Farrell Agencies is an insurance agency with its headquarters located in Yorkton, Saskatchewan. As the business continued to grow to seven locations it was faced with a major issue limiting its ability to grow. Continual network performance issues and outages. The first consultant recommended that they implement fiber optic Internet connectivity to solve the problem, however the problem persisted even after implementation. Frustrated with the continual problems, Farrell turned to another provider that was focused solely on the Insurance Industry. Confident that they would be able to solve the problems, once again the problems continued with no solution in mind. Finally, after years of back and forth communication the decision was made to give Lexcom a shot. Armed with years of large scale network experience, and advanced network analysis tools we were able to quickly identify multiple factors that were causing the issues.
Solving application performance issues can be one of the most challenging problems to solve due to the multiple layers of complexity. Solving these problems requires knowledge of computers, networks, servers, storage, applications and databases as the problem could be in any part of those systems.
There were a number of challenges around solving this particular performance issue. The first issue was that many of the sites were distributed in small towns throughout Saskatchewan. There were very few options for Internet connections to these sites meaning that delivering applications from head office had to be performed under those constraints. Application delivery needed to be provided with a low bandwidth technology meaning that remote desktop services was the correct solution for delivering the applications.
We utilized a protocol analyzer to quickly understand how employees were utilizing the network. On first glance we found that employees were using both Internet browsers to access files and remote desktop sessions. Our first step was to train the employees to only utilize remote desktop which freed up considerable bandwidth.
While the performance was improved there was still slowness during peak periods. We found a network bottleneck in the datacenter as Internet traffic was consuming the majority of the bandwidth. To address this we implemented Meraki networking equipment across all sites. As part of the implementation we configured SD-WAN to perform traffic shaping on the network and balanced regular Internet traffic down a low cost line.
With the network performance issues resolved, we found that there were still period of time where remote desktop sessions would pause. Upon closer look we found that the server needed more resources allocated to it. As it was a virtual server, we simply added additional computing power and ram to the server. Next we configured the remote desktop server to our best practice specifications to ensure that it functioned as expected.
For Years, Continual Network Issues Were A Major Limitation To Expanding My Business. My Previous Two Providers Promised The Same And Nothing Changed. When I Finally Pulled The Trigger, They Didn't Disappoint. They Quickly Identified The Problem And Within A Couple Of Weeks Of Taking Their Advice We Were Problem Free. They Really Know Their Stuff. - Jason Farrell