Wireless Networks Thread, How to speed up a network without any uprades. in Technical; This might sound a daft question, but here goes.
In our office I am on a gigabit connection all nice ...
30th January 2008, 01:27 AM #1
How to speed up a network without any uprades.
This might sound a daft question, but here goes.
In our office I am on a gigabit connection all nice and fast. But round the school they are on 100meg. The network is slow rendering pictures and updating SIMS and PARS on the 100meg connection. Pictures are not normally so slow loading on a 100meg connection. The school is closing in 2 years time, so major upgrades are out of the question. So I was just wondering if there is something we can do to improve the speed of the connection without any or just small upgrades?
30th January 2008, 10:10 AM #2
- Rep Power
Make sure all network cards are set properly and not on auto neg. Reading your posts, I guess you already know that though. In relation to pictures though, we often find pupils are trying to manipulate pictures they have taken from their own personal camera or that departments have used the top setting. This gives huge image files, especially when it comes to making changes to them. I try and get everyone to compress their images so they can work a bit easier on them.
30th January 2008, 10:17 AM #3
It would be worth chucking some packet capturing software out there (good free ones include Ethereal) to see what is actually flying around your network as it could be that you have loads of spurious traffic - printers are especially good at doing this, as they typically come with hundreds of protocols enabled which you should turn off if you haven't already done so.
A defrag or two wouldn't go amiss either.
Is there any mileage in moving some of your switches around so that the newer ones / ones with bigger backplanes are feeding the most-used PCs? I'm not sure if that would make a noticeable difference or just a theoretical one!
30th January 2008, 10:18 AM #4
There's a MS powertoy that can help make image resizing easy.
30th January 2008, 10:20 AM #5
Do these machines with 100Mb also happen to be somewhat slower than yours? With less memory?
30th January 2008, 12:21 PM #6
- Rep Power
We still run 100mbps here,
800 students, logon times average around 20 seconds, which is quite good considering most the machines are 5 years old!!
Are alot of the other schools out there up to 1gbps?
we use 1gbps on all the servers, and the main school office, but the rest is 100mbps :\.
30th January 2008, 12:31 PM #7
- Rep Power
Try things to reduce traffic, Like geoff and Pallen said, we tell our students to save all their pics as jpg's when they are done editing them. The photoshop files can be 70-80mb and its Jpg equivalent 240k!.
We give our students 1Gb of space max, some students who Really need it dont have a limit, but are monitored.
Change roaming profiles to mandatory profiles, this helps reduce alot of network traffic at the start and end of lessons, and lets you be able to have a controlled consistent profile.
only use IPSEC on machines that need it, although it is disabled by default, so unless you turned it on you shouldnt have to worry .
The most important thing, is what Nick said. Use a packet sniffer like wireshark (a newer version of ethereal) http://www.wireshark.org/.
See if you can reduce broadcasts or if you maybe even have some packet loss or corruption due to a slightly dodgy switch or EMI. That could increase traffic unnecessarily.
30th January 2008, 01:09 PM #8
Infrastructure permitting, we are. For the last 2 years or so, we've been buying PCs with gig NICs in them and whenever we need a new switch (due to expansion or failure) we buy gig ones - these get put where the gig PCs are, and the 100meg switch gets moved to where the faulty one was. We don't, at present, have any plan to replace working 100meg switches with gig ones.
Originally Posted by greenfieldsupport
The difference is actually quite pronounced - the users don't notice the difference here, but then they don't bounce huge files around very much; where it does show is in the time taken to install new applications.
30th January 2008, 05:35 PM #9
If the servers support it and you have spare Gig ports in your core switch why not trunk the server connections?
Many perceived network bottlenecks are just a result of excessive queuing.
500 nodes all trying to talk to the same server on the same MAC address at the same time, it like trying to park at Lakeside on a Saturday!
Use a 2 or 4 port NIC and Hey Presto, a dual Carraigway for packets!
Your switch does not need to support LAG to do this as the teaming software will do it at the server end,however if it's not a very poweful server and your switch does support it, you can configure the switch to do the Link control instead.
I love port trunking it makes slow networks fly again.
PS. all the other stuff about broadcasts and such is still worth doing but lets face it, if you want to land a Jumbo you need a bigger runway!
30th January 2008, 06:15 PM #10
Thanks for the response.
@Pallen Checked that, thanks anyway
@NickJones, that would be a good idea. Thanks
@DMcCoy The 100meg machines are a lower spec than mine but when patch the socket my computer uses to a 100meg switch it is just as bad as the low spec ones.
@Greenfieldsupport we don’t use roaming profiles just local ones.
@m25man we do have 2 Nics in most server but I didn’t set any of them up so port trunking has not been configured. I have never done port trunking just on google looking at it. Can you recommend any good sites that will explain how to configure it accurately please? I don’t really know what I am looking for. I presume its in the switch? We have 3com superstack not sure on the modal.
Last edited by FN-GM; 30th January 2008 at 06:20 PM.
30th January 2008, 07:08 PM #11
I'd be interested to know what the network card is topping out at in Task Manager while this problem is happening.
If that turns up anything, you can go further and get a free version of PRTG which will allow you to monitor the throughput on a few switch ports/fibres. You'll have to pay if you want to monitor a lot at once (or find some different software!)
30th January 2008, 08:42 PM #12
Are your NICs a server based pair? Such as Intel or Broadcoms?
Originally Posted by FN-Greatermanchester
If so you just need to plug in a second lead and enable teaming.
Your 2 nics will become 3, 1 Virtual with all of your normal IP settings and the 2 Physicals will become locked.
This mode is not switch dependent, there are others however that are, so do some homework IF you want to offload the load balancing to the switch most decent Gigabit switches will do this using LAG's (Link Aggregation).
This is the easiest tune up you can do for nothing, it's NoS for networks
30th January 2008, 08:53 PM #13
They are both Broadcom how would i go about teaming them please?
30th January 2008, 09:08 PM #14
Here's a reasonable link about teaming server adaptors.
If your using Broadcoms make sure you have the very latest drivers installed before you start.
You should start with the SLB and investigate the others according to your switch capabilities and your skill set.
Last edited by m25man; 30th January 2008 at 09:10 PM.
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