Common Network Bottlenecks & What You Can Do to Fix Them
Identifying network bottlenecks and developing concrete strategies to remedy them
Chances are, you or members of your team would agree that while your network holds all the resources you need to get work done, it sometimes doesn’t operate at the most efficient or productive speed. This may not seem like a huge issue, but when it comes to pursuing business goals and driving business growth in a competitive marketplace, a lagging network and the corresponding downtime can have negative impacts on your company’s prosperity.
That’s why coming to understand the exact reasons your network is falling behind and developing strategies for remedying these issues is critical. Network bottlenecks can seem like a tedious and complex problem to address and overcome, but the reality is, once you develop a process for identification and response, fixing even the trickiest of bottlenecks is possible.
Alltek believes strongly in connecting business professionals with useful and practical information that will help them maintain stronger and more productive business networks. Information is power, so we’ve created a foolproof guide to help professionals like you understand what network bottlenecks are, and how you can remedy them, and ultimately prevent them for good.
The Basics: What is A Network Bottleneck Anyway?
Simply put, a network bottleneck is any condition - obvious or unseen – through which data flow becomes limited thanks to insufficient computer or network resources. Network data flow is controlled by the bandwidth allotted to various resources and devices on the system. When a high volume of data is trying to flow through the network and there is insufficient bandwidth support, bottlenecks and network congestion are bound to occur.
Network bottlenecks manifest because of a variety of different network issues. The trickiest part of dealing with network bottlenecks is that sometimes the issues are obvious and easy to identify. However, other times pesky network bottlenecks are hidden and some digging is involved when trying to identify and resolve them.
Some of the most common network bottlenecks are caused by:
- Server configuration
- Communications hardware like VoIP phones
- Numerous access points
- Bandwidth overload or improper segmentation
- Underequipped network switches or faulty hardware
- Any network resource that is insufficiently designed to support network speed and data flow
The fact of the matter is, even companies who are paying for top-tier Internet speeds could be experiencing much slower speeds than expected if network resources aren’t properly aligned and bottlenecks are building up. That’s why developing a game plan for identifying and responding to the bottlenecks specific to your company network is critical to maintain a productive working environment and get the most value out of network speed investments.
Concrete Strategies for Easing Your Network Bottleneck Issues
As mentioned, the network congestion caused by bottlenecking is a common problem that will inevitably impact the networks of all business professionals at some point and to some extent. Because the impacts can be frustrating for your team and detrimental to overall office productivity, having concrete strategies for responding to network bottlenecks and eliminating network congestion is critical.
Check out these concrete ways you can get on top of common network bottlenecking issues:
- Monitor network traffic
The first step is all about keeping an eye on your network traffic in order to identify problem areas and gain insights about the nature of network congestion in your system. By monitoring your network, you’ll be able to determine the distribution of network traffic and reduce congestion.
- Segment your network strategically
Network segmentation involves breaking your larger network off into smaller sub-networks to avoid an overflow of network traffic congestion. By segmenting your network, you can group resources into specific areas which will allow for easier monitoring and more strategic insights. Then, you’ll have eliminated much of the guesswork and will be able to reduce congestion by segment.
- Deploy a Content Delivery Network (CDN)
A content delivery network (CDN) can be extremely useful in terms of monitoring and optimizing the flow of static content. A CDN stores static content on edge servers, meaning a decrease in requests bombarding the network. CDN’s can also be a useful tool when it comes to bandwidth management. Overall, the use of a CDN can be a strategic asset when trying to reduce network congestion.
- Reconfigure network settings
As data traffic moves through your network, some devices send and receive information at different speeds. This can result in some serious network congestion. Adjusting the TCP/IP settings to better sync requesting and receiving speeds can be useful in helping your network better process data traffic and reduce congestion.
- Prioritize network traffic
This strategy is all about determining which network traffic is most important for your business. For instance, if your organization uses VoIP phones, and this traffic is the priority, your network router can be configured to prioritize this flow of data. The prioritization of network traffic can be used to better utilize and optimize bandwidth and prevent congestion before it begins.
- Assess your hardware
Once you’ve identified trouble areas on your network, established the plan of action to remedy each bottleneck, and reconfigured your settings, it’s important to take stock of your hardware and determine what needs your attention. Are there any upgrades, updates, or replacements necessary? Stay ahead of common network bottlenecks by giving attention to your hardware and avoid congestion at this source.
Using these strategies as a guide is a great start when it comes to better understanding and responding to frustrating and tedious network bottleneck issues. While network congestion can seem like an impossible and annoying challenge to overcome, relying on practical strategies like these ones will help you feel more empowered and in control of your network hang-ups.
Looking for Local Tech Support to Start Eliminating Network Bottlenecks?
When it comes to tackling pesky tech issues like network bottlenecking and congestion, it’s never a bad idea to reach out to a team of IT professionals. Partnering with experts can make a huge difference in terms of strategically identifying bottlenecks, and optimizing your approach to fixing them.
The team at Alltek has immense experience working with all different types of business professionals to track down network congestion culprits and deploy strategies to restore adequate data flow and network speed. In fact, we recently put together a brief video on some of the most common bottlenecks we encounter when working with clients. If you think our team could support your effort to optimize network traffic and eliminate annoying bottlenecks, don’t hesitate to give us a call anytime at 863-709-0709.
Did you find this article informative? As always, we’re happy to help! If you liked this, check out these other articles we think you’ll love: