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Wireless speed drop

f513toy
Grafter
Posts: 41
Registered: 09-10-2010

Wireless speed drop

i have just had fibre installed. With a laptop connected to the Netgear router via an ethernet cable and set up according to plusnets instructions, using Speedtest.net I am seeing 70m down and 11m up (I know!). 
Interestingly using wireless with WEP security, my speeds drop alarmingly - something I could use some advice on. FYI, speeds are as follows:
1. Laptop conected to the Netgear router via ethernet = 70m down & 11m up.
2. Laptop connected wirelessly (sitting right next to the router) = 26m down & 11m up. Wireless N adapter used
3. Son's desktop connected wirelessly (his bedroom is just above the router) = 19m down & 10m up. Wireless N adapter used
4. Family desktop connected wirelessly (two rooms away from router) = 15m down & 10m up. Wireless G adapter used.
5. Ipod touch connected wirelessly = 15 down & 10 up.
Any ideas?
15 REPLIES
gofaster
Rising Star
Posts: 361
Thanks: 10
Registered: 01-08-2007

Re: Wireless speed drop

It's not clear what your unit of measurement (m) is here. Speed isn't measured in meters Smiley
But I am going to assume that you mean Mbps (megabits per second).
An ethernet connection connect is normally 100Mbps (unless using gigabit connections) and so shouldn't cause a bottleneck.
Wireless n has a theoretical speed of 108Mbps but due to encryption/interference etc is quite likely in practice to give a real speed of 26Mbps so is limiting your max speed to this.
Similarly, wireless g has a theoretical speed of 54Mbps but will give real life speeds of about 15Mbps.
Most people aren't fortunate enough to have an ADSL speed higher than 15Mbps (despite it being "up-to 20Mb") so don't notice any reduction due to the slow speed of wireless, so be grateful you have such amazing speeds via ethernet
 
jojopillo
Grafter
Posts: 9,786
Registered: 16-06-2010

Re: Wireless speed drop

HI f513toy,
I'm not sure if these are connected all at the same time and if you're using an N adapter with a G router but I know one thing, wireless can certainly cut your speeds. Obviously for optimum speeds I'd just stick to ethernet.
Jojo Smiley
f513toy
Grafter
Posts: 41
Registered: 09-10-2010

Re: Wireless speed drop

Gofaster, thanks for the response - good analysis - I am not compaining at all about the speed I am now getting, it's a nice problem to have Wink
In my house it is not possible to connect via ethernet permanently unless I run around 20+ metres of cable from where the router is to where the PC's are. I am going to turn off the wireless security, temporaraly, later tonight and see what difference that makes. I might mess around with channels later and It was also suggested that I switch from WEP to WPA2 and see if that makes a difference, not sure why and that will mean changing the passcodes on all our PC's, Ipods etc. Undecided 
mrpon
Newbie
Posts: 2
Registered: 31-08-2010

Re: Wireless speed drop

I had my trial installed this morning. All setup correctly as per the documentation.
Running the speed tests from speedtest.net and the last 12 test have resulted in:
Average download speed: 4.1Mbps
Average upload speed: 6.3Mbps
Average ping: 53ms
I have had the occasional 19Mbps but the majority of the download speeds on 4Mbps or less.
Is there a problem here?
jonnywishbone
Grafter
Posts: 110
Registered: 19-05-2010

Re: Wireless speed drop

Same here mate, got fttp in Middleton and the speed has dissappearedHuh
Getting between 0.5 to 6mbs at best.
Tried resetting my router which initially worked (went upto 50mbs) but soon dropped back down again. Cry
bigladuk
Grafter
Posts: 114
Registered: 03-08-2010

Re: Wireless speed drop

Not in Monkey Park

f513toy,
I ran the Netgear wireless router for a few days and though it was pants so switched to an Apple airport Extreme which I'm happy to report is giving me excellent wireless performance.
I think 2 things really help with wireless performance
1 Remove all encryption, WEP and WPA have a massive overheard as pointed out. If you need to add security then add Mac Address filtering ( unless of course you have some important government secrets on your network LOL
2 Match the wireless hardware. I have apple macbook pro's and iPhones as my primary computers so I've matched the hardware. If you had a netgear wireless dongle matching the wireless router your would extract the best of out it ( not the 300mbs if claims but as high as 100mbs I would have thought )
Si
Community Veteran
Posts: 14,469
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Wireless speed drop

Never, ever run a wireless connection without encryption. - suggesting such shows an ignorance of how easy it is to capture wireless data. Even a WEP encrypted connection can be cracked in a few seconds so WPA/WPA2 is recommended.
Mac address filtering will not stop a simple wireless snooping device capturing and recording all your wireless traffic outside your house.
bigladuk
Grafter
Posts: 114
Registered: 03-08-2010

Re: Wireless speed drop

LOL
What are they going to steal ?
To get use of my wireless network they would be very close to my house and then hack in ( say 2 seconds ) then what sit capturing me reading forums about fast internet or playing call of duty online.  They could use my internet connection to perform cyber attacks or DoS or SPAM attacks but contrary to what Spooks would have you believe it's not a 2 second job.
How would they get past the mac address filtering ? Your saying that WEP is hackable in seconds so surely WPA is hackable too ?
Honestly I have nothing on my LAN worth steeling.  Any transactions I do on the internet that are sensitive are performs using HTTPS websites.
There is far too much scare mongering that is thrown around about wireless hackers....Simple procations like changing default passwords, disabling broadcasting your SSID, Mac Address filtering etc etc should be fine.
Just like professional thieves, if they want to get, they will.
Community Veteran
Posts: 26,357
Thanks: 607
Fixes: 8
Registered: 10-04-2007

Re: Wireless speed drop

Quote from: bigladuk
1 Remove all encryption, WEP and WPA have a massive overheard as pointed out. If you need to add security then add Mac Address filtering ( unless of course you have some important government secrets on your network LOL

So you are happy for the police to come knocking on your door because you've been distributing child pornography?
jelv (a.k.a Spoon Whittler)
   Why I have left Plusnet (warning: long post!)   
Broadband: Andrews & Arnold Home::1 (FTTC 80/20)
Line rental: Pulse 8 Home Line Rental (£13/month)
Mobile: iD mobile (£4/month)
bigladuk
Grafter
Posts: 114
Registered: 03-08-2010

Re: Wireless speed drop

Right, so your saying no one can get on your wireless network then because you are using WPA ?
I though all wireless networks were hackable ?
Community Veteran
Posts: 26,357
Thanks: 607
Fixes: 8
Registered: 10-04-2007

Re: Wireless speed drop

No I'm not saying that, but I make it as difficult as possible - and that includes using a 64 character passphrase that is randomly generated using upper & lower case letters, numbers and special characters. With luck they'd move on to an easier target - such as yourself.
Removing security as a means to improve speeds instead of buying equipment capable of supporting the higher speeds whilst still being secure is really the dumbest idea I've heard in a long time!
jelv (a.k.a Spoon Whittler)
   Why I have left Plusnet (warning: long post!)   
Broadband: Andrews & Arnold Home::1 (FTTC 80/20)
Line rental: Pulse 8 Home Line Rental (£13/month)
Mobile: iD mobile (£4/month)
puffin
Grafter
Posts: 71
Registered: 24-03-2009

Re: Wireless speed drop

http://steve.grc.com/2010/10/28/why-firesheeps-time-has-come/
If you don't encrypt, or you use WEP "encryption" then you are basically allowing anyone full access to any websites you use.  WPA is essential.
Community Veteran
Posts: 4,899
Thanks: 327
Fixes: 16
Registered: 10-06-2010

Re: Wireless speed drop

I remember reading that the N wireless standard requires you to use AES encryption (WPA2 CCMP) to use the N speeds. Using WEP or TKIP limits you to G speeds.
From Intel wireless driver release notes - http://downloadmirror.intel.com/19303/eng/relnotes.htm#issues2
Or from Apple - http://support.apple.com/kb/TS3361
f513toy
Grafter
Posts: 41
Registered: 09-10-2010

Re: Wireless speed drop

ejs, thanks for that. Looks like WPA2 is the way to go, I was just avoiding to have to change the profile on all the PC's laptops and gadgets we have in our house from what is already set up on WEP!