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Internet Cataclysm

Discussion in 'Web & Email' started by Necrodread, Apr 4, 2010.

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  1. Necrodread

    Necrodread Thread Starter

    Apr 4, 2010
    Greetings all.

    Before I go into the many, lengthy details of my current networking issue, let me sum up my problem in one sentence: for the past two weeks, a single PC on my network of seven Internet-capable devices has suddenly and continuously experienced broadband Internet speeds decreased to such low values that browsing of the Internet has been, practically, impossible.

    As mentioned, the problem began approximately two weeks ago. There was absolutely NO activity performed on the afflicted PC within three days of the start of the problem, outside of typical Internet browsing (strictly to sites which I have visited previously). As I am the only user of the PC, I can assuredly state that no software was either installed, removed, nor altered within three days before the start of the problem. During the course of the three days preceding the onset of the problem, all Internet activity on the affected PC was standard and regular, and the behavior of such activity showed no signs of a decrease in performance. However, approximately one week before the problem began, I had (in an attempt to fix my PlayStation 3's sudden, mysterious, month-long inability to connect to the Internet via Wi-Fi) edited several settings within my router's browser-based menu page. These settings, suggested to me by several Internet contributors who claimed to be professional network analysts and technicians, were as follows: assign my PlayStation 3 a static IP address; setup a DMZ server and assign it the same IP address as the PlayStation 3's new static IP address; set my MTU to 1500 (this did not need to be changed, as it was already set to a value of 1500); and forward approximately one dozen given ports. After applying these settings and resetting all of my network devices and computers, none of these changes resolved my PlayStation 3's connectivity issue. As I did not see any negatives from them, however, I simply kept the settings the way I had altered them.

    Due to the fact that immediately following these changes, and for a full week afterwards, I experienced not a single change, positive or negative, in my PC's network and/or Internet performance, I do not believe that these was the causes of my current dilemma. However, after several days of fighting and troubleshooting the problem, I decided to reverse all of the aforementioned changes to my router's settings: this solved nothing.

    The basic problem I am experiencing is a dramatic decrease in speed of my broadband Internet connection on a single computer on my network. While pages once took a matter of milliseconds to entirely load on my PC (using the Safari 4.0 web browser), for the past two weeks they have taken in excess of a minute. In addition, the speed is generally not the biggest issue. Instead, it seems as if I am simply having EXTREMELY unreliable connections to the Internet. For example: if I want to go to YouTube.com, I cannot simply sit and wait minutes at a time until it loads. Instead, the page will never load, and the "Loading..." icon in the browser will eternally display. The page will NEVER load. To fix tis, I must hit F5 (refresh) continuously until the page will load partially. At this point, a few more F5 hits should load the majority of the page, usually excluding a few images or Java/Flash apps. However, the "Loading..." icon will still display, unless I left-click on it to dismiss it. I must follow this procedure for each and every action within my browser which requires data to be retrieved from the Internet. Not only when I attempt to load a new page, but also when I click a button/link within a page (for example: when I go to submit this thread, or preview it, or add an emoticon, or change the theme of the page from "Classic Blue" to a different color using the drop-down menu at the bottom-left of the Tech-Guy page).

    However, the strangest aspect, in my opinion, of this problem is that certain new, never-before-visited, non-cached pages will load lightning fast, but only very rarely. Also, they tend to be from the same domain. In other words, if a link to a Wikipedia page loads quickly, that generally means that any and all pages associated with Wikipedia.com will load quickly on my PC, with minimal refreshing required. This is VERY uncommon, however. Most websites require frequent and numerous F5 hits to load even partially. Also, some web sites will never load, ever, even if accessed on separate days, and after a full system reboot. In addition, ALL programs requiring an Internet connection are affected. Browsing the Internet is nearly impossible; online gaming is impossible; downloading program updates is impossible; downloading any files from the Internet exceeding a size of a few megs (mb) is impossible.

    The most vital pieces of information concerning this problem are as follows. The two other hard-wired PCs connected to my network, as well as my PlayStation 3 when it is hard-wired, have not experienced any Internet connectivity issues in the past month, at least. My HDTV, E-Book, and BlackBerry Curve have all maintained perfect wireless Internet connections for the past month, at least. A separate laptop (not owned by me) was brought into my bedroom (the location of the afflicted PC) and plugged into my broadband Internet wall-jack: it was able to connect instantly, and could surf the Internet effortlessly, with no problems. I connected my PC to the broadband Internet wall-jack in a separate bedroom of my house, which is normally used by one of the other two, functioning, hard-wired PCs, via an extra-long CAT-5 ethernet cable: it experienced the exact same problems as it has been for the past two weeks, with no signs of improvement whatsoever. After analyzing all of these results, I have concluded that the problem exists not within my router, modem, wall-jack, ethernet cable, nor ISP, but rather inside my computer itself.

    I have spent in excess of forty (40) hours over the past five days troubleshooting my current problem, and have not improved my situation in even the slightest degree. I have read nearly every other similar case which I could possibly find through Google, and certainly every similar case which exists on Tech-Guy.com. Some people found answers. Many, however, never found a solution. The following is a list of ALL of the methods for fixing my problem which I have already performed:

    Reboot my PC
    Unplug and re-plug my CAT-5 ethernet cable into my PC
    Unplug and re-plug my CAT-5 ethernet cable into my wall-jack, which connects to my router
    Power-reset my router
    Power-reset my cable modem
    Close any and all non-critical processes running in the task manager
    Reset my router's settings to their defaults
    Run an updated anti-spyware scan using the latest version of SpyBot S&D (returned with one result, which I deleted/fixed)
    Run a full, updated anti-virus scan on my entire PC using the latest version of AVG (returned with no results)
    Disable my software firewall, ZoneAlarm
    Disable AVG
    Disable ZoneAlarm and AVG simultaneously
    Assign a static IP address to my PC
    Assign a static IP address to my PC and assign it as a DMZ server
    Register at OpenDNS.com and assign the primary and secondary DNS server IPs which it provides to my router as its primary and secondary DNS servers
    Run Disk Defragmenter
    Run Disk Cleanup
    Download CCleaner, and perform a full Windows registry clean
    Eject all of the disks from my CD and DVD drives
    Free up over 15% of my hard-drive in free space
    Manually delete the entire Temporary Internet Files folder within C:\Program Files\Documents and Settings\etc.
    Replace my PC's CAT-5 original ethernet cable with a newer, shorter one
    Replace my PC's CAT-5 original ethernet cable with an older, longer one
    Access the Internet from Safari 4.0
    Access the Internet from Google Chrome
    Access the Internet from Internet Explorer
    Visit Speedtest.com, and run their free Internet connection speed-test (I could not even run the test, because the page would not fully load, and I continually received an error stating that it could not complete the test)
    Download my network card's latest drivers
    Download the latest Windows XP service pack
    Roll PC back to a previous system restore point from before the onset of the problem
    Run PC in safe-mode
    Kick PC
    Physically pick up PC and shake it, in the hopes of dislodging a misaligned network card​

    I am 17 years old. I have been on spring break for the past week. I must return to school this Monday. Once that happens, I will have very little time (due to school and homework) to troubleshoot this problem any further. I MUST have an Internet connection, and I must have it as soon as possible.

    To anyone who has stuck with it and suffered through this entire, terribly-lengthy post...I thank you dearly, and even if you do not have a possibly solution, PLEASE post a reply simply acknowledging that you have read my problem. It will aid in reviving a fraction of my sanity.

    At this point, I am open to any and all suggestions, no matter how ridiculous, time-consuming, and/or complex they may be. However, the final fix I will attempt is a full formatting of my hard-drives (well, not a full format...but a system restore back to factory defaults using the system restore CD which Dell provided me with), so if you suggest that to me, please understand that I will not attempt that until all other hope is lost. Also, my full PC specs are listed within my profile. In addition, I am capable of posting a HijackThis log if anyone feels that it is necessary.

    Once again, I thank you, and pray to God that someone will find the answer to this terribly horrific technological apocalypse.
    Thanks a million,

    P.S. Loading this page took me approximately 30 minutes.
  2. Necrodread

    Necrodread Thread Starter

    Apr 4, 2010
    Sorry, didn't know that new members' profiles are partially hidden. Here are my computer's specs:

    Dell Dimension 3000 desktop PC
    3.0ghz single-core Intel Pentium 4 processor w/ hyperthreading technology
    512mb of RAM
    nVidia GeForce FX 5500 256mb video card
    Windows XP Home Edition (2002 Version)
    NetGear 54mbps WGR614 v6 router
    Earthlink (BrightHouse) high-speed, broadband, cable ISP
  3. Necrodread

    Necrodread Thread Starter

    Apr 4, 2010
    I really need some help with this problem...I am entirely out of ideas, besides replacing my entire PC. I am desperate. Please respond, anyone, with anything.

    Thank you.
  4. buddyclm


    Oct 28, 2009
    when you are in safe mode, is the internet still extremely slow or is it more of a normal speed?
  5. TerryNet

    TerryNet Moderator

    Mar 23, 2005
    First Name:
    Please excuse my carelessness if you've already tried and I missed it ...

    In Device Manager right click on your ethernet adapter - Properties - Advanced tab. Assuming there is a 'speed & duplex' property try some other settings, such as 100 Mbps full duplex and 10 Mbps full duplex.

    Also run these repairs ...

    (From a JohnWill post)

    TCP/IP stack repair options for use with Windows XP with SP2 or SP3.

    Start, Run, CMD, OK to open a command prompt.

    Reset WINSOCK entries to installation defaults: netsh winsock reset catalog

    Reset TCP/IP stack to installation defaults. netsh int ip reset reset.log

    Reboot the machine.
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