I’ve recently been battling Comcast. They tell me I’m paying for 6 Mb/s downstream speeds, when Broadband Reports tells me I only have 2-3Mb/s. I would call their tech support, they would run me through the whole “disconnect everything from your modem (has that ever worked for them?), wait 30 seconds, and reconnect the modem again.” And then there’s the classic, “connect your computer directly to the modem, rather than through the router, then to the modem.” It always ends up with a technician coming out to my house, testing the line, telling me I’m getting what everyone in my neighborhood is getting, and there’s nothing I can do about it.
Well, I went through that process again recently after giving up for a few months, figuring maybe someone else would have a solution finally. After 2 or 3 sessions of tech support, I finally convinced them to send out a technician *again*. The first technician called my cell 2 times in a row (my cell phone literally showed him calling less than a minute apart), and said he had called twice and it was their policy after 2 calls to cancel the service call. I called furiously (being sent on a wild goose chase to even speak with the guy’s manager, who I never was able to talk to and had to leave a message), and was forced to reschedule for several days later. Well, this time it was my fault and I was unavailable when the technician called. So we rescheduled again.
Today, the technician finally came and we were both available. When he got here, I showed him the broadband reports speedtest (I think this was probably the first time he had seen it, as he was taking notes as I showed him), and he agreed that it was too slow. All this as he ooh’d and aah’d over my Windows Vista install and custom-built computer. Well, I suggested we disconnect the modem from the router and connect directly to the modem. This time we got up to 4 Mb/s. He grinned and said that was it, that no one in this neighborhood could get the full 6 Mb/s.
So I started to search around the internet looking for solutions as to how I can speed up the connection between the router and the modem so I would still get at least the speeds we got when we disconnected it from the router. Here’s where I think I finally found a solution!
I found an article at http://www.speedguide.net/read_articles.php?id=1885, which suggested moving the router away from the modem, and that line noise can cause significant slowdowns. I didn’t really believe this would work, but I decided to try it.
So I moved everything apart from each other. I moved my router up to the highest level I could, tucked away between some floorboards on the level above. I then moved my cable modem 2-levels down, also tucked between 2 wall joints. I then moved my VOIP box away from all the rest. I went and tested the speakeasy.net connection on Broadband Reports. What do you know? All the sudden I was showing 6.6 Mb/s down with 360 Mb/s up! I now officially get more than I’m paying for!
So, rule of thumb is if you’re having speed issues, one of the first things you should try is move all your equipment away from each other. I think Comcast would have a lot more customers if they actually recommended useful things like this.