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Wireless N Connection Constantly Drops To 5.5 Mbps


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#1 BlaineBug

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 01:48 PM

I have been chasing an issue here for a couple of months. To be honest, I did not really recognize it prior to the Windows 10 Creator's update, but I can't verify this for sure. I know a lot of folks had networking problems after the Creator's update. I'm not sure if my issue pertains to that or if it is a coincidence.

I am running a Windows 10 Pro machine with a Broadcom BCM43142 802.11 bgn Wi-Fi Adapter. I am also using a Linksys E1200 Wireless N router which is updated to the latest firmware.  I have a MAC Address filter for only allowing certain wireless devices to connect and also use WPA2-Personal security on top of that for added security.

My internet speeds in all actuality are somewhere around 50 Mbps from Comcast cable.

The problem I am having is that my network connectivity speed will consistently drop down to 5.5 Mbps, verified through Window's Control Panel. This is not using a speed test online through my browser, but rather viewing the WiFi status window through Network and Sharing in control panel. Due to this issue, I am always checking. I can tell when it drops because streaming videos will stop/start and web pages will take longer to load.

 

I have unchecked that Windows can set my Broadcom WiFi card to sleep to save power, and I have tried messing around with the advanced settings in device manager for the Broadcom WiFi card.

 

I first started resetting my Linksys E1200 WiFi router, which would correct the problem.  I was also tweaking with the settings, changing the channel number, or just leaving it on AUTO.  That really makes no difference.  The Linksys E1200 is also set to 20/40 mhz auto, but seems to settle on 20 mhz in the Linksys system status.  I also have my Linksys E1200 set to N Only so that it is not in mixed mode.

 

However, recently I am not so sure that the problem necessarily lies with the Linksys router.  I can disconnect/reconnect my Desktop computer from the network, and/or disable/enable the WiFi card and the speeds will increase back up to 72 Mbps.  In the past I did see this connection speed maxing out at 150 Mbps but I have not seen that speed in more than a few weeks now.

 

Basically, once the speed drops to 5.5 Mbps it will not go back up unless I disconnect and reconnect to the network.

 

In my home, I pretty much only have 7 devices connected to the network via WiFi.  This includes my desktop computer, cell phone, WiFi thermostat, and 4 WiFi security cameras.  Unfortunately, nothing is connected to the router via Ethernet cable due to the layout of the home and the location of the WiFi devices.

Is my Router dying or is it something with my Broadcom WiFi card?  I was thinking about upgrading to a dual-band router, maybe even with Wireless AC, but I wasn't sure if that would fix the problem.  Obviously, the dual band network with 5 Ghz connectivity might benefit me but Wireless AC wouldn't since I do not have any Wireless AC compatible devices at the moment.

Please let me know what you think is going on.  It is very frustrating, as I have to disconnect/reconnect VERY often.  It has almost become second nature for me when I am using my desktop computer.

 

PS, I just noticed that my desktop is currently connected at 5.5 Mbps.  inSSIDer Home is currently giving me a link score of 100!  That is the highest I have ever seen it.  Normally it is around a score of 80!  inSSIDer also says that my max rate should be 144 Mbps!  -52 dBm signal, no co-channels and no overlapping channels either.


Edited by BlaineBug, 26 February 2018 - 01:56 PM.


#2 BlaineBug

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 02:27 PM

Here's something else I just noticed.  I was watching a youtube video and it briefly stopped so I checked my connection status in control panel.  I was connected at 144 Mbps but the signal strength was NADA.  I wonder if it attempted to switch over to 40 Mhz or something.

Either way, it went back down to 72 Mbps with full signal strength bars.

Doesn't explain the drop to 5.5 Mbps which will be coming eventually.



#3 BlaineBug

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Posted 02 March 2018 - 03:17 PM

Well, I was just streaming a YouTube video and my connectivity dropped from 72 Mbps to 5.5 Mbps.  I took some screenshots.  2 screenshots with bad connectivity and 2 screenshots with good connectivity.
 
The amount of wireless networks picked up does vary.  In one screenshot there are 3 networks, in another screenshot there are 8 networks, and then I saw around 18 or so (just an estimate) but they dropped off before I was able to take a screenshot.
 
At any one time, there was only one overlapping network, but that comes and goes.
 
I was able to "revive" the network by disabling and enabling the network card.  I took the "GOOD" screenshots AFTER taking the "BAD" screenshots.
 
I should note, I ran a speedtest on my phone while my desktop computer was having issues, and this issue does NOT affect all devices on the network.  I took a speed test on my phone sitting at my desk where my desktop computer is and then another speed test within a few feet of my wireless router and it was relatively unchanged, around 30 Mbps during both tests!
 
What do you make of this?  Let me know if you require any additional info!  Thanks.

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#4 sepiashimmer

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Posted 02 July 2018 - 04:44 AM

This probably an issue with your WiFi adapter.

#5 BlaineBug

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Posted 02 July 2018 - 06:06 AM

Ultimately, I solved the issue by buying a TP-Link Archer USB WiFi Adapter.  Also, two weeks ago, I bought a new Linksys dual band router.

 

I am getting a rock solid 150 Mbps connection on my system with 5.0 Ghz network, and I am connecting to Comcast at about 109 Mbps with 100 Mbps service.

 

The odd thing is, my TP-Link USB WiFi Adapter seems to be rock steady at 150 Mbps.

 

Placing my old Toshiba laptop in the same spot, the adapter will report varying connection speeds between 100 Mbps and 200 Mbps on the same 5.0 Ghz network.

 

What gives?  My desktop won't go above 150 Mbps but never goes below, either.  Doesn't fluctuate at all.


Edited by BlaineBug, 02 July 2018 - 06:07 AM.