Poor network performance at satellite office in India from California

hello experts. We have a main office in Southern California with a 50/50Mbps connection. I have implemented a virtual cacti box to look at bandwidth at the corporate office and we are very low on average under 10Mbps usually. The satellite office in India which houses a software development team has been complaining of slowness. Unfortunately I dont have any access right now and they have a tech on site Im scheduled to have a meeting with later this week. We look ok on our end.

There is a tunnel set up to the satellite office through our sonicwall for them to access some servers here. Im guessing latency is going to be the big issue. My question is does anyone know a better connection solution besides a VPN tunnel through a sonicwall ?  I know its hard since we dont have access to the remote site to look at their connection but any other opinions is appreciated..
WAMSINCAsked:
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JustInCaseCommented:
One of the biggest issues could be MTU and MSS size, since VPN tunnel is present. Satellite link will always have big delay, but excessive fragmentation and packet loss can also create "slow network". MTU and MSS size calculation - link.
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robocatCommented:
Latency will most likely be the culprit. But you need to know what they mean by "slow". Is it slow file transfer, is it slow access to an ERP system,  etc.

Depending on how they work and what exactly is slow, you can think of different solutions.
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gheistCommented:
speed of light makes round-trip of 1/15s
that slows down bulk transfers and you need to tune systems to speed them up
Obviously if you have ajax that transfers each typed character you are impairing quick typists.
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kevinhsiehCommented:
This is why Riverbed got started. It's usually a latency problem that cannot be solved by bandwidth. Options are to move resources closer to the team in India, do something that is less impacted by latency,  or get a WAN optimization solution. Protocols and applications in use make a big difference. CIFS and SMB 1 are pretty useless over a high latency connection. SMB 2, http, and FTP are usually fine. Telnet, SSH, or other interactive protocols could be a problem if the latency is high enough. RDP might be an option for you.

First thing to do is figure out what is happening over the VPN, and then we can figure out how to make it a better experience.

Run a ping test across the VPN to see what the latency is.
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David Johnson, CD, MVPOwnerCommented:
I want to clear a bit of confusion in my mind with reference to the word  Satellite  as it can have more than one meaning.
(a) Does this refer to the hierarchy of the organization i.e. Parent Org -> Satellite Office
or (b) the method of internet connection The Branch office uses satellite internet?
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WAMSINCAuthor Commented:
satellite = remote office
Thanks for everyones input we are currently running a cacti box to capture some data over time and will go from there. One days MRTG showed a few times maxxing the circuit but management may not want to spend the money on a pipe increase. Will get back to you with results. Thanks again
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kevinhsiehCommented:
What are the protocols in use? What is "slow"? Additional bandwidth may not be helpful at all.
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gheistCommented:
If you fill the bandwidth you might need to enable some bandwidth management aka QoS aka traffic policy aka traffic shaping to favour interactive/latency sensitive services in presence of bulk transfers.

I'd test with icsi netalyzr (http://netalyzr.icsi.berkeley.edu/) to understand if problem is bufferbloat, jitter or just bandwidth.
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robocatCommented:
@WAMSINC: we do need to know the protocols or applications that are being used if you want any useful advice from us.
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WAMSINCAuthor Commented:
ok so we did some investigation and here is some more detail. We ran cacti for about a week and found in the mornings they download from Egnyte the daily workload. That is the only time they are exceeding their 5Mbps connection and it takes a couple hours. So we dont think we need to increase the pipe if we can figure out a way to automate the data tranfer over night with maybe a scheduled task but we dont have a constant VPN or I dont know a way to schedule a task like that over the web.
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gheistCommented:
Will rsync help? i.e. if transfer of differences in file will do any good?
Or you need to mark bulk transfer bulk in your traffic shaper/qos/whatever can limit your bandwidth.
Did you manage to measure link with netalyzr? Bulk transfers killing interactive traffic issign of excess buffering normally. With netalyzr in one hand and router/switch/vpn configuration in other it should not take more than few hours to make it right.
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