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How Virtual Private Networks Work

The world has changed a lot in the last couple of decades. Instead of simply dealing with local or regional concerns, many businesses now have to think about global markets and logistics. Many companies have facilities spread out across the country or around the world, and there is one thing that all of them need: A way to maintain fast, secure and reliable communications wherever their offices are. Until fairly recently, this has meant the use of leased lines to maintain a wide area network (WAN). Leased lines, ranging from ISDN (integrated services digital network, 128 Kbps) to OC3 (Optical Carrier-3, 155 Mbps) fiber, provided a company with a way to expand its private network beyond its immediate geographic area. A WAN had obvious advantages over a public network like the Internet when it came to reliability, performance and security. But maintaining a WAN, particularly when using leased lines, can become quite expensive and often rises in cost as the distance between the offices increases. As the popularity of the Internet grew, businesses turned to it as a means of extending their own networks. First came intranets, which are password-protected sites designed for use only by company employees. Now, many companies are creating their own VPN (virtual private network) to accommodate the needs of remote employees and distant offices. A typical VPN might have a main LAN at the corporate headquarters of a company, other LANs at remote offices or facilities and individual users connecting from out in the field.

Basically, a VPN is a private network that uses a public network (usually the Internet) to connect remote sites or users together. Instead of using a dedicated, real-world connection such as leased line, a VPN uses "virtual" connections routed through the Internet from the company's private network to the remote site or employee. In this article, you will gain a fundamental understanding of VPNs, and learn about basic VPN components, technologies, tunneling and security.

Multiple T1 line networks

Private T1 lines are superior to "best effort" digital lines such as DSL or cable connecting to the Internet, and even dedicated Internet connections. Why? Because you have exclusive use of the network.
Say your organization has a main office and a dozen substantial locations for retail sales, design, warehousing, manufacturing, medical or business services. It's vital that all locations are interconnected on a real-time basis with dependable bandwidth to share files and perhaps telephone communications. Within a building or small campus, everyone is on the same LAN. It makes no difference if they are in side-by-side offices or on different floors. On the network, everyone is right next door. Wouldn't it be perfect if that network included all locations?
T1 point-to-point private lines give you the ability to extend your network across town or even internationally. These are also known as WAN connections to complement your local or LAN connections. What distinguishes T1 lines for this purpose is proven reliability, guaranteed service, almost universal availability, and exclusive fixed bandwidth. These "transparent" data pipes give you the ability to engineer your network to run exactly that way you want.
T1 lines are a proven technology. Developed in the 1950's for use by the telephone companies, the T1 line is the basic digital line service for business applications. It has a fixed 1.5 Mbps bandwidth in each direction. That bandwidth can be allocated to network data, converged VoIP and computer data, or segregated into 24 individual standard telephone channels. If you need more bandwidth, T1 lines can be bonded to create typically 2x to 9x the individual line capacity. Usually higher bandwidth needs that these are assigned to DS3 circuits at 45 Mbps for cost reasons. However, in remote locations where there is no installed DS3 service, it might be cheaper to install multiple bonded T1 lines to get the required bandwidth.
What is a private line? It's essentially a T1 line that connects directly point-to-point from one business location to another. It's called a private line to distinguish it from an Internet connection, which is shared by multiple users outside of your organization. Can you use Internet connections to link your operations? Sure. Generally this is done by using VPN software that encrypts your data to create secure private "tunnels" within the Internet. If your primary use is Internet access and have an occasional need to send files between locations, this might be the best way to go. Order an Internet T1 line for each location and set up a VPN for your organization's private data transfers.
What an Internet connection doesn't do is guarantee your bandwidth between locations. Your T1 lines will always run at 1.5 Mbps, but the rest of the Internet is truly a public thoroughfare. Congestion occurs and things slow down at random. There is no ability to engineer QoS for voice or video. For email or non-time critical data exchanges this may not matter. It's critical for high quality phone service and real-time applications such as remote control or simulation.
A private T1 line between locations is an empty pipe until you fill it. It's perfect for interconnecting PBX telephone systems or local area networks. You have complete control of priority for different types of services, so you can ensure real time video conferencing that doesn't break up or VoIP phone calls that aren't garbled or dropped.
Learn more about high reliability voice, data or video connectivity among two or more locations at Shopforbandwidth.com.

The Art of Pricing a DS1 Line

While some people may enjoy a trip to the local shopping mall, shopping for telecommunication services like a T1 line has never been fun. If you happen to be looking for a dedicated voice line you may call the local phone company. Chances are you'll be passed around to three or four different people who can't handle your request for a T1 line. When you finally speak with someone who can answer your questions you'll go through a litany of questions that don't get to the point of your call which is, "How much do I have to pay".

A step up from a call to the local phone company is the use of a broker or agent. An independent agent can help reduce the number of phone calls by asking you the questions once and searching through multiple providers to get the service that is right for you. The agent helps steer clear of the bias you will receive when speaking with one vendor as the agent will be paid no matter which service you choose. If you happen to be searching for a dedicated voice T1, the agent will give you quotes for dedicated voice T1's for multiple service providers. Still, the agent has a shortcoming in that there is typically a delay between the time you have your conversation and the time you get your information. This can take a day or two.

Why not have the best of both worlds? An agent who carried no bias for one particular carrier AND immediate feedback! While this was not possible a few months ago, we have found a T1 line provider than can offer real-time quotes through its agents. A real time quote give you information NOW. There is no waiting to find pricing. Simply enter your information and compare pricing immediately. Real time pricing will do for telecommunications shopping what Expedia and Travelocity did for travel. So why wait? If you're searching for a T1 line make sure you use a broker that can help you with your search in real time.

fractional T1


A fractional T1 or T3 line is a T1 or T3 digital phone line in the North American T-carrier system that is leased to a customer at a fraction of its data-carrying capacity and at a correspondingly lower cost. A T1 line contains 24 channels, each with a data transfer capacity of 64 Kbps. The customer can rent some number of the 24 channels. The transmission method and speed of transfer remain the same. Overhead bits and framing are still used, but the unrented channels simply contain no data.
T3 lines (which offer 672 64 Kbps channels) are also sometimes offered as a fractional service. T1 and fractional T1 service are sometimes advertised as "point-to-point" service (from the customer to the service provider).

How to Tell You Need T1 or a T3 Service


So you are a network administrator. Maybe you work for a large company with thousands of employees who are constantly nagging your department or maybe you manage the network of a small yet growing company. Regardless of the size, style, or purpose of your network, you could benefit greatly from the service of a T1 line or a T3 line.

How can you tell if your network needs to be upgraded to T1 service or a T3 line? Here are just a few of the warning signs that can indicate that T1 lines or a T3 lines might alleviate some issues: do your employees (or you yourself) consistently experience delays and outages with the internet and intranet access causing inefficiency and frustration? When you sit at your desk, switch on your computer, and attempt to access the internet, is there a frequent wait or delay time that causes you to want to walk away or do something else while the “page loads”? Has your IT and Network Services staff been so bombarded by requests for increased bandwidth that you’ve had to create a separate file for them?

If you answered any of these questions with a “yes” or a quiet “perhaps”, then an upgrade to a T1 internet service or bonded T1’s or fractional or full T3 service (if you already have a T1 service at your company) might be great options for your company. This upgrade may actually solve a great deal of hassle that has been slowing down the efficiency and productivity of your business. With a faster internet connection, the larger bandwidth component also translates to faster data transfer and web surfing. This ability of T1 service to split apart and allow multi channel usage is one of the most sophisticated features it provides.

In contrast to this, T1 can handle many users, and because multiple lines can be bonded together and networked centrally, a T1 network can maintain an incredible bandwidth range across a high number of potential users accessing its mainframe. Also, if the T1 network needs to be distributed across a large space, VPN, or virtual private network clients can easily assist in the distribution and administration of your bandwidth.

When all is said and done, a majority of larger businesses have already realized the maximum efficiency and bandwidth power that is derived from T1 and T3 services. It now only remains for the smaller companies to understand the benefits they would garner if they considered switching to T1 line or T3 line. If you have questions, or are unsure whether or not you need T1 services, visit www.shopforbandwidth.com, a resourceful website with all kinds of information regarding T1 services and T3 services for your specific needs.

Get T1 and T3 line price

OC3 Service Experts


OC3, although not a new type of broadband internet service, has only recently been more popular among growing businesses. Now that many growing midsize companies have found that multiple T1 and T3 lines are inefficient and cannot meet their bandwidth needs, these companies have turned to OC3 lines, a more flexible broadband option that can free the bottlenecks in their networks and allows them flexibility to further grow. This change in focus from T1 and T3 lines to OC3 and OC12 connections has caused a new boom in the amount of network needed. More people are also sending audio and video files online and are even watching videos through sites like youtube.com.

So how do you find an OC3 service expert to assist you with your change over to OC3 from your older and slower network systems such as a DS3 line? Just look on the internet and you will find shopforbandwidth.com! They specialize with helping growing businesses in finding the right bandwidth solution at the best prices available from the many providers they work with.

While there are possibly hundreds of service providers online who would claim to be OC3 service experts, very few truly look out for the best interest of the businesses. They often overpromise and undeliver. That is why shopforbandwidth.com has been a “breath of fresh air in the IT community,” according to one of the clients who has worked with them the last several years. It provides its customers with quick and easy access to all the relevant broadband services they may need, from a T1 service to an OC3 and above. While a typical phone book search or online search could take weeks to get all the needed quotes and bids from a wide variety of “OC3 Experts”, shopforbandwidth.com can assist you in your search and give you feedback on what provider may best fit your needs. They have preferential contracts with the best Tier 1 bandwidth providers who provide the quality of service that a business would expect for an OC3 network.

At shopforbandwidth.com, you need only select the service you are looking for, be it OC3, Burstable OC3, Bonded T1’s or bonded DS3’s, or even MLPS or Frame Relay services. After selecting the bandwidth service you are looking for, you then enter in you address, service phone number, and the time frame in which you are interested in purchasing your broadband solution. With this information, shopforbandwidth.com searches among the various providers to help you find the best deal available on OC3 prices.

DS3 Price Trends

Like most telecommunications services DS3 prices (commonly known at T3) have been falling for the last few years. This is due to several factors. Competition has been heating up since deregulation in 1996. The number of companies offering service has exploded. With more competition in the marketplace service providers have to reduce their prices to attract customer and keep them from going to competitors. Service providers are desperate to keep margins but even more desperate to keep adding customers. This competetive arena has created a buyers market for DS3 lines and pricing is as favorable as it has ever been!

The soft economy and crash of the stock market has also contributed to the reduction in ds3 price. Since the peak of the market in 1999 many companies have gone out of business and no longer require service. This means there's a smaller pie available and there are plenty of telecom providers trying to get their share. Once again, the buyer is in control and can shop until he or she finds the price that is right for them.

A final reason for the reduction in DS3 pricing is the fact that equipement costs and the cost of supplying the bandwidth have decreased. This means that companies can supply the bandwidth at a lower cost. As bandwidth usage continues to increase as a result of bandwidth hungry applications like video on demand and graphic heavy applications the price of bandwidth will coninue to drop. The only factor that seems tlikely to inhibit prices from falling much further is the "last mile" or the connection from the users premise to the service providers' POP (Point of Presence), but we'll save this issue for another article. Until then, enjoy those affordable DS3's and good luck finding a price that's right for you!

Many Bandwidth Providers now include Managed Routers in T1 services


T1 service for internet and intranet access has been one of the most relied upon services for professionals and some home business users for a number of years now. The fact is that many growing small businesses are denied the bandwidth they need to grow by slow, inefficient and unreliable Cable or DSL services. Now that many organizations are realizing the need to create an expanded internet presence, the use of T1 lines has increased significantly. However, many skeptics counter the T1 internet service is still expensive, and, if that weren’t enough, the T1 router and hardware required for such a network can be a high upfront capital investment for a small business to make.

For such skeptics, T1 service providers have been updating and re-pricing their T1 prices in order to stay competitive. Go back a few years, and you would see bandwidth providers charging close to a thousand dollars for T1 connections and several thousand dollars a month for T3 connections. In recent times, typical T1 services cost around $300 to $800 a month, depending on the distance the location is from the local POP (point of presence). With the increased costs of a T1 pricing, comes a noticeable jump in reliable upstream bandwidth: a T1 line can service up to 1.544 megabytes per second both upstream and downstream, making it a large step ahead of DSL and Cable services.

In addition, T1 service providers have gone above and beyond the norm of internet service and hosting – many T1 providers now offer promotional deals that give customers a free leased T1 router with a term commitment and the install is waived. This can cut the cost considerably, and can be the deciding factor in many small businesses switching over.

There are also other important factors to choosing T1 services besides cost. A T1 connection can be set up to connect various locations together on a private network through MPLS or Multi-Protocol Label Switching service, and is offered by different bandwidth service providers at an additional fee which varies depending on bandwidth needs and number of locations. This is set up on a fully meshed network where all sites can interact with each other. With the older technology, the www.shopforbandwidth.com. It provides access to all the specific bandwidth services you need, assisting you in your search for the best deal on T1, T3, Frame Relay and MPLS services all in your own local area.

Finding the Right T1/T3/DS3 Provider


Finding the Right T1/T3/DS3 Provider

Hundreds of different national network providers all the way down to regional and local providers of T1 service exist currently. The problem for those who are looking to make a smart upgrade to T1 is not finding a provider, but the task of narrowing down the seemingly endless, vast army of providers down to which one will be most beneficial to your particular need. There are, of course, many ways to do this. You can search for local companies in the phone book, or even look endlessly on the internet attempting to find the Best T1 provider for you in your area.

However, there is another way that is more time efficient, cost effective, and can help you find the best T1 service provider for you in your local area in just minutes. At www.shopforbandwidth.com, businesses are able to find and purchase broadband services that are the exact fit for their needs. Among the benefits of Shopforbandwidth.com include its ease of use, its time saving process, and more importantly its ability to help clients reduce costs.

Shopforbandwidth.com holds preferential contracts with many providers. This makes it almost a certainty that deals, promotions, and costs of broadband services like a T1 line found through www.shopforbandwidth.com will be lower than if you choose to shop elsewhere. Sometimes it can take a traditional buyer days and even weeks to get a selection of competitive bids from multiple vendors who sell T1, T3, or DS3 services. At Shopforbandwidth.com customers are able to use a single place to find all the bids and quotes they need to decide on a T1 service provider that best suits their needs.

Besides a T1 internet connection, it is even more difficult and time consuming to look into purchasing the hardware and services to set up a T3 or DS3 service. A T3 line is much faster than a T1 line, providing around 45 megabytes per second, almost 30 times as fast as a T1 service. Most often, T3 service lines (also known as DS3 lines) are used by large ISPs and websites with lots of bandwidth need. Because the service is more expensive and the local loop cost can vary greatly, it is even more important to consider all aspects when considering a T3/ DS3 connection for your business or organization. Prices typically start at around $3,000 a month, and can add additional monthly costs based on how remote the location is.

Shopforbandwidth.com offers a wide selection of different types of T1 and T3 lines, including Point to Point, Bonded, and Burstable circuits. This allows you to research your different options and be able to find the exact type of services you need without having to deal with different salespeople hounding you regularly. A glossary of terms and services is also provided at Shopforbandwidth.com, to help you find out the information you need, not just find the broadband services you may be looking for.

What are the benefits of MPLS vs. Frame relay?


Your company's growing and you've been put in charge of finding a solution that is comparable in pricing with the frame relay but offers more bandwidth. What do you do?

You've noticed that your current network is slow and inflexible. You do research and find that MPLS is a newer technology that may fit your needs. However, those initials are foreign to you and you need to know a lot more before recommending to your company.

You've come to the right place as you'll be able to learn some useful benefits of MPLS vs. frame relay.

Benefits of MPLS:

* Multi-protocol label switching (MPLS) was invented to solve the problem of bridging multiple disparate protocols such as Frame Relay, ATM and Ethernet.
* Over the last few years, MPLS has become the dominant internetworking technology. More and more providers are migrating to MPLS.
* Carriers have deployed IP/MPLS core routers in order to support existing legacy networks more cost effectively.
* Fundamentally, MPLS employs an encapsulation technique providing internetworking between different technologies, coupled with signaling protocols necessary to discover, configure and manage connectivity.
* In addition to signaling protocols, MPLS uses resiliency protocols, such as Fast Re-route and Bi-directional Fault Detection, to determine failures and in turn switching to standby links.
* The strength of these protocols combined with the popularity of MPLS core networks have made MPLS a logical choice for extending into metro networks.
* Vendors have responded by creating MPLS-enabled multi-service platforms with a mixture of legacy port options.

MPLS combines the multi-service and traffic management capabilities of ATM with the scalability of packet networks to create a best-of-breed service provider network.

Main reasons to deploy MPLS include:

* Cost reduction through data network convergence: MPLS facilitates the convergence of disparate Frame Relay, ATM, Ethernet and IP networks onto a single infrastructure to reduce capital and operational expenses. The cost savings can be up to 40% from frame relay.
* Integration of voice, video and data services: MPLS's traffic management capabilities enable this services "triple play" on a common backbone.
* New high-margin revenue opportunities through MPLS-based service offerings: MPLS's flexibility, high availability and multi-service support enables service providers to offer strict SLAs, increasing revenue and margins.

MPLS can lower operational costs by integrating multiple services onto a common backbone; has integrated capabilities which enable service providers to offer strict SLAs and thereby increase revenue and margins; and facilitates the convergence of disparate Frame Relay, ATM, Ethernet and IP networks onto a single infrastructure to reduce capital and operating expenses.

Find out from Shopforbandwidth.com which providers offer this service and if it is available in all of your locations. They specialize in finding the right bandwidth solutions to fit any business application requirement as they work with over 20 providers. They'll do all the research Free for your company including negotiating the best rates from available vendors in your area. Once you decide on the best solution, they'll help you throughout the provisioning process and with customer service should you have any issue with the provider making your job easier.

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Welcome to Shopforbandwidth.com, your one stop source for broadband and cloud services for businesses. Save both time and money when your purchase your business Ethernet services. Our convenient service allows you to buy Ethernet network service, MPLS services, T3 lines, DS3 lines, OC3 connections, VPN, frame relay, point to point T3, or FastE services. You can get free quotes by simply filling out the form below to get started today! You can also request a No-Cost Telecom Bill Audit!

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