Six Steps to a Faster Broadband Connection
Becky Waring, PC World
Sunday, March 16, 2008
Even if you’re paying top dollar for high-speed Internet service, you may not be getting the performance you expect. Follow our guide to boost your broadband speed.
- Test Your Connection Speed
- Update Your Firmware or Get a New Modem
- Check Your Modem Parameters
- Troubleshooting Line Quality
- Optimize Software Settings
- Accelerate Your Downloads
Before you start tweaking, get a baseline reading of your downstream and upstream connection speeds at Speedtest.net.
The latest cable modems meet the DOCSIS 2.0 (Data Over Cable Service Interface Specification) standard.
First, the maximum allowed speeds (both downstream and up) should match your service plan.
Second, look for signal-to-noise ratio (or SN margin) and line attenuation, both measured in decibels (dB).
Your first task is to determine whether the signal is already degraded when it reaches your house or whether your own wiring is at fault.
Now that your cable or DSL line is as clean as you can make it, you’re ready to tweak your system and applications for maximum performance, too.
Frequent downloaders can save huge amounts of time by using a download manager like our favorite, FlashGet.
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