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I have a server (mostly but not only serving a web application) for whom some 80%+ of all traffic comes from inside the same LAN as the server (the LAN covers the downtown area of a small town).

Of course the performance inside the LAN is wonderful.

However, for people outside the LAN, the performance is abysmal, as they need to access the services through a typical business internet connection.

I'd like to direct the outside world to a Linode or Rackspace or something, where our apps can live an operate in tandem.

It's not clear to me how the database will work in such a scenario - perhaps the world server DB is read-only and all writes have to come to us? That would be acceptable.

What's the easiest way to implement a solution like this? Also, what is the terminology involved so that I can be better at asking similar questions in the future?

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There's no such thing as typical business internet connection. The possibilities include, but are not limited to, DSL, Cable, T1, fractional T1, ISDN, Metro Ethernet, wireless, etc. Furthermore, you've sorted to a resolution without having identified the real problem. It's an assumption that their internet connection is the problem unless you've actually been to each location and confirmed that via testing. –  joeqwerty Oct 16 '11 at 16:41
    
It's my location - a coffee shop in upstate NY. Our internet connection is currently a 10 / 1 Time Warner Business Class. In case it's not already clear, I'm a developer and not a deployment artist, but I am curious and want to learn much more. –  Justin Myles Holmes Oct 16 '11 at 16:42
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OK, can you clarify a few things: Is the coffee shop the location where the users are? Where's the server in relation to the coffee shop? What do you mean that the LAN covers the downtown area? Also, please take this in the spirit that it's intended (no offense): poor troubleshooting leads to poor solutions. If you don't have the skill set to troubleshoot this problem then hire someone who does. It's not a deficiency on your part, you have a different skill set. Hiring an expert will lead to the correct solution (hopefully) and you'll learn some things as well. –  joeqwerty Oct 16 '11 at 16:49

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