An Internet connection that is slow is typically marked by slow download speed, slow-loading websites, lags in online gaming, and buffering videos. It reduced productivity dramatically. And, during these COVID-19 periods, you will need your internet to be performing more than ever.
Let’s speed up your connection by optimizing your network, Wi-Fi, and Ethernet. Here are the best ways how to speed up Windows 10 Internet Speed – the 2021 edition and tested.
Use a Stable and Fast Router
A fast and stable router is the first part of your network infrastructure that will provide the maximum speed for your home. I am going to recommend at least 3 of them that you can pick from.
Those curious, I am using 3 Netgear Orbi mesh stations in my home internet connection, providing me with constant 500 Mbps Wi-Fi throughput.
Here are some of the good mesh routers, which is a great investment in the long run of having a good connection all over your home.
1. Netgear Orbi Mesh for Home
Orbi Whole Home AC2200 delivers solid performance at a reasonable price and is a great choice for small and medium-size homes that need to upgrade their Wi-Fi coverage. Newcomers will find it easy to set up and use, but the fact that Netgear chooses to use Disney’s subscription-based Circle service for parental controls is discouraging. Rivals’ routers and mesh systems have often provided better parental controls for free. If you prefer, you can pick up their Wi-fi 6 version, which will serve you for the future as well. But in general, my 500 Mbps line, provides solid connectivity with 40+ devices connected to it constantly.
2. Linksys Velop Wi-fi 6 AX4200
In addition to offering great performance and ease of use, the Linksys Velop WiFi 6 AX4200 makes mesh Wi-Fi access an affordable and accessible option for large families on a budget. This mesh network will improve the speed and connectivity of your home network. If you appreciate future-proofing your network with Wi-Fi 6, you’ll also appreciate the Linksys app, which is simple to use.
3. Netgear Nighthawk MK63
While the Netgear Nighthawk MK63 might be too much for smaller homes, it is an ideal choice for those with larger spaces and a need for high-performance gaming and 4K video. This mesh Wi-Fi router boasts some cool features, including the ability to create a guest network and a map of all the devices connected to your network. If you can live without parental controls and the high price tag, however, this might be the best mesh Wi-Fi 6 router for you.
Use updated Ethernet and Wifi Drivers and Speed Up Windows 10 Internet Speed
Windows 10 comes preinstalled with all generic drivers, but these sometimes cause compatibility and stability issues with the hardware. In the case of slower Internet speeds, it’s advisable to manually download the appropriate drivers from the manufacturer’s website in order to make the Internet connection faster and ensure stable system performance. One of the best ways how to speed up Windows 10 internet speed, is to keep all the network drivers updated.
But fret not, here is a freeware driver updater program that works with Windows 10. It will help you find the latest driver and let you update them.
A freeware (Open Source) driver update tool, Snappy Driver Installer is similar to many other driver update tools but offers the most features. The interface may look overwhelming but it does the job.
- No advertisements
- No need to install, just extract to a folder and run it (Completely portable)
- Drivers are downloaded from within the software.
- Driver installations can be done offline.
It works with Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista, and XP, both in 32-bit and 64-bit versions.
Free Software to Speed Up Internet on Windows 10
Let me show you an easy way to tune advanced connection properties and improve your overall internet speed efficiency.
SpeedGuide.net’s TCP Optimizer is a free, easy-to-use Windows application that optimizes your Internet connection. It can be downloaded and run as an administrator without installation.
With the program, novices and advanced users alike can tweak related TCP/IP parameters in Windows, making it easier to tune your system to the type of Internet connection used.
This tool uses advanced algorithms and the bandwidth*delay product to find the most optimal TCP Window for your connection speed. It allows you to tune all TCP/IP parameters, like MTU and RWIN, and even advanced ones like QoS and ToS Prioritization.
While targeted at broadband internet connections, the TCP Optimizer can also be applied to dialup and gigabit+ connections. The software is free, can be downloaded without installation, and has been downloaded over 9 Million times already.
Use Gpedit.msc to Speed up Internet on Windows 10
Purpose: Change the bandwidth limit to Zero
The bandwidth refers to the range covered for data transmission between an upper and lower range, which is controlled by the ISP provider. However, Windows provides some configuration options to limit reservable bandwidth limits.
As part of its default settings, Windows reserves a certain amount of bandwidth for its applications and operations. You can limit this amount from the Group Policy editor. You can fix this limit in Windows 10 by removing the reservable bandwidth.
- The Group Policy Editor can be launched using the “Run” command line shortcut by pressing Windows + R.
- Make sure you login as a System Admin account and then Type in Gpedit.msc, then press OK
- Now you should see the Local Group Policy Editor window.
- Navigate the following path:
Computer Configuration >> Administrative Templates >> Network >> QoS Packet Scheduler >> Limit reservable bandwidth
- In the Limit reservable bandwidth window, it should open in the “
Not Configured mode” by default.
- Now, Change the mode to Enabled and set the Bandwidth limit to Zero (Default value is 80)
Now, Just restart the computer once. And you should be able to notice an improvement in your internet speed. I would recommend using the TCPOptimizer which I have explained before.
Use Regedit to increase IRPStackSize
Your computer’s I/O Request Packet Stack Size determines the number of 36-byte receive buffers that can be used simultaneously. A higher number of buffers allows your computer to process more data at one time; in theory, this should improve performance.
The default setting is 15, which is adequate for most network connections of normal speed (10 Mbps). The maximum number is 50, and Microsoft warns that choosing values in the 33-38 range can lead to stability issues. Therefore, we will increase the value to 32.
Type “Regedit” in Windows 10’s search box and choose regedit.exe from the search results, then navigate the windows 10 Registry using the left windowpane:
For most users, IRPStackSize won’t exist, so we will have to create it. Right-click the Parameters folder or choose New | DWORD (32-bit) Value from the context menu. Give the key entry the name IRPStackSize (Note: Make sure the capitalization is exactly IRPStackSize)
Change the value base of the IRPStackSize key to Decimal so as to make your life easier. Then change the Data value to 32.
Once you have made the change, click OK to lock it in. Next, you must restart your PC.
The performance of the network should improve as soon as you make this change, though if your connection is slower than 10 Mbps, you are unlikely to see any improvement.
Change DNS Settings
For better speed with DNS, it makes a lot better speed when you do not use ISP Provided DNS. You can set these either in the Router or in your local connection properties.
I would recommend setting it for the Router, so the whole house can take the advantage of it.
For using Google DNS, Type:
For using OpenDNS, Type:
Here is a screenshot from the Router panel where you can set the DNS.
Flush the DNS Cache
The first time you open a browser or surf the internet, DNS resolves, and your computer caches these results thus reducing the time it takes for a page to load.
It may also store a bad entry over time, causing delays. Ideally, the DNS should be updated every 24 hours, removing bad entries automatically.
The DNS cache can be flushed manually as well, here’s how.
- Open “Windows command prompt” from the start menu
- Now, In the Command Prompt type in:
- Press enter
Additional Tips to Speed Up Internet on Windows 10
a) Check your cable and shorten your cable length
Even though Ethernet cables connect a PC to your router, you should make sure that the cable isn’t too long or kinked. In my case, I experienced frequent drops in downloads and Netflix buffering with my 35 meter Ethernet cable. When I switched to a shorter 22-meter cable, all my problems went away. It’s an easy way to improve your internet speed and/or improve a poor connection. Don’t forget to use a CAT6 cable if you have a high bandwidth connection.
b) Remove unnecessary background programs & bandwidth hogs
You may need to figure out what’s slowing down your internet connection on your primary laptop if it works flawlessly on your phone or another PC. You need to follow these steps if your computer runs Windows.
Figure out these things
- Whether OneDrive is uploading big amounts or large files.
- See if other cloud-based drives are uploading large files. Like Google Drive, pCloud, Dropbox, or iCloud.
- Close these programs, they will start back in the next restart of the computer.
You may also want to disable startup items and optimize processes on your Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS devices.
c) Install the latest firmware for your router
Stock firmware programs or drivers for routers or Wi-Fi and Ethernet adapters are rarely optimized or error-free. Over time, manufacturers squash bugs and improve their performance, so you should make sure to apply their latest updates. I have recommended the driver updater utility above.
Firmware can also be updated through the router’s web interface, which you can access using your browser (please refer to the router’s manual for instructions). Here is one example from my Orbi Router:
After updating the firmware and the drivers on my Windows computer and router, I was able to fix several speed issues and connection drops.
Summary of How to Speed Up Windows 10 Internet Speed
Speed up the Internet in Windows 10, may look like rocket science. But, it is generally not. You can use these tips explained in this document here to get an optimal internet speed on your PC/Laptop. But, don’t forget, a good router is also as much as important for the speed Improvement equation.
Look for Mesh Wifi AC 2200 or above if you have more than 100 MBps speed on your internet line. This investment in the router and cables will serve you in the long run.
Let’s summarize what we have learned here:
- Use a good and stable router
- Keep your network and wifi drivers updated
- Use the TCPOptimizer
- Use the registry patch
- Use the gpedit patch
- Use a fast DNS
- Flush DNS occasionally
- Use good cable for ethernet
- Stop bandwidth-hogging programs
- Always use the latest firmware on your Router
- Take a look at Microsoft’s recommendations on how to speed up Windows 10 Internet speed
With these, it will be pretty easy to maintain a fast internet on your Windows PC or Laptop. If you would like to add something to this mix, you can always drop a comment or contact me via the contact form. I am happy to listen and improvise.