To test your network efficiency, simply copy a file to and from your server and record how long it takes. Here are some suggested file sizes to consider for a 10 second test:

  • 12 MB file on a 10 Mb Ethernet
  • 120 MB file on a 100 Mb Ethernet
  • 1.2 GB file on a 1 Gb Ethernet
  • 67.5 MB file on 54 Mb WiFi
  • Basic formula is bits/8 x 10 seconds which is strictly theoretical!

The first time you perform this exercise doesn’t result in a bad or good time, just the first measurement but now you can measure the impact of any changes.

There are various ways to measure the network load you created during this test. Which one would you use:

  • Using SNMP from your switch port
  • Span or mirror your port to a Protocol Analyzer or other types of testers or probes
  • Use Microsoft’s Perfmon or other OS utilities (if available)

All of these approaches will give a slightly different result or perspective. Other variables that would affect your test results:

  • If the server is local, remote?
  • What protocol did you use for your transfers?
  • LAN vs WiFi
  • Disk vs RAM

The points above are ideas to consider when you create your test methodology.

A proper test methodology is critical so you can reproduce your findings and measure the impact of any network changes.