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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 09-25-2006, 01:54 AM
verivin@yahoo.com
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Default Slow wireless connection

I recently purchased and installed a Linksys WRT54GX wireless router.
I'm using this with a WMP54GS receiver set up elsewhere in the house.
The security I have set up is WPA (the receiver is about two years old
and doesn't support WPA2, even with updated firmware). The two
computers are able to form a connection, but the speed on the receiving
PC is slow, no better than dialup. The sending computer has a download
speed of 282kbps, upload of 277 kbps. The person using the receiver
says he has used it in other WiFi situations, such as in hotels, and
has achieved fast speeds. Questions: 1) If I purchase a faster
connection, say 4MB, is that likely to improve the receiving computer's
speed? 2) Does security (WPA) cause a slowdown? 3) Any other
ideas/suggestions?


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  #2 (permalink)  
Old 09-25-2006, 02:08 AM
Jeff Liebermann
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Default Re: Slow wireless connection

"verivin@yahoo.com" <verivin@yahoo.com> hath wroth:

>I recently purchased and installed a Linksys WRT54GX wireless router.
>I'm using this with a WMP54GS receiver set up elsewhere in the house.
>The security I have set up is WPA (the receiver is about two years old
>and doesn't support WPA2, even with updated firmware). The two
>computers are able to form a connection, but the speed on the receiving
>PC is slow, no better than dialup. The sending computer has a download
>speed of 282kbps, upload of 277 kbps.


How are you measuring the speed? What actual numbers do you get?

Are you using an internet speed test for benchmarking? If so, your
wireless connection is many times faster than the typical home
broadband connection.

Questions:
1. How are you measuring your speeds?
2. What numbers are you getting for upload and download speeds? Watch
out for mixing up kbits/sec and KBytes/sec.
3. Have you tried benchmarking your wireless without the internet?
That requires a wired PC, running Iperf or another benchmarking
program:
http://www.noc.ucf.edu/Tools/Iperf/default.htm
4. What is your existing broadband internet connections rated speeds?

>The person using the receiver
>says he has used it in other WiFi situations, such as in hotels, and
>has achieved fast speeds.


and the mystery "receiver" maker and model is...?

>Questions: 1) If I purchase a faster
>connection, say 4MB, is that likely to improve the receiving computer's
>speed?


Possibly. If your download speed is limited by your existing internet
connection, then a faster internet connection will improve the speed.

>2) Does security (WPA) cause a slowdown?


Yes, but only sometimes. It really depends on how hard the processor
in the access point or wireless router is working. If you have a
large number of filters and rules, then you might see a 10-15%
slowdown over no-encryption. If the router has hardware encryption
support, you won't see any measureable slowdown.

>3) Any other
>ideas/suggestions?


Yep. Supply the missing numbers and details.

--
Jeff Liebermann jeffl@comix.santa-cruz.ca.us
150 Felker St #D http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
Santa Cruz CA 95060 http://802.11junk.com
Skype: JeffLiebermann AE6KS 831-336-2558

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  #3 (permalink)  
Old 09-29-2006, 04:18 AM
verivin@yahoo.com
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Default Re: Slow wireless connection


Jeff Liebermann wrote:
> How are you measuring the speed? What actual numbers do you get?
>
> Are you using an internet speed test for benchmarking? If so, your
> wireless connection is many times faster than the typical home
> broadband connection.
>
> Questions:
> 1. How are you measuring your speeds?
> 2. What numbers are you getting for upload and download speeds? Watch
> out for mixing up kbits/sec and KBytes/sec.
> 3. Have you tried benchmarking your wireless without the internet?
> That requires a wired PC, running Iperf or another benchmarking
> program:
> http://www.noc.ucf.edu/Tools/Iperf/default.htm
> 4. What is your existing broadband internet connections rated speeds?
>
> >The person using the receiver
> >says he has used it in other WiFi situations, such as in hotels, and
> >has achieved fast speeds.

>
> and the mystery "receiver" maker and model is...?
>
> >Questions: 1) If I purchase a faster
> >connection, say 4MB, is that likely to improve the receiving computer's
> >speed?

>
> Possibly. If your download speed is limited by your existing internet
> connection, then a faster internet connection will improve the speed.
>
> >2) Does security (WPA) cause a slowdown?

>
> Yes, but only sometimes. It really depends on how hard the processor
> in the access point or wireless router is working. If you have a
> large number of filters and rules, then you might see a 10-15%
> slowdown over no-encryption. If the router has hardware encryption
> support, you won't see any measureable slowdown.
>
> >3) Any other
> >ideas/suggestions?

>
> Yep. Supply the missing numbers and details.


1) I'm measuring the speeds by going to the Vonage site, which measures
download & upload. http://www.vonage.com/help.php?article=497
2) I'm just giving exactly what it says: 282kbps/277 kbps. This is the
least expensive broadband from my ISP, so I don't think it can be
lightning fast.
3) no I haven't
4) see #2 above. As I stated, the receiver is a Linksys WMP54GS.

The security I'm running is WPA (not WPA2, just WPA). I'm not doing
anything complicated...wouldn't know how. When I bought the router I
was told it had an internal firewall, so I'm running that, plus the one
that is standard with XP. I was also told that the router had
excellent range and speed. I'm just sending inside my house from one
room to another.


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  #4 (permalink)  
Old 09-29-2006, 07:40 AM
Jeff Liebermann
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Posts: n/a
Default Re: Slow wireless connection

"verivin@yahoo.com" <verivin@yahoo.com> hath wroth:

>
>Jeff Liebermann wrote:
>> How are you measuring the speed? What actual numbers do you get?
>>
>> Are you using an internet speed test for benchmarking? If so, your
>> wireless connection is many times faster than the typical home
>> broadband connection.
>>
>> Questions:
>> 1. How are you measuring your speeds?
>> 2. What numbers are you getting for upload and download speeds? Watch
>> out for mixing up kbits/sec and KBytes/sec.
>> 3. Have you tried benchmarking your wireless without the internet?
>> That requires a wired PC, running Iperf or another benchmarking
>> program:
>> http://www.noc.ucf.edu/Tools/Iperf/default.htm
>> 4. What is your existing broadband internet connections rated speeds?
>>
>> >The person using the receiver
>> >says he has used it in other WiFi situations, such as in hotels, and
>> >has achieved fast speeds.

>>
>> and the mystery "receiver" maker and model is...?
>>
>> >Questions: 1) If I purchase a faster
>> >connection, say 4MB, is that likely to improve the receiving computer's
>> >speed?

>>
>> Possibly. If your download speed is limited by your existing internet
>> connection, then a faster internet connection will improve the speed.
>>
>> >2) Does security (WPA) cause a slowdown?

>>
>> Yes, but only sometimes. It really depends on how hard the processor
>> in the access point or wireless router is working. If you have a
>> large number of filters and rules, then you might see a 10-15%
>> slowdown over no-encryption. If the router has hardware encryption
>> support, you won't see any measureable slowdown.
>>
>> >3) Any other
>> >ideas/suggestions?

>>
>> Yep. Supply the missing numbers and details.


>1) I'm measuring the speeds by going to the Vonage site, which measures
>download & upload. http://www.vonage.com/help.php?article=497


I get 1300kbits/sec download and 325Kbits/sec upload using the above
URL.

>2) I'm just giving exactly what it says: 282kbps/277 kbps. This is the
>least expensive broadband from my ISP, so I don't think it can be
>lightning fast.


Ok, I guess I have to decode your ISP. Looking at the header, your IP
address is 64.228.74.14. Using RDNS, I find that this is:
HSE-Toronto-ppp132197.sympatico.ca
The various offerings by Sympatico Canada do NOT correspond with your
measured performance.
| http://www.bell.ca/shopping/PrsShpInt_Hsp.page
Which service level do you pay for?

You really should be using Sympatico's speed test for benchmarking but
that looks like its dead.
| http://fastweb.sympatico.ca/test/ontario/en.html
Try one of these that are near Toronto:
| http://www.dslreports.com/speedtest?more=1

>3) no I haven't


You should. It's impossible to tell if the speed problem is between
the wireless router and your wireless client, or between the router
and the ISP.

>4) see #2 above. As I stated, the receiver is a Linksys WMP54GS.


Ok. Those PCI cards work well enough. I can't check the various hard
mutations and firmware versions right now because the Linksys web pile
is being undergoing maintenance.

>The security I'm running is WPA (not WPA2, just WPA). I'm not doing
>anything complicated...wouldn't know how.


WPA or WPA2 will not slow you down more than perhaps 10-15% at most.
Since I have no idea what service level you're paying for from
Sympatico, I can't tell how much slowdown you're experiencing.

>When I bought the router I
>was told it had an internal firewall


The WRT54GX has an internal firewall.

>so I'm running that, plus the one that is standard with XP.
>I was also told that the router had excellent range and speed.
>I'm just sending inside my house from one
>room to another.


Well, you haven't mentioned anything about range. How far are you
trying to go? Going through any floors or walls? How many floors or
walls? Wireless will slow down when the signal strength gets low. It
will also slow down if there is inteference.

Try moving the computer with the WMP54GS into the same room with the
WRT54GX. Run two test:
1. See if the speed improves at this close range. What speeds do you
get?
2. Run a CAT5 cable from the computah to the WRT54GX router. Right
click on the wireless icon in the system tray and select "disable".
Run the benchmark test again. What speeds do you get?

It would also be nice if you would setup a 2nd computer running IPerf
for benchmarking just the wireless, but I think comparing the speeds
with a wired ethernet connection (as in #2 above) should offer the
necessary clues.

--
Jeff Liebermann jeffl@comix.santa-cruz.ca.us
150 Felker St #D http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
Santa Cruz CA 95060 http://802.11junk.com
Skype: JeffLiebermann AE6KS 831-336-2558

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  #5 (permalink)  
Old 09-29-2006, 05:48 PM
alphazip@yahoo.com
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Posts: n/a
Default Re: Slow wireless connection

Jeff, you're correct, I did write the last message from a Sympatico
account, but that's not the account I'm having the problem with. My
ISP here in the States is WOW (which I'm using right now) and I'm
paying for the least expensive broadband: 112k connection. I can bump
that up to 500k for $5 more per month, 4MB for $10, 6MB for $20.
Because we're talking about full-size PCs (not laptops) is sort of
difficult to move them around the house. I'm sending from one end of
the house to the other, maybe 75 feet. The signal has to go thru 3
walls, no floors. I informed the 20 y.o. techie-type salesman at Best
Buy what I needed, and he said that this SRX 200 model has great range,
even extending to neighbor's houses. I guess what I'll try later (I
have to do this when the person with the receiving computer is in the
mood) is call WOW and see if they'll bump me up to a higher speed
temporarily to see if that improves the speed. I have no previous
experience with wireless, but the other person (one with the receiving
computer) says he has used wireless at hotels and he gets T-1 type
speeds. Here, he's just getting speeds no better than 56k dialup.


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  #6 (permalink)  
Old 09-29-2006, 06:36 PM
Jeff Liebermann
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Default Re: Slow wireless connection

alphazip@yahoo.com hath wroth:

>My
>ISP here in the States is WOW (which I'm using right now) and I'm
>paying for the least expensive broadband: 112k connection.


Bingo. There's the speed bottleneck. However, you're getting TWICE
what they claim to offer.
http://www1.wowway.com/wowPriceBundleI.asp
In theory, your benchmarking program should show about 100Kbits/sec in
both directions. Yet, you're getting about twice that. I'm not sure
why. Maybe the connection is "burstable" which offers higher speeds
but only for short bursts of traffic.

Also, the prices are a bit high. On the left coast, PBI/SBC/AT&T DSL
for 1500/384 Kbits/sec is about $13/month for the first year, and
anywhere from $25 to $40/month after that.

>I can bump
>that up to 500k for $5 more per month, 4MB for $10, 6MB for $20.
>Because we're talking about full-size PCs (not laptops) is sort of
>difficult to move them around the house.


Do it. The reason your speed is so slow is the ISP's rate limit (also
know as "rate cap"). There is literally nothing you can do on your
end with the wireless to improve the speed. You only go as fast as
the ISP will deliver.

>I'm sending from one end of
>the house to the other, maybe 75 feet. The signal has to go thru 3
>walls, no floors.


Ugh. That's a stretch. If you had asked before you tried it, I would
have said that 3 walls and 75ft is not a workable situation. What I
guess will happen is that you'll get a connection, but keeping it
stable and not having it disconnect erratically will be a problem. It
really depends on what the walls are made from. I've done far more
than 3 walls, but they were thin wood walls with nothing inside. No
drywall, or foil insulation. Try this simple test from the desktop:
Start -> Run -> cmd <enter>
ping -t 192.168.1.1 (IP address of the SRX200 router)
It will run forever until you hit <ctrl>C to kill it. Look for
erratic increases in latency or lost packets. Try moving the the
computer, router, or antennas. Also, walk around the room and watch
it change.

This is what a flakey connection (to one of my neighbors) looks like:
Pinging 192.168.1.50 with 32 bytes of data:

Reply from 192.168.1.20: bytes=32 time=2ms TTL=127
Reply from 192.168.1.20: bytes=32 time=32ms TTL=127
Reply from 192.168.1.20: bytes=32 time=18ms TTL=127
Reply from 192.168.1.20: bytes=32 time=116ms TTL=127
Reply from 192.168.1.20: bytes=32 time=2ms TTL=127
Reply from 192.168.1.20: bytes=32 time=2ms TTL=127
Reply from 192.168.1.20: bytes=32 time=220ms TTL=127
Reply from 192.168.1.20: bytes=32 time=86ms TTL=127
Reply from 192.168.1.20: bytes=32 time=2ms TTL=127
Reply from 192.168.1.20: bytes=32 time=2ms TTL=127

1-2msec is the normal ping time. Anything longer is caused by packet
loss forcing retransmissions which adds delays. This one is a mixture
of interference and a very bad path through the trees. Usually, I'll
also see some timeouts mixed in, but not today. They just happen to
be moving their cars around when I was running the test, causing path
and reflection problems. If you get something like this from a fixed
location, the wireless link will not work reliably.

>informed the 20 y.o. techie-type salesman at Best
>Buy what I needed, and he said that this SRX 200 model has great range,
>even extending to neighbor's houses.


This time, he's right. I like the SRX200 (WRT54GX2) with the Airgo
MIMO chipset. As long as both ends of the link use Airgo MIMO
hardware, there's a definite increase in both range and reliability.
What little experimentation I've done showed a noticeable range
increase and connection reliability improvement with Airgo chipset
based product. I'd be interested in how well it works for you.

>I guess what I'll try later (I
>have to do this when the person with the receiving computer is in the
>mood) is call WOW and see if they'll bump me up to a higher speed
>temporarily to see if that improves the speed.


I'm not sure it's that easy. This is apparently (not sure) a DSL
connection or possibly an ISDN or IDSL line that is administered and
controlled by your local phone company. Unlike most ISP's, the telcos
are not known to be very cooperative toward experimentation.

>I have no previous
>experience with wireless, but the other person (one with the receiving
>computer) says he has used wireless at hotels and he gets T-1 type
>speeds. Here, he's just getting speeds no better than 56k dialup.


Yes. He'll get those speeds if the hotel's ISP can deliver them.

Good luck.
--
Jeff Liebermann jeffl@comix.santa-cruz.ca.us
150 Felker St #D http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
Santa Cruz CA 95060 http://802.11junk.com
Skype: JeffLiebermann AE6KS 831-336-2558

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  #7 (permalink)  
Old 09-29-2006, 07:23 PM
alphazip@yahoo.com
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Default Re: Slow wireless connection

Thanks, but the problem has been solved. I checked his receiving speed
for myself and discovered that it wasn't really all that much slower
than mine! (Before this, I had been relying on him telling me how slow
it was.) However, it still wasn't fast enough for him, so I increased
my service to 4 MB, which did indeed take me up to 4. I checked his
speed and it's now between 3 & 4. I was thinking that it was a
wireless problem, because I had never used wireless before, but I guess
it does operate as advertised! As regards price, I have bundled
service (phone, TV, Internet) and the price was lower than my other
cable option, Comcast.


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  #8 (permalink)  
Old 09-29-2006, 11:22 PM
Jeff Liebermann
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Default Re: Slow wireless connection

alphazip@yahoo.com hath wroth:

>I checked his receiving speed
>for myself and discovered that it wasn't really all that much slower
>than mine! (Before this, I had been relying on him telling me how slow
>it was.)


Now you know why I insisted on numbers instead of generalized
descriptions.

>However, it still wasn't fast enough for him, so I increased
>my service to 4 MB, which did indeed take me up to 4. I checked his
>speed and it's now between 3 & 4.


I'm impressed that WOW was able to do it so quickly. Is this DSL or
cable internet? If cable, I can see how they can do it as they would
own the CMTS. If DSL, I'm amazed.

>I was thinking that it was a
>wireless problem, because I had never used wireless before, but I guess
>it does operate as advertised!


See:
| http://wireless.wikia.com/wiki/Wi-Fi...ance_and_Speed
for the maximum speeds which to expect.

--
Jeff Liebermann jeffl@comix.santa-cruz.ca.us
150 Felker St #D http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
Santa Cruz CA 95060 http://802.11junk.com
Skype: JeffLiebermann AE6KS 831-336-2558

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  #9 (permalink)  
Old 09-30-2006, 07:44 AM
alphazip@yahoo.com
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Default Re: Slow wireless connection


Jeff Liebermann wrote:
>
> I'm impressed that WOW was able to do it so quickly. Is this DSL or
> cable internet? If cable, I can see how they can do it as they would
> own the CMTS. If DSL, I'm amazed.


Yes, cable. It was done immediately after I ordered it on the phone.
The lights went out on the modem, then came back on, and I then had the
faster speed.


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  #10 (permalink)  
Old 10-09-2006, 06:55 PM
alphazip@yahoo.com
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Posts: n/a
Default Re: Slow wireless connection

A new question. After getting the first person squared away, another
person in the house wanted to hook up to my router. He has a laptop
and purchased a ZyXel wireless adapter. (I suggested that he buy a
Linksys, but he went with ZyXel.) Anyway, I hooked it up and got it
going. The problem is that he has to get closer to the sending unit to
get a decent signal than the other guy had to (first one has a
full-size PC). The connection possibilities are poor, good, very good,
excellent. He gets "good" in his room, but that's not good enough for
IE to bring up anything. If he moves the laptop closer to the sending
unit in my room, he gets very good or excellent, both of which work
fine. I thought of maybe alligator-clipping some wire to the antennas
on my router to extend the range (if that's even possible), but they're
plastic. Now...the other guy (first one I wrote about) has an extra
linksys router he's not using. Any way of hooking that up somehow to
boost the signal in that part of the house? Any other ideas?


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  #11 (permalink)  
Old 10-09-2006, 07:12 PM
dold@XReXXSlowX.usenet.us.com
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Default Re: Slow wireless connection

alphazip@yahoo.com <alphazip@yahoo.com> wrote:
> full-size PC). The connection possibilities are poor, good, very good,
> excellent. He gets "good" in his room, but that's not good enough for
> IE to bring up anything. If he moves the laptop closer to the sending
> unit in my room, he gets very good or excellent, both of which work


If it works at all, free reflectors should help.
I like the EZ-12 "Windsurfer".
http://www.rahul.net/dold/clarence/EZ12-windsurfer.jpg
http://www.freeantennas.com

--
---
Clarence A Dold - Hidden Valley Lake, CA, USA GPS: 38.8,-122.5

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