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Troubleshooting slow internet speeds

Summary

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Here's what to do if your internet service seems to be running slowly


How slow is too slow?

When speeds seem slow, it may be because you have noticed one of these things: 
1.     You have run a speed test and the results show low speeds. 
2.     Web pages load too slowly.  
Speed may vary slightly depending on overall network demand. For instance, service may sometimes be faster during the day than the busier evening hours. 


Find out what speeds you're getting.  
We recommend checking it with an online site such as http://speedtest.via-satellite.net 

Please be aware that many other speed-test sites may report inaccurately over a satellite network. 
 
Slow web page loading is a little trickier to ascertain. If more than 4 or 5 webpages you've visited before are loading much more slowly than usual, there may be a problem.    


Reset the modem
The simplest fix often is to reset your modem: Unplug your modem from the electrical outlet (and router if you have one) and plug them back in. 
Read our router info page for more on how to properly reset your network. 

Most Common Reason:  Data Allowance Exceeded

The most common reason subscribers experience slow speeds is the monthly data allowance has been exceeded. When that happens, your access won't be blocked, but speeds will be restricted and significantly slower.

If you're in restriction, you should already know it; we send restriction alerts that pop up on your browser.

We also send out email notifications when you’re at 70% and 100% of your data allowance.
If you haven't received these emails, please check your junk folder, add our address to your junk exceptions or whitelist, and check that the email we have for you is correct.

If you're not sure how much data you've used, log in to Your Account. (Go here for WildBlue or Viasat Internet for Business). You'll see your usage clearly displayed, along with how much data is available to use for the current billing period.

If you've reached your data allowance limit, here are a few options:
·      Wait until your new billing period begins and your data allowance resets to zero.
·      Shift your online activity to our unmetered Free Zone hours of midnight to 5 a.m.
·      Purchase additional data via the Buy More program.
·      If it's available, upgrade to a new plan with a higher limit.

For Evolution customers: A data allowance restriction won't affect the speed of your web and email access, but will restrict the ability to download and upload files, stream media, and all other activities. During the Early Bird Free Zone (3-8 a.m.), all activities are unmetered. The resolutions above apply if you need more data or wish to change to another service plan.

For Viasat Internet for Business customers: You have an Early Morning Data Zone allowance of 30 GB from 3-8 a.m. daily.

For Liberty 12/25/50 customers only: You have an Early Morning Free Zone from 3 to 6 a.m.

Troubleshoot and Fix

Are all web pages loading slowly? Try loading several different pages. If most are fast, but a few are slow, the issue is probably with those sites. Try again in a few hours and see if there's a difference.
If one site is always slow or never loads correctly, report that site to our engineers. We can determine if our web acceleration technologies have trouble with that site and fix the issue if one is found. To report a problem site to us, go here.

1. Clear Out the Browser

Keeping lots of history and temporary files in a browser can slow down the browser and make your Internet connection seem slow. Try clearing your browser cache and temporary files. Also, keeping your browser up to date will ensure it loads the bug fixes and optimizations needed to keep your web surfing smooth. Your browser’s Help section will have information on how to update it or clear the cache and history.

2. Check for Simultaneous Household Access

If several people in your household are using your Viasat service at once over a wireless network, each may experience slower speeds. This is especially true if at least one of the users is streaming video. When testing speed or verifying slowness, make sure no one else is using the service. If everyone else stops using the service and the speed returns to normal, it may not be an issue with your service but with your router or another device on the network. Keep reading these troubleshooting tips.

3. Check for Open Wi-Fi Access

If you don't have a password on your wireless access point, someone might be using your internet without your knowledge. Set a password on your wireless router to help prevent any unauthorized use. If you have a password set and suspect too many people know it, considering changing it.

4. Run a Virus Scan

Ensure your antivirus is up to date along with your operating system updates. Run a virus scan to make sure you don’t have any viruses, malware, or botnet software installed on your computer.
Other types of software that can slow down your computer and use your internet service include weather widgets, browser toolbars and stock quote widgets among many others.

5. Give Your Hardware a Health Check or Update

The internet today isn't the same as it was 5 or 10 years ago. Websites require much more power from computers to run smoothly and load quickly. A computer with at least a dual core CPU and 4 GB of RAM (memory) will provide enough power to run internet applications well. So what appears to be a low internet connection could actually be an outdated, less-capable computer.
Try using your Viasat Internet service with a newer, more powerful computer, tablet, or smart phone. If other devices perform well while your computer is slow to load web sites, the issue may be your computer — or even malware of some sort running on your computer.
Before you replace it, consider having someone check it for problems.

6. Consider Router Issues

A router can have a significant effect on the performance of your service. Since all devices in your home connect through the router, it can be the bottleneck that hampers your service -- especially if you have more than one user on your network simultaneously. To find out, connect your computer directly to your W-iFi modem, bypassing your router. If speeds increase and slowness issues go away, your router could be faulty or misconfigured.

If your router has a built in wireless access point to provide Wi-Fi, the issue could be interference or distance from the router. Wi-Fi signals, microwaves, televisions, portable/cordless phones, electrical wires, other electronic devices and even walls can create interference. Try to locate your router away from other devices, and in the center of your home or work area. If you're several rooms away from the router, your Wi-Fi will be significantly slower than if you're in the same room or within a clear line of sight.

To determine if interference or proximity is an issue, place your router away from other devices and run a speed test while you're in the same room. If the issue goes away, there may be something interfering with your Wi-Fi signal. Free Wi-Fi analyzers available for smartphones will allow you to determine the signal strength of your Wi-Fi.

Read more about home networks and wireless routers here.

7. Do a Weather Check

Heavy storm activity can affect the signal at your home dish as well as at our ground stations. These disruptions are more typically a short-lived outage, however, and do not tend to result in slow speeds.  

Read more about weather’s impact on your service.

8. Ask Us. 

Occasionally technical glitches on our side gum up the network and disrupt service.  During any outage, we'll record an automated message on our customer care help line.  Since an outage is often localized, we try to tailor our outage message to the caller.  If you call from the phone number we have for you in our account records, you should hear any message for your area automatically.

Need help?

If you believe there's an issue with your service or need help troubleshooting, please contact our Customer Care team.

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