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DyerWolf
2007-Nov-12, 06:52 PM
Is there any way to check my download speeds? My dad lives in the same town and over his cable connection (and wireless router inside the house) he is getting better than 1.4 mb/s downloads.

I am only getting 364 kb/s at best with DSL (even though I supposedly have their high speed service).

I recognize we have different connections / ISPs - but there should be a way for me to check my download speed before I call my ISP to complain.

Any ideas?

ToSeek
2007-Nov-12, 07:01 PM
http://www.testmy.net/d_load.php

http://www.speakeasy.net/speedtest/

http://reviews.cnet.com/7004-7254_7-0.html

Probably best for head-to-head comparisons since I get three very different numbers for this computer.

Jim
2007-Nov-12, 07:03 PM
There are several sites that will run a test of your connection speed. Google "check download speeds" and choose your favorite.

Larry Jacks
2007-Nov-12, 07:06 PM
You can do a search for "internet speed test" or "intenet speed check" and get a lot of hits. Here's just one (http://reviews.cnet.com/7009-7254_7-0.html?CType=5732&ac=809&ISPID=&ISPNAME=&&kbps=3264) of many choices.

I have DSL at home and have not yet checked my speed but it seems pretty fast (~1.5 Mbit). Keep in mind that DSL performance varies with your distance from the closest switching center. The further away you are, the lower your speed. There may also be some optimization tricks that you can do to boost your speed. Good luck.

cjl
2007-Nov-12, 07:08 PM
www.speedtest.net works well for me.

Also, keep in mind that you may be getting the speed that you should be - many high speed cable connections are faster than DSL by a fair margin. At my house, we have Comcast cable, and routinely get 10-25Mb/s.

Neverfly
2007-Nov-12, 07:14 PM
www.auditmypc.com has some tests as well as other tests, hints and tips and security information.

Extravoice
2007-Nov-12, 07:56 PM
The speed check sites that have already been posted should work fine, but I have to relate my DSL experience.

A few years ago I signed-up for ATT DSL service because it was cheaper than a cable modem and I already had ATT dialup (I could keep the same email address). I should have known there would be problems when I was told that one of the phone lines in my house could get DSL but the other couldn't.

To make a long story short, the link kept dropping the connection so called the tech support people who throttled-back my connection to near-dialup speeds. After a day or two, I called back and they increased the speed, which resulted in dropouts. This cycle repeated several times over about two weeks. Apparently I could have speed or stability, but not both.

Before the trial period ended, I boxed-up the whole thing and sent it back. I then switched to the cable modem, which has been very stable and I get about 10 Mbps downstream and 2 Mbps up...but it is a little pricey.

DSL is probably great in many places, but I'm apparently at the edge of the service zone.

DyerWolf
2007-Nov-13, 02:32 PM
Okay - I ran the tests above - and they all suggest I should get between 1.8 mb/s and 4 mb/s.

Why then would my dad and I have completely different download rates from the same website? (He got 1.4 mb/s - I got 364 kb/s)

(I downloaded the CRYSIS demo from NVIDIA's website).

Any thoughts?

cjl
2007-Nov-13, 11:36 PM
Keep in mind that the websites above are testing in bits, which is the standard for network speed measurement, while download speeds typically report in bytes, which is the standard for file sizes. If your stated 364k is in bytes, it is the equivalent of a 2.84 megabit connection speed.

publius
2007-Nov-13, 11:51 PM
Keep in mind that the websites above are testing in bits, which is the standard for network speed measurement, while download speeds typically report in bytes, which is the standard for file sizes. If your stated 364k is in bytes, it is the equivalent of a 2.84 megabit connection speed.

That is a dang good point, and worth repeating. Raw data rates over various pipes are generally expressed in bits per second, while many download programs express speed in bytes per second. And even then, raw data rates are just that, the theoretical speed the physical setup can transport bits down the pipe. The other end doesn't have to send bits as fast as is theoretically possible.

I put Gigabit hardware on my little LAN system a couple years ago. My machines are nowhere near fast enough to fill that pipe up. Raw file transfers might peak at 12% capacity on a good day. <10% is typical.

And then, just because the local "pipe" system between your modem and the head end of that system is some given figure, it doesn't mean all servers will spew data that fast to you anyway. Great big outfits that are serving lots of users generally have big server farms all over the place and fast local connections that can spew lots of data, but you will run into slower servers. The slower ones just aren't going to spew it as fast as you can take it.

You can take advantage sometimes and open mulitple TCP connections -- "download accelerators" do that. But many servers won't play that game anymore, and will only give a single IP so much of their time.

-Richard

sarongsong
2007-Nov-14, 10:29 PM
...many high speed cable connections are faster than DSL by a fair margin. At my house, we have Comcast cable, and routinely get 10-25Mb/s.With more on the horizon:
May 9, 2007
Comcast has unveiled a new cable modem capable of speeds of 150 megabits per second -- some 25 times faster than standard cable modems...CEO Brian Roberts...expects...DOCSIS 3.0, will become available in 2009.
IMDb (http://www.imdb.com/news/sb/2007-05-09#tv4)