Dump the Router!

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*** UPDATE: Please read the whole post.  The point was that older routers are causing issues.  The 802.11G I tested recently resolves most of these issues, even though ping rates were about 5% higher on average (over an hour each).

Yes, you heard me right.  Well, dump the router for a newer one with an 100Mbps external connection.  Read on…

Packet Loss
This week Comcast upgraded their network and our (I’ll get the ‘our’ part in a bit) 5+ year old cable modem started getting 30 to 40% packet loss, to Comcast’s network!  I tested it here to my servers at Datapipe.net, and Comcast tested the actual modem itself (computer disconnected).  Dang, time to upgrade.

The ‘our’ part is that I share my neighbor’s Internet connection.  I bought wireless cards and a wifi router ~5 years ago to do this (802.11b at the time, first ones).  I’ve only gotten about 1.4 to 2.0Mbps.  Sometimes I had the cable modem here with the router and directly connected to it.  Then I was able to see about 2.8Mbps.

Today I decided to go all out and get Comcast Internet with the Premium service (6Mbps download, 768kbps upload).  They had a special, $29.95/mo for 6 months.  Premium service is $10/mo more ($39.95 total).  Picked up the modem and stuff today and ran the new wires, etc. 

I also found an awesome new Bandwidth Test website: www.testmy.net  No more DSLReports for me.

WiFi?  No Thank you.
Humm, only got 1.4Mbps (I’m wireless, not directly connected).  Checking my 802.11b, I’m connected at 11Mbps, no encryption (slows things down).  Hum, must be something else.  But I went ahead and connected a cable to directly connect the router (for a 100Mbps connection to the router).  Wow, it jumped to 2.8Mbps.  Verdict: No more WiFi for me (well, may try 802.11g).

10Mbps is a Joke
I’m still at 2.8Mbps, and I am paying for 6Mbps.  I found a post on testmy.net/forums that a guy was paying for 9Mbps down and 1Mbps up (Charter), but was only getting about my speeds as well until he removed the router.  So I did that today.  Turned on XP SP2’s Firewall, disconnected the router and connected directly to the modem.  Looking at my connection speed to the modem, it was 100Mbps. 

Whoa, my speeds jumped to 3.9Mbps/369kbps!  Humm, to me that’s the standard 4Mbps/384kbps speed Comcast has.  Not my Premium speeds.  So I gave Comcast a call.  They had to provision the modem to enable the faster speeds (Isn’t this suppose to be automatic?  Makes me wonder who many of you aren’t provisioned for the extra speeds).

Oh My…!!!
After a few resets of the modem and a “wait about 15 minutes before testing again”, I tested it again…  DAMN!

:::.. Download Stats ..:::
Connection is:: 5473 Kbps about 5.5 Mbps (tested with 20972 kB)
Download Speed is:: 668 kB/s
Bottom Line:: 98X faster than 56K 1MB download in 1.53 sec
Diagnosis: Awesome! 20% + : 52.54 % faster than the average for host (comcast.net)
Validation Link:: http://testmy.net/stats/id-5TQ7843H9

:::.. Upload Stats ..:::
Connection is:: 663 Kbps about 0.7 Mbps (tested with 579 kB)
Upload Speed is:: 81 kB/s
Bottom Line:: 12X faster than 56K 1MB upload in 12.64 sec
Diagnosis: Awesome! 20% + : 93.86 % faster than the average for host (comcast.net)
Validation Link:: http://testmy.net/stats/id-NT867RMYC

Verdict: I guess I need to get a wifi router with 802.11g and the faster external port to get my faster speeds I am paying for! 

Hope this helps those of you that aren’t getting 4Mbps from your Comcast in Nashville.

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