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Windsurf48

Internet Speed Download Varies Widely

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I just upgraded my CPU and motherboard and have been running Overdrive Tests.  I'm finding that the Internet download speed ranges from 12 mps to 180 mps.  Running the Speedtest.net test after the slower tests gets 180 mps.  I don't know if the problem is something in Windows 10 using bandwidth while the test is running or with the connection to the Albany server.

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First thing I would do, turn off anti-virus and any other active on the fly protection that you have running and run the test a few times again without that on. In my mind that is the most probable culprit.

 

After that I would look at any of that "gee wiz this sure makes my desktop look pretty stuff" visual affects, and turn it all off for the test. This Website discusses the built in affects and recommends what to turn off if you don't want to simply adjust for performance. http://www.thewindowsclub.com/disable-visual-effects-windows Be sure to only visit this and other websites with your anti-virus and any other protection you have installed turned on.

 

If you have installed any desktop features on top of what Win10 already has, you may want to disable them temporarily.

 

I also turn off the Indexing service for windows search which uses HDD and CPU resources.

 

There's probably some other things to look at but I don't remember them off the top of my head. You can find them by searching google for "tweak Win10". The things that make your performance faster by tweaking will also, most likely, affect your internet speed.

 

There are some things you cannot control out there in internet land that can also affect the speed. You can discuss this with your internet provider and see if they have any default server options in place which are affecting the speed that you can request to use or not use. Of course, they may try to upsell you which is always a risk when talking to them.

 

Oh, and Merry Christmas :)

 

 

Edited by oftentired

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There is nothing fancy in the desktop settings except the background changing every 30 minutes.  Visual settings are set for best performance, and I change settings from 200% to 100% for tests. The indexing service is turned immediately after installing Windows. The only antivirus running is Windows Defender, although I could try disabling that.

 

However, any of the current settings would have been in place when I was testing a couple of years ago after installing a Core i7-6700k. Tests for previous systems would have been under Windows 8.1 or 7, but still with equivalent settings.  However, in all previous testing, the download speeds were consistent in tests run within a few weeks or months, only changing when the cable limit changed.  It's only been in the past week or two that I've seen widely varying results, and then only for the download speed.  All other system results are stable from run to run, including ping and upload speeds. 

 

It is possible that something the system is doing is interfering with the download speed, although Windows Update is set to ask before downloading updates and to check for updates every 22 hours, which should limit its interference, and most of the other phone-home functions are disabled using Group Policy Editor or uninstalled used PowerShell.  I am investigating some items revealed by O&O ShutUp10, although some that it says are only partially disabled have been uninstalled.

 

I ran Overdrive twice this morning at different settings which should not have impacted download speeds, and both times the download speeds were close the rated 180 Mbs, so I did not see the problem in either run.  I was going to do another run tonight, but the CPU was running hotter than I was comfortable with at load, so I backed out the settings instead.

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13 hours ago, oftentired said:

What type of HDD are you using for your internet cache?

Two Samsung 950 Pro 512M M.2 drives in RAID 0. The Overdrive scores have been around 2700 MB in all the recent test runs.

 

Yesterday morning, the download speed was about 180 Mbs; last night, it was 15 Mbs, and this morning it's back to 180 Mbs. I don't know if time of day and the Comcast connection is a factor in the variations, but the response to my television remote varies widely, too; typically, the cable box stops responding to it completely for five minutes at 8 pm, 9 pm, and 10 pm, and tends to be slower between 7 pm and 11 pm. Comcast has been no help, mostly claiming that it couldn't be happening or telling me to reset the cable box, which takes longer than waiting for the response to pick up again and doesn't resolve the problem.

 

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Seems like your SSD's should perform without slowing things down. Have you looked at your CPU activity when the slowdowns happens? Maybe a clue will show with that info.

 

But, from what you've said so far I'm leaning toward something going on with COMCAST, such as daily peak activity periods which they are not capable of keeping up with.

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I'll run the stand-alone Internet speed test with Task Manager monitoring CPU usage.  I want to try that test at various times to see how it varies anyway. However, I've never seen much CPU usage just running downloads, and it seems unlikely that downloads would put much load on a Core i7-8700k (by the way, I've been trying to update my profile, but it always ends up at 0 percent complete after going through all the screens, so I've sent an email asking about that).

 

In the past, I've seen some variation in PCPitstop download rates, but not as wide as the current ones.  I've seen consistent download speeds using www.speedtest.net, but that uses a server within 50 miles of my house.  So far, it hasn't shown bottlenecks at the times I've gotten really slow downloads in the PCPitstop test, but I've seen radically different results using its different servers.

 

I doubt that it makes a difference, but there is a dying locust tree outside my window leaning against the Comcast wire between two telephone poles.  Last year, it was six inches off the cable, but about a third of the base of its trunk has rotted and it's been leaning against the cable since spring.  I know it's the Comcast cable because the power company came out four months ago, acknowledged that there was a problem, but said that it wouldn't do anything because its cable was above the top of the dying tree and it was Comcast's problem.  The tree is on the county right-of-way, but the county can't touch trees near wires, and Comcast can't remove the tree without permission from the county and power company, so it's probably going to stay the way it is until it falls and takes out the Comcast cable.

 

Merry Christmas.

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I just ran four Bandwidth Speedtests using the Albany server.  All four showed 12-13% CPU usage and no disk activity.  One showed 95 Mbs and the other three showed downloads in the low 20s.  Upload speeds only have only varied a couple of Mbs between any of the runs.  Test against the Dallas, San Francisco, and London servers got 180 Mbs.  A final test going back to the Albany server got 21 Mbs.

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Your system sounds top notch to me. I can't think of any issues that would be found there. (I'm making the assumption that your mobo drivers are up to date).

 

As you may already be thinking, running the test back to back with some high speeds and low speeds on the download side would seem to indicate the problem is farther out than Comcast. Maybe the route your location takes to bring some things down has a bottleneck that you won't be able to do anything about. I think if after several spaced out tests, if certain download test locations have a consistent high with the others consistent low that would confirm a problem outside of what you can influence.

 

 

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After seeing the expected download speeds from Dallas, San Francisco, and London, but not Albany, I'd come to the conclusion that the problem was something beyond my neighborhood and unrelated to my Comcast service between my area and Albany, which might include New York traffic.

 

All the drivers are up to date, and I tend to check them daily for the first few months after upgrading my system. ASUS just released a new BIOS last week, so I upgraded to that.  I don't know if that's why I was finally able to get through the Windows memory test at the rated speed of DDR4-4500, although I guess I could ask ASUS if there were any changes related to memory in the new BIOS.

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