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Why does downloading [& uploading?] torrents slow browsing?


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My web surfing is VERY slow when i'm downloading torrents in the background. Admittedly i've used only one ISP so it could be them, but i use utorrent's encryption so theoretically it can't be them punshing me by "shaping my bandwidth"]. Also i've used different torrent clients, firewalls, browsers [even Opera's internal torrent client], and even different computers.

And still my surfing is on molasses waves! I just tried a bandwidth test site: i got a much faster ping [50ms instead of normal 300] and it took 5 minutes for both down and up tests to start. When they finally did, they gave me normal [5mb cable connection] numbers.

Anybody know what's happening?

Ps: my port isn't forwarding: i get the yellow triangle. But i think it's a wider problem than just this since i've gotten it pre-uTorrent.

More to the point: how do i treat it!??

I'm not another newbie whining about slow torrenting. It's the simultaneous slowed non-torrent internet browsing that's driving me nuts.

Skeleton walks into a bar, orders a beer and a mop.

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My apologies if i'm not following proper procedure [but i'm new and find this board confusing too]...

To Firon.

I appreciate the page of standard fixes to try [re un-slow browsing while torrenting], but, after laboriously trying every one [dontcha love computers!?], nothing has helped.

I appreciate the offer listed [tell us your hardware configuration] but, since the problem has persisted after changing to a completely new computer, that's just not worth trying. [And no, it doesn't seem to be a firewall issue either].

Logically all that's left is my ISP [shaw of Canada]. I don't see how because i use encryption, but... it seems like it's permanent bend-over time for me, sigh.

Thanks for your help.


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No router. New cable modem [Motorola SB5100]. I stand by my original point: that since i'm using all new hardware, and identical problem persists, it *can't* be my hardware. The *only* common element is my ISP [and use of XP Pro]. Since other XP Pro users don't have this problem, it must be ISP. Or am i missing something???

Thanx 4 your time.

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Thanx Switevk and Firon: But even [or rather, especially] if you're right about it being modem, i'm still screwed. I don't have friends with spare cable modems lying around and even if i did, Shaw has a charming ID system that locks out all other modems. That's calculated, i think, to ensure that they can sell or rent their modems to customers.

And i can't switch ISP's. [There are only two serious contenders in Vancouver: Telus adsl, & Shaw/Rogers for cable. AndTelus seems to be a worse deal than Shaw.].

So if anybody knows any Motorola SB5100 tricks to try, i'd appreciate some advice.


Why are computers like the old testament God? Lots of rules and very unforgiving!

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Probably a bad call on my part as far as the Motorola Surfboard modem is concerned...I guess I mistakenly was thinking about the ADSL modem-routers which are almost a plague even to those who know a bit about networking.

Have you tried the Troubleshooting Guide yet?

As to the "Why are computers like the old testament God?":

Microsoft has "proprietary standards" that everyone is supposed to follow if they want to be compatible.

Not every possible combination can be tested before a product is released to consumers.

Lots of software is shipped out that's "known to be bad".

Numerous computer games and newer content products are using "DRM" of all kinds that's designed to cripple your computer to prevent copying...and prevent also "abuse" of the product -- where "abuse" is defined to be anything the designers don't want you to do!

DRM variants conflict with each other, as they often utilize "undisclosed back doors" or "undocumented features" in Microsoft's Windows OS's.

It's a recipe for disaster.

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And they all lived happily ever after! Yeah, amazed me too. Tried the TCPIP.SYS patch and, so far, actually works.

Some off-topic stuff: Switech- your remarks about DRM etc. are true enough, but don't explain it all. Mac and Linux users just have different problems. You have to have a strong streak of masochism to put up with this infant tec.

2] in the process of scrutinizing d/l times i happened to think of trying the same torrents on Opera and uTorrent [simultaneously]. Bizarre results- no pattern at all. Torrents will d/l faster on one, then the other. I understand utorrent has a slightly smaller memory footprint tho.

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Any time you have 2 apps aggressively competing for bandwidth, and asking for more than the total available, you're likely to see a see-saw effect:

1 dominates, then subsides briefly, then the other dominates, then subsides...repeat.

This assumes they're only fighting over download or upload but not both at once. If fighting over both at once, then it's a REAL mess and can vary from 1 always dominating to neither one getting more than 40% the total max...and the remaining 20% gets lost in the noise.

Doesn't matter whether a computer is running Mac, Linux, or Windows. The hardware's equally complex in either of those cases. But I would wager highly on the last one being the most unstable when under a heavy load. Windows seems designed to hide complexity from the user...but that doesn't mean the complexity isn't there!

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