Alright, so over the summer I built a $1k gaming rig in order to use during college. I ordered a cheap WLAN card (This one) while I was at home since I figured it would be temporary, and I'd just go wired when I got to college.
I got to college, and sadly found out that my dorm has NO ETHERNET PORTS. The cheap card I got was getting 0-2 bars of signal, so I ordered this one to replace it. Card got here, I installed it and plugged in the CD for the drivers, and it was working decently. I afterwards did a clean wipe of the system and reinstalled the OS (Replacing the non-genuine version of Windows I had with a genuine version I got from my university), reinstalled all the drivers and reinserted the card.
Unfortunately, now my wireless connection has dropped from the ~25mbps download/upload I used to get, to ~25mbps download and 0.6mbps upload. I can't play ANY multiplayer games since I get disconnected and lag out. I know that it's not the network as every wireless device around me (2 laptops, etc) gets the same connection speeds - roughly 25-30mbps download and 20-25mbps upload. Even my tablet gets better upload speeds than my computer, at around 6mbps.
So in short, what would cause this sudden drop in upload speed, and how can I fix it? Is it the WLAN card's fault even though it worked fine before? I already tried reinstalling the drivers/card. would getting yet another wireless adapter/card fix it? Since this is for gaming, lag can't be an issue.
As a reminder, I have NO ETHERNET PORTS (If you tell me to connect to an ethernet port, as most people do, I will send Lady Gaga to grope you in your sleep), nor do I have access to the router.
Did you use the default drivers provided by the Windows installer, or those from the manufacturer's website? Because in some instances, Windows chooses the less efficient generic, or even wrong, drivers. It's always best to go to the manufacturer for the drivers, esp. for wireless.
If the manufacturer provides their own wireless connection utility (most do), use it instead of WZC (Windows Zero Configuration). Or if already using the former, try the latter. IOW, try the alternative.
I’d also try a live Linux CD (e.g., Ubuntu) just to see if a change in OS returns things to normal. If it does, it would suggest a Windows config problem. If it doesn’t, it would suggest a hardware issue.
You have remember something else that’s unique to your situation here. This isn’t like back home where only YOU have access to the wireless network. Everybody else is SHARING the same wireless frequency! Wireless is like any other radio based communications; only one station can be talking to another station on any given freq/channel at the same time, all other stations must WAIT. And that can dramatically change your performance numbers depending on how many concurrent users are “queued up”. And the fact you are getting these wild fluctuations is starting to convince me that’s what’s happening here.
2) I understand that, but what I don't understand is why everything else except my desktop gets the ~25mbps down/up speeds. Only my desktop has this problem, my laptop's speeds are fine, as are my roommate's laptop's, and my friend's laptop's, and every other device in here. And like I said, I used to also get the 25mbps down/up on the non-genuine version of windows I had (As in, before I did the wipe to install genuine windows)
I don't trust that everyone is getting 25Mbps up/down on a consistent basis. Not unless you're telling me you and several other ppl sat down together in the lobby, all ran the same exact tests, one after another, and did so repeatedly, and only you had these extreme differences. I'm not saying it couldn't be the case, but it seems far more likely you *casually* asked someone what they were getting and they reported something you would consider normal. But if you truly tested this methodically as I suggested, I might feel differently.
EDIT: Ok, well now you updated your response w/ all these other tests.
Not fully sure why my laptop dropped to 7ish, it usually hits minimum 15, but the desktop speeds are pretty constant no matter what. All three devices are within 1m of each other, and neither of them is doing any internet-heavy tasks (Atm we're just browsing the internet)
Okay, I -think- the problem may be on the software side. I tried something else as suggested by a friend.
On my laptop, getting these speeds, I bridged the connection between its wireless card and its ethernet port. I then connected my desktop through ethernet to my laptop, therefore using my laptop as an access point.
That's why I had you load up Linux, which did show a significant difference too. Are you running any anti-virus/anti-malware software on that desktop? If so, uninstall it for now. Or perhaps try a system restore. Maybe something changed that you didn't even notice, perhaps from a recent automated software update, Windows or third-party.
That's the problem w/ computers these days. As much as you assume things have not changed and therefore can't be the reason, they're connected almost all the time to the 'net and can change behind your back and mess up your system. It's one of the reasons I don't allow Windows automatic updates, but only accept notifications, so I can tie a change in behavior back to the event.