CAble Modem/Speed

CAble Modem/Speed

Post by RGFuIF » Fri, 15 Aug 2008 11:26:01

I recently upgaded my service to a 20 Mbps cable speed through my provider.
Realizing my old modem was only DOCSIS 1.0 compatible, I went out and got a
new Motorola SB5101 modem than can handle DOCSIS 2.0 and upstream speeds of
30 Mbps. I can only seem to get a maximum speed of 7.2 Mbps. The cable
company says an acceptable level should be around 12 Mbps, and after calls to
their tech support line they cannot seem to figure out why I can't connect at
a minimum 12 Mbps. They said the connection is excellent with no packet loss.
I do have a router, but when I hook the cable modem directly to the computer
it gives me the same max speed of 7.2 Mbps. I also turned off Zonealarm, my
Avast Antivirus, Winpatrol, Windows Defender, and two other things that were
running in my taskbar, with no changes. I was wondering if anyone had any
ideas what I can do or settings to change to get me to the higher speed?

I am running Windows XP SP3, Pentium 4 2.8 Ghz, 1 GB of RAM, and a 128MB
Nvidia 6600GT video card. Any help is appreciated. Thank you.

CAble Modem/Speed

Post by Big_A » Fri, 15 Aug 2008 11:30:54

What are you using to test speed?


CAble Modem/Speed

Post by RGFuIF » Fri, 15 Aug 2008 11:38:00

I used a couple sites, but the main one I use is the cable company's own
speedtest site, but I've also used and

CAble Modem/Speed

Post by JS » Fri, 15 Aug 2008 11:47:13

See: Your Internet Cable Service may be running at Half Speed


CAble Modem/Speed

Post by Gregg Hil » Fri, 15 Aug 2008 13:20:24

Most older routers only have a 10Mbps WAN port. Check your maximum WAN port
speed rating on the router. Also, what speed is your network card?

Did you mean "downstream" speed of 30Mbps (upstream is from your computer to
the Internet)?

Gregg Hill

CAble Modem/Speed

Post by RGFuIF » Fri, 15 Aug 2008 22:51:02

I was told "upstream" is a different thing that "upload" speed and that my
upstream speed specifically needs to be above 20Mbps to handle the speed.
They said it is different than upload speed. Yes, my router is older and it
says in the manual that I do have a 10 Mbps WAN port (this is a wired
router). I've asked several companies, including my cable company, Linksys
customer service, and other if that specifically mattered and would hinder my
speed. All answered no. It does say in the router manual that while the WAN
speed is limited to 10 Mbps, the LAN ports can run a max speed of 100Mbps. I
dont know (and cant seem to get a straight answer) if the WAN speed does in
fact matter. If so, shouldn't I be able to get close to or at 10 Mbps? Also,
I directly connected the modem to the computer without the router, and I get
the exact same max speed: approx. 7.2Mbps. The netword card says it is a
10/100 network card. How can I check the speed of it? It is an intel one
that came pre-installed on my Dell.

CAble Modem/Speed

Post by Navigato » Sat, 16 Aug 2008 09:29:51

On Wed, 13 Aug 2008 19:26:01 -0700, Dan R

What does this have to do with the OS? Nothing.

Ask elsewhere

CAble Modem/Speed

Post by Gregg Hil » Sun, 17 Aug 2008 15:14:23


Upstream = upload = outbound from your computer to the Internet
Downstream = download = inbound from the Internet to your computer

Six of one, half dozen of the other!

Having a router with a 10Mbps WAN port caps all upstream/upload or
downstream/download speeds to a maximum of 10Mbps, as it is the weakest link
in the chain between your computer and the Internet via your provider.
Whoever told you otherwise was wrong, if indeed they were referring to
**20** Mbps and not **2** Mbps speed. You CANNOT push 20Mbps through a
10Mbps connection, period! It would be the same as trying to shove a 20 foot
diameter steel ball through a pipe that starts out at 30 foot diameter
(30Mbps at the cable company) but has been hammered down to 10 foot diameter
in the middle of the pipe (your router's 10Mbps WAN port) before it gets to
your 100 foot diameter (100Mbps) router LAN port and laptop network
card...not going to happen...from either end!

You stated that you have tested it with your laptop directly connected, and
if it truly has a 10/100 card that is connecting at 100Mbps, then your
problem lies elsewhere, i.e., between the cable modem and the provider. When
you connect your laptop directly to the cable modem, what is the link speed
listed? It should show connected at 100Mbps. If it does, and if they tell
you that you are paying for 20Mbps speed, then you should get close to that.
I have 10Mbps downstream and 1Mbps upstream, and my actual speeds are about
9.8Mbps down and 940Kbps up. I get almost exactly the speed for which I pay.

Again, upstream or upload speed is from your computer to the Internet (mouse
clicks on a web page, sending an email, uploading a picture to your own web
site or one that provides a picture-sharing service). Downstream or download
speed is from the Internet to your computer. Your mouse clicks on a web page
are upstream/upload packets, while the actual page you see is a
downstream/download packet. Watching a movie or listening to Internet radio
is DOWNstream/DOWNload communication. Think of upstream/upload as OUTbound
packets from you to some site or person, while downstream/download are
INbound packets to your computer. The data sheet for your Motorola SB5101 is
wrong when it states that upstream capacity has anything to do with surfing
speed. The speed from the Internet to you via your cable modem is DOWNstream
or DOWNload speed. When you are browsing, you are downloading web pages, not
uploading them. Browsing speed is mainly dependent upon downstream speed of
the images to your computer. You could have 128Kbs upstream speed and 20Mbps
downstream, and you would be BLAZING fast at browsing.

If they are giving you 20Mbps **upstream** speed, that is **EXTREME** high
speed for UPstream or UPload speed on cable. I do not know any cable company
in the USA that even has that upstream speed. Verizon FIOS has 20Mbps upload
and 20Mbps download speed for $65/month, and 50Mbps down with 20Mbps up for
$145/month. See

A typical offering from Road Runner cable (in the USA) is 6Mbps down and
512Kbps up for about $45/month. They have 10Mbps down and 1Mbps up for

Regarding the router's LAN ports, if you had two computers on the LAN that
had 10/100Mbps cards in them both, they could talk at a max of 100Mbps to
each other, but would s

CAble Modem/Speed

Post by » Tue, 19 Aug 2008 15:58:34

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