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Speedtest number way higher than actual download speed

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Posted · Original PosterOP

So I have a 50mbps plan,  when I do a speedtest I get around 48mbps,  which is normal, but when I actually download something my speed is way way lower.  E.g.,  I was downloading a game from steam and the max Dowland speed I got was around 2.7MB/s, being less than half of the 6MB/s I should theoretically get.  I'm connected via ethernet and tested this with a playstation as well. I'm really confused right now, am I missing something?

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When you download a game on steam you have several things to consider. A) The server you're downloading from. They could be limiting bandwidth to ensure availability to all. B) When downloading said game, its also installing so you will have slower times while it writes the game as to the drive. Mechanical drives will reduce it more so than an SSD. C) Consoles are never accurate and do NOT give good results and thus should not be trusted as a source of speed testing or measuring. 

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The speed at which an online source sends your data matters just as much as the speed at which your connection can receive your data.

If you are getting your data from a server which is sending data at Xmbps then that is the maximum download speed. Having a 2Xmbps connection to the internet on your end doesn't speed up the rate at which the server is sending your data.


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The route your internet connection follows can be traced through 'tracert' in CMD, usually you can find something that is slower than usual.

ipconfig /flushdns might help. or change the steam server you're downloading from.

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3 hours ago, overther said:

I'm really confused right now, am I missing something?

Not really. The speed at which you download is limited by the server from which you download, as well as the rest of the network. I've had downloads from the old Realtek servers which capped out <10KBs. On my 40Mbps connection.

You can always try again later, as depending on your provider you may have to share a finite amount of bandwidth with other users.

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