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  • nerd question – ping times across wireless lan
  • Premier Icon joemarshall
    Free Member

    So,

    I have a wifi router connected to the internet, and two devices attached to it wirelessly.

    If I ping from one to the other, it seems to take 53 or 104ms each time (jumps around from one to the other).

    If from either device I ping google.com, it takes 43 to 45 ms.

    This is annoying, as one of them is sharing files to the other, and it slows things down somewhat.

    Any ideas what is making this happen? Is it just that my wifi router is rubbish? Any settings I should be messing with somewhere?

    Premier Icon scaled
    Free Member

    WiFi is a shared media like an old hub/bus so it’s half duplex (unless you’re a boffin from Stanford)

    104ms is a bit crap though, try plugging a cable in to one or the other and see if it drops massively, you should be getting ping times of <10ms really.

    Depends how much you want to tinker but DD-WRT will give you a hell of a lot more tuning options than the stock firmware on your router.

    Oh simple things, make sure that you’re not sharing a channel with anyone elses wireless network in the local area!

    Premier Icon joemarshall
    Free Member

    Further to this, if from either device I ping the router (even at the same time on both devices), it takes 1ms

    Premier Icon TrevorB
    Full Member

    Try hardwiring them to the router and ping again. You will probably see around the 30-35ms mark, so wireless is not as bad as it seems.

    Premier Icon joemarshall
    Free Member

    With one of them plugged into the router (and the other wireless), I get 1ms ping in both directions.

    With both of them hardwired together direct, I get <1ms ping time.

    Joe

    Premier Icon MicArms
    Free Member

    try tracert the path taken?

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Full Member

    Rebooted the rooter lately?

    Premier Icon coffeeking
    Free Member

    Isn’t re-booting the router the IT crowd solution?

    Premier Icon samuri
    Free Member

    for a good reason. 😉 It’s actually a better suggestion that would first be apparent. Most wireless routers have a look see to see what channels are occupied when they boot up. If a new network has appeared since the last reboot, the device may be able to find a better channel.

    FWIW, I’ve always found wireless to wireless communication through non-enterprise wireless routers to be poor. I think the packets keep getting stuck behind the sofa.

    Premier Icon coffeeking
    Free Member

    Really? Mine seems to auto-adjust at any time (taking out the wireless at the same time but keeping the back end running).

    Premier Icon phinbob
    Full Member

    I was seeing poor ping times and some packet loss on my WLAN. I did the usual IT thing of a reboot and code upgrade and that fixed it.

    There doesn’t seem to be a lot of dials to turn on the average home router so sometimes it’s easier to go for for the blunt instrument approach.

    Premier Icon dirtydog
    Free Member

    When they talk too each other they are having to make two jumps across the wireless network, when your ping google from one of your devices your only making one wireless jump across the network.

    Any packet loss between the two?

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Full Member

    Isn’t re-booting the router the IT crowd solution?

    Thinking is,

    Everything else is fast but peer to peer is slow. What’s different in that scenario? p2p, the packets have to go to the router, which then routes, hence the name, back to the other host. This is reportedly slow. Ergo, the problem is probably piss poor routing.

    There’s a million reasons for this. Corrupt ARP table could be one, offhand. Bug in the router which is causing performance issues, overheating, something’s crashed on the protocol stack, etc etc. Which is easier, “log on to the router and attempt to flush the ARP cache” or “turn it off and back on again”?

    It’s a cliché, but there’s often a complex technical reason behind simple fixes.

    A reboot is step one, incidentally. Could just be that it’s a cheap shit router ofc, and this is just what it does. Could be that there’s some sort of translation required, maybe one device is 802.11g and one 802.11n (*handwave*). Maybe it’s decrypting the WPA encoded packets and reencrypting again, introducing an overhead. Could be that there’s merely a small latency issue (hence slower pings) but the actual data throughput is fine and the entire thing is a red herring; worth timing file transfers to see. Could be there’s updated firmware available which fixes it. I could go on. Generally though, there’s little point in fielding every possible scenario for a given problem because it’s a waste of time if step one actually fixes it. Why type half a dozen paragraphs when a sentence may suffice?

    Y’know, just in case anyone else thinks we make this shit up.

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Full Member

    Also, we’re not nerds, gods damn it.

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