[SOLVED] Why is my internet speed FASTER through a network switch?

Mar 11, 2021
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Why is my internet speed FASTER through a network switch?

Test setup #1 Computer -> CAT6 cable -> Xfinity Gateway = 70mbps…
Test setup #2 Computer -> CAT6 cable -> Gigabit Switch -> CAT6 cable -> Xfinity Gateway = 95mbps

How is this possible?

Same computer, same Xfinity Gateway, same CAT6 cables, same internet speed test website and server (Google default for Chicago)...

Test was repeated multiple times with both setups and results are consistently the same. 25mbps faster using a cheap Netgear gigabit switch inline with my computer.

Any thoughts?
 

Eximo

Titan
Ambassador
Xfinity tends to over provision. You can have a 75Mbit connection and see bursts to 90Mbit for minutes at a time. They do this to make sure people see numbers higher than they are paying for. Prevents calls.

I am curious on the outcome of this one. I always buy my own modems and don't get to experience the Xfinity routers and features.

Maybe a device limit? And the switch prevents it from seeing devices properly? (That doesn't sound good either, should still know where it is coming from)
 

Eximo

Titan
Ambassador
I would guess the Xfinity Gateway might be broadcasting everything down the line, the switch is likely filtering out traffic not meant for your computer and freeing up tx/rx lines for more bandwidth.

You could have some fun with this, install something like Fiddler would let you look at the traffic on both configurations and you could compare.
 

kanewolf

Titan
Moderator
I would guess the Xfinity Gateway might be broadcasting everything down the line, the switch is likely filtering out traffic not meant for your computer and freeing up tx/rx lines for more bandwidth.

You could have some fun with this, install something like Fiddler would let you look at the traffic on both configurations and you could compare.
I don't believe this explanation. LAN ports on a router are the equivalent of a built-in switch.

Is 95Mbit the speed you are paying for? Because that performance is usually an indication of something running at 100Mbit link speed.
Are any of these "CAT6 cables" flat cables? If so that could be the problem.
 
Reactions: Krotow
Mar 11, 2021
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No flat cables, brand new high quality shielded 24AWG straight CAT6 cables. One of the cables is actually 50ft long, I was testing it before I ran it through the attic to make sure there were no problems with it, that's the only reason I discovered this odd behavior in the first place haha.

I'm honestly not sure what speeds I'm paying for, I was originally comparing to WIFI (from the same Xfinity Gateway) just to see how much faster the LAN connection was going to be for the application I was setting up in my house.

WIFI was 26mbps downstream 10 feet from the Gateway. That's when I grabbed the long cable, short cable and network switch and noticed the speed increase when connecting the switch vs. the cable direct to the computer.
 

kanewolf

Titan
Moderator
No flat cables, brand new high quality shielded 24AWG straight CAT6 cables. One of the cables is actually 50ft long, I was testing it before I ran it through the attic to make sure there were no problems with it, that's the only reason I discovered this odd behavior in the first place haha.

I'm honestly not sure what speeds I'm paying for, I was originally comparing to WIFI (from the same Xfinity Gateway) just to see how much faster the LAN connection was going to be for the application I was setting up in my house.

WIFI was 26mbps downstream 10 feet from the Gateway. That's when I grabbed the long cable, short cable and network switch and noticed the speed increase when connecting the switch vs. the cable direct to the computer.
First thing is to determine if your 95Mbit is reasonable for your plan. If you are paying for 100Mbit, then 95Mbit is OK. If you are paying for 400Mbit and getting 95, then you need to look for a 100Mbit problem.
 
Reactions: Krotow

Eximo

Titan
Ambassador
Xfinity tends to over provision. You can have a 75Mbit connection and see bursts to 90Mbit for minutes at a time. They do this to make sure people see numbers higher than they are paying for. Prevents calls.

I am curious on the outcome of this one. I always buy my own modems and don't get to experience the Xfinity routers and features.

Maybe a device limit? And the switch prevents it from seeing devices properly? (That doesn't sound good either, should still know where it is coming from)
 
Mar 11, 2021
3
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Hmm... I can see that this has sparked interest in a couple people at least. Honestly I did not care what my speeds were, always seems plenty fast to me. But I guess I should find out what my plan provides to see if it relates to my original question of how it can get faster speed through the network switch. I'll update when I locate that information.
 

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