Solved: Laptop w/150mbps USB Wireless adapter only runs at 54mbps

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GaelicGal

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Dec 26, 2009
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(Boy am I glad you advised to run your sysinfo, it reminded me that I uninstalled an antivirus package and forgot to install the new one!)

I have an SMCWBR14S-N4 router, and I'm using a usb wireless adapter that says it supports n, and promises speeds of 150 mbps. My signal strength is excellent, yet my speed is only 54 mbps. This is the only wireless connection on my network, I have 2 PCs connected at 100 mbps, and a Dish DVR connected at who knows what speed.

I've been trying to read questions and answers from others online, and I keep reading that ISP speed plays a role. How does my ISP's speed affect my wireless network's speed? (Plus, I run speedtest.net all the time and my download speed is usually 260 mbps.)

But my question is simply why is my speed so low and what can I do about it?

Tech Support Guy System Info Utility version 1.0.0.2
OS Version: Microsoft Windows XP Professional, Service Pack 3, 32 bit
Processor: AMD Turion(tm) 64 Mobile Technology ML-34, x86 Family 15 Model 36 Stepping 2
Processor Count: 1
RAM: 2046 Mb
Graphics Card: ATI MOBILITY RADEON XPRESS 200, 128 Mb
Hard Drives: C: Total - 62251 MB, Free - 1670 MB; D: Total - 13003 MB, Free - 965 MB;
Motherboard: Hewlett-Packard, 309B
Antivirus: None
 

TerryNet

Terry
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Make sure you have the latest driver from the adapter manufacturer's web site?

To what is the router's Wireless Mode set?

Please attach a screen shot of the Networks page (don't collapse the Radar, Connection or Signal History) of the Xirrus Wi-Fi Inspector. If you need help with that see TSG Posting a Screenshot. FWIW to take screen shots with Windows 8 or 7 or Vista I prefer to use the built-in Snipping Tool.
 

TerryNet

Terry
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Messages
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The screen shot looks good. There's a little glitch in the signal strength about 10 seconds before the snapshot, but doesn't look serious.

It appears that the Wireless Mode is 'n' or 'n & g', but you should still double check that if you haven't already.

Did you make sure you have the latest correct driver?

Try without encryption to see if that makes a difference. If it does then try WPA-PSK encryption.
 

GaelicGal

Thread Starter
Joined
Dec 26, 2009
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10
I bought the router in 2010, and it was the correct firmware as of then. I've never gotten it to work, but I'm on disability, and have more pressing problems, so I'm just getting around to it now.

The network mode was set to 11g/n mixed, so I changed it to just n, and now I can't access the network on that PC :( Does that mean my adapter isn't functioning?
 

TerryNet

Terry
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Messages
80,770
It probably means it is only functioning with 802.11g. Did you make sure you have the latest driver installed? What is the brand and model of the adapter?
 

GaelicGal

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Joined
Dec 26, 2009
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10
cheapass brand, I'm going to go back through my Amazon records and see. I used the driver from the mini CD, and Windows said it was the latest when I asked to update it. I have 2 new theories though.

1) Earlier I had noticed that the adapter had a setting called Adhoc 802.11n and it was disabled, so I enabled it. But googling suggests that some routers may not accept that setting.

2) I'm using Network Magic, which is no longer supported. When I went to check the adapter's Properties, it says it's using Pure Networks Device Discovery Driver and Pure Networks Wireless Driver. It discovers my network, so the first one probably doesn't matter, but I'll bet you dollars to donuts their wireless driver came out pre n.

I hate to uninstall it because I paid "good money" for it, and I really don't know how to mess around with my network without it. I'm on a lot of pain meds, and teaching this old dog new tricks wouldn't be prudent at this juncture. I'm going to try to google to see what I can find out about that Pure Networks Wireless Driver, and if I can't find out, I'll have to bite the bullet and uninstall it. Have I set a record for the number of trite phrases in one forum reply yet? (Oh, and I dragged a long cord over to the laptop and changed the Wireless Network setting back to g/n, and I'm hooked up wirelessly again at 54mbps.)
 

GaelicGal

Thread Starter
Joined
Dec 26, 2009
Messages
10
I changed the security and now it's 65. That's going to have to do it for now, I think I broke my brain. Thank you for your help.
 

GaelicGal

Thread Starter
Joined
Dec 26, 2009
Messages
10
I tried one more thing (well, two more) before I gave up. I did that channel bonding thing and changed the setting from 20 to 20/40, and I switched back to 802.11n only. 135!!!!!
 
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