Tuesday, 17 June 2014

Bandwidth upgrade arrives

As you're probably aware, PLS manages the telecommunications network which provides public Internet access and the delivery of the One Card LMS software.  We're very conscious that there is never enough bandwidth to do everything that people want to do - particularly when we have limited funds to apply to this part of our business. (Having said that, our network bill is the largest single service cost for PLS.)

So, with the challenges of people wanting more bandwidth, but with limited funds PLS continues to refine our services, look for improvements in what our providers offer and how much they will charge us for these services.  We have been able to upgrade much of our network over the last 18 months or so to improve performance.  These upgrades have been in the libraries' connections back to the PLS "gateway" to the Internet.  This gateway has been a 60MB channel to the Internet.

As of tomorrow (18 June) this gateway will be upgraded to be a 200MB connection.  We expect that this will deliver increased performance for libraries, and will be monitoring the network's performance to see what impact this has.

There are other advantages of this new service as well.  One is that we now have the ability to filter what information comes onto our network.  We are using this ability to filter out malware which could harm our network. However we are not using this to filter any content. The other advantage is that we have increased capacity to monitor network performance, which should help us to address faults more quickly as well as identifying network bottlenecks etc.

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