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Internet Speed: How can you make it better?

by Stuart McCreath | Sep 21, 2015

Internet speed has a lot to do with our overall productivity (and let’s face it, overall happiness too), so we understand the frustrations that come with poor Internet speeds, especially in a busy office.

It is most important to be certain you have selected the correct mode of Internet service delivery. Even in remote areas where there are fewer choices than those available in populated areas, there is still an often complex decision process to choose the best solution from the options available. The solution must suit your location, your usage requirements and your budget. Choosing the best Internet solution and provider for you is often far more complex than people realise. Technology types available and their speed, latency, monthly data allowance , cost per unit of data and total cost over time all need to be taken into account. For those who want to get maximum control of their Internet usage, buying a decent router should be considered, rather relying on the standard devices supplied by the Internet Service Providers.

We will discuss Internet options that are relevant to you in upcoming blogs, and how to get the most from your choice. In the meantime, this edition focuses on how to get the most from an ADSL connection.

For those of you who are fortunate enough to be able to get ADSL, and assuming higher speed NBN services are not available to you, the following tips may help with your ADSL service. Firstly, let’s talk about the things you’re not in control of. The main factor to consider is the distance you live from the nearest exchange. ADSL and ADSL2+ are delivered to your home over copper wires and because of this the speed of your connection to the network is directly affected by the distance the information needs to travel between the telephone exchange and your home.

The following is a useful website to find out exactly where your local exchange is:

http://www.adsl2exchanges.com.au/

If you’re interested in how these distances impact on your Internet speed, this graph shows the degradation in the Internet speed that occurs as you move further from the exchange. Internet Speed Graph


You can also run a current Internet speed test. This will let you know whether or not you are getting a lower rate than you should be. Visit http://www.ozspeedtest.com/ or http://www.speedtest.net/ to see what kind of speeds your Internet connection is running. 

So what speed should you be getting?

Internet companies advertise the ‘potential’ speeds, but often in reality you don’t even come close to it. You can call your provider to get more detail on what you really should be getting. And don’t forget to take into account the distance from your exchange.

So what can you do to improve your Internet speed?

1. Try out a different modem

Again and again we’ve seen that the biggest cause of slowed Internet is a cheap modem. You can spend lots of time on the phone with your provider trying to figure out the cause, when the answer is staring you in the face! If you want to have premium Internet speed, you need a premium modem. And of course make sure your modem is suited to the Internet plan that you are on.

2. Try turning it off and on again

Yes, yes I know we sound like a broken record but often it’s all that’s needed to fix your Internet speed (or any IT problem for that matter!). Turn off your modem for one minute and turn it on again. This can help you to flush out any problems that may be affecting your speed.

3. Scan for viruses

You need to make sure you don’t have any viruses on your computer that are slowing the Internet speed down. Viruses can live in the computer and drain resources way from what you’re doing. Dorchester can help you with a daily virus scanning software. Just drop us a line.

4. Check your filters

If you have your Internet connected to a phone line that also has a telephone on it, then you will need to make sure you have good quality filters installed to the line. They are plugs that let you attach to the phone line and filter out any disturbances.

5. Ditch the Wi-Fi

Of course it’s a nice luxury to have Wifi, but it does mean slower Internet. Try getting a cord and plugging it straight in. If you have to use Wifi, check out our blog post here on how to get more out of it. 

6. Shorten and/or replace your cables

The length of cables you’re using impacts the speed. Try replacing them with newer and shorter ones.

If none of these fixes resolves your issues, get in touch with your service or IT provider to see how they can help. 

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