I work for a global company in the client support department. Another department manages the network. My team is frequently asked to throttle client traffic from our on-premises Apple software update servers (Apache) and Casper distribution points (IIS) because it's not possible to do so from network management. We run into a problem where one client can completely saturate a remote network link while downloading a patch or software package. This disrupts critical services like VoIP and intranet access. I know we have Cisco and Juniper hardware, and the link in question is around 30 Mbps. I'm sorry for not having specifics, but getting details is difficult to get from our networking team...

I get the feeling the network team is trying to pass the buck to my team... However, my team's network skills are marginal since our focus is client support.

Is it really the case network traffic can't be regulated from the router/switch level?

Any advice will help.


This is a case for QoS. Traffic like VoIP should have priority queues, and bulk traffic like you describe should be marked down to give other traffic priority. QoS is all about fairness (as you define it).

You can set the various queues to allow the bulk traffic to use all the bandwidth when noting else is using it, but, when higher priority traffic comes in, the higher priority traffic will take the bandwidth it needs.

Both Cisco and Juniper have robust QoS capabilities.

QoS is a very large topic that can't be properly discussed here, so you need to do some research.

By the way, you can't control incoming traffic, so someone sending from the outside can saturate the incoming link. This is called a Denial of Service (DoS) attack.

Also, questions from end-users of corporate networks are specifically off-topic because you need to deal with your network administration to make anything happen.

  • Given that OP mentions intranet links I'm going to take a stab and guess they are buying a L3VPN from someone in which case the SP can configure QoS outbound from their PE. Maybe include something to that affect in your answer? Ie correct marking from all endpoints in their internal network should work nicely together with queueing in the SP routers if the markings are synchronised.
    – kll
    Oct 29 '15 at 9:22
  • 1
    Unfortunately, something about which the OP can do nothing, and probably knows nothing. The question was really off-topic because, as an end-user of the corporate network, the OP has no power to change the network. I bent the rules so that the OP's department can get off the hook for this.
    – Ron Maupin
    Oct 29 '15 at 13:47
  • Ron, now that the OP knows that the network is capable of doing what is required hopefully he/she can escalate this through their manager (if necessary) so that they're able to get a reasonable outcome. Having said this, Sonic, we cannot be 100% certain that your network hardware is capable of achieving this without knowing what models they are. It is highly likely they will be able to do it, but I'd prefer to give you a definitive answer.
    – OzNetNerd
    Oct 30 '15 at 10:20
  • Thank you very much for taking the time to help me! I got approval from my manager to get some networking training classes.
    – Sonic84
    Nov 12 '15 at 4:22
  • @Sonic84, good luck! You may find a new career.
    – Ron Maupin
    Nov 12 '15 at 4:29

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