Internet Speed Tests

Last Updated: 16 October 2017 at 15:03

Internet connection speeds should be tested periodically to identify current connection speeds, and to verify that Internet Service Providers (ISPs) meet contracted service levels.

Speed Test

There are online tools that can measure Internet connection speeds. For example, Speedtest.net can be used to measure the connection ping (latency), upload speed, and download speed.

  • Ping measures the latency of the Internet connection in milliseconds (ms). This is a measure of the speed of a reply from a network device. Faster ping times means the connection is more responsive, which helps tasks like streaming, webcasts, and personal video conferencing.
     
  • Upload Speed measures how fast the connection can send data to others over the Internet measured in megabits per second (Mbps). The ISP upload speed will typically be lower than the download speed. The upload speed is important for meetinghouse tasks such as sending MLS/LCR data to Church headquarters, webcasting (originating broadcast site), and Personal Video Conferencing (send).
     
  • Download Speed measures how fast the connection can receive data from the Internet measured in megabits per second (Mbps). ISPs typically set the download speed to be higher than the upload speed likely due to the greater demand for downloading Internet content. The download speed is important for meetinghouse tasks such as streaming Church media for lessons, webcasting (receiving sites), and Personal Video Conferencing (receive).

 

Actions for Poor Results

There are various reasons a speed test will report a slow Internet connection. The ISP may not be delivering the agreed service level, but it is best to rule out other issues that can affect speed test results before contacting the ISP. The following options below help ensure that speed tests are accurate.

  1. Use a wired LAN connection: Run the speed test from a computer connected to a wired Ethernet connection (instead of to the Wi-Fi) to eliminate the chance of wireless interference.
     
  2. Reduce network traffic: Try running the test when no one else is using the network, since other network traffic will slowdown Internet performance. You can get a general overview of the current usage by logging into technology manager (tm.lds.org) and clicking the Usage Statistics tab. You should also shut down any programs and downloads that are using the Internet connection.
     
  3. Reboot the ISP Modem: Just as computers need to be periodically rebooted to fix system issues and slowdowns, rebooting the ISP modem may help resolve Internet performance issues. You can reboot “power cycle” a modem by simply removing the modem power cable, waiting one minute, and then plugging the power cable back in.
     
  4. Run multiple tests: Run a speed test multiple times to get the best understanding of the connection speed. Speedtest.net will choose the closest test sever by default, but provides an option to choose target servers that are available in the local area. Try running the test on several area servers see if you get similar results (servers that are farther away may produce slower results). You may also want to run tests at different times and on different days to understand whether issues are related to specific times.

If tests continue to report Internet speeds are below the contracted ISP service levels, then please coordinate with the Facility Manager(FM) and contact the ISP to troubleshoot the issue. Inform the ISP the test results and the steps that have already been taken.

 

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