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  1. #1
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    Significant difference between PCs and internet Download speeds

    I've got an interesting problem regarding download speeds between different PCs.
    I have a desktop with an AMD A6 chip with a Realtek 8111F lan adapter on a BioStar motherboard running Win7. This machine at best and directly from the DSL modem can only download about 3Mbps on a 6Mbps DSL line and will frequently drop to under 1Mbps or even appear to stop downloading.
    The DSL provider came out and after more than 2 hours of testing, consistently obtained 5+ Mbps which is pretty good considering distance from their DSL node. The DSL provider was also able to obtain through the wireless router a hair less than when directly hooked to the modem, which is to be expected.
    I have 2 laptops, one running with an i5 chip running Win7 and the other an old dual core T2550 with Vista that also get 5Mbps when directly hooked to the modem.
    The desktop Realtek driver was up to date so figuring the Realtek lan adapter may be the bottleneck; uninstalled the Realtek adapter and installed a new Intel network adapter and updated its driver but without effect on download speeds the desktop can obtain.
    The slow download issues on the desktop still exist and I'm stumped looking for direction.
    Typically run Firefox on the desktop but changing browsers to Chrome or IE makes no difference. The two laptops are also running Firefox. All machines are running MSE and the desktop also scans clean for virus, etc.

  2. #2
    Super Moderator RetiredGeek's Avatar
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    rdmar,

    Have you tried a different cable? It's worth a shot. HTH
    May the Forces of good computing be with you!

    RG

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  3. #3
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    How are you measuring download speeds? Is this a valid measurement or an artefact of the measurement technique?

    One way to test throughput speeds is as follows:

    • Get rid of any 3rd party download tools.
    • Transfer a large file via an http get request directly from a webserver.
    • Time the download accurately and calculate true download speed.
    • Do this on all three machines and compare.



    I suggest using something like a Linux distro download to use as the seed for the large download file: Try this one, which should be 708 MB
    In God we trust; all others must bring data.

    - William Edwards Deming. 1900 - 1993

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by RetiredGeek View Post
    rdmar,

    Have you tried a different cable? It's worth a shot. HTH
    Another interesting tid bit: same cable all machines including DSL provider's tech.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tinto Tech View Post
    How are you measuring download speeds? Is this a valid measurement or an artefact of the measurement technique?

    One way to test throughput speeds is as follows:

    • Get rid of any 3rd party download tools.
    • Transfer a large file via an http get request directly from a webserver.
    • Time the download accurately and calculate true download speed.
    • Do this on all three machines and compare.



    I suggest using something like a Linux distro download to use as the seed for the large download file: Try this one, which should be 708 MB
    DSL provider has a direct download file off their server. http://support.hickorytech.net/myspeed/

    I've got Ubuntu installed as a dual boot option on the desktop; I'll give it a shot.

    Thanks for your help - the Scot in me is getting stubborn to solve this. Unfortunately I've never been to Scotland! (But should come over for the Ryder Cup next year!)

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by rdmarr View Post
    DSL provider has a direct download file off their server. http://support.hickorytech.net/myspeed/

    I've got Ubuntu installed as a dual boot option on the desktop; I'll give it a shot.
    That site appears to measure reasonably accurately on my system, though it might be better to use a speed testing service that does not require java to be enabled in the browser (but that's a different story!).

    If you have Ubuntu installed as dual boot, it's even better: use the same hardware, but an independent OS and compare the throughput. If the same slow speeds, you have a hardware issue; if better on Ubuntu there is a problem with the configuration of Win7. Think about packet sizes and mtu settings on the NIC on the bad machine and compare to those on the good machines.
    In God we trust; all others must bring data.

    - William Edwards Deming. 1900 - 1993

  7. #7
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    Don't know if this has been resolved, but changing the Power Plan to High Performance and/or trying different Speed & Duplex settings may help.

    For the Speed & Duplex settings, right click on the LAN adapter in Device Manager/Network adapters and select Properties.

    Under the Advanced tab click on Speed & Duplex then use the dropdown to change the setting.

    TCP Optimizer will give you the best MTU setting and while it has the option to auto change the adapter in the computer, I prefer to set these manually.

    To do this open a command prompt as an administrator and enter the following cmd.

    netsh interface ipv4 show interfaces - This cmd will show the Index No. (left column) for the adapters

    To change the MTU setting to the optimum that TCP Optimizer gives, enter the following cmd.

    In this example, Idx No.15 is used for a MTU setting of 1492 but yours may vary.

    netsh interface ipv4 set subinterface 15 mtu=1492 store=persistent

    Then run the show interfaces cmd again to confirm.

    Change the other machines adapters to suit if not already set and this value will need to be put into the router.
    Last edited by Sudo15; 2013-12-08 at 16:07.

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