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Troubleshooting Procedures

Even the most well-designed and maintained networks will fail at some point. Such a failure might be as dramatic as a failed server taking down the entire network or as routine as a single computer system being unable to print. Regardless of the problem you face, as a network administrator, you will spend a sizable portion of your time troubleshooting problems with the network, the devices connected to it, and the people who use it. In each case, the approach to the problem is as important as the troubleshooting process. Although some steps are common to the troubleshooting process, few problems you face will be alike because so many variables are involved.

As you see in this tutorial, troubleshooting is about more than just fixing a problem: It includes isolating the problem and taking the appropriate actions to prevent it from happening again. The ability to effectively troubleshoot network-related problems goes beyond technical knowledge and includes the ability to think creatively to get to the root of a problem. In addition, strong communication skills can turn a difficult and seemingly impossible troubleshooting task into an easy one. Although the role of the network administrator can be a cellular one, you will be surprised at just how much interaction you'll have with users and how important this element of your role will be.

This tutorial provides a comprehensive look into the many facets that make up an effective troubleshooting strategy. In addition, it examines specific skills and techniques you can use to quickly isolate a network-related problem. It also examines scenarios in which these troubleshooting skills come into play.