Why is my internet connection so slow? (2023)

No matter how fast your internet connection is, there are times when things slow down. This article will help you figure out what kinds of things can go wrong, learn what you can do about them, and figure out how to get the most out of your Internet connection.

Windows provides a built-in troubleshooter that can automatically find and fix some common connection problems.

Open the Internet Connections Troubleshooter by clicking on theTo startbuttonWhy is my internet connection so slow? (1)and then clickingControl Panel. In the search box, typeproblem solverand then click onProblems solution. SobNetwork and Internet, cliqueConnect to the internet.

The type of connection you have makes a difference.

The type of Internet connection you use is the most important factor in determining your connection speed. The three most common ways to connect to the Internet at home are dial-up, DSL, and cable. If you have a choice, cable is usually the fastest, but both DSL and cable are faster than dial-up.

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Many ISPs also offer Fiber Optic Service (FiOS), which connects to the Internet using light over an optical network. In your home, you still connect your computer through copper wires. The advantage of FiOS is that it can provide higher speeds than traditional copper wire connections like DSL or cable. Some ISPs offer multiple options depending on the area you are in. More populated areas are more likely to have FiOS available. Consult your telephone company or ISP for more information.

If you use a dial-up connection, there are some good ways to optimize your Internet speed. First, use the fastest possible modem. The fastest modem you can use will send and receive information at a rate of 56 kilobits per second (Kbps). You won't get a full speed of 56 Kbps most of the time, but with a good phone line you should get closer to at least 45-50 Kbps.

Second, make sure your phone line is in good working order. If the telephone wiring in your home or business is old or deteriorated, you may be picking up stray signals or crosstalk from other telephone lines. These issues will slow down your Internet connection because the modem will have to send the same information over and over again until it is transmitted without interruption. Check the telephone cords to be sure they are not damaged, frayed, or tangled in power cords or other telephone cords. If you notice popping noises on your phones, contact your telephone company to have them check the lines inside and outside your home to ensure they are in good condition.

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Tips for wireless network users

When you connect to a wireless (Wi-Fi) network, the speed of your Internet connection can be affected by the location of your computer and the presence of other wireless devices in the same area. Wireless networks operate on frequencies similar to those used by other devices, such as microwave ovens or cordless phones. Operating a 2.4 gigahertz (GHz) cordless phone near your 2.4 GHz wireless laptop can cause interference or completely block your wireless network connection. If you want to make phone calls while browsing the web, use a corded phone or cordless phone that operates on a different frequency than your wireless network.

Proximity to the wireless access point or router, as well as physical obstructions, can affect the quality of your Internet connection. To improve connection speed, move closer to the access point and make sure there are no physical obstructions between the access point and your computer.

Computer problems: spyware, viruses and other programs

The health of your computer can affect your Internet connection. Spyware and viruses can definitely cause problems, but the speed of your Internet connection can also be affected by add-on programs, the amount of computer memory, hard drive space and condition, and the programs you are running.

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Two of the most frequent causes of slow Internet performance are spyware and viruses. Spyware can slow down your system by interfering with your browser and hogging your Internet connection. Spyware monitors Internet usage and keystrokes, which adds to delays. The problem is compounded when there are several spyware programs running at the same time. If the problem is severe enough, you could lose connectivity entirely. To regain Internet performance, you should regularly run an anti-spyware program to clean up any spyware infestations.

Computer viruses can also cause slow Internet performance. When a virus infects a computer, it installs computer code that tries to propagate itself, usually by emailing copies of itself. Some viruses can multiply at the speed of hundreds of email messages per minute, which leaves little computing power and Internet connection bandwidth for anything else. Viruses usually don't give any obvious indication that they're running, so it's best to run antivirus software all the time.

Browser add-ons also cause performance issues. Browser add-ons are programs such as multimedia add-ons, search bars, or other programs that usually appear on your browser's toolbar. Many browser add-ons can be added to an advanced browsing experience, offering specialized multimedia or document viewing. However, some add-ons may slow down your internet connection. If you suspect that add-ons are causing slow performance, try starting InternetExplorer in add-ons disabled mode. Add-ons are disabled for the session only, but if you find your performance improves, you can use the Add-ons Manager to disable them permanently. To access the InternetExplorer Add-ons Manager, click on theToolsbutton and then clickManage supplements.

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Like all computer programs, InternetExplorer requires a certain amount of computing power, memory and disk space to run efficiently. All web pages you view are first downloaded into memory and then saved to temporary disk files. Running another program that is using a lot of memory and computing power can compete with InternetExplorer and cause delays. If you notice that your Internet connection is slow and other programs are running, try closing them. If you want to run multiple programs, consider increasing your computer's memory. Low disk space can also cause performance issues. You can increase your disk space by deleting InternetExplorer's temporary files.

Occasionally, settings are changed in InternetExplorer that may affect how InternetExplorer works. You can reset InternetExplorer to its default settings. Resetting InternetExplorer is not reversible, so you should read the list of affected settings before resetting.

External factors that affect connection speeds

Unfortunately, there are events and conditions that are out of your control. Even with a fast connection, external factors such as busy websites or the spread of computer viruses can slow down the entire web. Popular sites can become overloaded with users. For example, when a television commercial mentions a website, many people might try to visit the website at the same time. If your site is not prepared to handle the traffic, you may encounter delays.

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During periods of large outbreaks of computer viruses, the Internet may be slow. Many viruses spread by causing computers to send out hundreds or thousands of copies of the virus. It can slow down your internet speed by sheer volume. You can see what major outbreaks are currently happening by visiting your antivirus vendor's website or thehome securitysite on the Internet.

Local internet congestion can also result in slower than normal connection speeds. These slowdowns occur when many people try to connect to the Internet at the same time, and most often occur during peak activity times, such as after school hours, when students come home and connect to the web.

If you are on a corporate network, general network and proxy server usage can affect Internet performance. Most network administrators monitor Internet usage and try to stop people from doing things like downloading large files during peak hours. If you find that your Internet access is slow at times, you can discuss this with your network administrator.

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Why is my internet connection so slow? ›

Spyware and viruses can definitely cause problems, but your Internet connection speed can also be affected by add-on programs, the amount of memory the computer has, hard disk space and condition, and the programs that are running. Two of the most frequent causes of poor Internet performance are spyware and viruses.

Why is my internet so slow even with WIFI? ›

Some of the top causes for slow internet speeds on Wi-Fi are: Router position: It may be too far away from your device, or blocked by physical obstacles, meaning wireless signals don't carry. This is quite probably the most common cause of slow Wi-Fi.

Why is my actual internet a lot slower than my speed test? ›

Some devices may not be able to measure the full speed of your internet service. It's also possible that your Wi-Fi router doesn't support the full speed of your service. Speedtest servers may perform differently. Generally, you will get faster speeds from servers closer to you.

How can I increase my Wi-Fi speed? ›

How to improve your internet speed
  1. Turn things off and on again. ...
  2. Move your router to a better location. ...
  3. Switch your Wi-Fi frequency band. ...
  4. Adjust your router's antennas. ...
  5. Extend your Wi-Fi network. ...
  6. Prune unnecessary connections. ...
  7. Change your Wi-Fi frequency channel. ...
  8. Upgrade to faster internet.
Jun 29, 2023

How can I speed up my Wi-Fi? ›

Other Tips
  1. Use a wireless range extender. While this may not speed up the connection, it can boost the signal into the dead spots of your house or office. ...
  2. Add access points. ...
  3. Speed up the data stream. ...
  4. Update routers, gateways, and devices to the latest Wi-Fi 6 standard.

How do I fix slow Wi-Fi? ›

12 Best Ways to Fix Slow Wi-Fi Speeds
  1. Check your Wi-Fi Speed.
  2. Connect to a 5GHz SSID.
  3. Restart the Router.
  4. Check Other Devices on the same Network.
  5. Switch to a Different Channel.
  6. Stop Background Programs Using Bandwidth.
  7. Check for Unauthorized Access.
  8. Change your Router's Location.
Jun 2, 2023

Why do I get less internet speed than I pay for? ›

End-user hardware issues

For example, if you are using an older router, it may lack the capacity to keep up with modern speeds. Additionally, a poorly configured Wi-Fi connection may be slowed down by interference, making it difficult for you to realize the connection speeds you are paying for.

Why is my 100 Mbps internet slow? ›

Bandwidth band-aids

The biggest culprit of bandwidth-hogging is likely other people using the same internet connection. Even with a 100Mbps internet connection, if all of that 100Mbps bandwidth is in use, all internet devices will be slowed, regardless of whether they're on Ethernet or WiFi.

Why am I not getting the internet speed I pay for? ›

Problem 1: Slow Internet Connection

There could be a problem with your Optical Network Terminal (ONT) or router, the Wi-Fi signal strength and the distance from your router, or the number of devices using your bandwidth.

Why is my internet data so slow all of a sudden? ›

If you've noticed your broadband is suddenly much slower than usual, there could be a few things at play: People are downloading or streaming high-quality files at home. It's peak internet usage times in your neighbourhood. Your router setup may need changing.

Why is my 2.4 GHz so slow? ›

All too often, the culprit of slow Wi-Fi is use of the 2.4 GHz band, which offers slower data rates and is often oversaturated with Wi-Fi and non-Wi-Fi devices, like microwave or baby monitors. The FCC allows Wi-Fi to operate in two different frequency bands, the 2.4 and 5 GHz.

Why is my Iphone internet so slow all of a sudden? ›

These can include outdated software, insufficient storage space, background apps consuming too many system resources, and more. Fortunately, Apple has provided a variety of simple tips on its official support page that can help you troubleshoot these performance issues and improve your device's speed.


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