Data Service Information

The Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center (VTCRC) offers a unique benefit to its tenants: cost effective access to very high speed Internet access. The VTCRC's mission is to "grow businesses that matter." Today, the 180 + businesses at the research park need a greater range of technology systems, and faster Internet access.

The upgraded VTCRC network now delivers 1 gigabit internet circuits to each office suite. This level of connectivity is one hundred times faster than most organizations are using today. Additionally, tenants gain the benefit of scale. Enterprise-class IT services are available at competitive rates, with streamlined ordering and local support.

To learn more about the upgraded network and services, we have compiled the following resources.

If you have questions not covered, please email techsupport@vtcrc.com and we will be happy to assist you.

Service Request Link

GLOSSARY OF TERMINOLOGY

  1. Burstable billing is a method of measuring bandwidth based on peak use. It also allows usage to exceed a specified threshold for brief periods of time without the financial penalty of purchasing a higher committed information rate or commitment from an Internet service provider (ISP).
  2. Gigabit Ethernet: Gigabit Ethernet is a data transmission technology based on the Ethernet frame format and protocol used in local area networks (LANs), provides a data rate of 1 billion bits per second (one gigabit). Gigabit Ethernet is defined in the IEEE 802.3 standard and is currently being used as the backbone in many enterprise networks.
  3. Mbps: "Megabits Per Second" One megabit is equal to one million bits or 1,000 kilobits. While "megabit" sounds similar to "megabyte," a megabit is roughly one eighth the size of a megabyte (since there are eight bits in a byte). Mbps is used to measure data transfer speeds of high bandwidth network connections.
  4. Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS): A mechanism in high-performance telecommunications networks that directs data from one network node to the next based on short path labels rather than long network addresses, avoiding complex lookups in a routing table.
  5. A VPN or Virtual Private Network is a method used to add security and privacy to private and public networks, like Wi-Fi Hotspots and the Internet. VPNs are most often used by corporations to protect sensitive data.
  6. Main Suite Port: A “Port” refers to the connection from the VTCRC network to the tenant office suite.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

SECTIONS:

WHAT’S NEW

How is the upgrade beneficial to me and my company/business?

The upgrade delivers some of the fastest Internet speeds available today with 1 gigabit links to your office suite. This minimizes your file transfer times and greatly enhancing your ability to stream high-bandwidth files. The network now provides tenants significantly faster internet access for the same or less cost.

What additional services are now available to me?

The VTCRC has negotiated pricing for the following IT services to be provided:

  1. Cabling
  2. Cloud/offsite data backup services
  3. Compute on-demand services
  4. IT server co-location services (Secure cage or standard rack spaces)
  5. Managed suite connections (wired/wireless/firewall)
  6. Private or hybrid cloud computing services

PRICING AND ORDERING

I would like to know about Internet pricing and what it costs to set up.

A port provides all tenants with access to high speed internet via VTCRC’s 1 gigabit Internet backbone. This connection allows tenants to ‘burst’ - or send large amounts of data to and from the Internet very quickly. The VTCRC monitors traffic patterns and uses this information to calculate monthly charges for data service.

→ Our pricing philosophy is simple: you only pay for what you use.

Our billing algorithm considers all traffic across the port during the billing period (15th to the 14th of each month) and uses “95th percentile” methodology to determine each tenant’s billable usage amount for the period (in mbps). Once we have the usage number, we assign the tenant a tier for that month and the data service invoice amount is calculated based on the rate for that tier (listed below).

  • Tier 1: less than 1 Mbps used * = $50
  • Tier 2: 1 Mbps to 2 Mbps used * = $100
  • Tier 3: Tenants using at or above 2 Mbps * = $45 per Mbps
  • Tier 4: Tenants averaging 10 Mbps * or greater = Customized pricing

*= Sustained data transfer – burstable 1 gigabit

Because our billing is based on actual usage, invoice amounts can change from month to month. We use this model in order to provide the best service to our tenants in the most cost effective manner; instead of limiting access through throttling or speed caps, our high bandwidth is always available to tenants - you only pay for what you use. Please note that performance can be impacted by the equipment used for networking inside the tenant suite (such as switches, routers, wireless access points, etc.).

We provide each data service customer with online access to our metering software. Tenants can use their credentials to log in and view their usage measurements at any time. Your monthly 95th percentile number will be listed on your data service invoice. This is calculated at the time of billing and is not readily available online.

In addition to monthly Internet charges, a set up and activation fee will apply:

  • New port installation/activation: First request upon initial lease execution > $100 per port
  • Existing port activation > $100 per port
  • New port installation/activation: New port request where one does not currently exist > Not to exceed $300 per port

What is the difference between port activation versus port installation?  

  • An installation requires a new cabling run – meaning new wiring needs to be installed in the walls/ceiling to connect the internal port (inside a tenant’s suite) to the VTCRC communications closet.
  • An activation references initializing service to an internal port that is already properly connected (no wiring needed). Once an installation is complete, the port must then be activated, which is why the installation is more expensive.

What steps do I take to order Internet services via the VTCRC?

Please click to complete the request service form. Upon receipt of your request, a VTCRC representative will coordinate with you to schedule installation and service.

Service Request Form

Once I have made the request how long does the process take?

Depending on the type of request and your specific needs, requests are usually completed within five business days of initial request for service.

Are phone services included in the VTCRC data service plan?

Tenants may obtain phone service through any provider of their choosing. Once you have requested phone service, please email techsupport@vtcrc.com to let the VTCRC know so that we may facilitate the connection within your building.

If you should experience any issues after your phone is installed, please do the following steps:

  1. Contact the VTCRC at techsupport@vtcrc.com so that we may check the connection within the building. If there are any issues on our end, there is no charge to the tenant for resolution of problem.
  2. If that connection is fine, then the tenant will need to contact their phone provider and any phone charges assessed by the phone provider are the responsibility of the tenant.

MAKING CHANGES TO YOUR SERVICE

What happens if I move suites at the VTCRC?

The process will work very similarly as when you first moved in. You will complete a new data services request for service form and submit it. A VTCRC representative will work with you to confirm pricing to adjust for turning on a port for your new suite.

What if my data needs change?

One of the benefits of being at the VTCRC is that as your needs change, you can scale up or down. Contact the VTCRC at techsupport@vtcrc.com and we will work with you to adjust your changing needs.

BILLING AND USAGE

Can I tell what my average usage is and if so, how?

Once you have submitted your email address to techsupport@vtcrc.com you will be given access to view your usage report at any time. You may also request usage report via request service form.

Service Request Form

SPECIALTY NEEDS

What if I need or use specialty connections (MPLS, VPN, secure government connections)?

If you need additional services such as MPLS, VPN or secure connections, please email crc@ali-inc.com for assistance.

TECHNICAL ISSUES

I’m having trouble getting on the Internet. What should I do?

Start with a call to your internal IT support contact. They will want to check your computer and conditions within your office suite that could be the source of the problem. Once they have reviewed the problem and believe it to be an issue with the VTCRC network, they will need to contact the VTCRC at techsupport@vtcrc.com to log a support request.

Will I be charged for troubleshooting support?

If a reported problem stems from the VTCRC network itself, then we cover the cost of that support. The VTCRC network is proactively monitored, so if there is an issue, we likely already know about it and have a resource working on it.

If you have signed up for Internal Suite Network services, then the following items are covered by your agreement:

  1. Your suite connection device
  2. Your wired/wireless Internet connection
  3. Cable ports

If you do not have Internal Suite Network services and the problem stems from something inside your office suite, meaning from the office suite to the point your office suite connects to the VTCRC network, then support charges to troubleshoot the problem will be billed separately.

If you are interested in relocating or adding a satellite office at the Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center, please click here to request access to available suites and options.