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Free Dialup UK Article - Understanding Dialup Connection Speed


Speed of Data transmission is one of the most important and debated factor of a dialup connection. A common misconception that many people has that once you connect to your ISP at a certain speed; it remains at that speed through the session. The truth is that the speed may vary right from the initial connection and it may very though out the life of that intent connection session. The speed may rise and fall or it may even pause and then start after some time.

If you have software monitoring the internet connection, it may report speed that is not accurate. Unfortunately, it is not possible to monitor the actual modem speed during the connection for most modems. No matter what your modem reports to you as your connection speed it may not be the true speed. Both phone line quality and modem type play a major part in the actual speed you receive when downloading data from the Internet. If the phone line is of good quality then the data will flow at high speed. On other hand, if the equipment is poor then it may not reach a high speed and go down due to errors. In addition, different types of modems can support different speed. Overall speed depends upon overall quality of the connection hardware. However, the real data transfer is more important than connection speed.

The modem makes hissing and screeching sounds and then it goes quiet while making initial connection. The hissing and screeching is called initial handshake. It is during this part of the connection process that your modem establishes connection with ISP’s modem. You modem also establishes as at what speed it can send and receive data from the ISP’s modem. After this conversation is completed, the operation system shuts off the modem's speaker. This is mainly done to shut all the noise that modem makes while transmitting data over the phone line. However, if the modem detects any change in the phone line conditions, it will go through the initial connection establishing process again. During this time, data will not flow through the connection. This often look like to users that the modem has just stopped working. In most cases, the modem starts sending data again after it is done the initial connection establishing. This retake of the process can take up to 10 to 20 seconds, in extreme cases, if the retake fails than the modem will disconnect the line. Overall, different modems have different ways of handling phone line noise and initial connection establishing.

The speed will also vary after the initial connection. Some modems can connect lower speed and then as time passes, slowly rise to go to significant speed. Some other modems may connect high and then go down in speed over the duration of the call. The Operation system and other software you may have may report the connection speed you initially connected. Unfortunately, there is no real way for you to know what your throughput is using that information.


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