Slow internet – what you can do if your internet is too slow
You use the internet a lot and often work from home. That’s precisely why you changed provider and treated yourself by switching to a new tariff. But you still keep feeling as if you are back in the age when modems were used for surfing. Everything is just slow, websites take forever to load if they do so at all, the film you’re streaming keeps pausing and time and again you lose valuable seconds when you’re playing games. It’s really getting on your nerves. After all, you deliberately chose a new tariff so that you would finally be able to use the internet quickly and smoothly. But is the line really at fault, or are there other problem areas? True, it’s often the case that the provider cannot deliver the speed promised. But it’s also possible that the problem lies elsewhere. Here you will find out what to do if your internet is too slow.
If the internet is too slow, you should find out what the cause is. A speed test will provide information about whether the speed advertised by the provider is actually being reached. Along with the internet line, however, there are other factors that could be responsible for a slow connection. Your router, Wi-Fi and computer should also be checked. In general, the blame should not immediately be placed at the door of the provider, as there are many other factors which could at least be partly responsible. If the internet is too slow, a little detective work is therefore always required. It’s often really small things that are preventing full speed from being achieved. Outdated drivers for network cards, cookies in your browser, poor Wi-Fi reception, the wrong settings on the router, antivirus programs and unsuitable cables could certainly be responsible, too.
If you take a look at the advertising, providers are always trying to tempt customers with information that doesn’t really tell you a lot. Internet connections are usually only advertised at the maximum achievable transmission speed. But that does not mean that this speed is actually achieved everywhere. It is entirely possible that the actual speed is much lower. It can depend on various criteria. If, for example, a user lives in an area in which the network is not particularly well developed, it can easily be that the speed is far slower. The quality of the transmission cables used also plays a part, as does the distance from the nearest exchange. There is, however, a way to find out the available data transmission rates. Since June 1, 2017, providers of telecommunications services have been obliged to make a product information sheet available to consumers before concluding a contract. The key components of the contract must be set out clearly in this. In stores, this sheet must either be given to the customer or be displayed in a clearly visible location. Of course, it must also be made available on the internet. There is often a link to the product information sheet. This can usually be found in the details for the tariff you are considering. It must include precise details about the available data transmission rates. It must not only specify the maximum speed available, but also the minimum speed and the speed that is normally available. This data sheet should tell you how fast the connection should actually be.
There are a few ways to find out where the weakness is and what is causing the internet to run slowly.
In order to determine whether the internet line is too slow, a special speed test should be carried out. This can be done very easily online and is free of charge. There are various tools available. The measurement tool from the German Federal Network Agency offers very precise information with its broadband speed checker. You have to specify the name of the provider, your zip code, the tariff ordered and the maximum data transmission rate, which can be found on the product information sheet. Using this information, a detailed log is created, which not only includes all the relevant details but also accurately documents the deviations from the maximum values. The results of the measurement can also be saved, as a print-out, for example, or a screenshot. The Federal Network Agency advises carrying out 20 measurements on two different days – ten measurements on each day. This is the only way to demonstrate ongoing minimum performance accurately.
Check your Wi-Fi connection
Your Wi-Fi can also be responsible for slow internet. There are analytical tools that are easy to use to find out whether the wireless network is behind the problem and how high the data rates are. For example, applications such as NetSpot and WiFiInfoView create a table of all accessible Wi-Fi networks and include, among other things, parameters such as signal strength and the wireless channels and frequency bands used. Signal levels above -50 dBm are fine. But it’s a different story for values below -75 dBm. In these cases, the quality of the connection will increasingly deteriorate.
There are a few factors that affect the results, however. These include the Wi-Fi standards that the end device supports, the time of testing and the location. But there is also a way of obtaining an overall picture of the quality of your Wi-Fi at home. Other tools are required for this, such as WiFi-Heatmap or Ekahau HeatMapper. These allow you to upload the floor plan of your apartment or house. Measurements are then taken at various points and a so-called heatmap – a map of your Wi-Fi – is created from them. The various colors show what level is being achieved at various points in your living space.
Use a Wi-Fi repeater
Using a Wi-Fi repeater can help to restore the speed of your internet connection. A repeater receives the wireless signal from your Wi-Fi, processes it and passes it on in an amplified form compared to the input signal. The signal is refreshed from one station to the next and passed on to the receiving device without losing information. Particularly in large buildings where only one router is available, a Wi-Fi repeater of this sort makes perfect sense when it comes to supplying all of the end devices with a good signal.
Browser check and deleting cookies
When you access websites in a browser, the browser first downloads them before displaying them. The larger the offline cache, the slower the browser responds. To rectify this, the cookies in the browser should be deleted. These are text files that are created on your end device by websites through the browser. If a large number of these cookies accumulate, it can have a negative impact on internet speed. It is therefore advisable to delete cookies at regular intervals.
Check antivirus programs and firewalls
Firewalls and antivirus programs are intended to protect your computer. But they can also be the reason why the internet is very slow. It is therefore advisable to check the program settings and change any settings that are slowing down the speed.
Rule out computer problems (hardware and software)
It is entirely possible that the reasons for a slow internet connection lie directly in your PC or laptop. This relates not only to the hardware, but also the software. It is possible that there are Trojans, viruses or spyware on your computer, and they are slowing down the internet. An outdated browser is also often the cause. It is advisable to adjust your settings so that any updates are carried out automatically. Updates are used by developers not just to improve security, but also for better speed. Add-ons that are no longer needed should be deleted, too. It is also important to ensure that the latest version of Windows is always running, and the same applies to the drivers. Too little RAM or an overloaded processor can also be the reason why the internet is slow.
Check the router configuration – set it to five gigahertz
Routers usually have two frequency bands, 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz. It is very often the case that both are activated simultaneously. The 2.4 GHz network continues to run, but is slower. The 5 GHz network is usually used less and is therefore able to offer a better connection. Many routers allow you to disable one of the two frequency bands – you should choose to do this for the 2.4 GHz band. If this is not possible or you don’t want to do so because some of the devices you use do not yet support the 5 GHz frequency band, many end devices have the option to set them so that they connect automatically to the 5 GHz band.
Restart the router
Restarting your router can also be a good solution. If there are problems with your internet speed, it could easily be that the router has stopped responding. A restart will ensure that the connection picks up speed again. With most devices, it is sufficient to disconnect them from the mains, wait a good twenty seconds and then re-insert the plug.
Move the router
If your router is in the wrong place, your internet might be very slow because the Wi-Fi signal is not reaching the end device with the right strength. There are some physical features that can put the brake on your Wi-Fi by severely impeding the signal, such as walls, corners, water pipes and underfloor heating. It is therefore important to set up your router as centrally as possible, ideally close to doors. There should be as few obstacles as possible between the end devices and the router. Relocating your router can make the internet faster.
Prevent external use
If your Wi-Fi is not adequately protected, it could be that third parties are using it. That will slow down the speed. You should check which devices are logged on to you Wi-Fi. Unknown devices should be removed and the Wi-Fi password should then be changed.
computeruniverse of course offers a wide range of routers.
Yes, because there is always a certain bandwidth made available for each internet connection. All the data passes down the line. If several people are using the connection, there will naturally be more data. But it still has to pass down the same line. The internet connection is therefore slower when more users are accessing it.
The reason for this is that many people are working during the day and are therefore not surfing the internet at home. At the end of the working day, most of them then go online. This means that far more people are accessing the lines in the evenings than during the day and the internet is correspondingly slower.
Although it is very often the case that internet connections do not offer the speed that the provider advertised, there are many other problem areas that could be responsible for slow internet. If the internet is slow despite a good connection, you should definitely look for other causes. Just changing a few settings is often enough to restore the internet to its normal speed. If that is the case, you can easily say goodbye to the frustration of everything running too slowly and get it all working quickly and smoothly, even if you have a lot of applications open at the same time.