Bandwidth Load Balancer Will Shave Your Bandwidth Cost

A bandwidth load balancer is a device that intelligently load balances the Internet traffic over 2 or more ISP links. With the latest bandwidth load balancer devices that are equipped with broadband bonding technology, it is possible to combine the several ISP links into one IP connection with the combined speed of the sum of all of the individual links.

This bandwidth load balancing approach sets up an interesting comparison: is an Internet service that is powered by a bandwidth load balancer better than a single Internet service from a single ISP with the equivalent performance specs?

To answer this question, one must consider various aspects of this comparison – more specifically: performance, reliability and cost. In terms of performance, you can easily achieve or surpass the performance of a single ISP link by combining forces of various ISP connections. In most cases, the bandwidth load balanced IP connection will outperform the single ISP link. This result also extends to the reliability of the two approaches as a bandwidth load balancer will enable high 9s uptime for the office network, as long as at least one of the ISP links are up and running. The final leg of the stool is the cost. In most cases, building a faster and more reliable Internet connectivity by bandwidth load balancing several cheaper ISP links is also more cost effective than a single ISP link with higher bandwidth.

So bandwidth load balancers indeed are better than a single ISP connection in terms of performance, reliability and cost – did someone say “win, win, win?”

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Cahit Akin, CEO, Mushroom Networks, Inc.

Mushroom Networks is the provider of SD-WAN (Software Defined WAN) and NFV solutions capable of Broadband Bonding that enables self-healing WAN networks that route around network problems such as latency, jitter and packet loss.


2 thoughts on “Bandwidth Load Balancer will shave your bandwidth cost

  1. One important note here: If you have 2 DSL lines brought into an office, it is likely over the same last mile backbone. Therefore, it is important to get heterogeneous links, like one Coax, one DSL, to ensure dual last mile connectivity.

    Basically, in the event of a copper cut to the premises, you’re screwed even with dual ISP over 2 DSL lines, but heterogeneous networks aren’t vulnerable to this sort of disruption.

    I’d love some more technical details on what you’re using to load balance. PFSense?

    (Please note: These points are not important in a Datacenter where everyone runs their own Fiber).

  2. Thank you very much Joshua for raising a very important point you. Indeed it is recommended that the WAN links are from diverse ISPs and therefore a common point of failure is avoided.

    If the load balancing is done at a session granularity, i.e. a single session traverses only one of the ISP, then the failure of the ISP links carrying that session will bring down that session (i.e. say if it is a file transfer, the file download will fail), so it is only a limited way of protecting against failure. However, if the aggregation is done at a packet level distributing even a single session over the multiple WAN links (i.e. broadband bonding) then the failure of a single ISP link can be shielded from the application (i.e. the file transfer will continue without failure, albeit with slower speed since the bandwidth on the failed ISP is no longer there).

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