6 Common Network Performance Problems (And How to Spot Them)

6 Common Network Performance Problems (And How to Spot Them)

Network performance is not something that any IT team should take lightly. Businesses rely on their networks for a variety of mission-critical tasks and workflows. If their network suffers any performance problems, it could be disastrous for your business. Some performance problems are more common than others, but each one can be a major issue for your network. Any network performance problems should be addressed, though network teams can aim to learn how to find and eliminate common ones.

Common network performance problems include issues that can happen frequently and/or happen easily. While these problems can be annoying, your network team can learn how to spot them and get rid of them using a network monitoring tool. Most common performance problems have telltale signs that your network monitoring tool can pick up and display. Below, we’ve listed six of the most common network performance problems that your team might have to deal with – and how to do so.

Bandwidth and data hogs

A network performance monitoring software constantly scans for programs and devices using up the resources on your network. Any device that’s using a heavy amount of bandwidth will be detected by the program; it will then alert your network team to the resource hog so you can address the problem.

Network routing problems

If your network isn’t routing data properly, it can significantly increase the amount of time data packets take to reach their destination. Network data routing should designate the most optimal route for data to travel; it should also discover alternate pathways in case those routes aren’t currently available.

Bad network configuration

Your network teams needs to configure every device on your network in order for it to work right. Misconfiguration can cause the devices on your network to get out of sync with each other and cause network packets to be dropped. Whenever you reconfigure a device, you should test your network to see if the changes you’ve made aren’t dragging your network down.

Malware affecting network performance

Malware and other cybersecurity threats could have several reasons for attacking your network, ranging from annoying to malicious. Degrading your network’s performance levels is a common function of most malware, and it can cause problems and headaches for your network team. Aside from the security issues, malware can often waste your network’s resources in an attempt to make it unable to function properly. For example, it may attempt to overload your network with data requests. A network monitoring tool will detect this spike in traffic and alert your enterprise when it happens.

Old or malfunctioning network hardware

You need to constantly maintain the hardware on your network in order to ensure it doesn’t affect performance. Hardware that is old or malfunctioning can drag down network performance. This hardware should be repaired, replaced, or upgraded as soon as possible. Network monitoring programs can determine when a piece of hardware isn’t working properly by initiating performance and availability checks regularly.

Poor cable connection

Sometimes, poor network performance can be attributed to something as simple as a poor cable connection. If your cables are loose or disconnected, your network monitoring solution won’t display the connection properly (I.E. the visualization for a connection between two devices won’t be there).


Looking for a solution to help you improve your network performance? Our Network Monitoring Buyer’s Guide contains profiles on the top network performance monitor vendors, as well as questions you should ask providers and yourself before buying.

Check us out on Twitter for the latest in Network Monitoring news and developments!

Daniel Hein

Dan is a tech writer who writes about Enterprise Cloud Strategy and Network Monitoring for Solutions Review. He graduated from Fitchburg State University with a Bachelor's in Professional Writing. You can reach him at dhein@solutionsreview.com
Daniel Hein