What's the Real Issue and How to Solve it (Gigabit or other?)

Discussion in 'Benchmarks & Performance' started by kcnychief, Dec 29, 2007.

  1. kcnychief

    kcnychief █▄█ ▀█▄ █ Political User Folding Team

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    So as of right now I download a file each night M-F that is around 3GB from another location. That may be changing soon to add around a 13GB file which would give me roughly 16GB of data being downloaded nightly. (Before I go any further, I don't want to get into details as to what it is, it is perfectly legal business related activity, and I have written proof from my ISP that I am allowed to do this monthly).

    My question is this -

    Currently I have Comcast Cable Modem, a Linksys WRT54G, a desktop and a NAS. Obviously the switch on the Linksys is only 10/100, and the NAS only has a 10/100 adapter. Basically the files come through the internet right to the NAS, and then I do a sync to my desktop so the next week can come in. That process I'm fine with, but I would like to speed this up some if I can.

    Obviously downloads of this size take time, but I was thinking about making the purchase of a gigabit switch/router to replace the WRT54G (would still hang it off new gigabit device for wifi support), upgrade the cabling to Cat 6 (still using Cat 5, ick!), and upgrade the NAS to one that is better and also has a Gigabit interface. I'm not entirely worried about the cost as I can get the job to pay for some, but is it going to be worth it? I suppose I should try to get one of those bandwidth monitors and see what I'm pulling down now, and then try to take note?

    Any suggestions on what I can take a look at or expect now vs. when/if I upgrade? I am not so concerned with transfers inside the network, although that would also improve since the DT has a Gigabit NIC.
     
  2. Dark Atheist

    Dark Atheist Moderator Political User Folding Team

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    you can use cat 5e on gbit, although 6 is preferred, now to make sure i understand you, you are on about gbit lan? how many pcs are on this lan and how many will you require the gbit speed, if like mine its 2 i have 2 gbit cards on the amd box and a gbit on the bsd box, connected by crossover using cat 6, if its more than 2 and you dont have the time to leave the pc tranfersing the data i would say get a gbit router/switch, best to shop about as gbit network equipment is coming down in price but someplaces are still expensive
     
  3. American Zombie

    American Zombie Moderator Staff Member Political User

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    You are probably getting max speed now as far as connection goes. Look in task manager/network tab for link speed. If 100 Mbps then you are already at more then Comcast offers as far as your setup. One way to speed up a download is with a download manager as it will open multiple connections to the file. Even though I have Comcast I still use Reget for large downloads.
     
  4. LeeJend

    LeeJend Moderator

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    Wasn't sure which part was of concern, the download or the NAS to PC transfer, so...

    Your screwed on the download.
    Fastest I've heard of is 10 mbps from Comcast. That means 10/8*.72 (theoretical overhead of ethernet) or about 900 kBytes per second = 18.5 minutes per gig in the best case. Since cable is shared bandwidth that can drop off sharply if you have neighbors doing p2p overnight also. The efficiency of the server on the other end could cause slow downs and the way Comcast handles the traffic also. The ISPs have been doing internal metering and even blocking and won't admit until caught in the act.

    From NAS to PC even at 100 mbps shouldn't be a big problem since it will be at least 10 times faster, or almost 2 gigabytes per minute. Going to gigabit LAN will help if it is direct connect but I saw some reviews that indicated you won't see a 10x jump like when we went from 10 to 100 mpbs LANs.

    The NAS may be slower than the LAN 100 mbps (or a gigalan) so I would check it's performance before upgrading the LAN.

    An alternative might be firewire if the NAS support it. The max speed on firewire is slower than gigabit lan but its supposed to have amore efficient transfer protocol.

    USB 2 should also be faster than 10/100 mbps LAN if the NAS has a USB port.

    Once you've determined the network and the NAS aren't the limiting factor then make sure the PC is using MB based ports (SATA preferably). A PCI slot HD adapter will be a speed limiter.

    If other users on the NAS are an issue you could schedule a "daily maintenance" for it where you are the sole user... ;)
     
  5. kcnychief

    kcnychief █▄█ ▀█▄ █ Political User Folding Team

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    Great stuff guys and gives me some things to consider, much appreciated!
     
  6. Dark Atheist

    Dark Atheist Moderator Political User Folding Team

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    fastest i have got with my gbit is 45meg/sec - although when other box was linux it claimed it transfered a few files at near 80meg/sec :) but norm its between 40-45
     
  7. American Zombie

    American Zombie Moderator Staff Member Political User

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    Nope, some areas already have 16/1 or 16/2 tier called Blast.
     
  8. American Zombie

    American Zombie Moderator Staff Member Political User

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    I think the file transfer is NOT on a LAN as Comcast is an ISP not a LAN.
     
  9. Dark Atheist

    Dark Atheist Moderator Political User Folding Team

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    i was refering to the fact he was on about transfering to a NAS which i understand is on a LAN ;)
     
  10. j79zlr

    j79zlr Glaanies script monkey Political User

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    My Comcast can have burst speeds of around 16Mbit or 2MB/s. It usually sustains that for around 30 secs max. But I agree with the previous posts, that speed is still well under the performance of 100Mbit LAN speeds, so it will not be your bottleneck.
     
  11. kcnychief

    kcnychief █▄█ ▀█▄ █ Political User Folding Team

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    Well, my current NAS enclosure is on the way out and I need a new switch/router. So, I'm going to get the Linksys RVS4000

    http://www.linksys.com/servlet/Satellite?c=L_Product_C2&childpagename=US%2FLayout&pagename=Linksys%2FCommon%2FVisitorWrapper&cid=1150490915278

    And just need to find a decent NAS (I'm thinking two of these for redundancy)

    http://www.amazon.com/LaCie-301138U-Ethernet-External-Drive/dp/B000MAM0KQ

    Since my hand is somewhat forced, I'll post back with if there is a noticeable difference after this upgrade. Should have them here and configured in about two weeks.

    Not ordering until Monday though, any other recommendations on the above are welcome.
     
  12. Steevo

    Steevo Spammer representing. Political User Folding Team

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    Windows Homer Server. Two 1TB drives in RAID 1.
     
  13. Dark Atheist

    Dark Atheist Moderator Political User Folding Team

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    which corrupts your files if your unlucky :p - linux/unix with samba :)
     
  14. Steevo

    Steevo Spammer representing. Political User Folding Team

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    Only if you are modifying the files on the server during a backup or copy procedure. Schedule your backups/copies to be ran at a time that you are not using the system.
     
  15. kcnychief

    kcnychief █▄█ ▀█▄ █ Political User Folding Team

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    Ended up getting two Lacie 500GB drives, some Cat6 cabling and a new gigabit router. Should be able to tell within a few days if this makes a difference :D
     
  16. lancer

    lancer There is no answer! Political User Folding Team

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    KC you will notice no difference what so ever. Not sure if anyone here knows what i do, but lets say i upload about 20gb's per night to our ftp server for one of our editors to download in CA.

    Our upload is just as fast as our download, T1.


    We have a 1000mbps network, previously we had a 100mbps network, i still only get a max upload or download of around 270k.

    Buying a gigabit router or switch will make no difference to your downloads at all.

    Gigabit hardware is really only meant for internal office or interoffice networks.

    If it is available in your area i would suggest fios... or in some areas comcast offers a 16mbps connection... nothing else we make any difference.
     
  17. kcnychief

    kcnychief █▄█ ▀█▄ █ Political User Folding Team

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    I do have the 16mbps Comcast, and I'm fine with the download sorta. Just really hoping to improve on internal transfer traffic when the drives replicate for redundancy in backup.
     
  18. lancer

    lancer There is no answer! Political User Folding Team

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    the only improvement i could see is a switch and router that deals with packet loss and/or conflicts better, other than that?!
     
  19. Geffy

    Geffy Moderator Folding Team

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    As a few people have mentioned your internet connection is going to be the bottleneck. Something that might well help though would be a diff based download. Assuming its a unix/linux server you are downloading from you could use Rsync with SSH. The first time its run it will download the files in full but after that only the differences should be downloaded. This may well help though it does depend a bit on how the files are changed each time.

    In this case you would shift the downloaded version off the NAS onto your desktop, or else copy the downloaded version to a different location on the NAS. Provided the original files are in the same dir rsync is downloading to it should only get the differences.

    This may well help or could at least be worth a try to see if it is able to speed up the download process or if it requires a complete download of the files each time.
     
  20. kcnychief

    kcnychief █▄█ ▀█▄ █ Political User Folding Team

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    Without getting specific, it is a requirement to download the full file each time for BCP reasons.

    I would think though, that the NAS previously in use, the PC I sync with, and the current router/switch are all 10/100 - am curious to see what, if anything, helps out by going gigabit across the board.