CACHEBOX protects Achilles’ heel
ApplianSys announced today that Hellenic Academy, Zimbabwe, has purchased a CACHEBOX solution to improve web browsing speeds and avoid a costly bandwidth upgrade.
Established by the Greek community in Harare, Hellenic Academy promotes a wide range of cultural, sporting and community service activities. It also encourages learning beyond the classroom walls.
To improve student engagement in the classroom and promote independent learning the academy introduced an iPad programme. But when students started using the new devices, the academy’s Achilles’ heel was revealed – its internet connection couldn’t cope with the additional traffic.
Hellenic Academy’s Technical Director Kudakwashe Zafevere, explains: “More than 100 students and 50 teachers ordered iPads. This meant that, together with desktop users, about 350 students would access the internet at the same time. YouTube videos, iOS updates and all sorts of apps were consuming our bandwidth, causing internet browsing to slow down.”
“We were caught between a rock and a hard place: we knew the iPad scheme would boost our students’ learning experience, but the devices were bringing the network to a halt. Our bandwidth capacity was only 15Mbps but an upgrade was too expensive.”
Kudakwashe started looking for alternatives to a bandwidth upgrade and found that other schools in the area used caching to deal with similar issues: “Harare International School and Peterhouse School had the same problem and both resolved it by deploying CACHEBOX. After consulting the schools, I asked ApplianSys for a quotation.”
“After the purchase, ApplianSys’ technical support helped us deploy the unit and whenever we’ve had any questions since, they’ve been giving us great remote support.”
When asked whether he would recommend CACHEBOX to other schools he replies: “Of course! CACHEBOX caches most of the objects accessed by our students on a daily basis: Apple and Windows updates, ESET, YouTube videos and much more. It improves the online browsing experience for our students and saves us so much bandwidth that we now don’t need to upgrade our connection. I’d recommend it to all schools with bandwidth issues, particularly ones with 1:1 schemes.”
Hellenic Academy was established in 2008 by the local Greek community, as an extension of the Hellenic Primary School that had been functioning for generations. It is an independent co-educational school located in the Northern Suburbs of Harare, Zimbabwe. Each Form Year comprises three classes and the school has approximately 550 students. The academy is a member of the Association of Trust Schools (ATS).