Michael – borwell Network Assistant – Work Experience

My two-week work placement at borwell has rewarded me with some of the most informative and enjoyable moments of my studies to date.  The guidance from the borwell team has provided me with the opportunity to gain a valuable insight into real-world networking and business practices, which at this early stage of my career is essential.

Before starting my placement I was apprehensive as to how well I would perform the tasks I was set, as well as whether the knowledge I had gained through my studies would suffice and how the borwell team would take to the presence of a work-experience attendee asking questions and operating around them.  These concerns quickly subsided as I was introduced to my mentor Patrick and the rest of the team, who were all friendly and talkative from the start.

Throughout the duration of my placement I learned about Virtualization and how, through the use of this technology, businesses such as borwell can ensure that its systems are both maintained and also flexible for an environment suited towards development and security such as theirs. I looked at both VMware vSphere and Microsoft Hyper-V, which are recognised virtualization platforms, being introduced first to vSphere.  This allowed me to learn the principles and techniques of creating virtual machines and templates, before applying these skills within Hyper-V on the second week of my placement and from there attempting to create an isolated network which could then be securely connected to a public network.

Apart from learning how to design key infrastructure through these platforms, I have also gained experience in operating Open Source security solutions such as pfSense, allowing for the creation of firewall exceptions and restrictions as well as the use of proxies and VPN tunnelling and creating captive portals. Knowing how to correctly introduce and configure technologies such as these is essential for ensuring cyber security.

I cannot thank borwell enough for the opportunity they granted me, and for valuable lessons I have learnt from my time with them.Mike Phillips WE