Can WAN wire moon to earth?

By : |July 16, 2009 0

SUNNYVALE, US: What might happen if an astronaut on the moon had to access a computer file on earth?  

The average distance from the moon to the Earth is 238,857 miles (384,403 km), and a computer session between the two would comprise the longest Wide Area Network (WAN) connection in the solar system.

July 20 marks the 40th anniversary of the first moon landing. And to commemorate the historic event, Blue Coat Systems has set up a WAN optimization deployment that would solve the question for the astronaut.

Even today, WAN connections between terrestrial locations on Earth are under fire for the amount of time it takes for a person in a branch office to access a file or centralized application in a company’s headquarters or data center. Larger files may take minutes or tens of minutes to access from as little as a thousand miles away, shares the company in a press note.

WAN optimization sprang up as a solution to address the slow response times for people located some distance from where computer files (Word, Excel, Power Point, data files, etc.) and applications are stored. What may have
previously required two or three minutes might be reduced to three or four seconds.

Speeding up remote applications or file access to the moon puts the WAN optimization problem in a whole new universe. Instead several thousand miles apart, the distance is perhaps two orders of magnitude greater.

In tests run by Blue Coat Systems, a 2.5 megabyte file from a location on earth required five minutes and 12 seconds (312 seconds) to download on the moon. With a Blue Coat ProxySG appliance for WAN optimization, the same file
could be downloaded in as little as 11 seconds, a 96 percent reduction in time required to transmit a file, claims the company, which is a player in Application Delivery Networking.

So do you think it’s about time we put our IT technologies on the space orbit or is it asking for the moon? What do you say?

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