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Network slow in one building, but fine in other two

I have a network connecting three buildings, but in one building the Internet access and e-mail downloading is extremely slow. I am able to ping other PCs in other buildings without problems. I am using the 2950 Cisco switches. Two buildings are connected to the main building using fiber cables connected to converters. What could be causing the network to be slow?
First, it would be difficult to nail down where your problem is. You will need to perform some tests to help track down if the problem is due to the network setup or your Internet service.

Determining if your problem is related to your network is not that difficult. You can try multiple file transfers and use special programs that will test the connectivity between two or more points, helping you rule out this possibility.

If your problem lies only on the e-mail service, then you should clearly look from your firewall toward your ISP. It could be possible that your Internet line is full during the day, making everything else seem slow, or there might be a problem with the e-mail server you are connecting to.

As you can understand, there are many possibilities why this problem is occurring and it must be broken into small pieces to be dealt with.

Summing up, start with your local network, ensure the network is running smoothly with no errors reported by the switches and double check your configuration. Then look at the Internet services (e.g., DNS and anything else you might use). Lastly, check your Internet connection -- is it being over-utilized during the day? If not, is your ISP experiencing any problems?

I'm certain that something from all the above will provide you an indication where the problem might be.

Good luck!

This was last published in April 2005

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