Reply

Slow speeds and constantly having to change wifi channels

worthy1
Aspirant

Slow speeds and constantly having to change wifi channels

Hi All,

Apologies in advance as this will a lot of info on my issue to read but i am really struggling and really need some help.

My hardware:
-Telstra ADLS+2 with a Telstra tehnicolour gateway router.

Old hardware
- TP Link TLWR103ND router ethernet bridged to the Telstra box. TP link handling PPOE

New Hardware
- AC1900 R700, ethernet bridged to Telstra box and doing the PPOE

My issue.
The Telstra Technicolour wifi speeds were shocking when used alone. Once adding the TP link i was able to increase the speed by finding a wifi channel that gave me decent speeds (11-13mbs down).

I would constantly have to go through the wifi channels each day or even a couple of times a day as the working channel would suddenly go slow. I would then find another channel that was slow previously but now quick. And so the viscous cycle continued for over a year. After starting to get more drop outs i though surely a bees knees router will fix this, enter the new Nighthawk R700...

Setup the new Nighthawk and the best speeds i could get were 7mb. when they are this slow youtube buffers, sites are slow to load, a telstra tbox i have buffers when trying to watch channels etc. Changing channels did nothing for this. I then found lots of handy info on here and after doing the following:
- upgrading to the latest firmware,
-making sure WMM was on,
- MTU set,
- Disabled SIP ALG,
-selected open under NAT filtering
-disabled port scan & Dos

Boom! speeds jumped up to 15mbs on 2.5ghz and 17mb 5ghz. Yay! Only had to change the 5ghz channel t get this and left 2.5ghz at auto.

It stayed stable for a bit over 24hrs and then today speeds are back to around 6-7mb. Agin everything buffering and slow. The odd thing is speedtest.net was showing over 18mbs down yet even it was jumping during the test. Clearly i wasnt getting this and other sites were telling me 7mbs which is accurate of what i am experiencing. (personally i have always found speedtest to never show what i am experiencing)

No changing of the wifi channels would see anything over 7mbs, some 3-4. So because i wanted to watch some sport on the telstra tbox i gave up and plugged the TP-link back in and was able to find a channel on it that was giving me 11mbs which was enough for things to pickup.

Any help would be GREATLY appreciated, surely life shouldnt have to revolve around constantly changing wifi channels and watching speedtests and i definitely dont want buyers remorse on spending $200 and still having to use my $50 router anyway.

Message 1 of 24
RogerSC
Virtuoso

Re: Slow speeds and constantly having to change wifi channels

I'm not sure how much testing or use you're doing with 5GHz. I find that 5GHz. is more stable around here, don't see any other wireless networks on 5GHz. Maybe one or two way down in signal strength, not interfering. On 2.4GHz. there are about 20 other wireless networks in my neighborhood, several are quite strong in my living room (my router is at the other end of the house).

So the way that I've dealt with the interference problem that tends to make 2.4GHz. unstable is that all my clients are on 5GHz. Except one wifi printer, that's quite close to the router, so that one has no problems.

Anyways, I find I get full house wireless coverage on 5Ghz. with the R7000. Wifi tends to be variable on either band, but quite good on the average with 5GHz., while 2.4GHz. is way overpopulated.
Message 2 of 24
Babylon5
NETGEAR Employee Retired

Re: Slow speeds and constantly having to change wifi channels

It’s quite possible that other routers/APs in the area could be set to automatic channel selection and in that case they could be changing channels frequently, so when scanning the channels it might be worthwhile taking screen grabs to see if there are any other APs regularly changing channels.

A point on sharing with strong / weak APs;

The requirements for WiFi transmission include CSMA/CA, it’s a ‘collision avoidance’ protocol that essentially requires that only one device in range of any other device transmits at any one time. The protocol requires that all devices ‘listen’ for other transmissions before they transmit. If you share a channel with a ‘weak’ network then you actually increase the risk of simultaneous transmission which leads to data corruption and the need to re-transmit, so it’s better to share channels with ‘strong’ APs. This rule applies at a device level, so there is no technical difference between four APs each with five clients, and one AP with 23 clients. True ‘interference’ occurs when the CSMA/CA rules fail.

It could also be possible that someone is using a device that does not obey WiFi protocols, but is licenced for operation on the 2.4GHz band, such devices include video senders, baby monitors, security cameras etc. They are often wide band, covering much or all available 2.4GHz channels, and high power to give them good range and penetration through walls. These devices can severely disrupt 2.4GHz WiFi use. They do not show up in a typical WiFi network scan.

If you are on good terms with your neighbours ask them if they are suffering from WiFi issues, and ask them if they use any of the devices I mentioned above.
____________________________
Working on behalf of Netgear
My name is Andy
Message 3 of 24
worthy1
Aspirant

Re: Slow speeds and constantly having to change wifi channels

Thanks for the responses.

My laptop is the only one that is on the 5ghz and it couldd not get over 7mb yesterday. Unfortunately a couple of the other devices on the network dont hav the capability for 5ghz (phones, telstra fox box etc).

Unfortunately there are a lot of routers in the neighbourhood and not sure which houses they are. The issue is routers come with the idea of plug and play and not having to muck around with channels. With the amount of non technical people out there they would not know their router is causing them to have sub par speeds let alone know how to change it. It does seem strange that people do need networking knowledge and have to speak to neighbours to get the best out of their internet, although i do get what you are saying it just doesnt seem the friendliest technology. The problem is further compounded by ISP's not seeming to have the knowledge on how routers work so when people call for slow internet they just check lines etc, never mentioning wifi channels (experienced this with Telstra myself)

What all this doesnt explain is:
- Why when speeds do drop none of the channels on the nighthawk speed up. I then plug in my crappy tplink and am able to find a channel that speeds up?
- 5ghz speeds drop also

I do get the issues with wifi channels and neighbours it is just really time consuming to find a channel that gives great speeds each day. Going through 13 channels, waiting for reboots, doing speed checks is surely no way to live and i am guessing people should have more stability then this let alone more of a life!
Message 4 of 24
Babylon5
NETGEAR Employee Retired

Re: Slow speeds and constantly having to change wifi channels

I agree that the marketing of routers and maybe networking devices in general does tend to treat then like any other household device, yet as soon as any issues arise then a fairly high level of networking and in this case wireless transmission / reception knowledge is needed. Unfortunately that’s the way it is and I don’t see the situation changing soon, all I can say is that more people have a satisfactory working system than people who have issues.

I think you are right that you should not be chasing a workable channel, that is not a practical approach since the environment around you is constantly changing, new APs appears, others go away, usage varies during the day, other APs change channels. You can never practically keep up with that. What you see should not be happening, your throughput should not be dropping in the way you describe. I can understand that switching channels and achieving a temporary increase in throughput leads you to conclude that it’s an ‘interference’ type issue, but I’m not convinced that it is, it could be for example that the simple act of the client device disconnecting and reconnecting to the network has that effect. Try disabling the WiFi clinet temporarily through the Network and Sharing Centre to see if this has any effect.

I have over 26 active networks running in my area and don’t experience the issues you see, I also run nine APs in my own house but activity amongst those nine is limited to just about ten wireless devices across both frequency bands.

My laptop does suffer from slowdowns occasionally, a reboot fixes it, but so does briefly disabling the Intel 7260AC card.
____________________________
Working on behalf of Netgear
My name is Andy
Message 5 of 24
mondenath
Prodigy

Re: Slow speeds and constantly having to change wifi channels

Did you try enabling the QOS.

Also the speedtest is not reliable. Do the DSLreports. It has buffer float.

Do that and revert back.
Message 6 of 24
worthy1
Aspirant

Re: Slow speeds and constantly having to change wifi channels

Thanks for the responses.

The problem is it happens to all clients connected. When speeds show they are down on my laptop then the Telstra Tbox (foxtel) also buffers, my other laptop is slow and speed tests on my android tabet is down to. I recently got a new laptop also and have the same issue.

I tried QOS the other day and it would speed up when uplink bandwidth was set to a maximum of 10mbs. Any other number and it would slow down. Then after trying a few numbers i decided to set it back to 10mbs and that suddenly didnt work. now i have it off and only have the WMM stuff enabled.

I plugged the nighthawk back in today and speeds for 5ghz are 10mbs and 2.5 is at almost 12mbs (using that dslreport test). Will see if it stays stable or whether it drops again like the other day although would hav thought 5ghz would be quicker....
Message 7 of 24
worthy1
Aspirant

Re: Slow speeds and constantly having to change wifi channels

I thought i would give an update. The streaming on the pay TV was buffering and Downloads were incredibly slow at the above speeds (both channels around 11mb/s).

Frustrate i decided to play with the Upstream QOS again before returning the unit and using my TPLink. Setting the Maximum Upstream QOS to 10mb (worked the other day) slowed things down to 6mbs. I just randomly picked 5mbs as the next Maximum to try and boom, both channels shot up to 14mbs speeds.

at 14mbs on both channels, the TV streaming went smooth and file download speeds went back to normal. 2 days in and they have stayed this way (fingers crossed)

Not sure what the Upstream QOS does and why setting it to 5mbs gives me 14mbs speeds but as long as it works. Not sure if choosing another QOS speed will give me better speeds but too afraid to touch anything!

The one odd thing is although the 5ghz channel sits on the high side of 14mbs and the 2.5ghz is on the low side. the 2.5ghz channel always gives around 200kbs better upspeed. I did expect the 5ghz channel to give a lot better up and down speeds, especially when only one device connects to it.
Message 8 of 24
rpoffen
Virtuoso

Re: Slow speeds and constantly having to change wifi channels

Almost sounds like you have a bufferbloat problem, see this thread.
Message 9 of 24
worthy1
Aspirant

Re: Slow speeds and constantly having to change wifi channels

Hmmm interesting read. I seem to get a B with my Bufferbloat which i am guessing is pretty good (do i really need to achieve an A?)

It seems i am still experiencing the problem. 2 Days ago the speeds dropped back down to 7mbs, everything choppy and slow. I decided to leave it instead of changing channels and doing tests (pain in the a$$ to do). This was around 9pm at night. The issue lasted until early afternoon the next day and then they suddenly jumped back up to around 14mbs.

Not sure when but again as of this morning it is back down to 7mbs again (bufferbloat B), arghhh! Interestingly although down speeds are dropping the upload stays around the 700-800kbs mark, guessing this means that part (paired with my bufferbloat B) is happy with my upstream QOS setting.
Message 10 of 24
nToxik
Aspirant

Re: Slow speeds and constantly having to change wifi channels

I had speed issues until I removed the Genie software. Since then, no speed issues at all.
Message 11 of 24
rpoffen
Virtuoso

Re: Slow speeds and constantly having to change wifi channels

nToxik wrote:
I had speed issues until I removed the Genie software. Since then, no speed issues at all.


Just to be clear, there are TWO separate things that can be called "Genie". The first is the built-in user interface on the router. This is the interface you get when you login to the router via a web browser, you cannot remove or change this (other than using third party FW such as DDWRT or similar)
The other is the Genie app that you can install on a PC. It is this latter Genie app that you don't want on any of your PC's, it has been known to cause problems.
Message 12 of 24
worthy1
Aspirant

Re: Slow speeds and constantly having to change wifi channels

Would the Genie software be one that i chose to install myself? i cant see it in my programs and dont remember installing it. Would it also affect other equipment suffering from speed issues that are attached to my network i.e pay TV box

It has stayed down to 9mbs and even gone as lo as 4-6mbs at times. Upload has stayed high though (around 800kbs).

Tie to fiddle around with wifi channels and QOS...yay
Message 13 of 24
Babylon5
NETGEAR Employee Retired

Re: Slow speeds and constantly having to change wifi channels

worthy1 wrote:
Would it also affect other equipment suffering from speed issues that are attached to my network i.e pay TV box


I don't believe so, and shutting down the Genie PC would have the same effect as uninstalling the App (which should appear in the list of installed applications, and have a folder in your start menu if you installed it).
____________________________
Working on behalf of Netgear
My name is Andy
Message 14 of 24
worthy1
Aspirant

Re: Slow speeds and constantly having to change wifi channels

So after giving it some time the issu has never resolved. Changing wifi channels now does nothing, what i have to do to fix buffering/slow response times is play with the QOS. 

 

I have to change the Upstream QOS to resolve things, it will then work for an undetermined period (usually stays fine until the next day) and then i need to change it again. I usually either set it at 2, 5, 8 and 10 MB/s for it to work.

 

Any thoughts on why this is ocurring?

Message 15 of 24
JamesGL
Master

Re: Slow speeds and constantly having to change wifi channels

Hi @worthy1,

 

Can you install an InSSIDer in your computer? Check if there are lots of network within you area. It could be the reason that you are getting slow speed due to your environment.

 

Regards,

 

JamesGL

Community Team

Message 16 of 24
worthy1
Aspirant

Re: Slow speeds and constantly having to change wifi channels

Thanks James. Wouldnt a congested environment affect wifi signals not QOS settings?

Message 17 of 24
JamesGL
Master

Re: Slow speeds and constantly having to change wifi channels

Congested environment can affect wifi performance. Just like in a traffic situation, the movement of the cars are slow.


Regards,

 

JamesGL

Community Team

Message 18 of 24
worthy1
Aspirant

Re: Slow speeds and constantly having to change wifi channels

Yes i get that but how is changing QOS settings changing anything in the environment? Say im on the same wifi channel as someone which is causing me an issue. Changing QOS shouldnt fix that.

 

So in my case i dont touch channel settings but i can fiddle around with QOS to get the speeds back up.

 

This is a daily issue and my internet crawls along most days until i do it. This shouldnt be that much of an issue. Surely i can get decent speeds regardless of neighbours, billions of people use the internet and surely they dont all have to do this and surely they dont go around to their neighbours and politely tell them to put their routers on a certain channel, i know my neighbours wouldnt have a clue how to.

 

Seems all a bit ridiculous that this is what i have to put up with and by the sounds of it there is no resolution...

Message 19 of 24
JamesGL
Master

Re: Slow speeds and constantly having to change wifi channels

@worthy1,

 

Can you provide the inSSIDer logs so that we can check the environment.

 

Regards,

 

JamesGL
Community Team

Message 20 of 24
worthy1
Aspirant

Re: Slow speeds and constantly having to change wifi channels

So you still didnt answer my question as to what QOS has to do with network congestion? Once again,  i dont have to change the channels to get faster speed, just play around with QOS size, surely that says something.

 

Seems to me 'network congestion' is the catch phrase in the networking world for something to blame issues on. Bit like reboot the computer and call us back.

 

Yes i understand Network Congestion can be an issue but im sure my mentioned symptons and spot fix doesnt add up to that. Not personally believing that network congestion can slow down a network to KB/s speeds and the fact that billions of people live in neighbourhoods, apartment complexes etc world wide not suffering from 'congestion' and knowing these people arent networking wizzes that it shouldnt do what it is doing to me.

 

So in saying that i searched the web as much as i could, checking other modem forums, i put together my own list of things to try. Strangely out of all the info i read that  got something substantial out of did they mention network congestion. This is what i did:

-Turned off 20/40MHZ co-existance

-Changed Fragmentation Length and CTS/RTS Threshold values to 2342

-Turned off Upstream QOS altogether. Apparantly not needed but leave WMM's ticked.

 

I am now 4 days in with around 13MB/s speeds, B-A-B result for Bufferbloat, Quality and Speed. This is unheard of for me for as long as i can remember.

 

Some of the recomendations were from reading any speed issue thread i could find on this forum to. Seems that there sshould be a checklist for things to set/try on the Router before telling people to knock on the door of your neighbour and watch them laugh at you when you tell them they need to adjust their channels to make sure the world coexists in a happy way, one step towards world peace i guess....

 

Hope this helps others with slow speeds.

Message 21 of 24
JamesGL
Master

Re: Slow speeds and constantly having to change wifi channels

@worthy1,

 

QoS has nothing to do with network congestion as it only affects devices connected to the router. 

 

Regards,

 

JamesGL

Community Team

Message 22 of 24
worthy1
Aspirant

Re: Slow speeds and constantly having to change wifi channels

Funny that so not sure why i was being asked to report on network congestion when a change in QOS was helping.

 

Anyway an update: The speeds of 13mb lasted about a week and then it went flakey again. Nothing i do now can get speeds back up. My speeds are less around 3mb down when i first connect then it drops to 200-300kb/s when testing again consecutively. I can swap channels and on first connection i get 3-4mb and then an instant drop. I have tried the following. THIS IS ALSO HAPPENING ETHERNET CONNECTED (exact same speeds):

- I upgraded to the newest firmware and no change. 

- Down graded to other firmwares as other people have had success with. No change.

- Multipe resets and resetups, changing one setting at a time.

- Turning off all electrical equipment around it

- Humoured the experts by running wifiinfo, No one around on 5ghz and on 2.5ghz the closest channel is 6 being used. I use 11 for 2.5ghz and 153 for 5ghz.

- WMM is on, switching off doesnt do anything (can slow it down slightly)

- 20mhz only.

- this is on all devices.

 

The only thing that remotely helps is i can toggle on and off 'Disable DOS...' and 'Disable Nat Filtering'. This will see it spike to 13mb first test and then straight back down the next. Toggle them again and back up and then back down.

 

The ISP has done all their tests and no congestion, seeing 16mb in etc

 

Basically done with this device and i hope its easy to get a refund. I cant believe how much time i have wasted trying to persist with it. Back to my old TP-link and will just have to put up with the odd drop out on it or do some better research as to a good router. Lesson learnt, dont believe the hype of reviews, find the devices forum and you will quickly see a trend such as the R700 for slow speeds and people having to tinker.

Message 23 of 24
worthy1
Aspirant

Re: Slow speeds and constantly having to change wifi channels

Wow, so i just spoke to customer service and now i see why people say its hopeless. For starters i was told there is a no refund policy, only a replacement warranty for a 'tested good unit'. For starters shouldnt all units be tested to not be faulty? I dont want another netgear unit plain and simple, 5 months of cr@p is enough for me.

 

Besides hardly being able to understand their accent and me having to repeat everything, which makes the experience more frustrating, they told me to go through usual steps which i have already done. I was then told after making changes i have already done to monitor my network for a few hours.

 

Are you guys kidding? a speed test or two after making changes is clearly enough. Its not suddenly going to jump up in speeds an hour later. Everything they were doing related to wifi channels even though i pointed out numerous times to this lady that i get the exact same speeds Ethernet connected, clearly ruling out an issue with just wifi. Fair enough all your support staff cant be network wizards (although should be) but that one is trouble shooting 101. I told her 2.5ghz channel was on 11 and she wanted me to put it on 6. I told her there are others in my neighbourhood on 6, didnt care.

 

Not once did i get asked what my isue was, all i got out was slow speeds then she goes through the playbook without logic troubleshooting such as Ethernet speeds are also affected. And now i am to sit and monitor my network as if some magic is going to happen in the router. That slap in the face to my intelligence has just lost me from netgear for good, pity i am now stuck with the router due to a no refund policy, wonder what the ACCC thinks of that considering it doesnt work as designed for me. keep replacing it, that will work guys....

Message 24 of 24
Top Contributors
Discussion stats
  • 23 replies
  • 16694 views
  • 0 kudos
  • 7 in conversation
Announcements

Orbi WiFi 6E