An old PC speed-up hoax reappears

Fred langa By Fred Langa

Like bad pennies and Nigerian money scams, those bogus offers to speed up your online connection keep coming back.

Most of these speedup come-ons give bad advice — disable Windows’ networking Quality of Service feature.

Speed up your Internet connection by 80%!

Jason Wallwork saw that claim on YouTube, but fortunately, his BS detectors were working five-by-five.
  • “I don’t really believe this is true, but a video on YouTube claims you can speed up your Internet by 80% by changing one setting.

    “Would changing it get a boost at all in Internet speed? Is it even safe to touch? I’ve heard about [Quality of Service] QoS before, but I don’t know which applications are QoS-aware. Can you shed some light on this?”

Wow! That particular hoax just won’t die. It’s been making the rounds for almost 10 years now!

It all stems from a misunderstanding of the Quality of Service network setting. QoS first appeared in Windows 2000 a full decade ago. It’s been in every version of Windows since, including Windows 7. (See Figure 1.) It was originally designed as a technology to improve networking over slow and noisy telephone lines.

All versions of windows support qos
Figure 1. All versions of Windows support the Quality of Service networking parameter. QoS has been a source of confusion — and bad advice — ever since it first appeared in Windows 2000. (Win7 shown.)

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All Windows Secrets articles posted on 2010-11-18:

Fred Langa

About Fred Langa

Fred Langa is senior editor. His LangaList Newsletter merged with Windows Secrets on Nov. 16, 2006. Prior to that, Fred was editor of Byte Magazine (1987 to 1991) and editorial director of CMP Media (1991 to 1996), overseeing Windows Magazine and others.