may still be doable to some buildings.
If there are preexisting phone lines run to a building HDSL is definitely something to consider. You can pick up a pair of modems for a couple hundred bucks and effectively transform one or two phone lines into a ~1-3Mbps Ethernet line, up to a couple miles.
Isn't optic Fibre a solution for your problem?
Optic fibre can travel the distances you have.
This way it would be fast enough to support your buildings (not sure how many users are present and the bandwidth needed)
Ofcourse the digging would be a problem, but it is feasible.
budget is a concern. this is a year round youth camp/conference center. The main goal is Internet access. They just want the guest to be able to access the web from each of the buildings. Hence I was planning on putting a good access point in each building that I could reach via ethernet. I will try to draw up a rough sketch to describe the camp layout more.
Disregard. Cisco used to make LRE switches but apparently they've all been EOL'd. LRE was essentially VDSL disguised as Ethernet.
I was doing a bit of research and I found this:
. I haven't used any of this gear personally but it looks neat, and I have respect for the ZyXEL brand. Deploying some of the NVF-200 series modems looks to fit your needs very well.