Tech Talk Live Blog

The Blind Shall See

Roy Hoover

Visibility – Look at the advertisement for any network monitoring product and you will find visibility as a feature of the product. Dictionary.com defines visibility as “the state or fact of being visible.” They define visible as “that can be seen; perceptible to the eye.” If you are responsible for operating a network into which you have no visibility, stop reading right here […]

Get Out of the Office

Mike Williams

Get away from your desk. Get out of your office. Go see your customers. I remember the days back when I worked in desktop support. I would start the day by checking the ticket system, then grab some tools and replacement parts, and head out the door. Maybe I would come back to the office […]

Setting Up Cisco Meraki Access Points

Frank Olshansky

Meraki access points (APs) have a number of options that can be set, and sometimes it is hard to find the right setting in their documentation. The goal of this post is to walk step-by-step through the process to set up a Meraki wireless network. First, you will need to set up the APs is […]

Link Layer Discovery Protocol and Hostnames

Roy Hoover

Link Layer Discovery Protocol (LLDP) is a protocol designed to be used by network devices for advertising their identity, capabilities, and neighbors. This is an open standard version of vendor specific protocols like Cisco Discovery Protocol (CDP).  These protocols are very useful when deploying voice over internet protocol (VOIP) telephones. Typically, a network that includes VOIP telephones […]

All About Trust

Mike Williams

Everyone in IT is consigned a certain level of trust. Some more than others. “Snowden” opened over the weekend. This movie is the account of Edward Snowden, the cybersecurity worker who copied and disclosed classified information acquired during his work as a U.S. government contractor. Among the information released were details of government surveillance programs […]

Quality of Service – Part 2 – Differentiated Services

Frank Olshansky

This is the second of several posts that will address Quality of Service. To read the first post in this series, click on Part 1.​ In the last blog post discussing Quality of Service (QoS), I stated that there are three main parts of the Differentiated Services (DiffServ) model, which are classification and marking, policing, […]


Roy Hoover

The E-Rate program was created as a result of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 and, according to Wikipedia, has provided discounts on services to over 100,000 schools that have participated in this program. With a 2.25 billion dollar (plus inflation) annual funding cap, this program has provided significant funding to schools over the last 20 […]

Apple, the FBI, and AUPs

Mike Williams

The battle between Apple and the FBI has been plastered all over the news and social media these past few days. Following the shootings in San Bernardino, CA, the FBI retrieved an iPhone belonging to one of the shooters. They believe there may be information on that phone which could lead to other co-conspirators. However, […]

Quality of Service

Frank Olshansky

Quality of Service, also known as QoS, is a very important topic to know and understand when working with modern networks. Networks are generally designed so that all traffic is treated in the same manner. However, this model does not work when voice, video, or other real-time traffic share the same network as data, because […]

IPv6 No More NAT

Roy Hoover

Since you are reading this blog, you have surely seen lots of IP addresses. They look something like this: Its four octets, each represented as a decimal value, are separated by dots. Each octet is 8 bits so it can range from zero to 255. If you do the math, you will discover that […]

Cyber Security – Keep Your Organization Safe

Jessica Diller

Cyber Security is such an important topic.  The news has been filled with different incidents, including the most recent Sony attack.  With data on thousands of students, including names, addresses, and Social Security numbers, it is no surprise that school districts, colleges, and universities face the same cyber security threats businesses and government agencies contend […]

Passwords: What Is the Best One?

Roy Hoover

How many passwords do you have? One – Yeah, single sign-on has arrived (finally) Ten – I wish One Hundred – Perhaps Are they all complex, unique, secure, and not written on a sticky note stuck to your monitor? Passwords are a form of authentication based on something you know and that you keep secret. […]

Documentation: It Isn’t a Four Letter Word, but It Should Be

Rich Molettiere

Several years ago in rural Nebraska, a one-person IT school district suffered a major loss when the IT director was killed in an automobile accident. With her went the heart and soul of technology in that district.  Everything was gone – admin usernames and passwords, knowledge of what was where, license info, etc. No written […]

Building a Network for Online Assessments

Brenda Priddy

Online assessments are likely to become one of the major challenges facing network administrators and IT departments in the future of education technology.  Schools in Minnesota have already laid the groundwork for them with approximately 95% of students’ math tests now being taken online. However, in that very same state, problems with servers hosting these […]

Technology Infrastructure Needed for Hybrid Learning in the Classroom

Colette Cairns

The Pennsylvania Hybrid Learning Institute began in the 2012-2013 school year.  Fourteen schools in eastern Pennsylvania launched the Pennsylvania Hybrid Model.  Currently, there are over thirty-four schools transforming their schools to implement the Hybrid Learning Model in their school systems.  “The mission of the Pennsylvania Hybrid Initiative is to improve student achievement in Pennsylvania by […]

BYOD @ PTHS: Got Technology?

Emily Sanders and Lindsey Myers

The BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) initiative at Peters Township High School (PTHS) began with the support of teachers, students, and staff as a program to provide our students with the opportunity to personalize their learning, as well as support technology use in the classroom. Our IT department and building-level administration partnered to ensure that […]

IPv6 – The Future Is Now

Roy Hoover

IPv6 is a replacement protocol for IPv4, which is the protocol used on the Internet, hence the name Internet Protocol. The Internet as we know it has always run a single layer 3 protocol, even though you may have run many different protocols on your local area network. Do you remember running AppleTalk, IPX, or […]

Cyber Security Institute Coming in the Spring of 2014

Paul Billy

If you have been watching recent news reports, cyber security is becoming a very hot issue. According to the department of Homeland Security, cyber security and hacking are currently the biggest threats facing our country.  These threats impact all levels of organizations from mom and pop stores, educational entities, Wall Street, Fortune 500 companies, and […]

Mobile Device Management

Tim Laubach

As the mobile device administrator for Lancaster-Lebanon IU 13, I have been exposed to many different solutions for management of the mobile user.  With tools from Meraki, AirWatch, and Casper, just to name a few, the evaluation of the capabilities and differences of these applications can quickly become difficult. Conferences like Tech Talk Live are […]

iPad Lessons Learned

Ryan Bennett

In the fall of 2012, Mercersburg Academy began requiring all students to bring an iPad with them to campus and to carry that iPad during the academic day. As an independent boarding school, we thought we knew all of the ramifications of such a program. We had great wireless coverage around campus in all of […]

Protecting Against Cyber Threats

Mark Villinsky

After a compelling video of various security facts, Mark Villinsky had some amazing facts to share.  Of approximately 1200 companies surveyed, 91% had at least one security intrusion last year. Sixty one percent had a virus issue. For a sense of scale of the escalating problem over time: In 1994, the average new virus sample […]


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