What is a point to point leased line?
If you have been looking into business connectivity you may have come across the term point to point (P2P) & be wondering what it is a point to point leased line & how can it help my business? To start with if you have one site of business & no plans to grow this will all be irrelevant to you so feel free to have a read up on leased lines instead.
A point to point leased line is one of the main ways you can connect two sites privately & securely via a dedicated line. It can also be referred to as a private circuit & can be a connection from a data centre to a site. They are often used for two locations that are in relative close proximity to each other.
You are able to use standard internet to share data between the two sites, however the reason many businesses will opt for a point to point is the added security compared to using a shared internet connection. They are often delivered in a similar way to you standard broadband, the difference being is with point to point leased lines there is never any copper involved – always full fibre circuits.
This is the main reason you are able to get symmetrical speeds at both sites rather than less at once because its further away from the exchange.
Point to point leased line advantages
There are a few advantages to having a point to point leased line, which include :
- Increased Security – Having a point to point leased line are also called private lines for that reason – It is all totally private, you can even get them so they don’t touch the providers network. However, doing this does require a lot more work with monitoring your own network so its important to have the right infrastructure & IT/Networking experts in place. The connection would be solely for your companies use & there would never be any public traffic on the line. This reduces your risk of malicious attacks.
- Symmetrical bandwidth – Standard broadband connections often gives you very different upload & download speeds. Whereas a point to point leased line connection guarantees you the same upload speeds as your download speeds which is perfect for business applications like VoIP phones, data transfers, document uploads etc
- Faster Data Transfers – The reason a point to point leased line will give you faster data transfers is because its delivered over fibre optic cables which are symmetrical so no more seeing the dreaded buffering symbol. This makes them perfect for things like video conferencing and VoIP.
- Ultra Low Latency – Because they are completely uncontended there is minimal delays when communicating via the line. This allows you real time access to any rapidly changing data your business may have.
- Reliable data back up – Due to all the benefits listed above together they create the perfect network for fast & reliable data back up which you can do across multiple sites at the same time.
So it can be great for the speed and reliability connecting two sites & it certainly worth considering but its important to keep a balanced approach.
Point to Point Leased Line Disadvantages
There are also a few disadvantages of point to point leased lines that are important to consider when making a decision.
- Scalability – Because point to points leased lines are designed for two sites, if you want to add more sites it can be costly & a pretty long process – most providers would guide you to consider WAN solution if you had more than one site.
- Limited Visibility from your Network Provider – Most point to points will use a topology that effectively means the point to point wouldn’t actually touch your providers network. This means they would have no visibility & it would be your responsibility to monitor the line & fix if it goes down for any reason.
- Adding other services – If the point to point doesn’t touch your ISP’s network you can struggle adding popular services to it like SIP phones & the Internet.
- Not always Point to Point – The idea of a point a connecting to point B is great but in reality its often that point A connects to point C & D & maybe more before it gets to your point B – Its just the other sites are invisible & you are invisible to them too.
The privacy of a point to point leased line means they are popular for some companies out there including WAN network providers, Investment banks & data centre providers but they would typically have a whole team of network experts & the monitoring tools in place to oversee the circuit & spot any potential issues or threats.
The reality of point to point leased lines is if you don’t know what they are the chances are your business doesn’t need one. They do require extra resource & the skill level required are not employees you can hire for the lower end of the wage bracket.
We would love to help you get a quote for a point to point leased line if that is the right solution for you. If not & you want to look at WAN options head on over to our sister company who are experts when it comes to Wide Area Network Solutions.