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Speed Test Differences in Browsers - Tomato Router Limit/Problem? Not!

Posted on Monday, November 5, 2012 @ 02:50:45 PM CST by David Yee [] [read 4244 times]

Tips: Windows-world
I had recently upgraded my Internet speed from Time Warner Cable from the regular 10 megabit down and one megabit up to the Turbo version, which was 20 Mbps down and 2 Mbps up. The problem was that I wasn't getting the speed increase. I was still stuck at around 6 Mbps down and 0.3 Mbps (yes- 0.3) up.

The Time Warner tech came and did two things to fix the problem. He detected a lot of "upstream" noise which he eliminated, and he also replaced my ancient Webstar cable modem to the Ambit U10C018. I connected a laptop running Windows 7 on it directly via Ethernet to the cable modem, and the speed test showed pretty much 20 down and 2 up. Now we're talking, so I thought.

After the tech left, I plugged the Ethernet cable from the Ambit U10C018 cable modem to my router which is running Tomato (great router firmware, BTW). Then, on my Windows 7 desktop PC, I ran the Time Warner speed test via:

And got this:

WTH? My instinct was that my Tomato router is limiting the bandwidth to 10 Mbps to or something. So I went into the Tomato settings and changed the WAN Port Speed to "100Mb Full" from "Auto", just in case somehow the auto setting was keeping the wan port at 10 Mbps:

Incidentally, my router has a gigabit WAN port, but Tomato doesn't seem to support it.

I ran the test again after the settings change, but the speed was the same- stuck at 10 or 9 Mbps down. I plugged the laptop into the router and bam- it was 20/2 there. So I thought maybe it's something with the Realtek gigabit Ethernet on my desktop PC, but after tweaking some of its settings there was still no improvement. I was about to change out the Ethernet cable connecting my desktop to the router, when I thought- let me try the speedtest on Chrome and Opera. I had been running the speed tests in Firefox. Low and behold- that was it. Here was one of the results I got from the Opera browser:

Now I don't know why in Firefox on my Desktop PC I was getting the reduced speed results, but it probably is due to one of the plugins/add-ons being the culprit, because on my laptop I also did the test in Firefox and it showed the proper speeds.

So yeah just just a word of advice for you guys testing out the speed of your Internet- try the test with a different browser if you the benchmark is showing a much slower speed than you are supposed to be getting. This is especially applicable to those of you who have upgraded your broadband speeds or have Verizon FiOS. It's a quick check before you start looking into other causes to find out why things are not as fast as it should be....

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Speed Test Differences In Browsers Tomato Router Limit/Problem? Not! Rating: 2.2/5 (39 votes cast)

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