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What is meant by network performance?

Performance, security and resilience are three most important factors of any network. In this article we focus up on the performance factor.

– The quality of the service of the telecommunications product is what is referred to as the network performance.
– But this is the definition as perceived by the user of the network services.
– However, it cannot be seen as a thing to get more via the network.
– Network performance measures can be defined both for the circuit switched networks and the packet switched networks. – In the former kind of network, there exists a synonymy between the network performance and the grade of service.
– For example under heavy traffic loads, the measure of how well the network performs depends on the number of rejected calls.
– Some other performance measures for these types of networks include echo, noise and so on.
– For packet switched networks viz. asynchronous transfer mode network, following performance measures are considered:
1. Line rate
2. QoS i.e., quality of service
3. Data throughput
4. Stability
5. Connect time
6. Technology
7. Modulation technique
8. Modem enhancements

– There are several ways for measuring a network’s performance.
– So many performance measures have been defined since each network differs from others in terms of design and nature.
– There are some cases where the performance has to be modeled instead of measuring it.
– An example of such a case is for modeling queuing performance in the former type of networks mentioned above in article by using the state transition diagrams.
– Using these diagrams, a network planner can very well analyze the performance of the network in each state and can ensure the optimized designing of the network.

The 8 – second rule:
– In some research, it was observed the average time taken by a user waiting for the page to download is 8 seconds but on most of the web sites it was observed to be 10 seconds.
– This rule is one of the traditional methods use for the determination of the adequate response of a server via varying bandwidth connections.
– It specifies that a user is more unlikely to stick around the website if it takes more than 8 seconds to download.
– Therefore, in order to increase a website’s stickiness, there’s a need for ways through content can be delivered to the user at a faster rate.

Latency and throughput:
– The fastness of the arrival of data to the user as perceived by the user himself depends highly up on his requirements as well as the measurement techniques.
– Some people have a wrong perception that higher throughput means having a fast connection.
– However, the fastness of a network is affected by various factors such as:
1. Throughput
2. Latency
3. Type of transmitted info
4. Way of application of info and so on.

All of these above mentioned factors along with the perceptions and requirements of the user play a great role in the determination of the fastness of a network connected as perceived.

The network performance is limited by some physical factors such as:
– The speed of light: A minimum propagation time is imposed up on the electromagnetic signals by the speed of light. Therefore it becomes impossible to make a reduction in the latency below the following value of t,
T = distance/ speed of light
– Throughput is dominated by two factors namely the signal – to – noise ratio and the available channel bandwidth.

Protocols and Algorithms
– Some high latency TCP connections possess large bandwidth – delay product which when combines with the small window size of TCP causes a sharp reduction in the throughput with latency.
– Following methods can provide a solution for this:
1. Increasing the congestion window size of the TCP
2. Packet coalescing
3. TCP acceleration
4. Forward error correction
These methods are mostly employed for high latency links in satellites.

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