How to draw a network diagram with online template

sample network diagramEvery organization has a network in place. It’s only a matter of how big or small the office network is. Image by chrismeller.

A small firm with fewer than 15 staffs may have a simple wireless router which connects to the Internet service provider as well as hooking up one or two servers to the ethernet ports from the router.

Large organizations may have several wide area networks connected to one another for networking and data transfer purposes.

No matter how big or small your organization’s network is, it’s good to have an updated network plan / diagram documented for the following purposes:

  • For new support staffs or external consultants to easily view the entire network architecture at a glance
  • Easily identify the person in charge of the entire network – usually the person who created the network diagram!
  • View how many switches, routers, server racks, servers, printers are available within the organization.
  • Distinguish the devices which are placed in within the demilitarized / secured zone (DMZ)

There are many ways to create a network diagram for your current network. One common way would be to use Microsoft Visio or Powerpoint to draw up the entire network. But if you have neither of these tools, then you can consider using Creately to assist in creating a network diagram.

Creately is an easy to use online diagramming application that’s built for collaboration.

To create a network diagram in Creately, you will just need to click on the network diagram template which would then automatically create a diagram which is already prebuilt with some of the common mappings. See the screenshot below.

network diagram created by creately

Note that the diagram above was created based on the network diagram template. It looks like my job is 50% completed. :)

Now to make the diagram suite your organization’s network, simply add, edit or delete the items accordingly. These are some objects which you can add:

  • PC
  • Access point
  • Connectivity checker
  • Generic Server
  • Network Printeer
  • Notebook
  • Rack
  • Router
  • Switch
  • Monitor
  • Raid Array
  • Server
  • Tape Drive
  • Patch Panel
  • Power Strip
  • Power Supply

As you can see the objects that you can add are quite comprehensive. Imagine if you were to draw the diagram using powerpoint, without this objects you would need to include images or even draw it out making the diagram look messy and inconsistent.

server rackWhat I really like about Creately when it comes to drawing a network diagram is the ability to define whats goes in the server rack precisely. Instead of showing just a 2D image of a server rack, you can now define what sort of devices are sitting inside the rack. Neat!

If you need to create a network diagram, check out Creately‘s Network Diagram template today!

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