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  • Question

    How can I improve my connection speed?

    • Answer
    • The best way to do this is using our broadband speed checker which will measure your current speed and offer tips on how you might improve it. Many speed problems can be solved quickly and easily by you.

      Try these top tips to improve your speed:

      Always use the master phone socket where possible

      A router connected to the master socket in your house will have the strongest broadband signal you can get.

      Ensure all the telephone sockets that you are using are filtered

      Microfilters stop other devices connected to your phone line from conflicting with your broadband signal which can cause slow speeds and disconnections.

      Note: If you have an NTE 2000 master socket it is already pre filtered so additional microfilters are not needed.

      Check your microfilters

      If you’ve had the same microfilters for a while it’s probably a good idea to replace them if your speeds have suddenly dropped significantly.

      Replacements can be purchased from our broadband accessories shop.

      Avoid using long extension cables between your modem/router and the phone socket

      Extension cables will weaken your broadband signal and this can reduce the potential connection speed you will obtain.

      If your computer is not near the phone socket it is preferable to use the short ADSL cable supplied by us and a longer Ethernet cable to connect between the router and the computer as these do not lose signal.

      These can be purchased from our broadband accessories shop.

      Where possible use an Ethernet cable to connect your computer to the router rather than a wireless connection

      Using an Ethernet connection will almost certainly increase the speed that information is sent between the two.

      If you need help to setup an Ethernet connection see our how I set up my router article.

      Check your wireless settings are optimised

      If you choose to use a wireless connection instead of wired please ensure -

      Your wireless network is secured to prevent others accessing it.

      Your router’s wireless channel is set to auto-select to avoid conflicts with other wireless connections. The article how I change the wireless channel will explain how to do this. Simply select your router model and follow the instructions. If you have an option for ‘auto’ or ‘auto select’ in the wireless channel drop down list choose this. If not you can manually select a new channel to see if this removes the interference from your wireless signal.

      Alternatively you might want to consider a Bright Sparks visit to set everything up for you.

      Clear your computer’s cache

      The "cache" keeps a record of web pages that you visit on your computer. This means that these pages then take less time to display when you visit them again as your computer only needs to download new content. The downside is that the cache gets bigger and bigger as time goes on and may actually start to slow your connection. You should therefore clear your cache regularly.

      The article how do I clear my cache will show you how to do this.

      Make sure you have adequate security software and that it’s up to date

      Computers infected with viruses, spyware or adware can really slow down your broadband connection. If you don’t have security software installed on your computer our TalkTalk Super Safe Boost and HomeSafe™ online protection can provide for your security needs and will keep you safe online.

      Disable any Peer to Peer (P2P) file sharing software currently installed on your computer, e.g. bit torrent

      P2P is file sharing software where files are broken up into lots of small pieces of data and distributed out to lots of different computers. These computers then share the pieces they have with other computers who don’t have them, and vice versa, to complete the full file. Your computer is continuously available for others to download your piece of the shared file and this can slow your connection. Disabling this software should increase your speeds.

      It is worth noting that Sky Anytime via a PC acts in the same way as P2P software and can have the same affect.

      Note: If you want to accurately measure your broadband connection speed it is essential that you disable P2P software before testing it.

      Check the speed with just one computer connected to your network

      Remember that the speed of your connection is shared across all the devices you have connected to it. If one computer is downloading using P2P software for example, it will significantly affect the connection speed on the other devices.

      Check the MTU setting in your router

      The MTU, or Maximum Transmission Unit, is a setting on your router which specifies how big a block of data can be sent or received by it. TalkTalk normally recommend an MTU size of 1432.

      Checking the MTU setting on your router is 1432 can improve your browsing speeds.

      Check your own computer and broadband equipment

      A faulty router or a computer not working properly can affect your broadband speeds.

      To rule out a computer related issue connect a single alternative computer to your network and perform a speed test. Please only test with a computer that you know is working well. Alternatively ask a friend if they will do a speed test on your network using their computer. If the speeds are slow on both computers then the issue is not computer related.

      To rule out issues with your router please connect an alternative router, alternative ADSL cable and a new microfilter to your master socket. This test router should be one you know is in good working order. Alternatively take your router, ADSL cable and microfilter to another property and try your equipment on that connection to see if that connection then has slow speeds.

      Still having problems?

      If you are using a TalkTalk router please call 0870 444 1820*. This number is free from your TalkTalk landline.

      If you are using your own router, or the fault is with your computer, please contact your vendor.

    • View Answer at http://help.talktalk.co.uk/app/answers/detail/a_id/1406
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