The cloud and the Internet go hand-in-hand like wine and cheese – you can’t have one without the other. Without the Internet, the way we do business today would not be possible and with it, cloud computing has become the game changer. With Cloud Computing, information is transferred securely using the Internet connections coming into your office or from where ever you are accessing the Internet.
Improvements in the technology, such as bonding (combining services into one), aggregation (throughput is the sum of all connections), and policy routing (prioritizing traffic) have changed the landscape. As well, high speed connections (50/100/Fiber) are now readily available from most carriers.
“What if my Internet connection goes down?” Failure of your Internet service can be a big deal. In most cases without it your business will come to a standstill at best, or at worst require the use of costly manual processes during the outage. To protect your business from the disruptions that a network outage would cause, we always recommend the deployment of a diverse backbone network with self-healing failover (translation – an always on Internet).
An always on Internet service combines multiple Internet circuits and enables automatic failover from one Internet connection to another in the event of a network outage. And, as an added benefit, an always on Internet service will optimize your business network to take advantage of the bandwidth and attributes of each connection.
The Internet is a Pipe through which all traffic must pass. Very big pipes are used in the cloud, but the size of the pipe into your office is tiny by comparison. The size of your office pipe is the limiting factor to what you can expect to pump through it. High volume printing, graphic intensive applications such as CAD, CAM large image files such as CAT scans or MRI images, and large volume scanning, to name but a few, will all influence the size of the pipe.
Any one of (or best yet, any combination of) ADSL, Cable, T1, broadband wireless, or better, can be the pipe. Choose the circuits according to what is available, local circuit reliability and carrier support/response, your tolerance for interruption and response time, required bandwidth for everything that will use Internet, and your budget. Consumer grade services have limitations that restrict the types and amount of data you can put in your pipe. These services are typically oversubscribed, connected on-demand, and come without static IP addresses. Talk to your IT provider or Internet Provider (ISP) and work with them to determine the type of pipe you need.
A slow or flaky Internet will raise the level of frustration in your office and put a serious damper on productivity. That’s why it’s important for you take the time and pick the right service.
Bob Milliken is the president of Cascadia Systems Group. Connect with Bob at TheITguy@CascadiaSystemsGroup.com, or give us a call – 604.270.1730. Your comments are appreciated –ComputerCents@CascadiaSystemsGroup.com