HELP - losing internet at home - going off and on and off

SaltyNuts

Platinum Member
May 1, 2001
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I've had ATT internet at home for years. Actually it was Southwestern Bell back in the day, but then I think ATT bought them (after they were previously required to spin them off LOL). Most recently I think I upgrade to their fiber. Been a couple years at least.

It has always been pretty much spotless as far as always being up and running. But these last few days I am losing connection and not able to get it back for many minutes or hours. On my wifi thing on my computer it says it cannot connect, but then it finally does after minutes or hours and says "connected and secured" and it starts working again.

Any idea what the likely causes of this are? Might the service just be down? Or might my ethernet card be going bad?

I'm curious too thinking about the wifi thing, I'm pretty sure I have a cable going directly into the back of my PC. I.E. the fiber I am supposed to be connected to. Or at least I thought. Does the fact that my connection is showing up when I click the wifi button at the bottom right of my windows screen mean I am not going through the fiber cable, but through the wifi instead?

Thanks for any help!!!


Moved to networking.

AT Mod Usandthem
 
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VirtualLarry

No Lifer
Aug 25, 2001
53,191
7,653
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Try cleaning the end of the cable with some soap... :p (No, DON'T do that if you have fiber, the live laser can blind you.)

More seriously, you need to figure out if it's just your local wifi going down (likely) or your actual service (with fiber, pretty unlikely).

Can you connect an ethernet cable to your ISP router, and disable the wifi on your PC? Does it still go "down"? If it doesn't, then consider replacing your wifi card in your PC (and possibly, get a new ISP router.)
 

nakedfrog

No Lifer
Apr 3, 2001
53,765
6,258
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Yes, if you have the wifi signal in your notification tray, you're connected via wifi, it has a different icon when you're connected via ethernet.
 

deadlyapp

Diamond Member
Apr 25, 2004
6,269
524
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I recently had some wonky stuff happen with my router as well, possibly a botched firmware update, I don't know, but a hard reset of the router fixed it for me. As Larry said, its not usually an external issue but rather internal network.
 

pete6032

Diamond Member
Dec 3, 2010
6,132
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Does the fact that my connection is showing up when I click the wifi button at the bottom right of my windows screen mean I am not going through the fiber cable, but through the wifi instead?
Yes. Your computer probably saw no connection through the wire and then tried to connect to your wifi router and couldn't find a connection there either.

I would recommend power cycling your router and cable modem. First thing is turn both off. Then turn the router on and let the router run with modem off for a couple minutes. Then turn the modem back on and see if the connection has improved. Sometimes network equipment just needs to be power cycled.
 

brianmanahan

Lifer
Sep 2, 2006
22,613
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did you try turning it off and back on again?

(also is your cell phone losing the connection when the computer does)
 

SaltyNuts

Platinum Member
May 1, 2001
2,195
189
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Thanks everyone! So I called ATT and they ran some tests and did some stuff on their end and its running seemingly flawless again, in the sense I'm not losing connections.

HOWEVER, it has always been and still is SLOW. I am supposed to have 1 gigabyte bandwith, I think both ways, but at least download for sure. When they ran the test on their end, they showed like 976 MB/S on download, and like 843 MB/S for upload. But when I go to speedtest.net I am getting MUCH worse results, like I literally just got 88 MB/S download, 14.77 MB/S upload on my computer just now which is right by the modem/router/wireless transmitter or whatever. My significant other did the test the other day from a laptop that was downstairs and thus further from the transmitting device and somehow got better results, but still the best was like 147 MB/S download, so still horrible.

Any idea what gives? My computer was also wiped recently with a brand new windows install, so I don't think its some installed programs slowing it down. And both of our TVs that use the wireless are off. And my significant other is asleep. So there should have been no wireless bandwith drain to my computer when I ran that test just now. Those numbers are just HORRIBLE compared to what I am supposed to be getting, and I've been paying a premium for fiber for a couple years now, pisses me off!!!

Before I tried my computer just now I thought maybe the laptop my significant other tried the test on being downstairs might have been the problem, so I ordered 3 repeaters from ATT. Cost is $7 a month. Should I tell them to hold off on them until I get this speed problem figured out? I think so.

Thanks so much!!!
 

VirtualLarry

No Lifer
Aug 25, 2001
53,191
7,653
126
Thanks everyone! So I called ATT and they ran some tests and did some stuff on their end and its running seemingly flawless again, in the sense I'm not losing connections.

HOWEVER, it has always been and still is SLOW. I am supposed to have 1 gigabyte bandwith, I think both ways, but at least download for sure. When they ran the test on their end, they showed like 976 MB/S on download, and like 843 MB/S for upload. But when I go to speedtest.net I am getting MUCH worse results, like I literally just got 88 MB/S download, 14.77 MB/S upload on my computer just now which is right by the modem/router/wireless transmitter or whatever. My significant other did the test the other day from a laptop that was downstairs and thus further from the transmitting device and somehow got better results, but still the best was like 147 MB/S download, so still horrible.
You essentially HAVE TO run speedtests wired. That's the only way to ensure that they're unrestricted by your own equipment.

Sounds like your laptop may only be "n" wireless (Wifi 4).

Try plugging in an AC1300 or AC1750 wifi dongle ($20 on ebay) and see what speeds you get.
 

SaltyNuts

Platinum Member
May 1, 2001
2,195
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Thanks VirtualLarry. The speedtest was done from my desktop as well, right next to where the wireless thing is. Would an AC1300 or AC1750 wifi dongle work for that?

It seems weird that they would not give me that in the first place if that is what is needed to get the speed they are supposed to be delivering me. Are then not supposed to?

Thanks!
 

SaltyNuts

Platinum Member
May 1, 2001
2,195
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By the way, I told them that I had wanted the fiber cord to run directly into my desktop, and then the OTHER devices in the house to get their connection via wireless. But I wanted the fat pipe right in my desktop. They said they cannot do that, that is not what their equipment is set up for. I don't care, as long as they can get my speed up to something CLOSE that I am paying for.
 

deadlyapp

Diamond Member
Apr 25, 2004
6,269
524
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By the way, I told them that I had wanted the fiber cord to run directly into my desktop, and then the OTHER devices in the house to get their connection via wireless. But I wanted the fat pipe right in my desktop. They said they cannot do that, that is not what their equipment is set up for. I don't care, as long as they can get my speed up to something CLOSE that I am paying for.
Yeah...your computer can't translate the fiber, needs to go through the modem first. However you should have an ethernet port on the back of your modem/router that allows you to hardwire it to the desktop. See if you have done that, and then make sure the wifi is disabled on your desktop. Should be as easy as going to control panel ->network connections ->wifi adaptor ->disable

Even on wifi you should get between 50-100 Mbps or more depending on how old your computer is and the adaptor it has. Why would the company be required to give you additional hardware - they have no power over how obsolete your shit is.

I pay for "up to" 175 Mbps, speedtest gives me 55 (however I think i'm going through a software VPN forced by company). Wireless adaptor is an AC so I shouldn't be limited there.
 

SaltyNuts

Platinum Member
May 1, 2001
2,195
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Thanks snoopy and deadlyapp!

I will do just as you suggested when I get home deadlyapp and report back. I seem to indeed remember a cable going into the back of my desktop, which is why seeing the wifi thing the other day on my desktop confused me, I always thought I was going directly through the cable.

WOW, so even if the fiber pipe is delivering data through the wall close to 1 GB Mbps, the absolutely best I could hope for over wifi is not much more than 50-100 Mbps? That is such a bummer! If I am getting that much on my laptop downstairs, then I guess I do NOT need those signal extenders or whatever they are trying to charge me $7 per month for?

Thanks!!!
 

pete6032

Diamond Member
Dec 3, 2010
6,132
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What does your setup look like, do you have one box (combined modem and router) or two boxes (one modem and one router). Also did you try power cycling these devices as in post #5?
 

CropDuster

Senior member
Jan 2, 2014
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Thanks snoopy and deadlyapp!

I will do just as you suggested when I get home deadlyapp and report back. I seem to indeed remember a cable going into the back of my desktop, which is why seeing the wifi thing the other day on my desktop confused me, I always thought I was going directly through the cable.

WOW, so even if the fiber pipe is delivering data through the wall close to 1 GB Mbps, the absolutely best I could hope for over wifi is not much more than 50-100 Mbps? That is such a bummer! If I am getting that much on my laptop downstairs, then I guess I do NOT need those signal extenders or whatever they are trying to charge me $7 per month for?

Thanks!!!
2.4Ghz wifi will typically max out around 100mbps depending on the distance/obstructions. 5Ghz wifi should get you well beyond 100mbps, still less than 1Gbps, but drops off faster with distance/obstruction. This is dependent on your wireless router/modem and your devices connected to it.

I have 1Gbps fiber, on 5Ghz wifi my desktop typically maxes out around 500mbps where it is located and my laptops around 300
 

mxnerd

Diamond Member
Jul 6, 2007
6,384
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Task Manager - Performance tab, you can easily see which adapter is used by Windows when you are doing speed test, watching video, transferring files.

Usually you want to set wired Ethernet with a higher priority than wifi.
 

Shmee

Memory and Storage, Graphics Cards
Super Moderator
Sep 13, 2008
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Depending on how many computers your household has, you will want at the very least, the the fiber modem, a router, which should have a more modern wifi for any wireless devices, but any devices that can be, should be wired with CAT6 ethernet or better. You may want gigabit network switches as well, for additional computers.
 

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