Business versus Non-Business Traffic
Most companies don't want to invest in upgrading their WAN/Internet bandwidth for a saturated link that is filled up by employees that are Web surfing and listening to Internet radio. Now, if a link was saturated with critical SAP traffic, and this is impacting employee productivity, that is a different story.
Quality of Service (QoS)
While a link may have high utilization, it may not be a problem because priority traffic is still routing properly, and therefore, users are experiencing very little delays. Under these conditions, you could be running at extremely high bandwidths, yet not need to upgrade any of your links. However, if the available bandwidth for priority traffic is starting to reach the capacity of the link, then you may have to start thinking about upgrading your link.
Although a link may show low bandwidth utilization, packets may be getting lost across the WAN or Internet. Typically, where there is packet loss, users experience slower application performance because data needs to be resent (retransmissions), and the user must wait for this resent data. In this case, there is no need to upgrade the link speed. However, you do need to call your service provider and ask for a fix to the packet loss problem.
The following information is typically furnished by an ideal performance management solution:
This was first published in February 2005