Mar 18, 2010

Reducing Latency and Increasing Bandwidth in Your Trading Environment

Written by Katie Gomez

Marissa recently created a YouTube video titled “Reducing Latency and Increasing Bandwidth in Your Trading Environment.” We’ve gotten so much response to this, I want to elaborate on a few points.

First, a quick picture will show the path your data takes using HTTP mode vs. a TCP/IP socket. There are more network hops. But more than that, HTTP mode requires your data to be massaged and reformatted. This adds overhead and takes time.

That picture was an ideal case. If you choose to switch between HTTP and the default, high performance mode, that’s what you’ll see. But if your corporate firewall forces you to use an HTTP connection, it’s probably so they can make you to go through their proxy server, as shown below.

The proxy server is another way for the company to monitor what you are doing. It will inspect each message, looking for porn and other things they don’t approve of. This proxy server was made for individuals browsing the web one page at a time. It was never designed to support realtime streaming stock alerts. It will get overwhelmed easily. One person monitoring the stock market with Trade-Ideas is like 100 people browsing web pages. You want to avoid the corporate proxy server to maximize performance.

I also want to add a clarification. Marissa pointed to an old video to show how slow HTTP can be sometimes. The stock charts were slow back then for a couple of reasons. That example showed HTTP used in the traditional way. Now Trade-Ideas can provide stock market data much faster, even in HTTP mode. That’s because of our proprietary data aggregation and streaming compression technology. That speeds up your internet connection, even when you are forced to use HTTP mode.

A lot of people ask about ping time. As you can see in this picture, pings only give you an ideal picture your speed. They avoid the corporate porn filter and a lot of other things. They are good for measuring ideal network speed, not the actual message traffic. The latency monitor in the Trade-Ideas status bar uses a more accurate measure. We send our test message through the same mechanisms that we use for normal stock alert messages. You need that if you’re trying to diagnose any network problems.

At Trade-Ideas we’re always striving to make sure you get your stock market alerts as quickly and efficiently as possible. But you might need some help from your IT department. If they ask questions, this page will tell them everything they need to know.