Internet… Who can live without it? It is a part of our lives, a way of living, the modern newspaper replacement, ordinary mail replacement, phone replacement and so on. We are kind of internet dependent and during these past years, we became obsessed with the internet speed.
Once the microbe infects one’s life, he starts talking about connection, speed, uptime, transfer, upload, download, everything expressed in bytes, kilobytes, MB, Mbps etc. All this happens because we use our computers to totally suck all the resources of an internet connection. Music and movie download, file sharing, live streaming and everything else combined managed to destroy the old dial-up connection bringing forward the Broadband connection.
Better, faster, more reliable but…not enough for some people. There will always be users who do not accept a limit. They want more…faster! As in any domain, there is a limit that cannot be outrun. It is the limit set by the Internet provider. Though, what if we cannot even reach this threshold because of an internal limit setup by the operating system? Can this obstacle be surpassed? Theoretically yes.
Have you heard about QoS Packet Scheduler? QoS Packet Scheduler support is a network bandwidth management that reserves by default 20% of the network connection for those applications that use the QoS. Unless you use such applications, there is no reason to let it reserve bandwidth. The thing is that the reserved 20% is not permanently locked for QoS-ware applications. Let’s say you are using a software application that can take advantage of the QoS Packet Scheduler.
Unless it starts sending and receiving data, the whole bandwidth is available for all the applications. Therefore, reserving 20% of bandwidth only affects the internet traffic for normal applications once a QoS based program uses the internet. To be sure that all the applications are provided with the same bandwidth access at any time, you can remove the reserved bandwidth limit.
For those using Windows XP Professional, here is a simple method to remove the limitation:
First go to Start > Run and type gpedit.msc. This will open the Group Policy manager. Under the Computer Configuration section, click on Administrative Templates and then select Network. Look in the right panel and you will se the QoS Packet Scheduler I was talking about. Double click on it and then access “Limit reservable bandwidth”.
You will get the Properties window where you have the option to enable or disable the service. If totally sure you want to remove it, just select removable. If you have doubts you can click on enable where there is the option to set yourself the reserved bandwidth limit. Do not expect to gain impressive speed on your internet connection. An improvement will be but sometimes unnoticeable.
For those using an Internet ADSL modem connected to the computer through USB or to a NIC (Network Interface Card) there is a trick to gain more speed. This trick creates a special buffer which is in charge of better handling the interrupts between the NIC and the ADSL modem. I need to inform you that this buffer properly works on computers with at least 256 MB of RAM.
First step would be getting the IRQ for the NIC. To obtain it go to Start > Run and type msinfo32.exe which will open the System Information Console. Now go to Hardware Resources > IRQs. In the right panel, you will see all the hardware along with their IRQs. Look for your NIC’s IRQ.
For those using an USB direct connect ADSL modem, the procedure differs. Right click on My Computer and select Properties. Select the Hardware tab and click on device manager. At the bottom of the list you got Universal Serial Bus controllers. Click on it to expand and there should be at least one USB root hub. Double click on it and go to power management. There you should find the USB ADSL modem along with its IRQ. If it is not located under this USB root hub just get the properties for another until you find it.
Finally, the last step consists in editing the system.ini file. To edit it go to Start > Run and type sysedit.exe. In the newly appeared window, select the System.ini window. Here locate [386enh], place the cursor after it and hit enter. A new blank line will be created. Now type IrqX=4096. The X represents the IRQ you obtained before. Go to file menu and save the new configuration. Restart the computer and you are done.