Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Steppin' Out With My Ethernet

Ethernet connects all of our computing equipment within the enterprise. It's the standard protocol for LAN or Local Area Network connections. Wouldn't it be nice if we could just string that Ethernet backbone out the door and across town or across the country? Well, now we can.

You're no doubt familiar with DSL, T1, DS3, and perhaps SONET fiber optic connections. All of these are used for metropolitan or long haul voice and data services. There's also a recently introduced service called Carrier Ethernet. In town it's referred to as Metropolitan or Metro Ethernet.

Carrier Ethernet is the technology that moves your network out of the office to just about anywhere you want to go. Other technologies will do that too, but Ethernet has a couple of notable advantages.

First of all is the ease of connecting and managing your extended LAN. With Carrier Ethernet, you can connect all of your scattered offices, factories and warehouses as if they were on the same network. You just have very, very long wires inbetween.

The other big and perhaps more important advantage is lower costs. Competitive Ethernet Service providers have newer regional and national networks based on IP technology that works very well with Ethernet. They are also aggressively expanding their points of presence (POPs) to bring connectivity to business users. Residential users will continue to get their broadband Internet connections through Cable, telco and wireless service providers.

What type of Ethernet services are available? The most popular speeds are 10/100/1000 Mbps, the same speeds that are standard for NIC or Network Interface Cards. There are also two delivery methods. For Gigabit Ethernet, also known as GigE, fiber optic connections are essential. That's no problem if your building is already lit for fiber optic service. If not, a competitive carrier might choose to "light" your building if there are a sufficient number of clients willing to sign up for substantial amounts of bandwidth. If that isn't cost effective, Ethernet over Copper may be the answer.

EoC or Ethernet over Copper is a mechanism for transporting standard Ethernet at 10 Mbps or Fast Ethernet at 100 Mbps over distances a few miles or less. The copper is standard twisted pair copper telco wiring that would otherwise be used for analog telephone or T1 voice and data lines. Newer modulation techniques make it practical to carry Ethernet bandwidths on lines once thought to be limited to 1.5 Mbps or less.

Are your ready to step out of the office with your Ethernet? If so, check fiber optic or EoC Carrier Ethernet service pricing and availability for your business.

Click to check pricing and features or get support from a Telarus product specialist.

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