Bandwidth – Frequency of data transmission
Bandwidth is the measure of the data transmission rate, or more correctly, the frequency range provided for data transmission. The term is best known in connection with the Internet. In DSL technology, the bandwidth is specified with the unit bit/s and refers to the possible transmission capacity, i.e., the amount of data per second. In general, the higher the bandwidth, the faster data transmission is possible. Bandwidth is also a common parameter in audio technology or in message transmission. Here, different transmitters use different frequencies, and the bandwidths are limited in each case by upper and lower limit ranges, the so-called cut-off frequencies.
Download and upload – limited by bandwidth
Download and upload are two fixed terms from DSL data transmission. Modern broadband networks are used to download data from the Internet to the home computer, and on the other hand users can upload data or files from the computer to the network. How high the data transfer rates are depends on the bandwidth. Furthermore, a distinction is made between different technologies such as ADSL and VDSL. While with the former the download speed is significantly higher than the upload speed, the speeds are the same with the latter. How high the bandwidth and thus the stream speed is at a particular connection depends on the technology used, the line networks used and the number of subscribers connected. At the port itself, computers and peripherals must also be able to process the incoming data transfer rates in order to use the maximum bandwidth.
Bandwidth in storage technology
Bandwidth not only plays a role in data transmission from the Internet, the term is also frequently used in storage technology. What is meant here is the memory bandwidth, which specifies a certain data transfer rate of a memory module. This form of bandwidth is calculated from the product of clock frequency and word length. For example, a memory chip with a clock frequency of 200 MHz and a word length of eight bytes has a total bandwidth of 1.8 GB per second. Word length in this case means the number of bits within a word.
Bandwidth management for an optimum data transfer rate
The term bandwidth management covers all actions within the WAN (wide area network) that optimize the bandwidth that a service can access. It is important to note here that the physically available bandwidth is not increased in the process, but only the available potential is fully utilized. Furthermore, the allocation of a certain bandwidth to the individual services using a certain frequency is optimized. Systems suitable for managing the bandwidth are placed at the edges of the network. The data streams are analysed by this technology, and the optimum bandwidth or even the bandwidth booked by the service provider is allocated.
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