There are a lot of factors which govern Internet transfer speeds. These
include the type of connection that you have - dial up (only connect when
required) or broadband (connected all the time). Broadband is much faster
than dial up, in some cases over 40x as fast. Secondly, if you do use
broadband then the distance you are away from the telephone exchange is a
factor - the further you are away, the lower speed you are likely to achieve.
Thirdly, again if you are on broadband, most ISPs (Internet Service
Providers) quote a speed in the form 'Upto 4Mb' or similar. It is the word
'Upto' that is important here. Basically this is the maximum theoretical rate
for your connection - your actual rate is going to be somewhat lower. If you
do use broadband, then you need to make sure that you have the filters
installed at EACH of your phone sockets. These separate the broadband signal
from the normal speech traffic on your phone line and prevent them from
interfering with each other. This covers the answers for your end of the
connection. At the other end of the connection other factors come into play.
This includes such things as the day of the week, the time of day and the
location of the server. Although servers (which store the webpages that you
access) are busy all the time, they are busiest during office hours in the
country where they are situated. Sometimes they are so busy that the transfer
rate can plummet compared to other times. Another factor is that sometimes
servers have to close down for maintenance purposes. This means that all
traffic is channelled through the remaining 'mirror' servers which, because
they are having to handle more traffic, are slower than they would normally
be. Sometimes, you can tell when you are using one of these servers because
the address starts 'ww2' instead of 'www'. I suggest that you download and
install 'MySpeed PC Lite Edition' from the link given below and run it a few
times to check the actual speed of your line. If this is satisfactory, then
you will just have to bear with the situation. Sometimes when I download a
file, even though I have a broadband connection, the download speed can be as
low as 40Kbps. At other times, the same file from the same site can download
at a speed of over 300Kbps (Kbps - Kilobits per second. A kilobit is 1000
bits). Sometimes if you navigate away from a slow page and return to it you
can get a quicker connection.
> I have a new Dell Inspiron 530, 2GB memory, 320GB hard drive with vista
> basic. On some sites it takes a long time to download, sometimes up to 5
> mins. Would this be a problem with the computer or with my service provider.
> Computer was installed and set up by a computer tech. Would be very grateful
> for any help.