Uploads are down
February 7, 2007 10:56 AM   Subscribe

I can barely upload anything and I've tried everything to fix it.

For some reason my uploads have crapped out on me and I can barely get anything on the web now-a-days (this is important to me since my work depends on it). So here's what I've tried

1. updated my wifi drivers
2. reset ip address
3. constantly tested my bandwidth speed
4. contacted my ISP
5. made threats to my laptop
6. Reset my cable AND wifi modem

One thing that did work...temporarily...was that our signal was reset by the ISP and everything was fine for about 24-48 hours. After that, it went back down to crap.

Here are some other factors:

I have 3 laptops, the other two work fine on the net and get normal bandwidth speeds however mine doesn't.

I'm on Megacable (it's the cable net down here in Mexico) and that is when the uploads are at their worst If I'm on DSL, it does fine. (The option of switching is not doable either)

So is it a problem with my wifi drivers or the ISP? I have a Toshiba Satellite R25-S3503 (Tablet PC).

The one solution I've come up with, and it's not a great solution, is to get a thumb drive or an ipod shuffle (I kind of want one anyway) and just transfer data from one computer to another to upload but that is like going around the elbow to get to the thumb (however if that's the only solution that is workable, do the new Ipod Shuffles act as hard drives? From looking at them, it doesn't seem to have an onboard usb hookup).
posted by Hands of Manos to Computers & Internet (17 answers total)
Response by poster: oh one other thing, I'm on the highest speed with my ISP and when it does work, it works well.
posted by Hands of Manos at 10:59 AM on February 7, 2007

Assuming the laptop and router both also support wired ethernet, plug a cable in and disable the wireless on the laptop. If it works as fast as the others, at least then you'll know whether or not the problem is in the wireless.
posted by Partial Law at 11:03 AM on February 7, 2007

Response by poster: oops, forgot to say I tried that
posted by Hands of Manos at 11:22 AM on February 7, 2007

Response by poster: and that didn't work either
posted by Hands of Manos at 11:22 AM on February 7, 2007

Have you plugged the cable modem directly into your laptop to confirm that the router is not the source of the problem? That is the first thing I would test.
posted by COD at 11:33 AM on February 7, 2007

Go over to http://www.speakeasy.net/speedtest/ and tell us what speeds you are getting on that machine- down and up. Then do the same for one of the machines that is functioning properly.
posted by bkeene12 at 11:56 AM on February 7, 2007

Response by poster: that's easy...done that a bunch already

download speed on both machines 1978
Upload on my other two laptops: 293
Upload on this latptop: 22

the only thing I can think of is that the other two laptops are 2 years old whereas this one was brand new.
posted by Hands of Manos at 12:14 PM on February 7, 2007

it sounds like it's pretty clearly an ISP problem:
You use your computer on DSL, it's ok.
You had them perform a reset of some sort, it's ok for a while.
Nothing you change on your computer improves performance.

Double check your router to see if that's it, and if not I'd say it's your ISP's problem. We wish you good luck getting them to fix it!
posted by wzcx at 12:15 PM on February 7, 2007

Have you tried running a speed test, (not to your ISP). If that is fine then you have an ISP problem. You might also try disabling things and running speed tests.
posted by MonkeySaltedNuts at 12:20 PM on February 7, 2007

So, on the broken machine you are getting download speeds of 1978 but uploads are running at 22. What virus software are you running and when is the last time you updated it? My best guess is that this box has the some rot and is sending something out unbeknownst to you.
posted by bkeene12 at 12:54 PM on February 7, 2007

I don't see how people can be arguing that this is an ISP problem. 3 computers connecting through the same access point, and only one misbehaves. And if this reply means what I think it means (upload is slow via both cat5 and wireless), then it is clearly not a wifi driver problem either. So best bet is probably to look for some sort of spyware/malware/misconfigured firewall, etc.

unless I am misunderstanding the description of the situation?
posted by misterbrandt at 1:14 PM on February 7, 2007

Response by poster: spyware...hmm!

I've not thought about that. Adaware should be able to find that, right?

All firewalls and virus protections are off too. I guess what I'm going to do is start disabling my start up rts things and see if that catches it too.
posted by Hands of Manos at 1:35 PM on February 7, 2007

Best answer: Possibilities:

1) You have a firewall on your laptop itself that is limiting outbound bandwidth. This is the most likely option given your description, but it's also puzzling that this would be the case unless you consciously set it up that way.

2) Your router is configured to limit bandwidth for some reason. Unlikely, since this happens on two different network cards (wired and wireless), which presumably means two different IP addresses also. So it is unlikely that it would happen to these two network cards / IP addresses, but not those in your other laptops.

3) Your laptop has spyware. Unlikely, because the amount of bandwidth it would take to slow legitimate traffic down to that extent would saturate your broadband pipe, which would result in EVERYTHING connected to the router having slow upload speeds.

4) Your network card is failing. Unlikely, since it seems to happen on wired and wireless.

Check for firewall software on your laptop first, and verify the configuration. Follow COD's advice above next. Scan for viruses / spyware next. Beyond that I'm stumped without examining it.
posted by chundo at 1:38 PM on February 7, 2007 [1 favorite]

Do you have VPN software running on the slow box? That could have an impact on the maximum transmission unit (MTU) size that needs to be set. Don't explore tweaking this until you've exhausted other possibilities, because it's a pain to optimize. I assume you're running Windows, and the standard MS fix is a regsitry tweak. Just google MTU if you need more info.
posted by nj_subgenius at 2:11 PM on February 7, 2007

Response by poster: I think I figured it out, it was either due to spyware or something in my start up sequence (I disabled a bunch of crap that might have been spyware in the misconfig/startup)

Thanks everyone!
posted by Hands of Manos at 2:58 PM on February 7, 2007

Also regarding the iPod Shuffles, you can use them as flash drives without any problems. The main issue, though, is that they need the dock they come with to interface with USB ports. Or something like this.
posted by now i'm piste at 4:56 PM on February 7, 2007

Since you are doing a lot of uploading, I thought you may want to know about cOfSpeed. I was highly skeptical, but it has worked pretty well for me- I no longer need to throttle my upload to keep browsing at a reasonable pace.
posted by Four Flavors at 11:10 AM on February 8, 2007

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