Anticipate network traffic generated by Office 365
Some companies do not properly anticipate the network traffic needs generated by Office 365. According to the experts interviewed by the editors, several criteria must be taken into account in order to avoid latency problems.
A project to migrate to Office 365 requires adequate preparation to avoid latency problems. Published last May by Zscaler, a Californian company specialising in cloud security, the study "Challenges and Opportunities in Enterprise Office 365 Deployments" shows that companies often face difficulties connecting to the network once Microsoft's cloud-based office suite is deployed. This is due to a legacy infrastructure that was not previously updated to meet the network traffic requirements generated by Office 365. The study was conducted among 205 large U.S. companies.
1. No universal solution
For Swiss small businesses, the risk of slowdowns is lower, but it does exist. Andreas Schmid, Senior Product Manager for Microsoft Cloud Services at Swisscom, contacted by the editorial staff, confirms that when switching to Office 365 many companies do not think enough about the type of connection their employees use to access the Microsoft cloud. "If the switch to the cloud is made from an on-premise solution, sufficient bandwidth must be guaranteed. The specialist adds that it is also important to know the nature of the connection to the Microsoft data center, i.e. via a web proxy or by opening the firewall ports. Andreas Schmid adds: "There is no universal solution here. It is therefore worthwhile to seek professional advice to find the appropriate solution in each case."
2. Latency based on the apps used
In addition, the possible latency problems will be more or less marked depending on the Office 365 package applications used. For Cyril Herbez, IT Architect for the French-speaking provider Darest Informatic, "the most significant latency problem could be in file storage, with OneDrive and Sharepoint. The opening and closing times may seem a little longer." However, the specialist adds that with the deployment of FTTH (Fiber To The Home) and the increase in bandwidth, the difference between the loading time from Office 365 or from a local server is "effectively zero".
3. Define a governance plan
The study published by Zscaler also shows that in some cases, an update of the network infrastructure is not enough to avoid latency problems. One of the solutions mentioned is to make an intelligent allocation of bandwidth. Senior SharePoint and Office 365 consultant for the French-speaking service provider CeRFI, Xavier Fabre explains to ICTjournal that everything is about anticipation: "What is important is to define your needs and define the Office 365 applications to use. To do this, we recommend defining a governance plan to know who will use which service." The consultant adds that it is then important to configure Office 365 by allowing only the applications you need to use in order to better control the bandwidth required.
Source: ICT Journal / October 2017 / © Darest Informatic Ltd 2017