People that spend their time producing technological documentation hear that expression quite often. It’s always nice to have your life’s work-related summed up in 4 easy words.

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The truth is, nobody in their ideal mind sits in a comfortable chair with their favorite drink and reads a technical manual from beginning to end or glances through depictions of their company’s server rack for fun. Nobody reads documentation—till they need to. 

But, as you’ll learn from this post, there are many situations wbelow netjob-related documentation will end up being crucial in your company. Discover what you need to start documenting and what worth you’ll get from these sources.

What is network documentation?

Network documentation is a technical record of the hardware, software program, servers, brochure structure, user prodocuments, information, and also just how it all works together.

Netoccupational papers need to include any kind of information that helps administrators and also IT experts to save the netoccupational up and running smoothly. This information have the right to be in any format you desire (although you’ll see that we recommfinish diagrams and also various other visuals for quick reference and also enhanced interaction with non-technological employees). 

What matters many is that the indevelopment is conveniently accessible and also deserve to be interpreted by all who must refer to it. Using network diagram software program deserve to help visualize the existing and future state of your netoccupational and also permits you to develop netoccupational diagrams according to industry standards.

Why perform you need netjob-related documentation?

Consider the complying with scenario:

You have landed a great task with a great agency as the head of IT after the previous IT head left the company to seek various other interests. When you start, you meet via your manager who tells you what is meant of you in this role. Your predecessor had done many of the groundwork for ordering new servers and software to run the network-related. You are meant to act easily to complete the orders and also implement the network changes.

Back in your office, you look for documentation that will certainly aid you understand the network’s current setup. However, you quickly discover out that tbelow is not a lot documentation various other than a few notes here and there. Tright here is no IT arrangement and also nopoint that describes existing sources and also design. You can’t uncover anything that justifies the request for new hardware and also software program.

It takes you more than 3 months to draw up plans and also to figure out wbelow every little thing should go. How a lot easier would your job have actually been if your predecessor had actually taken the moment to create netjob-related infrastructure documentation?

Network documentation is essential for the adhering to reasons:

Appropriate documentation have the right to conserve you from time-consuming research study to fix recurring problems.When every little thing is in place and also everybody follows the exact same procedures and steps, consistency throughout the netjob-related helps to mitigate troubles and errors.You won’t shed important indevelopment when a knowledgeable employee leaves the firm.The documentation helps you to onboard brand-new hires a lot more conveniently.You have the right to troubleshoot your network faster when concerns come up.

In addition to providing detailed documentation, you should likewise try to make it a exercise to encertain that even more than one employee has all the knowledge. That means, you are double-spanned when your knowledgeable employee leaves because you have a dependable collection of documentation as your backup.


Need even more convincing? See exactly how visual documentation deserve to help you better understand and also interact your cloud architecture.

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What must you document?

Suitable documentation must be produced as you job-related. Don’t wait until every little thing is in place prior to beginning to document what you’ve done. It’s much much easier to document in the moment than trying to remember what you did later. Make documentation a halittle bit and make it part of your process. Don’t risk perhaps embarrassing cases because of the absence of network-related documentation.

But, what need to you document?

Your goal with network-related documentation have to be to ensure that your firm retains all the knowledge that entered developing the netoccupational and how to preserve and upgrade it.

You need to seek input from your IT team, various other network administrators in miscellaneous departments throughout your company, and also supervisors to identify what you have to document. The complying with are just a few examples of the kinds of information you need to document to aid your network to continue to be in great functioning order (plus you’ll find templates to assist you start your own documentation).

Network-related topology

The topology is the physical or logical map of your network-related. It allows you visualize how the resources in your network-related are connected. Knowing the topology helps you to determine wright here brand-new hardware can fit in your netoccupational.

Basic Small Company type of Network-related Diagram (Click on image to modify online)

Cloud architecture diagram

Whether your organization uses AWS or GCP, these diagrams visualize the components within your cloud design. Cloud style diagrams deserve to come in handy when explaining the current state of your framework, planning a future state, troubleshooting, and also demonstrating compliance.

AWS Internet Application Hosting (Click on photo to modify online)

Server rack diagram

This kind of diagram shows the company of tools on your server rack, consisting of components such as monitors, difficult drives, power strips, routers, etc. Server rack diagrams can assist you identify the dimension of rack you’ll require throughout the style procedure however additionally watch wright here computers and other gadgets connect to the server as soon as you’re troubleshooting.

Server Rack Diagram (Click on photo to modify online)

Hardware directory

This directory documents the hardware pieces of your network-related and must encompass indevelopment about serial numbers and also descriptions of physical configurations. This indevelopment helps you to locate and also fix hardware troubles that occur.

Software directory

This directory represents your software application inventory. It allows you understand where all of the software application applications that are authorized for usage in your company are situated, what the names of these applications are, on which computer systems they are mounted, proof of software license for each application, and also company level agreements for those applications.

In large institutions, preserving a software program catalog deserve to be a challenging task. But if you are ever topic to a software program audit, you will be glad you took the moment to record what you have actually, wright here it is, and also how many type of licenses you have so you deserve to prove that your company is in compliance.

Wi-Fi diagram

You might discover it valuable to document or diagram just how your wiremuch less network-related is lassist out. The diagram have the right to include:

The variety of routers, switches, and servers supplied in your wireless networkA map of physical access points to help you track down problemsRadiofrequency patternsSecurity measures such as employee and also guest SSIDs

IP deal with allocation

You should save a comprehensive list of interior and also external IP attend to assignments to help as you design network expansions and also recycle IP addresses to be allocated to other locations. Documenting your alarea process provides you an expertise of subnet size, subnet assignments, and the tools that have actually been assigned to particular IP addresses or to a dynamic array of addresses. This documentation helps you to define allocation standards going forward.

An asset monitoring diagram can give you a bird’s-eye see of your organization. This customizable template have the right to provide your IT team a quick overview of employee location, ascollection tags, physical Wi-Fi accessibility points, IP addresses, software application installations, and so on.

Detailed Office Layout Example (Click on image to modify online)

Cable diagram

Documenting wright here and also how the cables run with your building have the right to aid as soon as troubleshooting and diagnosing netoccupational difficulties. The diagram need to map jack numbers to physical locations.

Recovery plan

Do you recognize what you are going to carry out if you have to gain back lost data? How perform you maintain information from failing hardware? Do you recognize wright here your backups are housed? You should record details of wright here backup data is situated, how often backups occur, which kind of data gets backed up, and exactly how backups are accessed and also recovered to those that require it.

A step beyond a recoincredibly setup, a fault-tolerant device is designed to provide you uninterrupted service in the occasion that one or even more netoccupational component stops working. Even if you suffer a catastrophic failure, the fault-tolerant mechanism must let your employees reprimary abundant and functioning without any expertise that tright here has actually been a device failure. 

A fault-tolerance arrangement have to include:

An analysis of the service influence in the occasion of a failure.Summary potential risks and also the influence they may have actually on your company.Assess how most likely it is that these risks will certainly occur.Consider the impacts if you don’t have a fault-tolerant plan in location (shed sales, shed productivity, lost advance, and also so on).Planned redundancies. Duplicating every little thing in preparation for potential tragedies can be costly. Be sure to understand also which business-instrumental assets and devices have to start up automatically. Let the information and devices that are not mission-instrumental wait to come ago digital after proper fixes have actually been put in place.The location of your fault-tolerant device, whether in the cloud or on-premises.

Improve your documentation process

While it might seem favor no one reads your network documentation, netoccupational diagrams are crucial to understanding existing technology, communicating through stakeholders, onboarding brand-new employees, troubleshooting issues before they escalate, and creating a vision for future innovation.

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Get started through the templates above or learn even more about how the diagram maker can assist your team via knowledge facility systems.