Networking Gotchas

There are 3 primary reasons Dencar requires a commercial grade network installation.

They are:
1) Bring your car wash up to online business standards.
2) Enable remote configuration and support capabilities.
3) Configure your site in a PCI compliant fashion so you can pass PCI audits & scanning.

Here are some common “gotchas” we see associated with networking service and support.

Proper Tools
Whether you are installing or running the car wash, you must have a computer on site. The
strong preference is a Windows based PC in laptop format. The computer needs to be able to
connect via WIFI and via WIRED connection. If the laptop does not have a WIRED interface,
purchase a USB to Ethernet adapter on Amazon for ~$10. During installation, a laptop is a
critical tool. Without this tool, you will be blind to the environment and constantly calling for
support for items that you have access to yourself. The lack of a laptop during installation will
give you a severe negative experience.

Inability to access the site
The secure way to access the equipment (wash equipment, security system, point of sale, etc.)
at your site is by using a Virtual Private Network (VPN) connection. This capability is included
with your new network equipment. There are two gotchas. Gotcha number 1 is you have
probably been doing something different up to this point and you resist change. You will have a
better experience if you embrace the change and learn the more secure way of accessing your
site. To facilitate this VPN capability, your primary Internet connection needs to be publicly
accessible. To make your Internet connection publicly accessible, the Internet needs to be
configured to deliver a public IP address to the new Dencar networking equipment. There are
standard configurations to accomplish this. The most common way to achieve this is to order
your Internet Service Provider (ISP) to configure their equipment in “bridge mode”. Depending
on the provider, the ISP equipment may need to use “DMZ mode” or “pass through mode”.
These three options are generally non-charged for configurations. As a last resort, you can
order a “static IP” from your ISP, but this is generally a charged-for configuration. Gotcha
number 2 is you don’t know what this means so you just skip over it. If you skip over it, we are
going to get to installation day, and you won’t be able to access your site, and now you will be
upset. Act now and start this conversation with your ISP. Get a copy of your ISP bill and call us if
you need some help or guidance.

Not setting up cellular backup
If you are running a legacy point of sale environment, it probably ran autonomously at your site.
The Dencar point of sale system is an online environment. This means that your customers can
buy monthly wash passes via your online wash pass sales site as well as within your app (in
addition to buying at your car wash site). To facilitate this multi sales channel functionality and
redemption, your car wash location should always be online. The Dencar networking
equipment includes cellular backup equipment, and you must register your account. You will
receive an email with this link as well as your device
credentials. Follow the instructions and make sure you have an active cellular backup
connection. By having an active cellular account, your car wash location will stay up and
running even when your primary Internet connection fails. The Dencar network equipment will
automatically failover to cellular backup and return to the primary Internet connection when
the primary Internet connection is restored. If you don’t have cellular backup and your primary
Internet connection fails, you will not be able to process transactions and your monthly
members will not be able to redeem their washes. Here is the second gotcha…test this failover
connection regularly. You should test every month.

Requesting port forwarding rules
The old way of accessing your wash equipment or video security cameras was to add port
forwarding rules to your network equipment. One component of the network equipment
Dencar is providing is a “firewall”. A firewall helps protect your site by preventing unauthorized
access to your site. If you request a port forwarding rule, you are rendering the firewall useless
for any forwarded traffic. i.e. you are bypassing the security of the firewall. If you request this
configuration, Dencar will oblige, but we recommend you don’t. In addition to weakening the
security posture of your site, you will fail your PCI audit and scanning and be assessed a PCI
non-compliance fee. The more secure way to access your equipment is by using the VPN
connection provided with the equipment. This will be more secure and will also be PCI

Running old network gear
If you have an existing site, you are likely running some old network gear. You might be tempted
to think it is working just fine the way it is, so you don’t want to touch it. The new network gear
you are receiving from Dencar is your network gear. You are buying it and you own it. Dencar is
here to help you support it. You want to get all your existing devices on the new network
equipment so we can all see the devices end-to-end and Dencar can help support access to your
devices. Dencar is not responsible for configuring your non-Dencar devices, but Dencar will
help get you to those devices. If you have your own security system, you need to know how to
access and configure it or have support from someone that does. If you have a specific
networking configuration requirement for existing equipment, you need to know how to tell
Dencar how to configure the network, or you need support from your existing provider. Don’t
wait until installation day to try and figure out what you need. Plan for a smooth conversion.
You want to eliminate your old network equipment as part of the new installation.