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Cisco, Router, Gt96k FE, RDP connections for 98 VM's over 2Mbps dedicated leased line

Posted on 2008-06-24
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Last Modified: 2013-11-21
Hi there,

I need some advice with regards to poor network performance over WAN. Following scenario:

As part of an outsourcing strategy, around 100 contractors in Hyderabad/India are required to access their assigned VM (Windows XP) hosted at the HQ in Brisbane/Australia. The WAN is a 2Mbps dedicated leased line using Cisco routers (Gt96k FE). The contractors have complained about slow network and application performance.

Our network department looked into this issue and compiled the below attached output taken from the Cisco routers and advised that the WAN connection is fully operational.

Our server team monitored system performance of 3 most affected VM's over the past month with the following results:
- CPU Usage (Average/Rate): 2.23%
- Disk Usage (Average/Rate): 22.82KBps
- Memory Usage (Average/Absolute): 4.75%
- Network Usage (Average/Rate): 1.61KBps

To me, it looks like the WAN connection of 2MBps is not in proportion to the required bandwidth. There are currently 98 VM's utilising a bandwidth of approx. 50KBps per RDP session. Doing some math: 98 VM's * 50KBps = 4,900KBps.

Any ideas?

Thanks and regards,
Rene
Snippet removed by Netminder 27 June 2008

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Question by:ServerManagementTeam
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by:kdearing
kdearing earned 300 total points
ID: 21862932
2Mb doesn't sound like enough bandwidth for 98 remote users.

But the part that concerns me is:
Client-Net#sh int fa0/1
       Total output drops: 2164943

You may have circuit issues or a flaky port on the router.

How are the users accessing their VM? TS/RDP? VNC? PcAnywhere? ftp?
What is the average number of concurrent users?
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by:ServerManagementTeam
ID: 21863003
Thanks for your reply. I'll pass this on to our network team. At this stage it's hard to tell the concurrent connections as I don't have enough info yet (will follow up on this). A rough estimate would be at least 70 concurrent connections. They accessing their VM's only over RDP (port 3389) and to my knowledge any other traffic may be restricted by firewalls (still need more info from the network guys). All the contractors are developers working on all sorts of different projects.

Regards,
Rene
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by:kdearing
kdearing earned 300 total points
ID: 21863210
Just an FYI,
RDP bandwidth requirements can vary greatly (28k - 1m) depending on several factors:
    Color depth
    Overall resolution
    Screen refresh rate
    Audio
    Printing
etc.

With 70 concurrent connections sharing 2Mb, that leaves only about 28k per user, which is at the low end.
I've heard that 28k is only good for text on low-res.
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arrkerr1024 earned 200 total points
ID: 21865986
I'll second that 2mbps is way too slow for that many users.  You might want to consider using a VPN over a standard internet line (or a couple) as well, and use the dedicated as a backup.  Dedicated I imagine is really expensive considering your distance, and with some pretty cheap Cisco ASAs or even older PIX you should be able to get some great vpn performance.

I also agree about making sure audio, printing, and drive mapping are all off and resolution is set really low - but it still doesn't sound like you've got anywhere near a fast enough line.
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