Broadband networks share both an opportunity and a problem. Modern technologies allow easy deployment of high-speed connectivity, but they also share bandwidth among all users. This presents some unique challenges, particularly due to the over-subscribed environments sometimes brought on by financial constraints.
It's a rule that users will take up as much bandwidth as they can. They are actually encouraged to by sites possessing more and more content and applications. Network protocols facilitate this consumption via the use of windowing protocols which attempt to increase packet rates as much as they can.
This is where bandwidth management technologies come in, providing order in an otherwise chaotic bandwidth grab. Bandwidth management regulates the consumption of bandwidth and enables maximum utilization by permitting the maximum amount of users on the network. It also creates the infrastructure needed for tiered services, and controls costs. There is no need to add capacity until it is necessary to do so. Customer satisfaction is usually improved as well, thanks to the fact that all users get a fair share of the available network bandwidth.
and Application Acceleration are great technologies which can increase the total amount of bandwidth that is made available to applications and users. However, these technologies also have two major problems:
1) They don’t function in secured environments the way VPNs do.
2) Due to the fact that they don’t manage the users and applications, they grant more bandwidth to abusive applications/users, which often results in negligible gains for the important traffic.
Brian Solomon is a Web Editor for TMCnet, covering news in the IP communications, call center and customer relationship management industries. To see more of his articles, please visit Brian Solomon’s columnist page.
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