how to know where the problem is beyond passing a simple speed test

You are at home quietly watching your favorite series on Netflix, checking the news on YouTube, reading your favorites list on Spotify or just playing an online game and suddenly everything stops. The video stops playing, the music stops, and the game is unresponsive.

What happened ? Internet not working? Has the connection disappeared, is it the neighbors’ WiFi interfering, is it my fault or the operator’s fault? What can I do ? Don’t worry, to help you figure out where the problem is coming from, we’ll go through a series of steps and tips before you pick up the phone and angrily call your ISP.

First signs of a problem

If we have experienced any of the aforementioned inconvenience of total or partial loss of access to online services, it is easy to deduce that there is something wrong with our connection. But sometimes issues can manifest in more subtle ways, making it difficult even for us to realize that something is wrong until it’s too late.

There are some signs that can help us suspect that our connection is not working the way it should. For example, web pages take longer to load than usual, messages and emails stay in the outbox for a long time, connection comes and goes, games ping or lag high regardless. either the server we connect to, the videos are choppy, if we have on-demand TV service, the channels take a long time to change, smart TV apps are slower than normal, etc.

Speed ​​tests in general are only used to find out if the external connection to the Internet is working well, not the local network.

In these cases, we could think of opting directly to access an online speed test to check the functioning of our connection, but in general these are tools that only serve to know if the external connection with the server is working correctly. and they won’t. give us information on where the problem really is, especially if the point of failure is inside the house.

Therefore, in order to try to fix the failure, the first thing we need to do is limit the problem: is it on the internal home network or is it my carrier’s business?

This is my problem: the local home network is not working well

Often times when the connection fails we tend to immediately think that the problem is with our ISP or service provider, bad routers abandoning us, or a line cut, when the error is most likely in the network. internal to the house.

This is generally easy and immediate to check first by approaching the router and observing if its operation seems correct (LEDs on and no error signals or lack of connection with the operator) and if not proceed with the classic restart. which fixes many performance issues and losses. At this point, it is better to do the simple check to enter the router configuration menu to see if the connection between the different devices and the router is correct.

To do this, we can open the web browser and type directly into the address bar the IP address of the router we have installed at home, which will usually be something like 192.168.1.1 or similar (if not not that, we have to look in the instruction manual for that of our specific model). If all goes well, we will enter the router menu, which means that there is a connection between it and the device used to enter the address.

Ping command from the Windows console

It is also convenient to check the timeout of this connection with the classic ping command. For this we can use a mobile terminal with a dedicated application (like Ping Analyzer) or even simpler if we have a PC at home, type in the terminal or the command prompt (in Windows we have to search to run > cmd) the address of the router and see if there is communication between the two and the response time which should be less than 1 or 2ms, as can be seen in the example image:

If this test indicates that there are lost packets or a very high response time, then we probably have a problem in the internal link of the network we are using, either because of a lack of coverage or because of ” a WiFi or Powerline network extender or adapter has stopped working, due to excessive saturation of requests to the router (if there are other users at home using the network to the maximum) or due to ‘saturation of the WiFi spectrum. How can I check it?

Devolo Cockpit application for PLC

If we have WiFi extension cords and Powerline adapters, the first thing to do is to go and see if there is an error indicator and, even if there is none, it is advisable to restart them. by disconnecting and reconnecting them. We can also, if available, use the state control applications (each manufacturer generally provides its own) which will tell us if the WiFi or Powerline network has been correctly established, the speeds achieved and if all the links can communicate with the rest .

A frequent cause of breakdowns is generally the saturation of the WiFi network, hence the importance of choosing the right channel.

As for the WiFi channel, it is very common for it to be saturated by neighbors’ connections, reducing the speed and causing connection failures or even cuts.

To solve or minimize the problem, we can follow this tutorial in which we have explained how to correctly choose the network channel and observe the performance losses and the speed and stability benefits if we find a poorly saturated channel.

Channel selection in a WiFi network

Finally, if we have such problems and frequent blackouts, it is also advisable to use an application that monitors network usage and measures connection speed in real time, like Networx which is free. It will give us additional information about the status and operation of our connection and even generate logs that can be useful in identifying the problem.

NetWorx for Windows

It’s my operator’s fault: Internet access is not working well

If after checking the internal home network, the status of the router and the various network accessories such as adapters and extension cords everything seems to be working fine, then the fault is probably our operator and we will not be able to fix it. a lot.

The first thing we have to take into account before we run like crazy to report to technical service is whether it is a total error in all the services offered by the ISP (e.g. IP telephony and on-demand TV) or only internet access, so we will limit the problem and give clues so that they can investigate the error, because if everything works except the internet, we rule out, for example, a cable failure in fiber or copper that reaches our homes.

Speed ​​test

It is also possible that the cut is not complete and that we only have a reduction in speed, which we can verify by passing a speed test. In these cases, the problem is usually temporary due to a change or saturation which often resolves itself.

If after all this the situation persists, we will have no choice but to contact the operator and make the problem known, in which case it should be clearly explained what the fault is and comment, if we l ‘We have previously checked the state of the router and the other services contracted so that they do not make us dizzy and the solution is accelerated.

Pictures | Compare Fiber

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