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Georgia Southern U Uses Packet Shaper To Decrease Bandwidth Consumption

Georgia Southern University is tapping a traffic shaping appliance to help optimize bandwidth use on its wired network. The result so far, according to the university, has been a 22 percent decrease in bandwidth consumption on its campus and residential networks.

For the optimization project, the university adopted Exinda's 8060 WAN Optimization appliance. According to Exinda, the evaluation and purchase happened in early 2011, and the university has been using the appliance in full rollout for about a year now.

"With the Exinda 8060 solution in place, we can guarantee performance 24/7 by prioritizing critical applications such as streaming educational course materials, while limiting the bandwidth available to recreational applications such as BitTorrent," said Krey Tinker, network administrator for Georgia Southern U, in a prepared statement. "Our previous solution for this had proven unable to provide enough granularity and control, and compared to Exinda was just too complex to manage."

Exinda said the university uses the appliance to prioritize "applications and traffic on server subnets. For residential users, Tinker prioritizes Google Mail."

Tinker explained: "We have a football application called Dragonfly," he said. "It's a video sharing application that they use to share football videos with other teams they are playing. We use the Exinda appliance to allow that application a certain amount of bandwidth overnight and on weekends so it doesn't hog all the bandwidth during the day. We also prioritize another application called JumpTV that is for streaming events."

The 8060 is a 2U rackmount appliance supporting 10,000 Mbps throughput and up to 5.1 million concurrent flows, depending on configuration. It runs on two 2.4 GHz Intel Xeon E5530 processors and sports 12 GB RAM and six 500 GB hard disk drives. It includes four onboard 10/100/1,000 copper NICs with expansion support for two to 24 10/100/1,000 copper or fiber NICs. Capabilities include real-time monitoring, automated reporting, caching (1.2 TB), data deduplication, application acceleration, compression, prioritization, and traffic shaping, among other optimization and management features.

Georgia Southern University serves more than 19,600 students at its physical campus in Statesboro, GA and through its online and blended programs.

About the Author

Executive Producer David Nagel heads up the editorial department for 1105 Media's education publications — which include two daily sites, a variety of newsletters and two monthly digital magazines covering technology in both K-12 and higher education.

A 21-year publishing veteran, Nagel has led or contributed to dozens of technology, art and business publications.

He can be reached at dnagel@1105media.com. You can also connect with him on LinkedIn at linkedin.com/profile/view?id=10390192 or follow him on Twitter at @THEJournalDave (K-12) or @CampusTechDave (higher education). A selection of David Nagel's articles can be found on this site.


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