[SASAG] Microwave ISP Feedback?

Nick Webb nickw at redwireservices.com
Wed Mar 11 10:27:08 PDT 2015


We have moved offices and are trying to get a reliable internet connection
in place. The new location doesn't have a ton of options for our small
business budget (~$300-400/mo). Basically our options include various
offerings from Comcast (including ones with an SLA), T1, and microwave from
AccelNet (accelnet.net) or some combination thereof. Comcast does have
fiber in the area, but that's 3 months out and is outside our budget (to do
the buildout, they want a >= 20x20mbps for 3 years commitment).

Given the SLA and cost effectiveness of AccelNet, I'm very tempted to
pursue that option, however we have zero experience with it and are unsure
what to expect. Basically the only information I can find comes from WISPs
themselves who of course say it's the best thing ever, even better than
fiber. That seems technically true in some cases, but it seems that
reliability can be an issue depending on the specific equipment the WISP
uses, distance, weather, etc. I also know that carriers have used/are using
microwave for some major connections, which tells me it *can* be reliable.

The connection would come with a 99.99-99.999% SLA, but it's a problem if
it's down even a couple of minutes once or twice a week during business
hours, which would still meet that SLA. I'm OK with planned maintenance
after hours and maybe one or two small blips here and there during business
hours, but it can't be a daily/weekly occurrence.

We are a really small shop, we have just 3 folks now, probably 4-5 in the
next 3-6 months. While speed is nice, I'm more interested in reliability as
we depend on VoIP and various VPN connections, etc., that can be a hassle
(though not impossible) over the standard "best effort" Business Cable
connection. I think we are more tolerant of failure than larger shops, but
less so than most businesses our size.

Any advice welcome, especially specific experience with microwave and


Nick Webb
Principal Systems Engineer
Red Wire Services, LLC
T: 206.829.8621 x11 / F: 206.826.1223

15215 52ND Ave S STE 205
Tukwila, WA 98188-2354


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