WiFi performance problem in your PC?

I note your recent emphasis on Rampart and the tool looks potentially helpful for many users, but I’m coming to believe that in the Win 10 world there is a problem in some PCs that causes anomalous behavior that Rampart won’t be able to detect. Prior to the latest monthly Windows update there was substantial but anecdotal evidence that poor videoconferencing performance was closely correlated with how long it had been since a PC had been re-started. Lesson learned: re-start the PC immediately prior to videoconferencing. Following the latest WIndows update with PCs now inexplicably transitioning from sleep to off after about three hours whether you like it or not, the problem seems to have evolved. Now in some PCs during a videoconference, with throughput of typically 3.5Mb/sec, Chrome is using 55 - 75% CPU bandwidth, videoconference is showing some problems with freezes and audio quality, and a simultaneous Speedtest shows a 5:1 or larger drop in download rate from just prior to start of the videoconference (e.g from 107Mb/sec to 21Mb/sec). This should still be plenty of download bandwidth, but it appears that some sort of processing bottleneck inside the PC is causing a problem. As I said, not all PCs exhibit the problem. I have two Win 10 laptop PCs, only one of which exhibits the problem when both are connected to the same videoconference and known to be connected to the same AP on the same 5GHz channel and SSID. And it’s not just a problem with videoconferences. With both PCs simultaneously on the same AP, SSID and 5GHz channel, both checking DL and UL rates using Speedtest, one will consistently show 3 to 5 times higher downlink rates than the other even when I run Speedtest simultaneously on both PCs. This certainly smells like a problem inside the PC that perverts the Speedtest results, but I have not been able to find anything on line that addresses this issue. In any event I suspect that this problem, whatever it may be, is impacting other users’ videoconferencing as well.

Martt Harding

Windows 10 seems to be the nemesis of many things, including WiFi. Updates keep breaking things. For the last month or so my WiFi will not attach to anything unless I disable the adapter and re-enable it, which is an annoyance for sure, but haven’t had time to hunt down what Microsoft broke and how to fix.

I’ll bet that Windows 10 automatically downloaded a driver update. Try going into Device Manager (Windows key, type in “Device Manager”, hit enter when the Start menu highlights it), finding your Wi-Fi adapter, and rolling the driver back to a previous version.