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Download Speeds - Speedtest is fast, everything else is slow

Posted on 2016-11-07
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Last Modified: 2016-11-15
When I test on speedtest.net, I get 100Mbps download speed and see the network saturation skyrocket in Task Manager.  When I download Steam and Battle.net (at the same time or separately) I don't see more than 16mbps.  If I stop one, the other increases.  If I run both, they split that speed.  If I run Speedtest.net while downloading, I get maybe 1mbps download and see a minor bump in task manager.

In Task Manager, I see 16 Mbps consistently.  Not quite a flat line, but close, it never goes above or below that range by more than 1mbps.

I am using a brand new Netgear R9000 router.  Other computers earlier in the day were getting super fast Steam download speeds.  I reinstalled windows, and am seeing the same speeds.  I have updated the drivers from Asus' website.  Downloaded the Intel Ethernet drivers.  Not using wireless.

I have checked and there are no limits on downloads in the steam download settings.  

I am using a static dhcp lease on this computer.  I am running Windows 10.

Any ideas?  Sure seems capped, but can't figure out how or where.
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Question by:Taylor Huckstep
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LVL 12

Expert Comment

by:andreas
ID: 41876724
maybe daytime related caps from your ISP? Try to download some linux isos via http and https from various mirrors at the same time and see the accumulated speed.

May also be a general cap except for speedtest sites. Try some speedtest sites not so popular or from other countries. e.g. russia or asia which might not be on the whitelist of your ISP.
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LVL 17

Expert Comment

by:Sajid Shaik M
ID: 41876736
the 100 MB is shared bandwidth with cap so check with ISP ... about this... i dont think so the netgear R9000 or your system may have any issue

you can try deleting temp files

start - in search tupe-RUN - in run   %temp%  
select all and delete...

IE properties delete history
101.jpg
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LVL 88

Expert Comment

by:rindi
ID: 41876763
Other things to look at, is your PC the only device connecting to the Internet when you have the problems.

Uninstall the Windows 10 Crapps, many of them "phone home" constantly and use up tons of bandwidth, while they are a complete load of crap. You can also use gpedit to disable the m$ cloud expereince.

Your AV tool will be scanning your downloads, so that also reduces the bandwidth. Many small files result in a slower download speed than one large file.
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LVL 32

Expert Comment

by:masnrock
ID: 41876963
What ISP do you have? They might be doing the capping against certain types of sites. I remember that Verizon has been busted at times for throttling traffic. Also, just because you may have a 100 Mbps connection does not mean you will always achieve that speed in downloads.
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Author Comment

by:Taylor Huckstep
ID: 41877293
It's Cox.  I was testing this after midnight last night, so probably not daytime caps.

I was hoping maybe it was a shared bandwidth thing at night, but I pay for a business line, so it's supposed to be uncapped.  No speed or port restrictions according to the contract.  It's twice the monthly price, so...

Also, I did some more testing this morning, and I'm getting slow speedtest.net speeds on everything except a laptop when I plug the laptop into the router direct.  I plugged my desktop into the router direct and it's slow on both downloads and speedtest.net.

I tested one of my other 4-5 computers and an ipad and my smartphone, all getting 5-15 mbps on speedtest.net.  Yet that one laptop I have continues to get full speeds.

I guess I need to start unplugging everything and go down the line.  I'm going to bring this desktop into the office where I have 300 megabit connection and see if it's slow there, too.  

Downloading linux ISOs is a good idea for speed testing.  

I hate chasing ghosts.
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LVL 32

Expert Comment

by:masnrock
ID: 41877313
Well, there could be issues on your line. Ideally not, but better to check and know for sure anyway.

Were you having the same problem when you were using your old router? Also, what kind of ping times have you been averaging?

BTW - Does your Netgear have the latest firmware updates on it?
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Author Comment

by:Taylor Huckstep
ID: 41877423
Yes I was havin problems with the old router.

I just brought my desktop into the office with that 300 Mbps connection and it's getting 10 on speedtest.net at the office while a computer next to it speedtests for 300.

Must be something on this computer. I just reinstalled windows and it was fast right after the install. I updated all the drivers and windows update and I guess something in those drivers is causing the problem :(
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Author Comment

by:Taylor Huckstep
ID: 41877426
My wife just tested everything at home without this desktop on the wire and it's all testing fast. This desktop has a brand new motherboard. I wouldn't expect a chattering NIC unless that can somehow be driver induced.

Not sure how to test where the problem is on this machine.
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LVL 32

Assisted Solution

by:masnrock
masnrock earned 500 total points
ID: 41877429
Could be screwed up drivers or TCP/IP. Sometimes even AV will interfere. Are you using NIC drivers from Microsoft, the NIC manufacturer, or the PC manufacturer?

Almost forgot, what version of Windows is that compute running?
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Expert Comment

by:rindi
ID: 41877477
Have you disabled the crapps like I said? Scanned for malware? Got a good AV tool (Norton/Symantec isn't a good AV tool).

Something on your PC is taking up all the bandwidth.
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Author Comment

by:Taylor Huckstep
ID: 41877613
What is crapps?  It's a brand new installation but maybe something somewhere is infecting it from my network.

The bandwidth as monitored in task manager isn't any more than the download speed so I don't think anything is competing with my download speeds so much as interfering.

I will run malwarebytes. I do have norton as well but is there one that's recommended over another?  

I am running windows 10 enterprise. I was using Microsoft drivers but installed the intel NIC drivers from Asus' website. There's a chance the slowdown started happening after I updated all the drivers.

It happened after a new image with only windows updates. So I reimaged and got decent speeds then updated windows and downloaded drivers from asus and the slowdown returned some time after that.

The confusing part is that other devices at home were testing slow too. Not just this machine.  But taking it to work and seeing it run slow indicates and a computer problem though both networks are provided by Cox.

Thanks for all the advice here!
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LVL 32

Expert Comment

by:masnrock
ID: 41877623
Crapps is a reference to trashy apps that are preloaded on Windows (things like Candy Crush and all sorts of stuff considered bloatware). You could try turning off IPv6 or even removing the Intel NIC drivers.
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Assisted Solution

by:rindi
rindi earned 500 total points
ID: 41877642
Yes, the Crapps are all those m$ store crapps that you get since Windows 8. All of them are total rubbish and don't belong on any PC's. A PC should use real software.

Panda Antivirus is way better than the norton stuff (which I regard almost similar to malware).

You say your wife is getting normal speeds now that the PC is away. That means it is using up all of the bandwidth.
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by:andreas
ID: 41877861
If the PC eats up all the bandwith as rindi says, but you cannot see which processes are responsible for it in task-manager or the ressource view. Then you should throughly scan the machine for malware. Even you have set it up newly. You might have got infected again by some software you've downloaded and installed from the web, or during the time the PC was loading all the pending updates, by just using internet explorer and surfing around. (e.g. google links to programs to download and install).
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Author Comment

by:Taylor Huckstep
ID: 41877884
Knowing that my desktop was slow at work, I went home at lunch and put my gaming laptop on the same network as my desktop and did a speedtest and got 100mbps.  I then launched steam, and started downloading a game update, and it never exceeded 16mbps (2MBps).  So again, slow speeds seen on a seperate laptop, while I get fast speedtest results.

So this is making me go out of my mind.  Going to run some malware tests on both these machines.

But I have confirmed the same problem on multiple machines.  Fast speedtests, but slow downloads.  Sometimes slow speedtests, too, but not always.  

System is pretty bare bones, both of them, I don't install much except steam and battle.net games.
IMG_2703.JPG
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LVL 32

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by:masnrock
ID: 41877934
What antivirus is on the systems? And are the steam-related applications excluded? And lastly, have you tried changing download servers?
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Author Comment

by:Taylor Huckstep
ID: 41877951
I tried changing download servers with no impact, 2MBps every time.  Only just now put malwarebytes on the system, before that it was just windows defender.  There are no steam download limits set.

Malwarebytes found nothing on the system.  I do have a Norton subscription I use for the kids that I could run, but generally don't like the program's impact to performance.  I'm a pretty safe surfer, not that anybody is perfect, but I generally know what's good and bad, so my system's are generally clean, though you never know if a worm is making its way around a network.  Nothing found on the system by malwarebytes however.
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Author Comment

by:Taylor Huckstep
ID: 41878007
I pulled out a second gaming laptop and I'm getting full speed tests and 100mbps download speeds downloading from steam.  So strange.

Recap:
Desktop:  Sometimes full speedtest, but mostly slow.  Always slow on downloads.
Gaming laptop 1:  Full Speedtests, slow on downloads.
Gaming laptop 2:  Full speedtests, full download speeds.
Work laptop:  Full Speedtests...no games.
Phones and iPads - Sometimes full speeds when the desktop was not in the house, but slow speeds last night when I opened this thread.

Not sure what to make of it all, except I'm doing more testing with the laptop that gets full speeds all around.

No viruses found on any machine tested.
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andreas earned 1000 total points
ID: 41878252
Wireing problems in the LAN? Try the same network cable that the lapop used which gets full speed.
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Author Comment

by:Taylor Huckstep
ID: 41879224
So today, i tested the desktop at work and it's consistently getting full speeds.

I'm wondering if there isn't a wiring problem at home.  Problem is, I was getting full speeds on the laptop plugged in directly to the router, and full speeds when I plugged into the same ethernet port as my desktop that was slow.

Today I came into the office and the desktop is now getting full speeds consistently, so I'm back to thinking it was a fluke that it was slow  yesterday on the desktop, and that there's something in my environment at home.  I'm going to change out all my switches, and do some testing on cables.  

So confusing, one minute the same device is slow, then its fast, but when it's slow a lot of devices are slow.  So maybe ISP related, as well.
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LVL 32

Assisted Solution

by:masnrock
masnrock earned 500 total points
ID: 41879246
There could be some signal issues, but you'd have to get Cox to check. There could be an issue before the signal even enters either facility. Other possible points could be things like splitters or even the coaxial cables. I don't know about Cox, but Comcast charges if the problem is any cabling inside of the house (unless you pay for a cable coverage plan). What type of modem are you using at home?

All you can do is try with cables that you know are good. So either using new Ethernet cables or more ideally, tested cables.
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Expert Comment

by:masnrock
ID: 41879257
Another idea: are you able to have ports on your router not autonegotiate? Then you could try set your PC's link speed and duplex to match. If the problem goes away, there is a chance autonegotiation was the issue.
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Expert Comment

by:rindi
ID: 41879291
Have you tested it again at home now? Chances are that it will be fast there too now. That would be an indication of OS updates downloading, Crapps autoinstalling etc. When a PC of mine downloads Windowsupdates, it causes all the rest of my internet activity to crawl. Since Windows updates can be large this can take a lot of time.
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Expert Comment

by:masnrock
ID: 41879298
That's a thought, you could actually the autoupdating.
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Author Comment

by:Taylor Huckstep
ID: 41880943
I just upgraded to a Motorola Arris Cable Modem (Model SB6183).  

I took it home and it was consistently fast this morning.  So I can only surmise there's something inconsistent with the home network.  Maybe it's ISP.  Next time I see slowdown, I'm going to call Cox.

Thanks for all the suggestions and recommendations.
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Author Comment

by:Taylor Huckstep
ID: 41881572
After some more testing, I've noticed everything in the house is full speed, until I open steam.  When I open steam and start a download the whole house slows to 2 MBps.  I can play netflix with choppiness and turn off steam and it starts going fast again.

Steam is full speed at the office.

Has to be ISP throttling, right?
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Expert Comment

by:masnrock
ID: 41881745
It would almost seem that way. I'm sure if you talk to Cox they will try to blame Steam. But within the settings for Steam, have you ever tried changing the server?

Also, do you have a data cap from Cox at home?
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Author Comment

by:Taylor Huckstep
ID: 41882537
Yes, within steam I tried multiple servers, and I get a solid flat line of 2MBps.  I've changed the cap to 7 from unlimited just to see if it would bump up to 7 from 2.

Problem with blaming steam is, when i brought the machine to work, it got 300 Mbps download speeds in steam.  Other problem is, when I'm downloading in Steam at home, every other device's internet comes to a halt.  When I close steam, the rest of the devices pick up speed again.

It's a Cox Business line, so there is supposed to be no caps or blocks of any sort, other than the 100 meg speed limit.  My line runs about $150/mo.  That's the price of gigabit speeds on the residential side.  I specifically pay for the business side to reduce caps, blocks, and limits.  It also gets me a 4hr response time to get it back up and running.  I also supposedly have a level of QOS for speeds over my neighbors when the community network starts to get bogged down during prime time.

I need to call them and see where it goes.  Just haven't had time yet.
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Expert Comment

by:masnrock
ID: 41882596
Trust me, I'm really betting on it being Cox either throttling or packet shaping. But I'm just not going to be shocked if they try to deny it. But yes, definitely contact them, and let us know what happens.
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Author Comment

by:Taylor Huckstep
ID: 41886642
I called Cox and they immediately denied it, said with a business account there's no throttling.  

Good news is, I figured out the problem.  The first problem I figured out, was that when my computer was receiving slow speeds, plugging into a faster connection somehow didn't increase speeds, it wasn't until I rebooted that I would increase speeds.  For example, I plugged the computer directly into the modem and continued to see slow speeds.  When I rebooted, directly plugged into the modem, my fast speeds returned to full.

I can't explain why I needed a reboot between changing connections.  But knowing that fact, I was able to systematically trace it back to a switch I had under my desk I'd forgotten I was using since there was another switch in my home office I was using.  Whenever I was plugged into that one switch, I was getting slow download speeds.

So the reason I had such a challenge was dealing with both those problems together.  I couldn't unplug away from the switch into another switch and see the speeds return, not until I rebooted in between.

The reboot requirement I can't explain, but the switch consistently failed on the download, while giving full upload speeds.

Thanks to everybody who helped guide me to getting this resolved.
1
 

Author Closing Comment

by:Taylor Huckstep
ID: 41888472
It did end up being a TCP/IP issue with a bad switch on the line.  What made it tough to troubleshoot is that my PC would not increase speeds after I bypassed the bad switch through simply plugging in a network cable around it.  I had to reboot between in order to see speeds restored, and that part of it I can't explain.

I just replaced the switch today, and I tested the speeds on the bad switch, it was slow.  I removed and replaced the bad switch, and tested the new one.  Also slow.  I rebooted and everything was fast again.

Maybe it really was auto negotiating a slower speed, then when I changed switches it kept the old negotiated slow speed until I rebooted.  Maybe an IPCONFIG /RENEW would have done the trick.  

Thanks for all the suggestions on dealing with my ISP and checking for viruses, it all helped me rule out possibilities and find the culprit.
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