How to Fix a Slow Internet Connection

by David Lipscomb

Today's broadband Internet is the conduit for business and entertainment. Carrying the data needed to live a connected life, your Internet speed is affected by numerous things. In the event your Internet connection speed isn't as fast as you would like or were promised by your service provider, there are steps you can take to rectify the situation.


Switch from a wireless connection to a wired one. If you have a separate router and modem, connect the two with an Ethernet cable. Plug an Ethernet cable from your router directly to your computer. If you have an integrated modem and router or residential gateway, connect the Ethernet cable from this directly to the computer. Wireless G connections offer 54 megabits per second maximum. Conventional wired Ethernet connections offer nearly twice that at 100 Mbps.


Swap out your wireless G/B router for a wireless N unit. Wireless N routers offer up to 300 Mbps per second performance. Note that your computer must be wireless N capable for maximum benefit. However, even computers with wireless G/B modems benefit from the increased range and reliability of an N router.


Use an online speed-testing service to determine your actual Internet speed. Contact your Internet service provider if you are not in the range of your promised speeds. Note that it is normal for your actual speed to be slightly less than your package indicates.


Unplug your router and modem. Wait roughly 30 seconds and then plug them back in. Power-cycling your Internet hardware often alleviates network congestion and resets your connection to the speed at which it should normally operate.


Change your router's broadcast channel. Open up your router's settings page in your Web browser. Switch between channels 1, 6 and 11. Look for your wireless strength indicator icon to increase the number of bars or to indicate a color change from yellow to green. Either indicates improved performance.


Run a virus scan to remove any malware on your computer. Viruses run as programs, eating up your computer's resources. Often, these are not visible in the Task Manager menu. These extra resources slow the processing speed of your computer so incoming and outgoing Web content is affected.


  • check You can add a second router to serve as a wireless bridge to your primary router. This is an advanced technique that serves to increase the range of your wireless network.


  • close Wireless WEP security is easily penetrated. Use WPA or WPA2 if your hardware supports it.

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About the Author

David Lipscomb is a professional writer and public relations practitioner. Lipscomb brings more than a decade of experience in the consumer electronics and advertising industries. Lipscomb holds a degree in public relations from Webster University.

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