Jul 062017
 

…or is it maybe being broken by people who think it is broken?

I’m pretty sure a lot of people here in Germany have heard the common complaint about end user internet connections being slow in the afternoon and evening because “everybody is watching netflix now” and similar stuff.

I was voicing the same complaint, over and over. My 400MBit cable link at home would drop down to under 80MBit in the evenings, and in downspikes go as low as TEN megabit/second. So I started measuring regularly with speedtest-cli which measures against the closest speedtest..net server, and the graphs in munin were pretty awful. Every day at around noon the performance would start to drop, and go down to around 50mbit by 11pm, and then after midnight would normalize again.

NOT FUN.

but, here’s the thought: What if it is not actually my internet connection?

What if it’s because everybody thinks their internet connection is bad, and starts hitting the speedtest.net servers so hard that they start to slow down?

… So I switched to measuring against a speedtest.net mini server that I’m hosting myself, and no-one else uses… and guess what. My internet performance still drops in the afternoon and evening, but nowhere as dramatic as before.

Makes you think about self-fulfilling prophecies, or maybe internet speed is related to Schrödingers Cat.

 

Edit: Here are two bandwidth graphs from my connection. The first one’s from when I was measuring against the official speedtest.net servers:

Internet performance by day, measuring against speedtest.net servers

Internet performance by day, measuring against speedtest.net servers

The second one was created the same way, but instead of using a random speedtest.net server for every data point I have been measuring against my own speedtest mini server on my cloud host:

Internet performance by day, measuring against my own server

Internet performance by day, measuring against my own server

 

I just hope that that new test site run by the Bundesnetzagentur has enough power to handle the load without drooping.

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