Stuff You Should Know about Network Performance

Known as the specific measure of service quality, network performance can be calculated a few different ways. Because each network is naturally different in terms of design and functionality, performance is generally measured through various characteristics. In addition, performance can generally be mirrored by other networks instead of just being measured. For instance a transition diagram can be used to mirror queuing actions in a network that is operated by a circuit switch. Each diagram will grant a network planner the ability to examine the exact way a network is able to perform in each individual state. This will establish a network that is perfectly designed.

Network Performance Measures

Throughput – This is the specific rate at which data is transferred or the total amount of messages that have been received over a specific amount of time. Controlled by the amount of accessible bandwidth, throughput is generally interchangeable with the term bandwidth.
Bandwidth – Frequently measured in bits per second, this is the highest rate that data can be transferred. The bandwidth will help determine the highest possible amount of throughput.
Jitter – The actual time difference between when information has been sent and received.
Latency – The lag time between sending information and a receiver decoding it.
Error Rate – The amount of bits that have been corrupted that are represented as a fraction or percentage. The Bit Error Rate (BER) is calculated by dividing the total amount of bit errors by the total amount of transferred bits.
Because certain performance measures share similar meanings, a frequent misunderstanding is that a stronger throughput means that you have a faster network connection. Despite this belief, network speed is determined by the specific information that is being sent, latency, how the information is applied, and throughput.
Determining Factors
Each specific network performance factor above, combined with user beliefs and requirements, have an important role in deciding the speed of a network connection. The similarities between latency, throughput, and a user’s experience is generally understood through a shared network median.
The Internet
Internet users that recognize an instant response do so when lag time is within 100 mm of a specific click response. Together, throughput and latency are able to affect the believed connection speed. Although true, the believed performance of a network connection can still change drastically depending on the exact type of information that is being sent. For example, a picture might be received at a slower rate than simple text. Because latency is a critical component of a networks performance, both the HTML markup language and the HTTP standards were created to decrease the lag time of messages throughout the internet. These standards permit segregated rendering, which means that each received text can begin to be displayed as soon as the first text arrives.

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