Frequently asked questions

I have a question about…

GCOMM network

Q: What are the benefits of GCOMM owning and managing its network?

A: There is a huge benefit to owning and managing our network. Through our network, we provide complete national coverage, access to a wide range of ‘last mile’ access options and the choice of best connection types at any given location. We are carrier neutral and have economies of scale to drive down costs for our customers. As we have full control over our network, we have the flexibility to design highly customisable solutions that precisely meet the business needs of our customers.

Q: Does GCOMM have multiple Internet gateways?

A: Yes, GCOMM has multiple Internet gateways. Our gateways are located at our points of presence in Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne and Perth ensuring business continuity for our customers. In the unlikely event that one of our Internet gateways experiences an outage, the GCOMM network can automatically reroute Internet traffic down an alternate Internet gateway.

Q: What geographic area does the GCOMM network cover?

A: We provide Australia wide coverage by interconnecting with the country’s major telecommunications carriers at our points of presence in Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Darwin, Perth and the Gold Coast.

Q: Where are your data centres located?

A: Our data centre points of presence are located in Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Perth, Darwin and the Gold Coast.

Q: What kind of latency can I expect on the GCOMM network?

A: The latency and other parameters are related to the type of link being provided and the distance between the two ends. Importantly, GCOMM can tailor this to meet your business application needs. If you need the link to share voice, video and data simultaneously we can ensure the necessary priority and therefore latency is achieved for each different application type.

Private IP network

Q: Is there a cost for data transfer within the private IP network?

A: Yes, there is a cost for data transfer within the private IP network. The cost is fixed and therefore allows for unlimited data transfer.

Q: What last mile access options are supported by GCOMM’s private IP network?

The following’ last mile’ access options are supported by GCOMM’s private IP network:

  • ADSL/ADSL2+
  • Ethernet over NBN
  • Ethernet over Copper
  • Ethernet over Fibre
  • Satellite services
  • Wireless services
  • E1
  • Dark fibre

Q: Is Internet access included as part of the private IP network service?

A: A private IP network does not give the customer Internet access by default. If the customer requires Internet access, a centralised Internet gateway and an Internet data package are required which gives Internet access to the entire private IP network.

Q: What is the best way to connect my private IP network to the Internet?

A: GCOMM offers three methods of connecting your private IP network to the Internet: 1) Internet access via a centralised Internet gateway, 2) Internet access via a localised Internet gateway and 3) independent ‘last mile’ Internet access.

The most suitable option for your business depends on a number of factors. The GCOMM team will carefully assesses your business needs and recommend the best solution based on the unique requirements of your organisation.

To learn more about connecting your private IP network to the Internet, read our article on The GCOMM Post – 3 ways to connect your private IP network to the Internet.

Q: Is user authentication required to access the secure private IP network?

A: When directly connected with a GCOMM ‘last mile’ tail, there is no end user authentication required to access the private IP network.

Q: I am a private IP network customer and have multiple services with GCOMM. Can I monitor all services from a single web interface?

A: All services can be monitored from a single web interface when you subscribe to GCOMM’s network performance monitoring (Netview) service.

Q: If I want GCOMM to manage my private IP network, do I need to obtain routers from GCOMM or can I provide my own?

A: In order to subscribe to the managed private IP network solution, the customer must rent the routers from GCOMM. GCOMM always manages the core routers, while the customer has the option to manage the edge routers or outsource management of edge routers to GCOMM.

Q: Does GCOMM provide interstate carriage?

A: GCOMM provides all interstate carriage as part of our private IP network solution. The GCOMM team will assess your specific bandwidth needs across the country and provide the appropriate interstate carriage for your business.

Q: What are the IP address requirements for each site that is connected to the private IP network?

A: Unique IP address subnets are required at each end customer site within the private IP network. These subnets must also be private IP addresses.

Q: : When recommending the most appropriate last mile connection for individual sites, what do you base your recommendations upon?

A: When recommending the most appropriate ‘last mile’ connection for each individual site, we base our recommendation upon:

  • The amount of users at each individual site

  • The applications being utilised across the WAN

  • Whether any of the applications are time sensitive (typically voice or video)

  • The bandwidth requirements of the applications being utilised

  • The future growth of the site (growth in users and or applications)

  • The budget for connectivity to the site

  • The infrastructure that is available to the site

Q: : What software tools do you use to provide WAN monitoring services?

A: We use Netview (SolarWinds) software to proactively manage our customers’ wide area networks and communications environment. Through the use of SNMP, Netview provides near real-time statistics (and keeps historical data for trend analysis) to accurately measure the private IP network and then organises all required information in an easy-to-ready graphical interface.

Q: : Is data which is going through GCOMM’s network encrypted?

A: GCOMM’s private IP network is more secure and faster than traditional Internet virtual private networks (VPN) as the traffic never traverses the Internet, and therefore requires no encryption.

Q: : Do we need to have some sort of extra layer of security when connecting very important locations or do we already have that included as part of the private IP network service?

A: GCOMM’s private IP network is a secure solution that only allows access to your network thorough connections that are provisioned as part of your network solution.

Centralised Internet gateway

Q: : What is centralised Internet gateway?

A: GCOMM’s centralised Internet gateway is a point through which Internet access is delivered to all the sites on your private IP network. Importantly, it is located in a data centre which provides the fastest and most redundant connection to the Internet that is possible.  It consists of two 1Gb Ethernet ports and 1 rack unit located at our data centres.

Q: : Am I able to provide my own firewall for the centralised Internet gateway?

A: Yes, you can provide your own firewall for the centralised Internet gateway.

Q: : Can the Internet gateway device be located at my business premises?

A: Yes, the Internet gateway device can be located at the end customer’s premises. However, if you choose to locate the gateway device/firewall at your premises, you cannot take advantage of GCOMM’s centralised Internet gateway service. With this configuration, your private IP network will access the Internet via your office of choice.

Routers

Q: : What types of routers does GCOMM support?

A: GCOMM supports all Cisco routers for our Internet and private IP network solutions.

Q: : Does GCOMM offer router rental?

A: Yes, GCOMM offers router rental for specific models.

Q: : I am a managed router service customer. Do I have permission to access the router?

A: The customer is not permitted to login or access the managed router, all access is maintained and controlled by GCOMM NOC.

Q: : What types of configurations can be made on the managed router service?

A: The majority of configurations that are required for businesses are supported under GCOMM’s managed router service. There are some advanced features that are not supported under the managed router service. For more specific information, contact GCOMM to speak with one of our representatives.

Q: Does GCOMM backup configurations of customers’ routers?

A: For customers who subscribe to our managed routers service, GCOMM maintains a backup configuration in the unlikely event of router failure.

Colocation

Q: What type of equipment can I colocate with GCOMM?

A: GCOMM only accepts rack mountable equipment for all colocation. You can colocate equipment such as your firewall, proxy server, web server, mail server, VPN device and other hardware.

Q: What rack space options do you have available at your colocation facilities?

A: GCOMM offers a wide variety of rack options, from single rack units (RU) to dedicated, lockable full cabinets (42RU). To inquire about rack space availability at a specific data centre, contact us to speak with one of our colocation specialists.

Q: Do you offer remote hands support for colocation services?

A: Yes, we offer remote hands support for colocation services. Remote hands can be utilised for many different services from basic reboots to more complex cabling requirements.  For availability and costs please speak with your GCOMM representative.

Q: Do I need to notify you if I need access to my equipment at your colocation facility?

A: This depends on the data centre facility and whether the customer has a full rack unit and the access cards.  In some cases, for non-emergency access, the customer must notify GCOMM for access to data centres minimum 24 hours in advance.

Internet services

Q: Is last mile Internet access sold together with a traffic package?

A: ‘Last mile’ Internet access is typically sold with a flexible traffic package. It includes a minimum commitment to traffic and a usage charge (typically per Mb) thereafter. The larger the monthly commitment on data the customers makes the lower the cost per Gb (and per Mm) the data becomes.

Q: Does GCOMM network utilise Quality of Service?

A: Yes, GCOMM uses MPLS Differentiated Services (DiffServ) and/or DSCP markings to provide QoS functionality. A DiffServ architecture enables service discrimination of traffic flows by offering network resources to higher classes at the expense of lower classes of service. This architecture allows you to prioritise or to aggregate flows and provides Quality of Service (QoS) that is scalable.

Q: On what services is Quality of Service provided?

A: GCOMM can provide QoS on the following services:

  • Ethernet over Copper

  • Ethernet over Fibre

  • Ethernet over Wireless

Q: If we do not want to use QoS, can you meet our needs and provide us with two physical links - one for data and one for voice?

Yes, we can provide a solution that doesn’t involve QoS and uses two physical links – one for data and one for voice. For more information, please contact GCOMM to speak to one of our representatives.

Q: Can you provide redundant links (two or more physical links coming from different carriers) to the desired location?

A: Yes, GCOMM can provide redundant connectivity utilising different carriers, technology and path. This ensures you get automatic failover with the most diverse connectivity possible.

Q: Why are speeds with some connectivity services like ADSL not guaranteed?

A: There are a wide range of factors that affect the speed of your connection. For example, GCOMM offers speeds of up to 8Mb/384Kb for ADSL and up to 20Mb/3Mb for ADSL2+. However, the actual speed your business will experience depends on how far your office is located from the exchange. The further you are from the exchange, the less speed you are able to get. Additionally, some services like ADSL have a high contention ratio, which means that the potential number of users sharing bandwidth at any given time is high. To learn more about factors that can affect your Internet connection speed, read our article on The GCOMM Post – How distance, contention and connection type affect the speed of business Internet.

Q: Which carriers does GCOMM have peering relationships with?

A: GCOMM has peering relationships with major national carriers, including AAPT, Vocus and MegaPort.

Q: As GCOMM’s customer, can I establish a peering session with GCOMM?

A: Customers who have IP ranges can establish a peering session with GCOMM.

VoIP

Q: We have several offices across Australia. If we decide to connect those locations, can you provide VoIP services as well? If yes, would calls between offices be free or charged less than they would be regularly?

A: Calls made between your offices across GCOMM’s private IP network are not charged, but your PABX has to be configured to support this.

Security

Q: Can you provide centralised anti-spam solution in case we host our own mail server(s)?

A: Yes, GCOMM provides a hosted anti-spam solution that is delivered from the cloud and protects your mail servers.

Switching to GCOMM

Q: I am currently with another provider and want to switch to GCOMM. How do I do that?

A: Speak with your GCOMM Account Manager, they will work with you to methodically and safely transition you to GCOMM services, taking into account service continuity, costs and project management. All customers requirements are different, that is why we will tailor a transition plan to suit your specific requirements.

Moving office locations

Q: I am moving office locations. How will this affect my service?

A: Your service will need to be transferred to your new location. Speak with your GCOMM Account Manager, they will work with you to methodically and safely transition to GCOMM services, advising you of any cost implications and taking into account service continuity, costs and project management. All site requirements are different, that is why we will tailor a transition plan to suit your specific requirements.