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DSL vs. T1 bandwidth or software issue?

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  • DSL vs. T1 bandwidth or software issue?

    Alright ladies and gentlemen of TG, I need some help. I think I know the differences between DSL and a T1 or bonded T1 line, but I don't understand the effects of bandwidth....Let me explain what I am looking for.

    My company is using two DSL lines, one line is dedicated to our marketing department. We ran into an issue because they would upload large files to ftp sites and eat up all the bandwidth and slowed our internet speeds to a crawl. We got a second DSL line and everything has been going fairly smoothly. However, the admin assistant for a couple of our executives moved out of state, they wanted to keep her so they set her up to remote connect to a computer here. The executive that works with her most has been complaining that whenever they are working on a document, it's very very slow and they have disconnect issues. He wants this fixed, cheaply (HA)

    All internet searches point to T1 or bonded-T1 lines for businesses with multiple internet users, but their speeds seem slow. 1.5 Mbps T1 for $259 a month or a 3.0 Mbps Bonded for $559 a month. We pay <$300/month for two 6.0/768 DSL lines with static ips now. What could I expect if we went with a 3.0 Bonded T1 line. I realize the upload speed is now 3.0, but if our marketing department is uploading either a lot of files or a few large files, would we still experience the slowdown we did before?

    I guess I just don't know what the best solution for our company is. Any suggestions? Here are some company details:

    Office size: 14 employees + 1 offsite connects via software?
    We don't have any servers, we have one NAS device where office files are shared.
    Most internet usage is for e-mail and web connection. Our marketing department does a lot of image downloading and file uploading to ftp sites. I suspect about 4-6 are streaming music from sites like pandora.

    Also does anyone know about the Business Ethernet that offers?
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  • #2
    Re: DSL vs. T1 bandwidth or software issue?

    T1 is "slow" relative to DSL. However, that's not really a fair comparison because they do better in different circumstances. DSL does best when it can focus on a specific task, however it gets quickly inundated, while T1 does best when given many different jobs--their strengths are complete opposites. In your particular situation? I would recommend T1, if it is a bandwidth issue. If you want to use a driving analogy on the executive, a 6-lane freeway moving at 45 mph is much more effective at moving total traffic volume in a city than a 75 mph 2-lane highway ever will be. By contrast, a trucker moving cross-country will do best to stay on the latter option.

    That said, if the slowdown issue only comes from that particular remote access and otherwise is completely absent in all other cases, I would look more closely at that setup for problems before changing over to T1. Why waste the money, right?


    • #3
      Re: DSL vs. T1 bandwidth or software issue?

      T1's are slower, but speeds are symmetrical @ 1.5mb/s both ways. ADSL is not symmetrical, speeds obviously vary, highest I've seen is around 6mb/s-9mb/s. T3's are nice, and much faster @ around 44mb/s both ways.

      To Hell with that, get a OC-3


      • #4
        Re: DSL vs. T1 bandwidth or software issue?

        If they are using a screen sharing software you might consider upgrading your office upstream capability because basically sending screenshots back and forth will eat up your bandwidth and cause slowdowns. Isn't SDSL or fast cable available where your office is located?

        You might also consider getting a router capable of bandwidth throttling.

        We have two lines in our office (cable 100/10 and SDSL 8/8) connected to a DrayTek Vigor2910 dual-WAN router (not too expensive, robust and easy to set up). It's able to do round-robin load balancing, handle VPN access, provide DHCP, WIFI and supports bandwidth management. So you could set up your marketing dept to access the internet over one line for outbound connections (uploads) and share the downstream among all workstations.

        Setting up a IT policy regarding the use of music streaming services might also help easing bandwidth problems :)
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        • #5
          Re: DSL vs. T1 bandwidth or software issue?

          Look into the pricing for CAT5, if anything I would upgrade to at least a T1, or T3 connection, that of course after finding out the price differentials from your internet provider, and possibly seeing if you can strike a deal.
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          • #6
            Re: DSL vs. T1 bandwidth or software issue?

            I don't think SDSL Is available in the USA, ADSL is mostly USA for some reason.


            • #7
              Re: DSL vs. T1 bandwidth or software issue?

              Symmetrical/synchronous DSL (SDSL) IS available in the US, from a few providers, but it's HEAVILY dependent on distance from the colo to your business, much more so than DSL. Most companies around where I live will attempt an ADSL line up to 16-19k line feet from the colocation (even though the speeds are going to be fairly crap at that much) before they give a Not Technically Feasible response. Heck, my 1.5/384 business dry line was 9800 feet and got ~1.23/320. Depending on the speed of SDSL you might be looking at distances in the 2000-3000 range to get the higher tiers.

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              • #8
                Re: DSL vs. T1 bandwidth or software issue?

                $259 for a T1 is pretty cheap at least compared to the few providers here in Chicago. Since you guys upload so much, why not just go for 2-3 T1 lines?

                I know T1 is relatively slow in the download department compared to DSL, but the 1.5 mbps applies to both down and up unlike DSL which has a snail's pace of usually far less than 1.5 mbps up.

                Otherwise, do they offer T3 lines where your company is? Would you be able to convince the execs to invest in a T3 line instead of multiple T1s?

                Typically T3/DS3 lines are 45 mbps and can come over copper or depending on the provider can also be offered as fiber-optic. I'm sure at DS3 speeds, your company wouldn't even complain about slow connections when they're uploading, downloading, and RCing with that admin.
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                • #9
                  Re: DSL vs. T1 bandwidth or software issue?

                  It doesn't appear that T3/DS3 is available in our area, we are in Indianapolis. I've done a few service availability checks through speakeasy and megapath and they show T1, SDSL, ADSL...but no T3 and speakeasy shows the speeds that are available

                  T1 1.5, 768K, 384K
                  ADSL 6.0M/768K, 3.0M/384k, 1.5M/128K
                  SDSL 1.5M, 1.1M, 768K, 384K, 192K
                  IDSL 144K

                  thank you for all the information, still not sure what we will do, but the information is appreciated!!
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