February 18, 2013

Fast & Furious

No one wants to deal with a slow computer in their work environment, and the real problem is determining  the exact cause of the issue. Most of us automatically assume an Internet connection is the culprit, but the truth is the Internet may not be to blame for creating rising employee and management frustration.

I find, very often in the SMB space, that there is a piecemeal quality to the internal network environment. In other words, as a SMB organization grows, stuff is added on piece by piece in order to accommodate more workers and demands. Too often there is little or no consideration to the effect the increase in access will have on network performance. I've run into cases where the entity I speak with has no idea about their switch infrastructure. All they know is their preferred PC endpoint is connected to a jack in the wall or to a wireless network they cannot see. What are they really connected to? Maybe a ten year old unmanaged hub, maybe an overloaded 10BaseT switch, or maybe an old wireless access point tenuously connected to network intelligence.

Before throwing up your haves and throwing more bandwidth at a lethargic internal network, have a thorough analysis of the existing hardware infrastructure. Costs have come down significantly for gigabyte Ethernet speed switching often with on board VLANs and wireless connectivity. In the cases of the really small micro-business, you can often obtain a device that provides all the network control, security, connections, and routing you need in one package. Leverage your relationship with your trusted technology provider, or use this as a reason to go find one!

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