Linksys WRT1900AC slow internet speed
Here is a strange problem. Comcast recently doubled my internet speed according to an insert in my bill. I have performance internet which means I should be getting 25Mbps download speeds. Doubled I will get 50Mbps! This is nice. I follow the instructions to power cycle the modem, then the router and blow off rebooting the PC since I know that is not needed. A quick speed test and I’m getting a whopping 16Mbps download?
Time to play the fun tech support chat game with Comcast. We go through the standard stuff of power cycling the modem and router. He even asks if the modem is connected to a surge suppressor or extension cord (wtf?). Finally he asks if I can connect directly to the modem and run a speed test. So I grab a laptop and plug into the modem, but I can’t get an IP address no matter what I do (different cable, release, renew, etc…). Finally I connect the modem to the router and plug the laptop into the router and run the test. Everything is right next to each other so it’s essentially the same as plugging into the modem. Same 16Mbps download speed. They schedule a tech to come out.
The tech comes out and figures it’s a modem problem since he’s seen plenty of them in this area. He sees the modem (surfboard 6120) and says it’s probably not the modem. He checks signal on the cable and that is good. He then goes and gets a laptop from his van and comes back. I explain that I tried that and couldn’t get an IP address. He explains that with that modem you have to power cycle it whenever you change what is plugged into it. That’s a good bit of info I should have been told earlier. Anyway, he proceeds to do a speed test with his laptop plugged directly into the modem and gets 60Mbps! Ok. He then plugs the modem into the router, power cycles the modem and connects his laptop into the router. Speed check comes up with 16Mbps. Bad router he says. I agree and he is on his way while I find the box and receipt for the $300 router I just bought a few months ago.
Before going through the pain of returning the router I decide to do a quick google search and I find this: https://community.linksys.com/t5/Wireless-Routers/WRT1900AC-Slowing-down-internet-drastically-Advanced/td-p/878775
I had turned on Media Prioritization for my computer because I kept getting disconnects on a game I was playing and figured it might help. I turned off Media Prioritization and ran a speed test. 60Mbps download speed!
So at first I figured it was a bug in the firmware. Then I noticed there was a settings link to the right of the on/off button. I clicked it and saw an entry labeled Downstream Bandwidth and it was set at 16286 Kbps. I changed it to 1000000Kbps and turned Media Prioritization back on. 60Mbps download speed! I find it very odd that by default the router is set to limit downstream bandwidth to 16Mbps once you enable Media Prioritization. I’m sure someone just came up with a number figuring that would be plenty fast enough.