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  1. #1

    Question Colo Bandwidth Dilemma

    Iíve looked at quit a few co-location providers but none seem to fit this dilemma I am in.

    Hereís my situation:

    I plan to run a Unix machine that ideally will need 5mbit/s under normal operating conditions. But will need to be able to burst anywhere to 10 - 50 mbit/s at all times. However, 95% of the time itíll only use 3 - 5 mbit/s consistently. I find it kind of stupid to purchase a capped line at 50 mbit/s just to be safe when itís possible I wonít even break 5 mbit/s. I am familiar with ďburstable bandwidthĒ options but totally in the dark on how they work. Can I get some information/resource on everything from billing to anything else one would need to know? Yeah, Iíve heard of 95th percent tile billing but have no idea whatsoever on how that works. Any and all help greatly appreciated.

    Best Regards,

    Brad Meyers

  2. #2
    Take n measurements of the rate (typically every five minutes) of the port. At the end of the month sort them from the highest to the lowest. Index them with the lowest being 1 and the highest being X. Now find the index (i) of 95th percentile by find 95th percent of X. The rate corresponding to the (i) is the 95th percentile.
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  3. #3
    On 95th percentile billing, your bandwidth is typically sampled every 10 minutes. The top 5% of the samples is then discarded. 5% comes out to approximately 36 hours per month.

    If you burst to 50 megabits for more than 36 hours per month, you will be billed for it. Otherwise you will be billed for something closer to your "average" usage.

    Depending on how much you're paying, you may be better off going with unmetered options. If you don't need the burstability, you could go for a 10Mbps unmetered server. If you do need the burstability, you might want to go for a 100mbps unmetered option, though you will pay more.

    Good luck,
    Russell
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  4. #4
    Join Date
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    Maybe I'm just spoiled but all the colo providers I use do this, you get a 100mbit link to their hardware and then you pay for 95% bandwidth (sampled every 5 minutes not 10 for me).

    I see bursts of 80-90mbits quite regularly and my average runs around 20mbits (95% average).

    The two colos I use are GNAX (www.gnax.net) and fastcolocation (an HE reseller).
    Gary Harris - the artist formerly known as Dixiesys
    resident grumpy redneck

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    As others have said, you should be able to get a burstable 100Mb/sec port, billed on 95th percentile. Just be sure that "bursts" don't exceed 5% of your usage, though. You will be in for one heck of a colo bill, if they do.
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  6. #6
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    Re: Colo Bandwidth Dilemma

    But will need to be able to burst anywhere to 10 - 50 mbit/s at all times. However, 95% of the time itíll only use 3 - 5 mbit/s consistently.
    Then 5Mb/s burstable to 100 on 95%ile is exactly what you need
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  7. #7
    Lets say for instance I got a 10/100 burstable port.

    Lets say I bursted to 50mbit/s for 30 hours out of the month but all the rest of the time I retained a steady 5mbit/s.

    I know you need to know the price of the bandwidth to calculate the bill but could someone draw me a rough figure. Let's say I used Equinox pricing for a 10/100 burstable port.

    Best Regards,

    Brad Meyers

  8. #8
    Join Date
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    Basically the way it works for most is every 5 minutes the current bandwidth usage is measured, at the end of the month the top 5% is chopped off and you pay for the usage of the top spike left.

    So basically out of a 30 day month there are 8640 "checks" of those the "worst" 432 are discarded then you pay for the worst spike left. So theoretically you could use 100mbit for 432 x 5 or 36 hours and then use 5 mbits for the rest of the time and only pay for 5 mbits.
    Gary Harris - the artist formerly known as Dixiesys
    resident grumpy redneck

  9. #9
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    95%ile takes the top 5% of the peaks and disreagrds them , so if you burted over for under 5% then you'd pay for 5Mb/s ...
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  10. #10
    Join Date
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    Keep in mind that you'll never have steady 5Mb/s traffic unless you traffic shape, which will sacrafice quality. Sample periods of 5 - 10 minutes smooth out most true bursting, but your traffic will ebb and flow with the U.S. business day and evening prime-time just like most hosting traffic. Most folks should expect their 95th percentile measurement for web hosting traffic (not streaming, etc) to be about 80% above their mean ("average") traffic for a month with no traffic shaping or saturation.
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    95th Percentile Explained Rate-Limiting on Cisco IOS switches

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