Dear Lifehacker, I work full time from home for a company based interstate and do nearly all my work by VPN to a desktop in the office. Over the normal course of a working week there are occasional speed and up-time issues. I'm having some difficulty getting my manager to understand that some downtime is to be expected and unavoidable (it's not possible for me to change/upgrade my internet at home).
I average about a total of 30 minutes a week when I am unable to VPN due to connectivity issues. I'm also having trouble getting it across to work that a 500ms+ ping is terrible and unusable, and unfortunately this is fairly regular. Am I being too lax about the up-time and too demanding about the ping? I have no reference point to go by; what do you and the readers think? Thanks, Remote Worker
Shield picture from Shutterstock
Performance variation is inevitable when using public connections — the question is, does absolutely everything have to be done remotely? And why are you VPN-ing to a desktop, rather than securely connecting directly to the relevant apps? Are there no tasks you can perform with downloaded tasks which you re-upload later? Without any information on your line of work, it's hard to know which workarounds are and aren't possible.
In regards to getting your boss to understand the problem, try logging your downtime and working out the exact percentage of time wasted each week — hard statistics tend to pull more weight than vague estimations. Ditto with the speed drops; make a physical record of all the ways the connection hampers productivity.
We'd love to hear from other readers about how their remote setup works. If you have any performance tricks to share, let RW know in the comments section below.
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