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Mac's run slow on hub compared to P.C.'s

Posted on 1998-07-28
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Last Modified: 2013-11-13
recently we connected 6 mac's to a 10 meg hub.
it transfers files between machines almost twice as slow as
ibm's and when we tryed a switching hub it hardly worked.
We are using a standard UTP Cat 5 cabling system with standard Hubs that we would normally use on ibm pc's.
Help !!!!
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Question by:mikehutcheson
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by:ipierce
ID: 1581264
If they are using Appletalk then this is to bew expected.  Appletalk is a slow protocol, and it is also "chatty" in that it sends lots of "I'm still here, guys" messages over the LAN.

This is why AppleShare IP 5 has the IP in the name--it is a much faster protocol.  This is what allows AppleShare 5 servers to actually keep pace (more or less) with NT and UNIX, since they will send the information using TCP/IP to macs which can accept TCP/IP, and will default to Appletalk for older macs.

I'm not sure if you have a server--sounds like just a peer to peer network.  So I'm not sure what your best fix is, but I seem to think there's something out there...
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by:TheHub
ID: 1581265
Ditch the NT's and go all Mac...it's just easier.
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by:jkjung
ID: 1581266
ipierce is right.  Macs and PCs are NOT using the same protocol.  PCs use either the NetBEUI or IPX protocol for file transfers between PCs.  Macs use AppleTalk between Macs.  AppleTalk is a slow protocol by today's standards.  Yes, that is why there's AppleShare IP.

I hope this helps.

--MikroData (jkjung)
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TheHub earned 400 total points
ID: 1581267
Protoplasm and protocols...I keep mixing them up...

Gotta love Novell:
http://www.novell.com/intranetware/products/clients/clientmac/ 

other related links:
http://lime.weeg.uiowa.edu/~itslan/its/ 
http://www.benchin.com/$index.wcgi/prod/1109852 
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by:jkjung
ID: 1581268
Comment to TheHub:
  Did you give mikhutcheson a couple new computers--one with NT and one with NetWare?

Am I missing something or what?

--MikroData (jkjung)
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by:TheHub
ID: 1581269
No...I have esp.
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Author Comment

by:mikehutcheson
ID: 1581270
thanks guys for the answers.they are all mac's some running on 10 meg and some on 100 meg network.
 i had never hit a mac network before so was worried it was our cabling.
tryed a 10/100 switching hub and it was almost unusable taking about 10 minutes to transfer a 30 meg file.

long live the P.C. .... na just kidding :-}
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Expert Comment

by:Farfrae
ID: 1581271
Does your hub have an IP address, or is it still set to its factory defaults? You have not stated what brand you are using, or whether you have any network tools to check it out.
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Author Comment

by:mikehutcheson
ID: 1581272
in response to Farfrae,
 i hav'nt adjusted hub at all, tryed 'dlink' and 'Magnum'.
have no network tools except for cabling which tested ok.

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by:jkjung
ID: 1581273
Just a note...

The theoretical maximum transfer speed of a 10Mb network is 1.19MBps.  So, it should take only about 25.2 seconds to transfer a 30MB file.  This is assuming that conditions are more than IDEAL.  (On a 100MB network, it should only take 2.5 seconds.  Of course, no matter what you do, 99.9% of users can NEVER achieve these speeds.  My bets for the best speeds would be three times the times listed above.)

To get close to that, you may want to make sure that only the two test Macs are on the network, switched (not regular hub).  Also, try enabling File Sharing in one direction only, so that generation of Mac signals is minimized.  On the switch (like Farfrae said), specify an IP address, consistent with the rest of your network.  Enabling this feature allows the switch to better identify where data is to be directed.  Lastly, make sure no background applications are running, in addition to having an idle foreground (no tasks that take up CPU power), because, currently, the MacOS does not support preemptive multitasking.  (Preemptive multitasking is implemented in an upcoming MacOS version.)

I hope this helps.

--MikroData (jkjung)
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by:TheHub
ID: 1581274
Are you using an AppleShare IP server?
Is RunShare installed on both the Server and the Client machines?
If not, you are never going to achieve anything close to the speeds realized by the other team, since the Macs are talking to each other using AppleTalk protocols rather than TCP/IP protocols, which are considerably faster.

RunShare is a System Extension packet compression utility. It ships (or used to) with ASIP 5.x.

Macintosh peer to peer networking is all done using the AppleTalk protocol, which runs (allegedly) at 128 KBps. These speeds can be quadrupled (allegedly) by using a packet compression extension. I am not sure what happened to Run Co., but I beleive that Farallon has a software solution similar (probably better) to RunShare, however, I cannot find it on their web site and have misplaced the promo lit. on the product. MacZone may be able to help you identify the product's name.

-good luck
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by:jkjung
ID: 1581275
Comment to TheHub:
  Where did you get 128KBps?  The AppleTalk protocol supports up to 230.4Kbps (almost equivalent to 28.1KBps).  All Mac serial ports supposedly are able to go at about 920Kbps.  Supposedly with a non-AV or non-Power Mac, it's only reliable at 19.2Kbps or less.

Yes, transfer speeds increase, if you install other software.  If you purchase SpeedDoubler 8, there's a server extension (name escapes me).  Some other company (which I can't recall the name to) wrote NetDoubler.  They provide better compression routines.

I hope this helps.

--MikroData (jkjung)
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by:TheHub
ID: 1581276
jkjung,
The data was retrieved from my obviously flawed memory.

According to this article:
http://til.info.apple.com/techinfo.nsf/artnum/n8668
jkjung quotes the correct theoritcal maximum speed of 230.4KBps, just under twice as fast as the speed I incorrectly quoted, but still really damn slow compared to EtherTalk's 10MBps, which is more than 43 times faster.

Supplemental:
http://til.info.apple.com/techinfo.nsf/artnum/n11744
http://til.info.apple.com/techinfo.nsf/artnum/n36285

NetDoubler is made by Asante and can be found at:
http://www.asante.com/homepages/ndhome.html
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by:jkjung
ID: 1581277
Comment to TheHub:
  KB (kilobyte) is not the same as Kb (kilobit).  1KB = 8.192Kb
  LocalTalk runs at 230.4 kilobits/s (Kbps), and EtherTalk (LocalTalk over Ethernet) runs at 10 megabits/s (Mbps).

--MikroData
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