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Internet Connection Speed

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Internet Connection Speed

Postby JTWood » Sun Nov 11, 2007 11:12 am

Got a technology question...

My home "network" consists of a cable modem, a wireless router, a desktop Mac with a hard line connection to the router, and a laptop PC with a wireless connection to the router. My Internet service plan provides me with a 3 MBPS line, so downloads should be moving along, right?

Recently, I've noticed that some streaming connections, like mySpace music were getting severed abruptly and for no apparent reason. At first, I assumed the problem was on their end, but then I started have the same problem with different downloads, like YouTube and other video hosting sites. It seemed odd that a strong connection like 3 MBPS would have bandwidth issues, so I ran a connection speed test to see if I was indeed getting all 3 Megs of my connection. The results were really odd.

I ran the test over and over again, and I got different results each time, but the range was clear. Depending on some random factor, my connection is oscillating between 600 KB and ~2 Megs at any given time. I was doing those tests with only the Mac online and with no Internet activity occurring. I was curious if the router was the problem, so I took it out of the stream and ran the cable modem directly to the desktop. All of the sudden, my connection speed was right at 3 Megs without fail. Same held true if I ran the line directly to my laptop.

So my question is this: Do I need a new router, or is there something else going on here?

I should mention that my wireless router is secured. I'm not concerned about anyone leeching my service.
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Re: Internet Connection Speed

Postby Amazinz » Sun Nov 11, 2007 1:57 pm

With everything working properly you should expect to see better speeds with the direct connection. Hard line connections are still substantially superior to wireless connections. Also, you should expect decreased performance when using encryption. It slows the data transfer and I've read that you can expect as much as 10% speed loss but it's usually not that much.

However, if you're experiencing enough latency that healthy mp3/video streams are dropping out then I would bet (since you already ruled out a problem with the direct connection) that this is a configuration issue in the router. Are you familiar with your router's config? Ever adjusted it?
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Re: Internet Connection Speed

Postby JTWood » Sun Nov 11, 2007 2:02 pm

Amazinz wrote:With everything working properly you should expect to see better speeds with the direct connection. Hard line connections are still substantially superior to wireless connections. Also, you should expect decreased performance when using encryption. It slows the data transfer and I've read that you can expect as much as 10% speed loss but it's usually not that much.

However, if you're experiencing enough latency that healthy mp3/video streams are dropping out then I would bet (since you already ruled out a problem with the direct connection) that this is a configuration issue in the router. Are you familiar with your router's config? Ever adjusted it?

I am to some extent, but only with things like the security settings.
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Re: Internet Connection Speed

Postby Amazinz » Sun Nov 11, 2007 2:09 pm

Give me the make/model of your router and I will read the manual during commercials.
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Re: Internet Connection Speed

Postby JTWood » Sun Nov 11, 2007 2:36 pm

Amazinz wrote:Give me the make/model of your router and I will read the manual during commercials.

It's a DLink WBR-1310. I appreciate the offer, but take your time. Suddenly, I can't log into the modem anymore, and I have to leave in an hour and won't be back until after 7 PM local.
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Re: Internet Connection Speed

Postby JTWood » Sun Nov 11, 2007 3:45 pm

Okay, login issue fixed. :-[
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Re: Internet Connection Speed

Postby JTWood » Tue Nov 13, 2007 10:51 pm

I borrowed an extra router (DI-514) from a buddy, and now my connection speed is in the 200kb-300kb range.

I'd say that test didn't go well at all. %-6
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Re: Internet Connection Speed

Postby Amazinz » Wed Nov 14, 2007 8:30 am

Sorry, this had totally slipped my mind. I had poked around a little on Sunday and was only able to find a quick start-up guide. I just checked the FTP site. They list about ten to fifteen router manuals but none of the IDs match your model. I will poke around so more when I get a chance or if you know where I can get it, let me know.
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Re: Internet Connection Speed

Postby JTWood » Wed Nov 14, 2007 8:53 am

Amazinz wrote:Sorry, this had totally slipped my mind. I had poked around a little on Sunday and was only able to find a quick start-up guide. I just checked the FTP site. They list about ten to fifteen router manuals but none of the IDs match your model. I will poke around so more when I get a chance or if you know where I can get it, let me know.

No worries. You're obviously not obligated to help me at all.

I found the manual here. ;-D
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