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Internet Drops Out, Consistent Speed with Modem, New Router

Reader Success Stories

  • John Panfil

Aug 31, 2016

    John Panfil Aug 31, 2016

    “A lot of information, much of which I had no idea can affect internet speed. Going to go back through again and follow each step and tip and see what my end results will be. I suspect I’ll gain internet speed.” …” more

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Computer woes: spyware, viruses, and other programs

The health of your computer can affect your Internet connection. Spyware and viruses can definitely cause problems, but your Internet connection speed can also be affected by add-on programs, the amount of memory the computer has, hard disk space and condition, and the programs that are running.

Two of the most frequent causes of poor Internet performance are spyware and viruses. Spyware can slow your system by interfering with your browser and monopolizing your Internet connection. Spyware monitors your Internet use and keystrokes, which adds delays. The problem is compounded when there are multiple spyware programs running at the same time. If the problem is severe enough, you can lose connectivity altogether. To get your Internet performance back, you should regularly run an antispyware program to clean out any spyware infestation.

Computer viruses can also cause poor Internet performance. When a virus infects a computer, it installs computer code which will attempt to propagate itself, usually by sending copies of itself through e‑mail. Some viruses can multiply at the rate of hundreds of e‑mail messages per minute, which leaves little computing power and Internet connection bandwidth for anything else. Viruses often don’t give any obvious indication that they’re running, so it’s best to run your antivirus software at all times.

Browser add-ons also cause performance problems. Browser add-ons are programs, such as multimedia add-ons, search bars, or other programs that usually appear on your browser’s toolbar. Many browser add-ons can add to a rich browsing experience, offering multimedia or specialized document viewing. However, some add-ons can slow your Internet connection. If you suspect that add-ons are causing slow performance, try starting Internet Explorer in Add-ons disabled mode. Add-ons are disabled only for the session, but if you find your performance improves, you can use the Add-on Manager to turn them off permanently. To access the Add-on Manager from Internet Explorer, click the Tools button, and then click Manage Add-ons.

Like all computer programs, Internet Explorer requires a certain amount of computing power, memory, and disk space to run efficiently. Every webpage you view is first downloaded to memory and then saved to temporary disk files. Running another program that’s using lots of memory and computing power can compete with Internet Explorer and cause delays. If you find your Internet connection running slowly and you have other programs running, try closing them. If you want to run several programs, consider increasing the memory you have on your computer. Low disk space can also cause performance problems. You can increase your disk space by deleting Internet Explorer’s temporary files.

Occasionally, settings get changed in Internet Explorer that could possibly affect how Internet Explorer works. You can reset Internet Explorer to its default settings. Resetting Internet Explorer isn’t reversible, so you should read the list of settings that are affected before resetting.

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Check Whether Your Network Speed Is Slow

Occasionally run speed tests to check the quality of your internet connection. These tests reveal whether your local computer's outbound connection is impaired. If you get decent throughput on a speed test but your computer's connection still seems slow, the problem may reside in your computer (for example, active download sessions or you've maximized memory, disk, or CPU utilization on your device).

If your computer runs above 80 percent consistent utilization for system memory, disk input/output, or CPU cycling, the computer may struggle to maintain optimal performance. Network slowdowns follow—not because the network is problematic, but because the computer is overtaxed.

To check relative resource utilization to determine whether another component is affecting network performance in Windows 10, right-click the Start button, select Task Manager, and choose Performance. On a Linux computer, use the top command. On a Mac, open the Activity Monitor.

What is Good Internet Speed for Me?

Once we determine our internet speed, we can start to take a closer look at the type of service package that will be required to support our network needs.

The choice of what internet package to pay for will depend on numerous factors. If you’re a serious gamer, expect higher bandwidth if you choose to download games.

Streaming movies, sharing large files, and long conference calls also require a faster connection.

But if your activities only involve general web surfing and email, then you don’t need blazing speeds and a basic internet package should be enough to sustain your activity.

Some of the online ventures that you may want to consider when selecting the best internet speed include:

  • General web browsing and email use
  • File, music, and game downloads
  • File sharing
  • Streaming movies using Cinema APK and Kodi
  • Online gaming
  • Video conferencing

Below is a comprehensive internet download speed guide:

1 MbpsLD to SDStandard web surfing

Emailing without large attachments

Social media browsing

Mobile audio and music streaming on Spotify, iTunes and Amazon Music

SD video on Xbox, Vudu

Standard voice and HD video calling on Skype
2.5 Mbps to 3 Mbps480 SDFile sharing

Playing online games on Xbox, Playstation 4, Nintendo Switch

SD video on Netflix

HD video on Hulu, YouTube, Xbox

Group video calling on Skype for a maximum of 3 participants
6 Mbps720p HDOnline gamingHD video on Netflix, Hulu, VuduVideo conferencing
8 Mbps1080p HDInstructor-led online classes

Playing games on Fortnite

HD video on Netflix

Live streaming on Hulu

Group video calling on Skype for a maximum of 3 participants
25 Mbps4K Ultra HDDownloading HD movies and Torrents

Long web conferencing

Ultra HD video on NetflixCloud file-sharing for very large files

5.  Uninstall OneNote

Ever used Microsoft’s OneNote?

If you just said yes, you’re great!

If you’re like me who just minimised this page, and actually went and took a look at OneNote after 5 years being a Windows user and thinking all this time that it was a spyware that Obama and the  FBI boys is using to watch me, then you’re a paranoiac idiot.

It’s basically just a note taking app from Microsoft, just like Evernote or Bear and it does what it does which is collect and organize not just one note(pun intended) but all your notes.

If you are not planning to use Microsoft’s note taking app (unless if your school teacher is forcing you too), then you can uninstall it and see if it has any effect on your internet speed as some have reported that this was the main problem that caused their internet to be slow.

Here’s how you can uninstall OneNote in just a matter of seconds.

Step 1:  First, go to your Start and then look for PowerShell.

Step 2:  Next, right click on the app and then choose to Run as administrator.

Step 3:  You will now have a new PowerShell window

Step 3:  You will now have a new PowerShell window. Trust me it’s pretty simple 🙂 all you have to do is just copy-paste this command and hit enter.

Annnd you’re done!

How To Fix Inconsistent Internet Connection

There are so numerous factors that are involved with internet speed, but if you are facing continuous speed fluctuations, it means something might be actually wrong with your internet connection.

Switch to a dedicated line

Constant Traffic is actually the major causes of inconsistent internet speed. For instance, if you are residing in an apartment building, you tend to notice this at the time everybody is at home. This means that everybody is sharing the signal, which in turn tends to increase the load. Getting a dedicated line will help to fix this issue. Though it’s important, you get approval from your service provider before getting this line because at some point the inconsistent speed might be as a result of another factor.

Run a quick check on your devices

This is one of the delicate troubleshooting steps to follow. In every household, there are numerous devices connected to the internet this, in turn, share the bandwidth you’re getting from your ISP. This means that you are going to lose internet speed on all the devices. In some cases, an inactive device might tend to be consuming more bandwidth without you realizing it, which ends up reducing your speed. To solve this problem only connect devices which you need and disconnect the Wi-Fi of others not in use. Furthermore, when you notice the inconsistent speed, there might be an application running background updates. This means that automatic backups or updates on your applications can also be the cause of speed inconsistency you experience with your internet connection.

Metered Connection

Internet speed can also be affected by metered connection because when a limit or timer is set on your device, it most times affects the speed. So make sure you disconnect any active metered connection setting on your device unless you actually need it to monitor your bandwidth usage. It needs to be configured efficiently to prevent these issues.

In Conclusion

As a must-have service, the internet can’t be separated from our lives because we rely on it for information, education or entertainment. Suppose you’re experiencing an inconsistent internet speed. In that case, you can go through some of these multiple suggestions – repositioning your router, rebooting your equipment, disconnecting devices, surfing the web doing off-peak times, etc. if non worked, at this point you need to reach out to your service provider. Remember they would want to rectify this issue just to keep you as their customer. When they seem unwilling to help you, it might be time to jump ship to another internet plan.

Make Sure Your Router and Other Network Equipment Is Working

When routers, modems, or cables malfunction, they don’t properly support network traffic at full speeds. Certain technical glitches in network equipment negatively affect performance even though connections can still be made.

To troubleshoot potentially faulty equipment, temporarily rearrange and reconfigure your gear while experimenting with different configurations. Systematically try bypassing the router, swapping cables, and testing with multiple devices to isolate the slow performance to a specific component of the system. Then, decide if it can be upgraded, repaired, or replaced.

9.  Update Your Network Drivers

Sometimes whenever you upgrade to a new Windows, especially if you just upgraded to your new Windows 10, unwanted errors that has got to do with your drivers could now and then pop up.

The reason could be that your drivers are outdated, lost, or you just might have the wrong network drivers on your computer, so it’s always good to check up on this (even if you’re not having any problems).

A great tool you can use is Driver Talent and you don’t need to do a thing as it matches your computer to the right drivers and it downloads them automatically in just two minutes. Oh did I tell you it’s free too? 🙂

I have included a great guide for you to follow up on this.

Why Is My Internet Slow at Night?

It is not unlikely to experience slow internet speeds at night. Most people use the internet at home at night, especially in the rush hour between 7-11 pm.

It isn’t much you can do to increase the speed of the internet at this hour, especially if you are a cable internet user. You can minimize the number of devices you use at this particular time or subscribe to a faster internet speed.

Tips to speed up your internet connection

There’s no one way to boost your internet speed. Your speed could be suffering from a number of unrelated reasons, so it’s in your best interest to explore as many avenues as possible. With each step you try, we also recommend re-running your speed tests to see whether or not you are achieving any noticeable results.

Tip #1: Turn off unused or extra internet-connected devices

In most cases, your unused internet-connected devices are sipping marginal amounts of your bandwidth. However, if you have multiple phones, tablets, smart TVs, computers, smart home devices, and video game consoles sharing your home network, all of that data usage can add up and result in reduced available bandwidth.

Additionally, you may think that your devices are sitting idle, but if they’re on, they’re likely still using data. Many devices are now set to automatically download and install updates as they become available. That’s not just system updates, either. That includes individual app updates. And if you’re running a lot of smart home devices, these may be drawing a large amount of bandwidth as they are often always on and will likely automatically install firmware updates.

As such, you could have multiple devices downloading updates regularly and simultaneously throughout the day without your knowledge.

Hopefully, you ran a few speed tests beforehand under normal conditions. Now, try going through your house and turning off the majority of your internet-connected devices, or at a minimum, turning off the wifi connection on those devices. Run your internet speed tests again and look to see if you can notice any uptick in download speeds.

To show you what we mean, I purposefully streamed videos from three different sources at the same time: a mobile device, a laptop, and a smart TV. Here was my speed test result:

And here’s the result after turning off all of the videos streams and shutting off two of the devices (smartphone and smart TV):

That’s a 37.5 percent increase in my internet speed. Keep in mind that I also earlier stated I’m paying Comcast for up to 100 Mbps. I’m clearly not getting anywhere close to that, even at 2:00 in the afternoon on a Thursday, which is still within the off-peak hours.

Nevertheless, shutting down some of your always-on internet connected devices should help free up some bandwidth, and in some cases, help with buffering issues.

Conclusion

Are you experiencing speed fluctuations while using the internet? The low speed in your network could be due to various reasons, including outdated software, old hardware, choosing the wrong bandwidth, etc. You can deal with the issue by ensuring you use the latest hardware, firmware, changing your router location, changing the router settings, and enhancing your network security.

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