7 Step Guide to Successfully Migrating to the Cloud: Review Your Bandwidth Performance

bandwidth performanceAt this point, if you’ve been following along with our guide to cloud migration, you’re more than halfway done with your journey. As we move on to the fifth step, however, you might want to refresh your memory of the first blog entry in this series.

Remember when we went over the pros and cons of moving to the cloud? One of the potential disadvantages is bandwidth problems. If you underestimate the amount of bandwidth you need before you make the transition to cloud-based solutions, you could experience performance issues. That brings us to the fifth step in our guide to transitioning your business to the cloud.

Here are the first four steps, in case you’d like to review them before moving forward. 

Step 1: Know Your Current Needs and Goals

Step 2: Determine Your Future Needs and Goals

Step 3: Consider Your Current Obligations

Step 4: Determine the Impact of Inaccessible Systems

Step 5: Evaluate Your Bandwidth Usage
To ensure optimal performance, your business needs to determine its bandwidth requirements before adopting cloud-based services and solutions.  Here’s some information that can help you understand minimum requirements for the most commonly used items in an office environment.

  • Standard Web browser page (non-video): Typically, a minimum estimate of 100 kilobits per second should work for Web-delivered cloud services, according to the Ars Technica article “Meeting the bandwidth demands of taking your business into the cloud.”
  • Standard cloud phone: In addition, if you are utilizing a hosted phone system you can assume a minimum of 64 kbps.
  • Remote desktop or terminal service: Some businesses utilize remote desktop, virtual desktop, or terminal services to provide their end users with a simulated controlled desktop.  Bandwidth can vary, but it looks like no more than 120kpbs per session based on Microsoft studies.

The amount of bandwidth you need can vary considerably depending on the cloud-based services you use. For instance, streaming media uses a large amount of bandwidth.

Some cloud solutions are also less latency sensitive and fare better in a state of bandwidth shortage than others, according to Ars. For example, a Web page might load slowly but still work, while lagging VoIP phone calls could majorly disrupt workers’ ability to get things done.

How to Determine Your Bandwidth Requirements
The following tips will help your company assess your current bandwidth performance and ensure you know your needs before migrating to the cloud.

1. Identify the user groups within your business.
  For example, accounting and sales all use technology differently. They leverage unique line of business applications, some of which might integrate with others.

2. Understand what utilizes bandwidth today. Figure out the details of your bandwidth usage, in addition to examining what measures you’ve established to limit that consumption.

3. Identify the current performance of simple things. For example, this might include using line of business applications or accessing server information.

4. What is the current bandwidth at your facility today? Clients that move applications outside their business should pay close attention to the impact on operations. Performance that was once 10/100 or 10/100/1000 mbps can potentially degrade to whatever your bandwidth is.

Be sure to look into providers and figure out how much it would cost to increase your bandwidth if necessary. This is the best way to ensure end users won’t grapple with performance issues.

5. How much would it cost to get fiber Internet? Increasing your bandwidth typically isn’t as simple as just snapping your fingers and giving your capabilities a boost. But fiber circuits tend to be more flexible when it comes to delivering more.

6. Do you have backup Internet connections and intelligent IT infrastructure to route traffic accordingly? If not, you might want to set these up before you move forward with your move to cloud-based tools and applications. It’s always smart to be prepared and have backup options in place.

An external cloud service provider like Stratosphere Networks can help your business determine how much bandwidth you need to maintain optimal performance and efficiency after migrating to the cloud. If you have any questions about bandwidth and transitioning to the cloud, feel free to contact us by emailing sales@stratospherenetworks.com or calling 877-599-3999.

Check back next week to learn about the sixth step in our guide to successfully migrating to the cloud.

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