Server 2003 Terminal Services and cable vs. T-1 internet service

JP_TechGroup used Ask the Experts™
Comcast business internet offers an 8Mb/2Mb connection in our location. A T-1 connection from AT&T is, of course 1.5 Mb. In this day and age, is there any reason to spend the money on a T-1 for internet only connectivity, while servicing a terminal server? If so, why?
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That question is still being debated, but mostly boils down to:
T-1 if you really need the better up-time and want to avoid possible slowdowns durning "peak" loads you could get from cable.
Also T-1 should have a higher "fix me now" than cable in the event of unavoidable problems.

But most people that have switched to Business Cable, seem fairly happy with it. Though ComCast does take some flack about some of their policies.
Coral47 has hit most of the high points.  The big thing about a T1 is guarantees and consistency.  Typically a T1 will have language in the contract about:
  • Percentage of uptime, how many outages per month are allowed (not many)
  • Time of outage, when an event does occur, how long will you be down (and it’s not long)
  • Bandwidth consistency, making sure you get all of the contracted 1.5Mbit in each direction
On the other hand, with cable, you often get more general statements about these.  It’s shared bandwidth so you will likely see times with your bandwidth is impacted. If an outage does occur, it may be some time before it’s restored, possibly even days (although that would be rare, but possible).
So, if you need/want a service with high uptime percentage, go with a T1 and factor the higher cost as a cost of doing business.  If you can tolerate the random long outage or occasional BW impact, cable can save some serious money.  Ask yourself (or the business manager) what the business impact would be for a day without service.  If the cost is more than the difference between cable and T1, you have your answer.


Excellent comments guys... thank you for your input!

Thank you much.   : )

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