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Test Your Internet Connection Speed
By James Wise
posted June 29, 2009
EDGEFIELD – Are you curious how fast your
Internet connection is? Do you want to make sure you are getting the
speed you’re paying for? Do you need to troubleshoot an Internet
connection or speed issue? If so, there are a number of free websites
you can use to see how fast you’re running on the “Information Super
Here are a few of the sites I like for Internet speed tests (you could
use several to confirm your results):
Important Note: When running a test, don’t do anything else on your
computer (especially something like file downloads) as this will skew
Almost all speed test sites do the same thing and present you with some
key numbers regarding your connection such as:
Download Speed - Shows how fast your computer RECEIVES information.
This is a critical number for downloading files on the Internet and for
browsing in general since that involves downloading text, images, and
videos on web pages.
Upload Speed – Shows how fast you can SEND information. This is an
important number for email (when mailing large files), sending pictures
to the Internet, etc… While download speed is more important for
browsing, your upload speed can also affect this since your computer
has to request what information it wants.
For download and upload speed, higher numbers are better. Cable or DSL
service for example should have a download speed of 1,000 Kilobits per
second or higher generally. Uploads speeds might vary more and are
normally lower than download speeds.
Ping Time or Latency to Server – Shows how long it takes for you to
send a request and receive an answer. This will affect browsing and is
especially important for “real-time” items such as games, chats, and
Internet telephone service. With ping time, lower is better.
Some sites also offer a comparison of your speed to the speed of other
users (with the same provider, in your area). Another helpful feature
is that some of these sites offer a history of your test results.
This can be especially useful if you want to check what your speed is
at various times. For example, you could compare peak usage and
non-peak usage times and you could check week after week to be sure
your speed is consistent. Of course you could also do this by just
writing down the results of your tests.
While I have lots of ideas for columns and run across new things every
day, I always like hearing from readers. So if have a tech question you
would like answered or a topic you would like me to cover, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
© Copyright 2009
original material is property of
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without the expressed written permission of Edgefield Daily.com
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