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"Systems administration" and "network administration" sound a lot alike, and in practice it's sometimes difficult to tell them apart. Yet there is a substantial amount of effort invested by the technical community

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"Systems administration" and "network administration" sound a lot alike, and in practice it's sometimes difficult to tell them apart. Yet there is a substantial amount of effort invested by the technical community, supported by a lot of managers, to maintain this distinction.

If we take a look at an interesting source for technical career information, Techies.com, we find the specialties described as follows:

Systems Administrator

Network Manager

This module is about what network management do for organizations, and thus it is appropriate that the case focus on one of the unique contributions of networks -- that is, the ability to conference people from widely distributed places. The development of easy-to-use and widely accessible conferencing arrangements has been some time coming, although one of the very first things done with the early ARPANET was to establish a conference call between two of the first three nodes. There is no shortage of technology available to organizations wishing to implement such approaches. However, Internet based conferencing is not just a technological issue, but a classic case of sociotechnical balance; in most organizations, the social arrangements for managing and incorporating conferencing are underdeveloped, and it is not clear just how to change the situation for the better. Mostly, people are worried about its security.

Read this guide to gain a background in web conferencing:

Web Conferencing Guide, netschmoozer.net. http://www.netschmoozer.net/article_list.php

Then read the following articles. One is on web conferencing packages and the other is on web conferencing security:

Patton, E. (2009) Web Conferencing Packages. Article Alley, 10/15/2009 http://www.articlealley.com/article_1175700_45.html

Baez, D. How Web Conferencing Security Works. HowStuffWorks.com. http://communication.howstuffworks.com/how-web-conferencing-security-works.htm

White Paper (n.d.), Cyber Security for Power Utilities, RAD, Retrieved from 
http://www.rad.com/21/Cyber-Security-for-Power-Utilities-White-Paper/30757/

When you've had a chance to read these articles, anything from the Background that seems helpful to you or anything else you may have come across on the subject (please use appropriate references). Please write a 6-10 page paper addressing the following questions. Make sure to take a stand one way or the other (and justifying it!) when answering the second question.

Why do we distinguish between network administration and systems administration?

Agree or Disagree: Internet-based conferencing is as safe as face-to-face meetings

Case Assignment

Your paper should be between 6-10 pages. Take a definite stand on the issues, and develop your supporting argument carefully. Using material from the background information and any other sources you can find to support specific points in your argument is highly recommended; try to avoid making assertions for which you can find no support other than your own opinion.

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