COMPUTER BUSINESS REVIEW

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TECHNEWS

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by Technews
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Issue Date: November 2003 (es)

South African solution to local bandwidth woes

1 November 2003

Businesses are dependent on bandwidth as a key business tool, and network managers are increasingly pressurised to provide reliable capacity with guaranteed service levels. However, the high cost of bandwidth remains a major challenge to local companies of all sizes.
Specialist Internet solutions company Technology Concepts has a cost-effective solution for local bandwidth challenges: its popular TC Bandwidth Manager is designed to solve not only the Internet access bandwidth problems of local businesses, but also their WAN (wide area network) demands.
"TC Bandwidth Manager provides network managers with visibility into the cause of WAN or Internet link congestion - and provides a competent solution to maximise the use of the existing bandwidth capacity," says Neil Vlaming, product manager at Technology Concepts.
By providing the tools to monitor, classify, report on and control the cause of network congestion, TC Bandwidth Manager enables organisations to align available network resources with business requirements.
Vlaming notes that even SA Minister of Communications, Ivy Matsepe-Casaburri, finally acknowledged that a lack of access to low-cost broadband and the slow development of a broadband corridor is restricting local businesses.
"The new TC Bandwidth Manager can help a business's network traffic move more quickly over congested links - the perfect solution to free up available resources and eliminate network congestion," he says.
"Not only does the new TC Bandwidth Manager ensure that the available bandwidth is fully optimised, but it now offers a host of new features to make network administration and traffic reporting far easier. It also ensures that critical business applications are prioritised ahead of the standard everyday Web traffic," he points out.
Vlaming says the new product now also provides multilink support, which means that branch offices no longer have to purchase individual units for every link - they can simply manage their entire WAN capacity through a single unit.
"If a company has a star topology network, meaning that all its branches are connected to the head office, then we can prioritise network traffic to the individual remote links through a single device. This is a major advantage from an administrative point of view since it ensures simplicity of operation. It also provides the administrator with statistics on each link from the single unit," he says.
"A further new addition is the introduction of user-based grouping. This means that the network can be split into segments, based on IP addresses, with each group given a set of rules. For example, in a campus environment, the research department could be allocated preference over the commerce faculty. Each group can share bandwidth with one another to ensure that the link is always optimised," he explains.
"We have also included realtime reporting with the new product. This ensures that administrators have a clear indication of all traffic passing through the box on a realtime basis and will therefore be able to take appropriate action when required.
"The new TC Bandwidth Manager prioritises preferential hosts, destinations and users, and has been designed to be simple to use by either the novice or advanced user," he adds.
Vlaming says that the problem with unmanaged network traffic is that the link processes data in the order in which it was received. The result, he says, is that business applications traffic on the LAN or WAN suffers and has to trickle through until such time as bandwidth becomes available.
"Bandwidth Manager ensures the situation is reversed. Low priority traffic will back off and allow maximum performance for the critical business information," he states.
"The new TC Bandwidth Manager is a locally-developed device that is suited to companies of all sizes, especially those with bandwidth problems. It allows users to discover and monitor what is really being transmitted across the network; controls bandwidth utilisation; manages application performance; and reduces costs.
"Bandwidth Manager allows network managers to get more from their existing bandwidth without having to purchase additional capacity. This aids in minimising the total cost of ownership for businesses by extending the existing network infrastructure and bandwidth resources," he says.
TC Bandwidth Manager is sold with a full product lifetime warranty, access to all current and future features and enhancements, a full remote backup facility and an ongoing system maintenance and swap-out policy should the product become faulty.
Technology Concepts has an extremely flexible pricing model catering for a variety of different scenarios. The device may be purchased as a once off capital cost or through a variable finance option. A yearly rental is available for those organisations not wishing to purchase the unit outright. Pricing starts as low as R1060 per month (excl VAT).
For more information contact Technology Concepts, 011 803 2169.


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