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Old 20-10-12, 17:54
Old_John_McKenna Old_John_McKenna is offline
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Default Slow Connection Troubleshooter

To enable us to quickly identify and address any issues you may be experiencing, we would be grateful if you could spare some time to perform some basic checks.

We would also like to take this opportunity to outline why some users can experience speed problems and some simple solutions.

The nature of Broadband is such that bandwidth at peak times is shared amongst customers according to the speed of service purchased. It is therefore likely that if you are downloading a large file during peak times, it will take longer to complete (as there are more users online, sharing the same bandwidth). For this reason we would recommend that if you need to download a large amount of material that you try and do so outside of peak times. This will ensure that optimum speeds are achieved.

However, if you are experiencing consistently low speeds then this needs to be investigated. In order to identify the problem and therefore ensure a speedy resolution, please ensure you have performed the 6 checks below as you may find the solution to your problem:


1) How is the modem/router connected to the phone line...?

Please ensure the modem/router is connected to a filter via an RJ11 cable (like the Black 2 Metre RJ11 Cable we supplied). This RJ11 cable must connect into the DSL socket of a filter that is DIRECTLY connected into a BT-installed, wall-mounted telephone socket. PLEASE NOTE: No telephone extension cabling is to be used to connect the modem, as this was not designed to carry a broadband signal.

ALSO: Ensure that ALL equipment attached to the phone line is connecting through a DSL filter (2 of these were supplied with your broadband modem). Unfiltered equipment (Such as Phones, Fax, Answer-Machine, Cordless Telephone Base Units, Alarm Systems, Surge Protectors, Sky Digital Set Top Boxes, Dialler Boxes, literally anything attached to the telephone line) can interfere with the broadband reception of your modem/router. If you are in doubt as to whether a piece of equipment attached to the telephone line is causing a problem, simply disconnect the item in question and try your broadband connection again.

2) Can your PC cope with the speeds of a broadband connection and the resource demands of a Broadband modem/router...?

It is recommended that your PC at the very least must match these minimum specification requirements:
* Pentium 200Mhz Processor or Equivalent
* 32MB of RAM
* 150MB of free space on the hard drive
* One of the following Operating Systems; Windows 98, 98SE, ME, 2000 Professional, XP, Vista, Windows 7 or 8.
* A fully functioning and operational USB port (if using a USB modem) providing a full, USB Standard Specified, 500 milliamps of power.

If you are unsure of the specification of your computer please consult your PC documentation or download and run a diagnostic tool such as System Spec.

3) What programs / applications are running on your PC? Is there anything that could be responsible for slowing your connection?

Your Firewall and Antivirus software are continually working in the background to check that the traffic flowing over your connection is both permitted and safe. This can sometimes cause the connection to appear slow. We would recommend that whilst disconnected from the Internet, you uninstall and reinstall both your Anti Virus and Firewall software. (Fresh installations almost never interfere with the speed of a connection.)


To do so would leave your computer open to infection from viruses and other malicious attacks.

4) Are you running any File Sharing Programs (including Peer to Peer - P2P Software)?

Such programs will undoubtedly utilise some of your speed leaving a reduced amount of speed available for the loading of Web Pages. Please disable any such software and re-examine the speed of your connection.

5) Does the PC have any 'hidden' programs that may be 'stealing your speed' or indeed usurping your Internet Connection...?

These could include program types such as 'Spyware', 'Malware' and 'Adware'. The detection of such 'hidden' programs may prove difficult. We would recommend you visit the Webuser HijackThis Forum and follow the instructions on how to post a HijackThis log for analysis.

6) Is your PC configured with the optimal settings for a Broadband Connection?

The MTU or Maximum Transmission Unit is a setting on your PC, which specifies the maximum packet size to be used (or how big a block of data your PC can send / receive at a time). BT has recommended an MTU size of 1458 bytes. You can ensure your PC is configured to this recommendation by downloading and running the 'SG TCP Optimizer Tool'...

Go to the following website;

On the website please read the TCP Optimzer documentation and then click on one of the download Mirrors. When prompted choose to save the file TCPOptimizer.exe to your desktop. Once downloaded you need to run the program. Double Click on the new 'TCPOptimizer' icon you have on your desktop and follow the instructions in the documentation. Once you have successfully run the program, you will need to restart your machine before re-examining your connection speed.

If you are satisfied that none of the above factors are affecting your connection, your broadband provider may need to re-examine your connection speed.

In order to investigate, you will need an accurate speed measurement. To obtain these we recommend you perform a speed test at; http://www.speedtest.net/ alternatively you can use http://www.broadbandspeedchecker.co.uk/.

Follow the online steps given on this website to perform a speed test and make a note of the Bandwidth Reading you are given (this will be given in Kbps (Kilobits per Second).

Please note that it may help your provider identify the issue more quickly, if you performed this speed test at various different times of the day to give them a complete picture of the speed of your connection. I would recommend that speed tests be performed at the following intervals:

? In the morning
? Around 6pm
? As late in the evening as is convenient.

Please make a note of each 'Bandwidth Reading' given and the time at which the test was performed. This will be useful when your provider investigates your problem.

Last edited by Old_John_McKenna; 20-10-12 at 18:50.
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