Archive for the ‘Networking’ Category Mini

April 15, 2010

Now you can host a free speed test on your own server that uses the same technology as! Setup is very simple, and the only requirement is that your web server supports PHP, ASP.NET or ASP.

This application is offered “as is” free of charge without any support – use it at your own risk. We will introduce new features to it every few months in required updates. As such you will have to download it again periodically.

While Mini will work on almost any web server, some require minor settings changes. Read the troubleshooting file included in for further details.


Troubleshooting home networking with this tool

October 15, 2009

The Microsoft Internet Connectivity Evaluation Tool checks your Internet router to see if it supports certain technologies. You can use this tool on a PC running either the Windows Vista or Windows XP operating system. If you’re planning to run Windows Vista, this tool can verify whether your existing Internet router supports advanced features, such as improved download speeds and face-to-face collaboration using Windows Meeting Space.

The tool is intended to be run from a home network behind a home Internet (NAT) router. Running this tool from behind a corporate firewall or on operating systems other than those specified above won’t produce accurate results. This tool requires administrator privileges to run.

US ranks 28th in Internet connection speed

August 27, 2009

South Korea, Singapore, the Netherlands, Denmark and Taiwan were the top five countries listed in terms of access to high-speed Internet.

Average download speed in South Korea is 20.4 megabits per second (mbps), which is four times faster than the US average of 5.1 mbps. Japan trails South Korea with an average of 15.8 mbps followed by Sweden at 12.8 mbps and the Netherlands at 11.0 mbps, the report said.

“People in Japan can upload a high-definition video in 12 minutes, compared to a grueling 2.5 hours at the US average upload speed,” the report said.

Communications Workers of America, CWA Report (PDF)

Updates on 07 Sep 2009 – Singapore Ranks 24th in Download Speed

SAN connectivity guide – Fibre Channel, Ethernet and iSCSI

July 7, 2009

A storage area network (SAN) organizes a broad assortment of storage devices into a single storage resource that can then be provisioned, allocated and managed for the entire enterprise. Although issues like storage capacity performance and management often receive the most attention, the connectivity between each SAN device plays a critical role in successful SAN deployment.

Each switch and storage system on the SAN must be interconnected — usually through optical fiber or copper cabling — and the physical interconnections must support bandwidth levels that can adequately handle the peak data activities that occur. This overview details the role of Fibre Channel, Ethernet and iSCSI connectivity on a SAN.

Fibre Channel
Fibre Channel is the quintessential SAN interconnect and virtually every storage switch and storage platform provides Fibre Channel ports. Multiple Fibre Channel ports support simultaneous data streams, but individual ports can often be aggregated into groups for even higher effective bandwidth. Servers and other devices can also be fitted with Fibre Channel host channel adapters to enable an Fibre Channel interface.

As a serial interface, Fibre Channel bandwidth is denoted in Gbps. Early Fibre Channel implementations ran at 1 Gbps per port before doubling to 2 Gbps and then 4 Gbps. Another transition to 8 Gbps is beginning but mainstream adoption is not expected until mid or late 2009. Also, 10 Gbps is used in interswitch links to connect Fibre Channel switches to each other. Fibre Channel operates with numerous protocols, most notably SAS and IP.

Fibre Channel can use several types of physical media. Twisted pair cable is used to cover relatively short distances at low speeds between Fibre Channel devices. Coaxial cables generally offer better shielding against signal interference and can run across somewhat longer distances. Optical fiber is routinely used to carry the fastest signals across distances up to 10km.

While Ethernet connectivity is generally used on the greater local area network (LAN), its use in the storage area network has been limited by its relatively slow bandwidth.

Traditional Ethernet ports support 10/100 Mbps — far slower than Fibre Channel. This had limited Ethernet in the SAN to basic management tasks. For example a storage device or switch might include a single Ethernet port that connects the device to the LAN where an administrator can manage the device across it. Ethernet typically uses two protocols; Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) which handles the organization of data into packets and Internet Protocol (IP) which handles the way those data packets are addressed. In fact, the terms “Ethernet” and “TCP/IP” are often used interchangeably.

Ethernet bandwidth is increasing today and 10 Gigabit Ethernet (10 GigE) is widely available for data centers, which boosts performance on the LAN and will eventually make Ethernet use more practical for carrying data on the SAN. One-Gigabit Ethernet is now common on many servers and switches, and the eventual emergence of 10 GigE promises to put Ethernet on par with 10-Gbit Fibre Channel.

Traditional Ethernet LAN deployments used coaxial cables but twisted-pair cabling (e.g. Category 5 or Category 6 Ethernet cables) is the most common LAN cabling. 10 GigE often relies on optical fiber with transmission distances up to 40km, which makes the technology far more expensive and limits its use to network backbones. As copper cabling becomes available for 10 GigE, the technology should see far more use within data centers and SANs.

Fibre Channel SANs have long been challenged by deployment expense and management complexity — often keeping SANs out of reach of smaller IT organizations. The emergence of iSCSI eases these challenges by encapsulating SCSI commands into IP packets for transmission over an Ethernet connection, rather than a Fibre Channel connection. This approach eliminates Fibre Channel in favor of Ethernet, which allows iSCSI to transfer data over LANs, WANs or the Internet and supports storage management over long distances.

In actual practice, a user or application will cause the operating system to generate corresponding SCSI storage commands. Those SCSI commands and data are then encapsulated and IP headers are added to make packets. The packets can then be sent over an ordinary Ethernet connection. The remote end of the iSCSI connection disassembles the encapsulated content and passes the SCSI commands to the SCSI controller and storage device. This also works in reverse, so any data or responses can be sent back to the user or application across the Ethernet connection.

Although it is easier to manage than Fibre Channel, iSCSI still has two disadvantages for storage. At 1 GigE, it does not perform as fast as Fibre Channel. And Ethernet will drop packets during network congestion. These problems may be alleviated soon, thanks to the emergence of 10 GigE and Data Center Ethernet — a standard in development with the goal of providing Ethernet with quality of service levels, efficient multipathing and lower latencies, while preventing dropped packets.

Another alternative is FCIP. FCIP translates Fibre Channel commands and data into IP packets, which can be exchanged between distant Fibre Channel SANs. It’s important to note that FCIP only works to connect Fibre Channel SANs, but iSCSI can run on any Ethernet network.

Storage vendors are working on a Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) standard to enable SAN and LAN convergence. FCoE would reduce cabling by using converged network adapters in place of Fibre Channel HBAs and NICs. FCoE adoption depends on the availability of Data Center Ethernet and is not expected to be widely adopted before late 2009. Unlike iSCSI, FCoE is not routable and is subject to the distance limitations of Fibre Channel.

Starhub to operate Singapore’s next generation national broadband network

April 6, 2009

Telco will design, build and operate active infrastructure
By Computerworld Singapore staff writer
06 Apr 2009
SINGAPORE, 6 APRIL 2009 – Singapore’s Infocomm Development Authority (IDA) has picked local telecommunications firm Starhub to be the operating company for the island’s next generation national broadband network.

The proposed next generation national broadband network aims to provide high-speed Internet access of up to 1Gbps to all physical addresses in Singapore via fibre optic cables by the year 2015. Starhub’s proposal was selected from four bids, namely IntelliNet Consortium, which comprised Axis NetMedia Corporation and Cisco Systems, MobileOne, SingTel and Starhub.

Under the agreement, Starhub’s operating company, named Nucleus Connect, will design, build and operate the network’s active infrastructure, with the help of a S$250 million (US$166.39 million) grant from the government.

Nucleus Connect is expected to support and enable a range of ultra high-speed wholesale broadband services to retail service providers at prices that will be regulated by the IDA.

Wholesale prices are expected to be S$21 (US$13.98) per month for a 100Mbps residential end-user connection and S$121 (US$80.53) for a 1Gbps connection. Non-residential locations such as offices and schools will have a wholesale price of S$75 (US$49.92) per month for a 100 Mbps connection. Enterprises users with more demanding bandwidth requirements can choose a 1Gbps connection at S$860 (US$572.38) per month.

Commercial services are expected to be rolled out starting from the first half of 2010.

Nucleus Connect will be operationally separate from all retail service providers and will also be a separate legal entity from Starhub, with a different corporate brand, separate premises and an independent board of directors.

“The next generation national broadband network is a key national infocomm infrastructure that will enhance Singapore’s competitiveness in a globalised and digital economy. It will spur the development of rich and innovative content, applications and services, and bring significant benefits to the various economic sectors such as finance, healthcare and education,” said Yong Ying-I, chairman, IDA. “Everyone in Singapore can soon look forward to a richer broadband experience and a wide range of innovative broadband services at competitive prices, transforming the way we work, live, learn and interact.”

Telco will design, build and operate active infrastructure

Singapore Achieves Another Milestone For Singapore’s Next Generation National Broadband Network

Commentary: StarHub wins Opco deal in Singapore’s NBN

Speakeasy — Speed Test

March 18, 2009

Test your internet connection speed!

By measuring the download and upload rate from the following locations you are able to accurately measure your current line throughput or internet connection speed.

Numion – internet connection speed testing sites

November 8, 2008

Measure your speed.

How fast can you really surf? Measure your true internet throughput. Very easy to use, no installation necessary.


Ultra high-speed broadband by 2012 in Singapore

September 29, 2008

SINGAPORE, 29 SEPTEMBER 2008 – The Singapore government has selected the proposal from the OpenNet Consortium to design, build and operate the passive infrastructure for the Next Generation National Broadband Network (Next Gen NBN).

The announcement was made by Minister for Information, Communications and the Arts (MICA), Dr Lee Boon Yang on 26 September. “Users can look forward to innovative services from as early as 2010,” he said.

Ultra highs-peed broadband by 2012

According to this scheme, by 2012, homes and offices nationwide will be connected to Singapore’s ultra high-speed and pervasive Next Gen NBN. The Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) said that in two years’ time, 60 per cent of homes and offices can already expect to have access to this new, pervasive, all-fibre network.

OpenNet is led by Axia NetMedia Corporation with Singapore Telecommunications Ltd, Singapore Press Holdings Ltd and SP Telecommunications Pte Ltd as the other members of the consortium. The NetCo Request-for-Proposal (RFP) was launched on 11 December 2007 and closed on 5 May 2008 with proposals from two consortia, namely Infinity and OpenNet.

The proposal

According to the IDA, as the selected NetCo, OpenNet will design, build and operate the passive infrastructure of the Next Gen NBN that will be capable of delivering speeds of up to 1 Gbps and beyond. The Government will provide a grant of up to S$750 million to the NetCo to support the network rollout, said the agency.

The scheme will bring good news for the public and the companies. OpenNet will offer attractive wholesale prices of SG$15 per month per residential fibre connection and S$50 per month per non-residential fibre connection, to the Operating Companies or OpCos.

Such wholesale prices are expected to bring about competitive retail prices in the ultra-high speed broadband market, the agency said.

With the selection of the NetCo, said the agency, OpenNet is expected to work closely with IDA to provide the necessary network information for Next Gen NBN Operating Company (OpCo) RFP bidders to finalise their bid submissions, which are expected to be due on 14 November 2008.

Internet Connectivity Evaluation Tool

July 14, 2008

The Internet Connectivity Evaluation Tool checks your Internet router to see if it supports certain technologies. You can use this tool on a PC running either the Windows Vista or Windows XP operating system. If you’re planning to run Windows Vista, this tool can verify whether your existing Internet router supports advanced features, such as improved download speeds and face-to-face collaboration using Windows Meeting Space.

The tool is intended to be run from a home network behind a home Internet (NAT) router. Running this tool from behind a corporate firewall or on operating systems other than those specified above won’t produce accurate results. This tool requires administrator privileges to run.

INTEL Broadband Speed Test

February 22, 2008

Put your connection to test.