If you get slow speeds all the time, it’s likely the problem is at your home, so here are 12 STEPS to try before calling your RSP. (It’s a good idea to do methodical tests and make detailed notes while you’re trying to find the cause of speed problems. You might like to take screen shots of the speed test results you get, or create an account with www.speedtest.net and store them all online.)
If for some reason, you can’t complete one of the steps, like a speed test, then skip to the next step.
- First check that no one else in your home is downloading or streaming If you have teenagers, ask them to take a break from using the service and shut down any downloads and close YouTube. YouTube’s new auto-play feature is a big data thief.
- Next check your usage to make sure you’re not speed limited for exceeding your Data Allowance. (Sounds simple, but RSPs get lots of calls from speed limited customers).
- Run some speed tests at speedtest.net and manually choose a Telstra or Optus Sydney-based server. Your service lands in Sydney no matter where in Australia you live. Telstra and Optus have good servers and lots of bandwidth for their speed tests, that’s why we recommend them.
- Power cycle everything, including your NBN Sky Muster modem, your router (if you have one) and your computer(s) – turn everything OFF and then back ON in THAT ORDER. A monthly reboot of everything often makes a performance difference. Do some more speed tests and see if that made a difference.
- What’s the weather like? Bad storms and heavy cloud cover may reduce speeds, but only a little. That’s also the case at your Beam’s Ground Station. Details on beams and what ground stations they use are here. Wait until the weather clears and run some more speed tests.
- Download and install a fresh copy of a browser you haven’t used before. If you use Windows and Internet Explorer, try Chrome or Firefox. If you’re a Mac owner using Safari, try Firefox. Sometimes browsers get clogged up with cookies and other stuff and that can affect your speed.
- Windows users should set your computer into Safe Mode with Networking (how to is here). Reboot your Windows computer in Safe Mode with Networking and run some more speed tests. That starts your computer with the bare basic software, so if you have anti-virus or some other program that’s slowing your computer, speed tests in Safe Mode will reveal that.
- If you’re using the service via Wi-Fi, plug your computer directly into your router with a network cable and run some speed tests. If that solves the speed problem, your Wi-Fi signal may be poor, or your router has a problem or the Wi-Fi device drivers in your computer may need to be updated. You should ask your local computer specialist for help with device driver updates as it’s tricky if you’re not sure what you’re doing.
- Plug your computer directly into the Sky Muster modem with a network cable, bypassing your router (if you have one) then reboot everything. It’s best to wait for the modem to be rebooted first then reboot your computer. Do some more speed tests, and that will tell you if your router is causing speed problems.
- Try a different network cable, just in case that’s the problem. If you have a few of them in your home, try them all just in case you have a dud cable. Network cables lull you into a false sense of security by rarely being faulty, then when you least expect it, there they are!
- Try another computer (if you have one), plugged directly into the Sky Muster modem, in Safe Mode with Networking if it’s a Windows computer. More speed tests will tell you if you have a computer problem rather than a satellite service problem.
- Take a look (from the ground) at the satellite dish and make sure there are no trees or branches close to the dish. Cockatoos chewing the cables usually take the service offline rather than making it slow, but it can’t hurt to check for obstructions or any obvious damage. Do not climb on the roof, do not go anywhere near the dish, do not knock it out of alignment!
If you don’t solve the speed problem using these steps, you can forward your notes and your speed test results to your RSP and say “I tried all these things, what’s next?”.
Please note, while all care has been taken in compiling BIRRR documents, we recommend that you check with your service provider regarding your own connection issues.