If you are experiencing a slow internet connection despite subscribing to a good internet plan, your internet service provider might be cheating you. But if you are certain it is a credible company, there are certain areas you can look into in order to improve your internet connection.
Problem Areas to Check When Your Internet Slows Down
The common problem areas that can slow down your internet connection are:
The modem/router: Most problems with modems and routers with regard to slow connections occur because of some wrong entry in the settings. Mostly pressing the reset button makes slow connection issues disappear. Remember to back up your router settings before you press reset.
Computer hardware: Connectivity hardware in the PC like LAN card can also cause the internet connection to slow down if you use incorrect drivers.
The operating system: The OS could be slowing down your internet connection by scheduling updates without checking if the connection is idle. There could be too many net based programs linked to windows startup
The Internet Browser: This is the most common culprit that makes internet connections lag. With browsers offering more and more functionalities, the scope of a setting going wrong and causing a conflict has become more probable.
Top 3 Sites to Test Your Internet Speed
Speedtest.net : This is one of the most accurate and trustworthy of speed testing sites. It detects your location automatically and provides detailed metrics on your download and upload speeds.
Speakeasy.net : This is another popular internet speed testing website. It offers other broadband and mobile internet services too. The only downside to using this site for speed testing is that it does not detect your location automatically. Once you select your location, the site gives a detailed account of your connection speed and other parameters.
Testmy.net : This site has been in existence since 1999 and offers a great deal of information on speed tests. They are the founders of test score authentication and sharing. This can help you diagnose connection, browser and operating system issues that other speed tests do not detect.
Sites for Advanced Internet Diagnostic Testing
PingTest.net : Use the PingTest website to analyze the quality of your broadband service free of charge. The website is made to compliment www.speedtest.net. Both websites have proven invaluable when testing the speed and quality of your broadband connection. The troubleshooting tools on www.pingtest.net grade your ping and packet loss. Ping measures the time it takes a “packet” of data to travel from a computer to a server on the internet and back again. Delays in internet applications can usually be attributed to a higher then desired ping. Packet loss happens when there is a problem with your internet connection leading to an error with transmitting and receiving “packets” of data. Errors can significantly decrease the speed at which you upload and download, leading to poor quality with streaming audio and video and can even bring your connection to a complete stop.
8×8.com : 8×8 offers a comprehensive VoIP quality and connectivity speed test. Their online conectivity test creates a socket-connection directly to your internet browser in order to transfer simulated VoIP data to your PC. This test is much more robust than a traditional connectivity test in that actual VoIP packets are being transferred from the 8×8 servers through your ISP to your PC and measured. The end result is a specific measurement of both the quality and performance of your internet connection. Begin the test by clicking on “Click to Start Test”. Note: you will need a web browser with Java 1.5 (Version 5.0) or greater in order to run the test.
Speed Monitoring with Gadgets
It is possible to monitor your network speed conveniently and continuously by installing various gadgets available for the Google sidebar as well as the Windows sidebar. However, it is not known how resource intensive the gadget or widgets will be.
Internet Optimization Tips
Mentioned below are some general tips that will help you speed up your internet connection:
Remove the add-ons that you are not using. They can hamper the connection speed by demanding more resource for the system to run as well as by creating conflicts with the core operations of your browser, network adapter, etc. In IE, navigate to Tools > Manage Add-Ons > Enable or Disable Add-ons.
Another primitive move for increasing the connection speed is to empty the Temp Folder regularly.
For both DSL and cable broadband connections, there are ways through the registry with the help of which one can optimize performance. Registry values are sensitive and hence should be backed up before you make any changes in the values. Modifying the TcpWindowSize value for broadband TCP/IP connections is a method that is applicable to most operating systems. Open registry editor and go the key: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\Tcpip\Parameters
Now create a DWORD value ‘GlobalMaxTcpWindowSize’ and set the hexadecimal value to 00007fff and decimal value to 32767. Alternatively 0000ffff and 65535 can be used respectively. The final step is to restart the computer. Your internet connection should be considerably faster.
As long as you have chosen your service provider carefully, you should never have to deal with an annoyingly slow internet connection speeds. Follow the above steps to keep your settings and PC in ship-shape for better and faster connectivity.
Once you have taken care of the Quick Fix PC Clean-up items and the PC Speed-up items, it’s time to move on to finding and eliminating spyware on your PC and a complete and thorough virus scan. Once you are finished cleaning up your computer and fixing the conflicts and problems, you must take precautions against these problems popping up again in the future.
If you are beginning to have problems with your computer, you should consider taking the time to set up a good backup plan for your precious files and learn more about how to protect your privacy when you are online .
That’s all for now. The aforementioned tips can make a rookie look like a Tech Wonder. The tools mentioned are ones that I use and recommend to my clients and family. If you have suggestions of worthy alternatives send them in. Thank you for reading.
Still plagued by a slow PC? Try fine tuning your Windows Operating System and speed up your Windows XP, Vista, or Windows 7 PC.