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Solved: Slow-ish transfer speeds over network

Discussion in 'Networking' started by BigTobster, May 8, 2014.

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  1. BigTobster

    BigTobster Thread Starter

    Feb 26, 2011

    I am transferring some files over my network using the Python SimpleHTTPServer on a Xubuntu box.

    python -m SimpleHTTPServer
    The server is a mediocre, 4-5 year old machine AKA David. I don't have the exact specs to hand but it was bargain bucket in 2009

    The client is a big powerful monster of a machine. Big games rig. AKA Goliath.

    The router has a theoretical transfer speed of 300Mb/s. It's a TP-Link TL-WR841N.

    My actual non-concurrent download speed is ~ 4Mb/s.

    This isn't really my area and I was wondering if anyone can explain why this is? All connections are via Ethernet cable. David is connected via Ethernet. Goliath is connected via Ethernet to a Powerline Adapter which in turn is Ethernet connected. Over wireless, I am getting ~1.5Mb/s.

    I'm not expecting the full theoretical maximum but surely better than 4Mb/s? Is there anyway to improve this? Why am I getting such a slow connection? I'm interested in the academic side of things here as well as the technical solution (if any) :)

    My theory is that my rubbish-y old network card is throttling. Possible?

  2. Oddba11


    May 12, 2011
    First Name:
    Several things here. First, the NIC(s) used can affect the speed, even the driver version can have an affect. Second, how each NIC is connected and configured (ie: 10half, 10Full, 100half, 100Full, etc.).

    Verify the configuration end to end. Also, the router itself, and in this configuration, the powerline adapter can/are likely further reducing the speed.

    Try moving everything to the same room and test. ie: David > short ethernet > router > short ethernet > Goliath

    That will give you the best possible results with your current hardware (assuming there aren't any configuration issues).
  3. BigTobster

    BigTobster Thread Starter

    Feb 26, 2011
    Thanks for the response.

    I did as you suggested and then worked backwards.

    The powerline adapter was knocking about 20% throughput off the connection. On a straight through was getting only a few MB/s from the routers theoretical maximum :D

    On Wireless, the connection was getting battered. Over halved by moving up stairs. Not exactly surprising but still interesting.

    A fun exercise is to use wget on a big file and then run around the house with your laptop and watch what happens :)

    Working backwards I then ironed out a few issues. Mostly, my issues concerned me misreading MB/s and Mbps :)
    Human failure. The most common and troublesome computer fault!

    Interesting to know about the NIC stuff. Thanks for that.

    I'm solved :)
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