Discuss

last person joined: 2 days ago 

Ask a question. Give advice. Share resources. Looking for software or hardware recommendations? Want to know how others are using text messaging in their work? Trying to find examples of IT policies? The NTEN Discuss forum is a great resource for all of the above and more! It's the general discussion list for the NTEN community, and folks all over the US (and the world) are sharing their questions, answers, and news about nonprofit technology.

Backup Internet Provider

  • 1.  Backup Internet Provider

    Posted Nov 11, 2019 07:54
    We currently use Comcast Fiber as our internet provide and Windstream as a backup in case Comcast service would go down. I'm posting this message to see how many other organizations have a primary internet provider and a backup in case of a service interruption.

    ------------------------------
    Sandy Harvey
    ------------------------------
    2020 Nonprofit Technology Conference Logo  w/ Baltimore Skyline


  • 2.  RE: Backup Internet Provider

    Posted Nov 12, 2019 08:58
    When I worked in an office we had two different internet providers. One typically ran our network, and one typically ran our phones, but it also gave us the flexibility to move traffic if one of our connections went down. 
    mg

    Mary Getz
    MESG Marketing
    Supercharging Decisions with Data
    202.421.5780



    2020 Nonprofit Technology Conference Logo  w/ Baltimore Skyline


  • 3.  RE: Backup Internet Provider

    Posted Nov 12, 2019 10:05
    I like and encourage backup internet services for mid and large NPOs.
    A long time ago (before fiber) I was doing tech consulting for an airline company. They had 4 T-lines lines 2 bonded for incoming internet traffic and 2 bonded for outgoing. In case of emergencies, they could use any of those lines.  It was springtime and they were having landscaping outside. The landscaper cut the lines coming into the building, the airline company had all the lines next to each other and they lost all internet connections. Now I recommend the second line be wireless/cellular service and that has worked out well me.

    ------------------------------
    Ellery July
    Saint Paul, MN
    ------------------------------

    2020 Nonprofit Technology Conference Logo  w/ Baltimore Skyline


  • 4.  RE: Backup Internet Provider

    Posted Nov 12, 2019 13:37
    I'll have to look into Windstream availability. We would be happy to have actual fiber or a backup Internet option here in our part of Houston but even within a large city, there is often no real competition available.

    Comcast is our only option at the moment and we're not happy with the performance. Sadly, AT&T only provides a 3 MB/sec availability despite the existence of a branded fiber link under our parking lot. We can't relocate at the moment so it's frustrating. Whenever it rains, we can either go home or try to work with our cell-phones to get some kind of internet. </rant>

    ------------------------------
    DJ Brown

    Houston, TX
    ________________________________
    ------------------------------

    2020 Nonprofit Technology Conference Logo  w/ Baltimore Skyline


  • 5.  RE: Backup Internet Provider

    Posted Nov 12, 2019 17:34
    At a remote office we have a Mobile Beacon 4G/LTE router serving as backup to a 100/10 cable connection. 

    At our main office, we have bonded DSL as backup to a 100/100 fiber connection.

    I think that as organizations have more and more hosted infrastructure, having a backup is critical.

    Best.
    --ken
    Ken Montenegro
    Gender Pronouns: he/him
    Information Technology Director
    Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Los Angeles

    1145 Wilshire Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90017
    T: (213) 977-7500 (213) 241-0219
    C: (323) 545-4904
    F: (213) 977-7595
    advancingjustice-la.org
    Building upon the legacy of the
    Asian Pacific American Legal Center



    2020 Nonprofit Technology Conference Logo  w/ Baltimore Skyline


  • 6.  RE: Backup Internet Provider

    Posted Nov 12, 2019 20:44
    We use Windstream as our primary ISP on both campuses, currently with Comcast as a separate service alternate ISP. This will move to an active/active configuration upon completion of a telecomm upgrade project currently in progress.

    ------------------------------
    Laura Peabody-Park
    Director of Information Technology
    Guide Dogs for the Blind, Inc
    San Rafael, CA
    ------------------------------

    2020 Nonprofit Technology Conference Logo  w/ Baltimore Skyline


  • 7.  RE: Backup Internet Provider

    Posted Nov 13, 2019 09:06
    I would like to reinforce what Ellery said here. I also knew a large organization that had duel providers for their internet which were buried in the same trench. When the city was doing construction, they dug through both provider lines simultaneously. Be sure if you are using multiple providers that they have separate line locations or choose a wireless option.

    ~Matt

    ------------------------------
    Matt Koeppel
    Principal
    Hartland, WI
    www.ocreativemarketing.com
    ------------------------------

    2020 Nonprofit Technology Conference Logo  w/ Baltimore Skyline


  • 8.  RE: Backup Internet Provider

    Posted Nov 13, 2019 14:29
    Adding more constructively to my earlier rant...

    In the military, I learned that the base had two or three sources for just about every utility.
    - The water lines came in from two different sides of the base but because they drew from the county water supply, the base drilled their own well and pumped it to a water tower on site.
    - Power came in through two different sets of lines each connected to separate parts of the local grid and critical points had their own backup generators.
    - Communication links included radio, separated phone trunks, satellite links, etc.

    For our Internet, and VOIP phone service, we're kinda "stuck" with one provider (unless that Windstream option works out... thanks). A mobile hot-spot service would be helpful but our experience using cell phone hot-spots has been barely adequate (slow Internet and no phone service). Our current disaster plan is based on power availability so it needs an update but when the 'net does go down, we evacuate and work from home. Comcast tends to break down locally rather than across the whole Houston area so working from home is an option. Fortunately, we are small enough that operations aren't critically affected.

    ------------------------------
    DJ Brown

    Houston, TX
    ________________________________
    ------------------------------

    2020 Nonprofit Technology Conference Logo  w/ Baltimore Skyline


  • 9.  RE: Backup Internet Provider

    Posted Nov 14, 2019 08:28

    With so much of what we do coming from hosted providers, redundant Internet providers is a must.  Yeah, it costs more, but how much would it cost to have to send all the staff home because they can't work.

    Like DJ's military base analogy, I always make sure that the Internet comes from different sources, otherwise it's not redundant.

    Here's my two questions:

    1. who is the last mile provider?

    2. who is the underlying carrier?

    If they both use, say Frontier, as the last mile provider or if my data is going to be travelling to Atlanta (everything in Florida goes through Atlanta) all on the same fiber then it's not redundant.



    ------------------------------
    Colin Boyle
    Sarasota, FL
    cboyle@manateecaa.org
    ------------------------------

    2020 Nonprofit Technology Conference Logo  w/ Baltimore Skyline


  • 10.  RE: Backup Internet Provider

    Posted Nov 14, 2019 14:00
    I understand that under an extreme condition the city or utility company could cut all connections. So if you are concerned about that extreme conditions many companies offer line of site service. Or you can use something like Hughes Net. Depending on user counts sometimes could use Cell Data. As you can get routers that support data cards.

    Normally I just go with cable and the phone providers to provide my redundancy and load balancing. If someone cuts the wires its the smallest chance so I live with it.

    ------------------------------
    Anthony Caufield
    Organizer
    North Las Vegas, NV
    ------------------------------

    2020 Nonprofit Technology Conference Logo  w/ Baltimore Skyline