How to Solve Your Network Performance Problems
How To Solve Your Network Performance Problems

Everyone wants their internet and private networks functioning at top levels all day, every day. For many people, it means quicker responses to queries, seamless communication, and tasks getting completed in good time. It’s what makes work smooth and productive for many people and businesses.

We get frustrated when networks degrade or fail. Our work slows down and productivity levels dip. And if connectivity is an important part of your business’s service delivery, your customers may experience network defects as a poor product of customer experience coming from your end.

If you don’t solve the problem early enough, you could lose clients. In the end, it might cost you a lot of (unearned) money.    

So you’ll want to deal with your network issues as quickly as you can. Even better, you should be preventing them from happening in the first place.

First, you need to know what network performance issues you’re most likely to face. When you’ve learned this, you’ll be better able to prevent them, or deal with them if they crop up.

Common Network Performance Issues that Businesses Face

1. Congested Bandwidth

Maybe you often use more data at any given time than your bandwidth can take care of. It’s not large enough to accommodate the amount of traffic that goes through your networks. If you have the right monitoring tools, you’ll see what users and devices contribute the most to the congestion.   

2. Failed Hardware

In some cases, network outages are the result of failed devices in the network infrastructure. Common culprits in this category include broken cables and damaged switches. Disabled devices can also cause networks to slow down or shut down.

3. Network Loop

A network loop is when there are multiple paths to two endpoints on a network. This usually happens if there’s a problem with the way the network is configured. When there’s a loop, traffic keeps going back to its source-- and growing in the process --instead of stopping at its destination. The expanding traffic will choke your bandwidth and slow your network. 

4. Incorrect Device Configuration

When devices are poorly configured, they won’t function as they should. This, in turn, causes performance problems for the networks that they support, or are a part of. 

5. Hidden Devices

Your employees may have connected more devices or applications to your network than what’s officially accounted for. These additions could be slowing your network speed. Unless you have a network monitoring tool or system that tracks these things, you won’t know what’s weakening your network’s performance.

6. Prolonged Backup Process

Let’s say you set data backup to happen overnight. But for some reason, it extends into the working day. If it’s still going on during work hours, it could impede traffic on your networks. Prolonged backup processes, regardless of when they’re initiated, will slow down other significant traffic being generated at the same time.

How Do You Know When You Have a Network Problem?

There could be a problem with your network if you detect any of these things:

•Network services are not available for your users at a particular time

•Increased network latency (i.e. slow network)

•Complaints about slow response times from your end-users

•Clients frequently get disconnected from your applications   

How to Solve Your Network Problems

Here’s how to prevent common network issues from cropping up, and deal with them if they arise.

1. Increase Your Network Visibility

Deploy network monitoring tools to help you track the traffic on your networks. They will give you greater visibility of your networks and reveal what the data consuming users and devices are, so you can curb the excess traffic that may be coming from them.

2. Prioritize Applications

Assign more bandwidth to applications that are closer to the top of your priority list, and less to those closer to the bottom. You may even have to remove some applications from your systems if they don’t contribute to your operations or productivity.

3. Use Compression

One way to free up your network channels is to compress large files before sharing them. There’s a catch: it may take a while to compress files, especially if they’re really large. If you’re dealing with transactions, you will be better off adopting a technology that enables the speedy transmission of data instead. 

4. Time Your Traffic

This solves the problem of backup-induced network slowdowns. You can restrict heavy-duty work like backups to times in which networks have little else passing through them. This spreads out your traffic more evenly across the time that you have.  

5. Shut Out Junk Traffic

Put up things like firewalls and spam filters that can prevent irrelevant traffic from clogging your channels. Malware could also affect your network’s performance as well, so you should have a reliable antivirus installed too.

6. Check Device Configurations

If poorly configured devices are a cause of network difficulties, it makes sense for you to ascertain that their configurations are in order before they are in full use. This will reduce the incidence of network loops and slowdowns.

7. Educate Your Staff

Encourage employees to adopt data saving practices. They can access documents from a single cloud platform, instead of sharing those documents and holding them in private storage. Let them know how connecting more devices to the network than you authorize can stifle network speed and ultimately cost your company. Train them to react appropriately to risks like malware and DDoS attacks that could slow your networks.

Conclusion

The quality of your network will play a part in determining your organization’s productivity. If you have continuous connectivity problems, it could negatively affect your work, your customer’s perception of your business, and your revenues in the long run.

It also helps to have a proper IT services provider take care of your network issues. That’s what you’ll get from us at Layer3. For over a decade, we have helped organizations in the public and private sector solve their IT problems. We continue to deliver network security, virtualization, and data center solutions to our clients across Nigeria, enabling them with technologies that drive them up the growth ladder.   

Is your business struggling with network issues? We can help you fix them. Send us an email via enquiry@layer3.com.ng, or contact us here, and we’ll get back to you.

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