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500kbps speed on a 2MB connection!

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500kbps speed on a 2MB connection!

I use an apple mac (10.2.6) and after having recently used plusnet's (and others) speed tester I'm only getting results of between 400 and 600kbps - I tried different times of the day and the results did vary a bit (both up and down) but still way below 1000kbps. The packge I'm on has a 30:1 contention ratio which should help me but it doesn't appear so.
After having raised a ticket I was told to go directly to the BT test site where I was told that I'd have to "tinker around" with my computer's settings/configuration in order to get an accurate result (even then there were have the usual "can't guarantee the results" clause) . Messing around with a computer's settings is something that only the brave or very foolish should attempt and I'm neither.
http://usertools.plus.net/tutorials/id/27
Surely Plusnet wouldn't put a speed tester on their website if they weren't confident that the results were generally accurate and gave a rough indication of speed - why direct me to BT's site and then ask me to play around with my settings?
I've read on the forum that tweaking something called MTU and RWIN might help - can this be done on a Mac as well as a PC and if so how easy is it to do?
Any help given will be greatly appreciated!
26 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 5,877
Thanks: 1
Registered: 05-04-2007

500kbps speed on a 2MB connection!

They ask you to go to the BT site as it bypasses PN's network therefore showing whose network the problem is in plus or BT all you have to do is change your login name on the modem or router and then go to the BT site. The usertools tutorial makes it extremley clear exactly what you need to do. If you refuse to do the BT test then plusnet cannot investigate further as they do not know where the problem is - with them or with BT.
Alecto
Grafter
Posts: 2,886
Registered: 30-07-2007

500kbps speed on a 2MB connection!

Pn's reply is not very helpful.

The BT speed tester, because it involves bypassing Plusnet altogether, gives you a more accurate figure for the speed of your line, but it does mean altering your router settings so they may tell you to do that to fob you off and make you go away, as it's a lot of trouble.

Have you just had an upgrade? In which case it's likely that Pn simply haven't unthrottled your line - it stays at the old speed til they change a setting at their end - and a call to cs to tell them to unthrottle it is the answer.

I can't see MTU tweaks etc making such a drastic difference. I adjusted mine to see what happened and everything slowed down, so I adjusted it back.

Have you tried reconnecting your router/line to get a different server? They may be having congestion on the one you're on.
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500kbps speed on a 2MB connection!

Geoff
No recent upgrade - I've been on the 2MB for a number of months now and previous speed tests prove that good speeds can be achieved as I was geeting anything from 1400kbps up to 1700kbps up until recently.
When you say "have you tried reconnecting your router/line to get a different server" do you mean turn everything (including modem/router) off and then switching back on again?

Thanks for the help
Alecto
Grafter
Posts: 2,886
Registered: 30-07-2007

500kbps speed on a 2MB connection!

Just the modem/router - or unplug the phone line and plug it back in.
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500kbps speed on a 2MB connection!

Hi Geoff
Just tried "switching off" and then did a couple of retests (plusnet + one other) - speed still hovering around the 550kbps level i.e. at least 1000kbps less than what I'd expect.
Looks like it can't be that - do you think I should try the MTU and RWIN tweaks and if so any idea whether it's easy to do a Mac?

Thanks very much
Alecto
Grafter
Posts: 2,886
Registered: 30-07-2007

500kbps speed on a 2MB connection!

I'd be surprised if that was it, especially after you've been running OK and , presumably, changed nothing, but I can't suggest anything else.

Perhaps you'd be as well running the BT speedtest, then at lest it would show whether the problem's on your line or in plusnet.

One of the technical men who visit the forums might like to comment.
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500kbps speed on a 2MB connection!

You seem to be complaining about your speed - well do something about it and co-operate a little. Try the BT speed test (as on the usertools tutorial - very simple to follow, even for the lamen). It's not rocket science.
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500kbps speed on a 2MB connection!

Dear gotdsl
Thank you for your constructive advice!
I dont profess to be either a rocket scientist nor a lamen (layman perhaps, but not a lamen) and I was once given some excellent advice - "if it aint broke, don't fix it"
I once had the misfortune of messing up my settings and it took me many, many hours to correct the problem - hence my reluctance to fiddle around with something that I dont really understand. You may well believe that it's not rocket science but to me it is!

If anybody else (apart from gotdsl) has got any more advice to offer then I would be extremely grateful
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500kbps speed on a 2MB connection!

I hate to ask this in case you think it patronising but here goes.......Are you someone like me who's been with plusnet for a while now, recently had your account changed to the "Up to 2mb" account? Is it possible that you, like myself, are still on the 512 speed and waiting for BT to upgrade you on the DSLAM?
Just a thought, hope i haven't ticked you off mate.
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500kbps speed on a 2MB connection!

Until you do try to use the BT speedtester it is hard to say where the fault lies... in this case it is broke so fix it Wink
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500kbps speed on a 2MB connection!

Dear Stark1968 - thanks for your suggestion, but someone else has already suggested that as being the reason for slow speed. I replied to them (earlier today) that I've been on 2MB for quite a few months now and I've not been involved in the recent spate of upgradings.
Hope you dont think that I'm ticking you off for not reading the whole thread!
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500kbps speed on a 2MB connection!

LOL, Maybe you should be mate, attention to detail was never my strong suit Shockedops:
Out of interest, have you received higher speeds than this in the past or is this how it's always been? Perhaps there's a problem with your line. I've seen advice in the past to ask for a "whoosh test" from plusnet to check your lines capabilities. Also, are you using extension cables between your modem and the input point of your telephone line? A faulty cable can result in reduced speeds i believe.
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500kbps speed on a 2MB connection!

Yep a faulty cable can...

What router are you using? If it is one that gives line stat's post 'em here and we'll have a look and see what your line can support..
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500kbps speed on a 2MB connection!

Hi Stark 1968
I've been on 2MB for approx six months and previous tests have consistently come out at between 1400 and 1700 kbps - I dont ever expect to be able to reach 1840kbps but I'll be happy to just get back to where I was!

Modem cable goes straight into the telephone wall socket so no extensions.

I'll contact plusnet and ask about this "whoosh test" and see what they say.

Once again thanks for your help