Great Connections Happen Here.™

Frequently Asked Questions About the 95th Percentile Rule

Here are a few of the questions that you may have about your bandwidth usage and the 95th percentile rule. 

When it comes to billing for bandwidth, PS LIGHTWAVE uses the 95th percentile rule for billing. Every customer has a committed rate for bandwidth. Occasionally, a customer may exceed that due to a sudden burst of bandwidth. We do not charge for that burst, but rather change based on the 95th percentile rule. This rule can be confusing and leave you with many questions. Here are a few of the questions that you may have about your bandwidth usage and the 95th percentile rule. 

What Is The 95th Percentile Rule? 

The 95th percentile rule takes a look at your overall bandwidth for the billing cycle that you are being billed for. If your overall bandwidth use is at or near your committed rate 95 percent of the time, and you have spikes or bursts of higher bandwidth usage less than five percent of the time, you are still within the 95 percent, and will not be charged for those extra bursts or usage. However, if you are at your committed rate less than 95 percent of the time, you are underestimating or under committed to the bandwidth you estimated you will use, and you will be charged for the overage. 

What Are The Benefits Of Using The 95th Percentile Rule? 

The biggest benefit to the 95th percentile rule is that you are not charged or your bandwidth is not slowed down because you have sudden bursts of either incoming or outgoing traffic. You are billed at a higher rate for overages, so limiting or minimizing those overages is beneficial. This rule also ensures that only those who are majorly undercutting their estimations are penalized, while those who normally stay within their allotted bandwidth usage and commitment are not. This ultimately helps to keep prices low for all those parties involved. 

How Can I Monitor What My Data Usage Is? 

At PS LIGHTWAVE, we provide you with a graph that will show your 95th percentile inbound rate, and the amount of usage you have on a daily or monthly basis, and your 95th percentile outbound rate and the amount of usage you have with that on a daily or monthly basis. 

What Are the Benefits Of Monitoring The Graphs Provided To Me? 

Monitoring the graphs provided to you is extremely important. It allows you to see how close you are to the 95th percentile, which ultimately helps you to determine if you need to increase your bandwidth for either incoming or outgoing traffic. The graphs also allow you to compare traffic from month to month, allowing you to see if there are certain days of the week or times of the month where you may see spikes. Ultimately, monitoring allows you to watch your data and help up your usage to prevent unexpected outages if you are flirting month after month with being below the 95th percentile. 

PS LIGHTWAVE provides high-speed, fiber Internet for public and private commercial entities in the Greater Houston and surrounding areas.

Through our high-quality infrastructure, innovative technology and expert, locally based support, we deliver not only the best in connectivity and reliability but in scalability and redundancy. We invite you to learn more about our services, our history and our dedicated team.

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PS LIGHTWAVE, a leading telecommunications service provider headquartered in Houston, Texas, provides managed Ethernet Data Circuits, Internet, private network solutions and Voice over IP (VoIP) over one of the nation’s largest facilities-based private Metropolitan Area Networks (MANs). The switched Layer 2 network, backed by 24/7/365 Network Operations Center (NOC) support, encompasses approximately 5,500 route miles and 1,400 on-net locations and connects 100+ fault-tolerant multi-gigabit Ethernet rings for built-in redundancy, security, low latency, and high-availability. At PS LIGHTWAVE Great Connections Happen Here™.

For more information, please visit or call 832-615-8000.