Because of today’s environment, companies in Norfolk rely on the net. Reliable access to the internet is the lifeblood of their company. All companies, large and small, need fast and reliable access to The net.
We are going to become increasingly reliant on Internet access as the months and years progress.
From email messaging to information sharing, e-commerce to archiving data, and voice over IP to video chat, the net is omnipresent. What is the best solution for you? Is a cable modem sufficient? Metro Ethernet? Your needs may be met with Gigabit Internet. What does your Norfolk company need? Does it require 10 Meg access to The web, a 100 Meg access to The web point, a 50 Meg circuit or a 5 Meg circuit?
Before choosing an adequate or appropriate service, you must decide what your company really needs. Is Internet use limited to website surfing or emailing only? Will Internet usage mainly involve cloud servers and real time data connection? Are you hosting data in Norfolk? Do remote locations depend upon you?
Have you thought about what happens to your company if your high-speed Internet is interrupted by an outage? What about the downtime that results? Can your company afford that? Is uptime required? You must answer questions like these so you can make a purchase that actually meets your needs
In all-encompassing terms, businesses need high-speed access to The web. When choosing the right broadband for business, you need to analyze and balance the costs and benefits. Don’t be distracted by terminology. While you may hear service providers throw out words and phrases like:
… the real issue is understanding what capability and technical solutions best meet your needs.
For many, if not all, companies in Norfolk, access to The Internet is needed for at least some employees. Whether it is to speak with shippers, do research or place orders, access to The web is required.
The solution you choose may be based on the number of employees you have or expect to have. If you only have a few workers, you may be fine with a smaller Internet circuit such as a 5 or 10 megabyte. If you have many employees who need to use the net at the same time, you may do better with more.
Perhaps most workers at your company use an intranet system with limited features. High- speed Internet may not be a priority in this case. On the other hand, Internet speed becomes dramatically more important when they are required to regularly download things like documents or videos.
Does your business regularly conduct backups? When you do remote backups from every workstation, which you should, you must support multiple and simultaneous connections to the web in order to sync your backup data.
Are you using a service such as DropBox or Google drive to share files? This is how a file sharing service works: You save a file. Then the file is pushed to the cloud, and is then synchronized with other people’s computers. In order to ensure that all of your functions work properly, in addition to file sharing, you must have sufficient bandwidth.
You may consider high-speed business Internet access if you location warrants it. Gigabit Internet and Metro Ethernet may be viable options for you. “Lit buildings” that have already been wired by a carrier, are commonly the site for these. Adding this high-speed Internet to your office may be surprisingly affordable and easy.
Absent the need to introduce Metro Ethernet into a new building, it is not particularly costly to connect Metro Ethernet to a suite or office within that building. You can actually get high-speed access with gigabit Internet or even Metro Ethernet quickly. It often takes only 30 days or less, depending on availability.
Ask yourself this: Does we host our own servers to run APIs, websites and data feeds to external offices or company premises? Is your main company office with a hosted application accessed by 40 or even 50 branch office sites? Are you a retail chain hosting the POS system for 12, 000 stores? Does your legal practice host all of the data for 3, 4 or 5 offices in different places?
When things are hosted at a central point, parties outside the office must somehow gain access. For those people, no Internet connection means no work gets done. Can your intranet solution support your needs? Can it support multiple simultaneous connections? Is it stable enough to handle this when they are from various locations?
For one office or a small organization with just one or two people surfing the web, a less expensive 10 Meg circuit or a cable modem may meet your needs. For headquarters, Metro Ethernet, gigabit Ethernet or other high-speed Internet dedicated circuits is advisable. While fast Internet access is and important, they must also have the capability to handle assorted simultaneous connections. A cable modem would likely be insufficient.
Bringing in a cable modem, which seems to save money, may actually come at a price. Your low monthly bill may mean that the bandwidth is shared among multiple tenants. The cable modem you subscribe to with the 30 Meg connections may not always reach those speeds, especially during the busiest or “peak” hours of the workday. Cable operators are only permitted to establish a certain amount of bandwidth within communities. Buildings, offices and tenants within the buildings all must share that amount of bandwidth, whatever it may be. While you may be capped at thirty-megabyte speed, will you ever reach that speed during business hours? What will the consequences be if you expect 30 but only get half that? What if you get even less?
There are providers who offer dedicated and even guaranteed bandwidth. In this situation, you do not have to share bandwidth. The bandwidth is all yours and is fully allocated to the needs of your business. You should receive full capacity of your circuits during all hours. This is true even though you may have many buildings, businesses and tenants nearby.
For example, Metro Ethernet guarantees bandwidth in 5 met circuits, 10 Meg circuits, 50 and 100 Meg circuits. In your office out to the net you can reach gigabit speeds with gigabit providers
In these situations, each tenant receives their contracted high-speed. The carrier delivers enough so they can split their circuit and provide enough to each tenant.
You can’t control everything. Even with the superior Internet bandwidth products that some providers offer in Norfolk, problems arise and circuits can fail. You must ask yourself: “how do I lessen the chance of an outage? ”
The answer is redundant circuits.
There are, in reality, two kinds of redundancy.
The first type exists when the same carrier gives you multiple circuits. These redundant circuits help protect from certain failures, for example, router port issues or physical line trouble. Damage to an external wire or part can cause the failure of all of your circuits. A regional outage experienced by your carrier can have the same result. While there is some protection, there is also some risk.
Circuit redundancy can also be achieved in the following way: Import circuits using two different and distinct carriers. By using IP address allocations and certain routers, you can bind your connections. By doing this, it appears and behaves as a single circuit. However, despite appearances, they are actually very much separate and are redundant to each other. This is called diversity redundancy and offers more protection that the first. If one carrier has a widespread issue, you have a carrier that will still be alive.
To maximize the benefit of redundancy, consider looking for redundant circuits from different providers that have different pathway in Norfolk, Virginia. Alternatively stated, try to have your circuits enter the building on different sides from one another. The circuits would be attached underground or to telephone poles, in various directions. The circuits would go to different data centers or central offices. Having redundancy in different physical directions can protect you if there is a serious incident at a data center or some accident that causes a regional circuit issue.
Even though access to The net comes with a cost, you will save money if you make sure it is dependable. Unreliable access will end up costing you more in the long run. Consider the following:
Your organization is on a cable modem and your carrier provides circuits to 20 other offices in your building. During the course of a regular work day, any or all of these other businesses might be performing massive file downloads. Tenants might be taking a large volume of calls or be regularly streaming video. As the amount of accessible bandwidth decreases, what will happen to your needs? What will happen to your phone calls? What about phone call quality? Will you lose calls? Will your voice be inaudible? Will you have difficulty hearing the other end?
Your office is the hub of your enterprise: You might be a law practice that shares files, a retail operation that utilizes POS systems or a large accounting firm that needs to share databases. All of your locations, you may have 2, you may have 500, you may have 4, 000, count on your main Internet connection to access and receive data. How will you be affected if your circuit goes down? Would it cause mere annoyance or utter disaster? Can your satellite offices perform any work at all? Process new orders? Share information? Make sure you completely understand your needs before you pick a solution. Perhaps you are a software company, running a hosted solution used by hundreds of customers. Maybe you offer a service that allows other systems use an application program interface (API) to talk to you to collect information and data. You may find that they are unable to reach or connect with your business servers. How will repeated outages affect your customers? Will they remain customers?
What if your business could not function at all without the internet? Maybe your business relies on it completely. What if your representatives can make no outgoing telephone calls because your circuits go down? No calls could be answered either. Your organization is basically done with. While most call centers that are reputable use redundancy, is it enough? Can you truly rely on your providers? Are they as dependable as they claim? Is the quality of your calls consistently and reliably clear?
Obviously, there are a variety of choices. Your choices will largely count on your budget, in addition to the other requirements of your business. As a wrap-up:
If you are a small company, with just one location and not concerned about redundancy, a single five meg, 10 meg or 50 meg access to The Internet circuit may be adequate. For an office in a lit building, you may find that gigabit service or Metro Ethernet are affordable options for you. Prices vary based on your location and availability of circuits; speak with our engineers to find your best option.
If you have a midsized organization in Norfolk, Virginia, you will need higher-speed Internet access. Gigabit Internet, Metro Ethernet and other higher speed Internet circuits are options to consider. Multiple circuits utilizing multiple providers would, ideally, provide you with maximum redundancy. This may be attainable without doubling your costs. For example, one 100-megabyte circuit may cost more than two smaller 50-megabyte circuits. As a reminder; availability and costs may vary. In order to find out the options available for you, in your location, you need to speak with one of our seasoned experts.
Any company with more than one location suffers the greatest risk of problems. They require redundant circuits. Varied providers are optimal. Redundant routers, switches and other equipment can also be helpful to lessen downtime during a problem. Before you make a decision here too, do your research. Look closely into Ethernet access services, Metro Ethernet providers, gigabit Internet providers and other high-speed circuit providers. The right mix of carriers and services will help keep your organization up and running as efficiently as possible.
To run efficiently and effectively, corporations and businesses that fall into this category must use point-to-point high-speed Internet circuits, gigabit Internet circuits and Metro Ethernet circuits. Redundant hardware and redundant circuits will, for these businesses, ensure the greatest uptime. Be sure the circuits are from different providers. Spikes or sudden increase in usage can result in Internet slowdowns or disruptions in service. You can decrease the risk of these events by having sufficient bandwidth. Having both your hardware and your circuits capable of supporting many different, fast, and simultaneous connections is essential. It cannot be one or the other.
The danger and risk of failing circuits is tremendous. So is the risk of having less bandwidth than you need. The right circuits must meet your demand while keeping you within your budget. It is crucial to choose the correct mix of hardware and circuits. Figuring out exactly what to put in the mix, can be a daunting task.
Our engineers will take the pressure off and develop a free action plan for you by analyzing your needs. You want your company to run smoothly. We will look at your current usage levels and demand levels and design a plan that meets your needs at a cost that makes sense for you.
If you would like to arrange for an assessment, please click here to complete the contact information form to the right. You can call our office as well. We can often provide assessments within 48 hours.