Could my computers be slow because of my network switch?
Posted on 2011-03-07
HP ML350G5 w/ Gigabit and Windows SBS 2003 SP2
HP ML350G5 w/ Gigabit and Win 2003 SP2 as Terminal Server
Linksys SRW224G4 as main switch
D-Link 8-port Gigabit unmanaged switch (we ran out of ports) connected to a Gigabit port on the main switch. Each server is connected to this D-Link. (No performance difference was noticed when this was installed about a year after the initial setup)
Watchguard Core X550e
Bonded T1 internet (3M/3M)
Core 2 Duo E8400
Windows XP SP3
HP EliteBook 6930p
Core 2 Duo T9550
Windows 7 64-bit SP1
Some computers have another 5 port switch in between.
Almost all computers have a Linksys SPA962 VOIP phone (with pass-through network) in between the wall and PC.
My question is generally a broad one, I think. Why are my computers so slow?
I'm not talking about internet speed. I understand a 3M connection sucks. It's all that's available here now. I also understand that Outlook will probably be slow when some users have 5-10GB mail stores. I get that too. I'm trying to convince the partners to get a new dedicated mail server and upgrade the servers we have. In fact, I'm recommending upgrading our whole system with more RAM and WIndows 7 64-bit and Solid State Hard Drives across the board. I'm looking at a $65,000 ask (and that's a tough sell).
I need to be sure that the reason our computers are slow isn't something stupid like a low performance network switch. What made me think that is I read on the internet that performance can be improved if you set a secondary gateway to your managed switch...something about pathway to the server. We do have a managed switch, but the default (and only) gateway is set through DHCP (my SBS) to the WatchGuard firewall.
We have Core 2 Duo computers we purchased at the end of 2008. These were higher-end machines for the basic usage of a law firm. When we go to open Acrobat 9.4 on my C2D T9550, it takes a solid 7 seconds to open. If I'm accessing a 10MB PDF on the SBS, it takes another 10 seconds or so. It's not bad-hard-drive-slow, it's Pentium Dual-Core slow. Not blown-capacitor slow, but Turion slow.
I don't want to ask for $65,000 and have it end up being a $300 switch that's causing our slowness. Any advice?