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T3 Dedicated Internet For Business
High speed connections for video, servers, VPNs and corporate Internet access.

By: John Shepler

Connections to the Internet come in two flavors, shared and dedicated. DSL and Cable Broadband fall into the shared category. Subscribers are multiplexed, or connected as a shared group, to a common backbone Internet connection. To keep access prices low, more connections are sold than there is bandwidth to support. The arrangement, called oversubscription, works because not everyone is downloading files or even online simultaneously. If too many users do try the access the Internet, the connection speed simply slows down. In cases of extreme congestion, time critical feeds such as VoIP telephoneor streaming audio and video will break up.

Dedicated Internet Connections For Bandwidth Control
Businesses with critical applications such as online transactions, Enterprise VoIP telephony, web and email servers, video conferencing, Intranets and Extranets need a more robust connection to the Internet. That's the dedicated variety. A dedicated Internet connection offers full Internet bandwidth to the limit of the service level you order. It is "dedicated" to your needs. For smaller businesses, a T1 line at 1.5 Mbps will suffice. For larger businesses or high bandwidth applications, a T3 line at 45 Mbps is appropriate. T3 is also known as DS3 service when it is provisioned on a fiber optic carrier.

The advantage of dedicated Internet connections is more than just bandwidth. It's the fact that you have control of the bandwidth. With a dedicated connection, your videoconference won't break up just because the business next door decides to download major software updates. Their bandwidth is separate from yours. In a way, though, the bandwidth is still shared. It's shared among the users in your company.

You Still Need In-House QoS
This means that you'll still need to engineer your network to provide a Quality of Service that prioritizes time critical services such as voice and video over applications such as email, file transfers and Web browsing. Within your organization you can rigorously guarantee network performance and properpriorities. Once you packets are on the Internet, though, you lose a certain amount of control. Congestion, latency and dropped packets are normal for this environment. Buying enough dedicated bandwidth is the best you can do for using the public infrastructure. Encrypting your data to create VPN tunnels will give you a virtual private network for your employees, partners, clients and suppliers. However, for the most rigorous control of bandwidth, jitter, latency and packet loss you'll have to move up from virtual private networks to fully private point to point connections.

The Value of T3 Bandwidth
Dedicated T3 lines are often used as the backbone Internet connections for Internet Service Providers such as DSL, Cablebroadband and WISPS (wireless). They can provide general Internet access for companies with hundreds of employees online. They are also a good choice for in-house or colocated Web, email, fax, streaming audio and streaming video servers. Higher speed services include Fast Ethernet WANs at 100 Mbps and OC3 SONET fiber optic lines at 622 Mbps. All of these can be provisioned as dedicated Internet connections or point to point private lines.

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