Quality of Service in Computer Networks: Boosting Performance

QoS provides network engineers with the means to prioritize latency-sensitive traffic flows. It is increasingly essential as bandwidth consumption soars.

Bob Wallace, Contributor

June 14, 2024

1 Min Read
Network traffic illustration

Defined by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) in 1994, Quality of Service (QoS) is alive and well in enterprise and service provider networks at its 30th birthday this year.

QoS is a cause for celebration since it allows IT teams to improve the performance of a computer network as the soaring use of voice, data, and video and lifeblood applications need flexible levels of service for users.

Recapping the Essentials

Quality of service tools use mechanisms or technologies that work on a network to control traffic and ensure the performance of crucial applications with limited network capacity. Rather than use complex load balancers, it enables organizations to adjust their overall network traffic by prioritizing specific high-performance applications.

At its core, quality of service in computer networks consists of bandwidth management and traffic prioritization. You can employ bandwidth management and traffic together or separately for any given type of traffic.

Using QoS in networking, organizations can optimize the performance of multiple applications on their network and gain visibility into the bit rate, delay, jitter, and packet rate of the network. They can engineer the traffic on their network and change the way that packets are routed to the internet or other networks to avoid crippling transmission delay. This also ensures that the organization achieves the expected service quality for applications and delivers expected user experiences.

Related:Understanding the Role of Network Taps in Data Center Observability

The QoS techniques include traffic classification, traffic policing, traffic shaping, rate limiting, congestion management, and congestion avoidance. They address problems that arise in different network locations.

Read the rest of this article in Network Computing.

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About the Author(s)

Bob Wallace

Contributor, Network Computing

A veteran business and technology journalist, Bob Wallace has covered networking, telecom, and video strategies for global media outlets such as IDG and UBM. He has specialized in identifying and analyzing trends in enterprise and service provider use of enabling technologies. Most recently, Bob has focused on developments at the intersection of technology and sports. A native of Massachusetts, he lives in Ashland. 

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