Hosted Microsoft Lync bandwidth requirements

Deciding how much bandwidth is required for your Rackspace Hosted Lync deployment requires a review of your general communications infrastructure. Several factors can influence how much bandwidth you need.

You can use Lync in multiple modalities.  To estimate how much bandwidth you need, you should know two sets of data – how many employees will be using the connection, and which of the following Lync services you will be using:

  • Instant messaging
  • Audio and video calling

How many employees will be using the connection?

The most significant factor in using Microsoft Lync involves the number of employees who will be sharing the connection and the type of work.

Note: Be sure to count remote and home office workers.

We recommend about 100 Kbps for each of the first 10 users, or the equivalent of a T1 line. 

The following tables recommend bandwidth based on how you see usage in your company.

Hosted Lync bandwidth for messaging only

Recommended bandwidth

Number of users

1.5 Mbps - (T1 line) 

10 users

3 Mbps (Bonded T1 line)

50 users

10 Mbps (EVPLS)

200 users

100 Mbps (EVPLS, Ethernet, etc.)

1000+ users

1 Gbps (Ethernet, etc.)

1000+ Users

Hosted Lync bandwidth for audio or non-HD video

Recommended bandwidth

Number of users

1.5 Mbps (T1 line)

5 to 10 users

3 Mbps (Bonded T1 line)

10 to 15 users

10 Mbps (EVPLS)

30 to 50 users

100 Mbps (EVPLS, Ethernet, etc.)

300 to 400 users

1 Gbps (Ethernet, etc.)

1000+ users

The following table shows detailed bandwidth use per user:

For 1 user

Maximum  required

Minimum recommended


PC to PC or Lync to Lync

.06 Mbps

.03 Mbps

Lync to Lync video

CIF (15 fps, 352 x 288 pixels)

0.26 Mbps

0.22 Mbps

VGA (25 fps, 640 x 480 pixels)

0.61 Mbps

0.51 Mbps

HD (30 fps, 1280 x 720 pixels)

1.51 Mbps

1.21 Mbps



Audio and video conversation over the Internet requires a good Internet connection with low latency. A few 100 milliseconds delay is not noticeable in web browsing or for email, but in an audio or video call, the human brain can easily detect it. In addition to bandwidth, the quality of the audio and video call depends on the total latency between the two parties in the call. Call quality suffers if end-to-end latency is higher than 150 ms.  


Running other services?

If you have other services running on your network that share bandwidth with your Lync audio and video traffic, you need to account and adjust for their bandwidth use as well.



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