Insights

Potential Issue: Bandwidth Saturation at a Local Network/Provider Network Border

What PingPlotter Insights Discovered

Your local network is showing signs of bandwidth saturation where it meets another network. Because we are seeing the issue between a hop using a local IP address (see below) and one that is using a public IP address it is likely that the issue is happening where your local network meets the router leaving your premises. Bandwidth saturation occurs when your local network is trying to pull data through a connection that can't handle all of the traffic it's being asked to transport. The good news is that it was discovered on your local network so there is an excellent chance that you can find a solution. The most common bottlenecks are overused Wi-Fi bandwidth or Internet connections. When looking for high data consumers (like gamers or video streaming) don't forget that outbound data can be an even bigger problem than the data that comes into your network. If you remotely access files on your network then too many outside users can be as much of a problem as too many inside users.

Solution

When you find bandwidth saturation occurring on your home network, limiting usage is the easiest approach to avoiding the problem. If managing people's network operations is not ideal, internet service providers are always happy to sell you more bandwidth.

An alternative to buying more bandwidth involves a device that gives preference to certain types of data. Configuring networks to treat certain data differently is known as Quality of Service (QoS). The option is more technical, but might be the best solution if limiting usage and buying more bandwidth is off the table.

If you're experiencing ISP-related bandwidth saturation, you aren't in a position to limit the usage of other customers or implement QoS. Because of your position, solving the problem requires interactions with tech support.

Calling tech support is a daunting task. We wouldn't wish the situation on our worst enemies, but if you do find yourself contemplating a tech support call, our Step-by-Step Troubleshooting Guide offers advice on building a case that proves a problem and working with support in a way that gets results. Be sure to give the guide a look before embarking on your quest.

Local vs Public IP Addresses

The Internet Protocol Version 4 and Internet Protocol Version 6, IPV4 and IPV6 respectively, have a reserved set of address which is held for use on local area networks only. These IP addresses can be used by anyone on their local networks without concern that they will conflict with other users across the global network. This is because the addresses have been defined as non-routable, meaning that routers are not allowed to use them on the public side of their connections. All public, routable, IP addresses are managed and assigned globally similar to telephone numbers through the Internet AssignedNumbers Authority (IANA).

The local and non-routable IP addresses fall within the following ranges:

  • 10.0.0.0 – 10.255.255.255
  • 172.16.0.0 – 172.31.255.255
  • 192.168.0.0 – 192.168.255.255
  • fd00::/8
  • fe80::/10

What is PingPlotter Insights?

PingPlotter Insights is an algorithmic data interpretation feature currently in beta.

If you are interested in testing Insights, let us know by emailing beta@pingplotter.com.