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Time: August 2nd, 2023

This post is all about the commonly asked question of what is link aggregation and how it impacts one's network and bandwidth. Read more to find more.

What is Link Aggregation? Link aggregation also called Ethernet bonding is a process that combines multiple links into one. It is used to improve the performance of a network by combining two or more interfaces into a single logical link, which improves bandwidth utilization and reduces latency. Link aggregation is a way for network devices to combine multiple Ethernet connections into one larger connection. This gives you faster speeds and less chance of errors when setting up your network.  

The aggregation of links can be done manually, but the automatic operation has been proposed as well. Link aggregation can be applied to both wireless backhaul and wireless data services. It can be applied to both wireless backhaul and wireless data services, such as video streaming. Link aggregation allows data to be delivered more efficiently, and the service becomes more robust and reliable, especially for wireless backhaul and data services.

Wireless Backhaul: In this scenario, link aggregation is used to combine multiple links into one so that more bandwidth can be delivered from each node on your network without degrading service quality or requiring additional equipment. For example, if you have four routers but only need two links to connect them at each end (e.g., via Ethernet), you could use trunking technology instead of using separate physical cables between each router pair; this would save money while still providing reliable connectivity between all users in your organization's enterprise network. If you've ever been in a networking situation where you needed to connect two switches or more than two switches to the same server, then you know how frustrating it can be. but here, link aggregation makes things possible. 

The most common device combinations involve connecting a switch to another switch, a server, a network-attached storage (NAS) device, or a multi-port access point. Most of the network devices in the industry take the link aggregation group as a single link like LAGs can be included in a VLAN. You can also configure more than one LAG on the same switch, or add more than two Ethernet links to the same LAG (the maximum number of links per LAG depends on your device).

Benefits of Link Aggregation

Link aggregation is one of the most significant ways to increase the bandwidth of a network. It enables you to connect more devices, adding more bandwidth and reliability. For example, if you have five PCs connected wirelessly using 802.11ac Wi-Fi, you can use channel bonding to add another channel—thus increasing the amount of data that can be sent between all of them at once. In the past, we've had to use coaxial cables to connect our network devices. But with Link Aggregation, we can use any number of Ethernet connections to act as one logical connection, so if one wire fails it doesn't affect the others.

Is it Worth Investing?

As with any technology, there are both benefits and drawbacks to Link Aggregation. However, if you want to maximize your gaming experience, it's worth considering.

First, Link Aggregation is a general wired network upgrade that will help you in a variety of ways. It can increase your FPS by allowing you to stream more video without dropping frames or latency. It will also make the game feel more responsive, which is important for competitive games. Finally, it allows you to play more games at once, which means less waiting time between matches.

Second, Link Aggregation won't directly impact your FPS or latency for most online gamers. Even if your network isn't overloaded due to congestion like many home networks are during peak hours (when everyone is trying to stream), Link Aggregation won't offer as much bandwidth as a direct wired connection would. This means that even though it does offer some benefits for gaming performance, it probably isn't worth pursuing because it doesn't have a big enough impact on those metrics to warrant investing in a new router/modem package at home or work unless you're already planning on upgrading anyway.


Wrapping up:

Let's recap before ending our post on the question “what is link aggregation”. Link aggregation allows you to combine multiple Ethernet links into a single logical link between two networked devices. It is also worth mentioning that to set up link aggregation enabled network, one needs to check the OEM website and follow the instructions as they can vary among different brands.


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