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help with slow and inconsisitent speeds

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kellycha0s
Freshman

help with slow and inconsisitent speeds

okay.

streaming is sketchy at best (roku player). speeds are slow most of the time.

i can get decent speeds in the morning. that's about it.

 

over the past couple of years i've had many conversations with tech support as well as advanced tech support.

 

in the past two weeks i've had a technician on site twice.

here's what he did: when he was here last week he switched the dish from beam 19 right to beam 17 left (he also mentioned that his program (?) was telling him to connect me to beam 63 which he said doesn't yet exist).

today he replaced the modem and the radio. he said all the hardware looks good. he also was quite surprised and confused that my speeds were fluctuating wildly from one minute to the next.

 

i've been running tests at testmy.net but even there i'm having issues because i'm clearly getting inaccurate results.

 

i'm at a loss. i'd like to know if anyone has any thoughts on this? what steps should i take next to try and solve this mystery.

 

36 REPLIES 36
GabeU
Distinguished Professor IV

@kellycha0s 

 

The only thing I can suggest is seeing what the reps here have to say.  Problems with streaming may be due to a combination of system congestion and the high latency that's inherent to geostationary satellite internet.  If you're having overall speed issues, however, that's something different.

 

Regarding the speed testing, they may still ask for some to be run, and though you said you've run some I'll post the procedure below, just in case they ask.

 

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

To help the HughesNet Customer Service Reps get a head start on your speed concerns, please create a testmy.net account (if you do not already have one) and, while signed into that account, perform a batch of 3-5 tests during different parts of the day, then share your testmy.net "My Results" page URL with us here. A batch each in the morning, afternoon and evening is the most ideal, but the reps are well aware that not everyone can do this, so please just run a batch when you can.

Most important points to remember during this test:
-do the tests while directly connected to the HughesNet modem with a LAN cable (NO third party Router or Wireless devices can be used)
-disable the WiFi in the HT2000W modem while the speed tests are being performed
-the testing device should be the ONLY device connected to the HughesNet modem while testing
-use the manual 25MB size download test file
-if testing upload instead of download, use the manual 4MB size upload test file
-space each test in the batch at least 5 minutes apart
-post your testmy results URL here, it may look something like http://testmy.net/quickstats/yourusername


For a more in depth guide on running the tests, please see this site.

The Reps are on M-F from approximately 9AM to 6PM EST. They will be the ones to address your speed issues, but they will need these tests to do so.

If you don't know how to disable the WiFi in the HT2000W modem, please see "How do I manage my built-in WiFi modem?" in this PDF. Please be sure to click "Save Settings" after unchecking "SSID Enable" for each of the four tabs individually (2.4Ghz, then 2.4Ghz Guest, then 5Ghz, then 5Ghz Guest).


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kellycha0s
Freshman

well, yes, i'd definitely say  it's overall speed issues. i understand that there is congestion and the latency issue. but i think to have every day problems with streaming goes well beyond that.

 

the speed tests i've run to date have been per the instructions you posted.

 

do i need to do anything else to have the reps take a look at this? or will they see this post and reply to it?

 

maratsade
Distinguished Professor IV

@kellycha0s , your next step is to post the link to your test results, which seems to be this one:  https://testmy.net/quickstats/kellycha0s

 

Give the reps on this site some time to look into this and get back to you. For more immediate assistance, you can call the 24/7 toll-free number. Those reps may have slightly different procedures, so you will need to follow their instructions. 

 

yes, that's the link to my test results.

thanks.

i'll wait to hear from the reps.

@kellycha0s,

 

Thank you for taking the time to run these tests. I am sorry to hear you are still having issues with speed and streaming. You have already had many cases escalated over the last 2 years and a lot of them allude to the fact that inherent congestion and latency are the reasons for what you have been experiencing. There is not much that I can do that advanced technical support and the onsite technicians haven't already done. The best I can provide at this point are tips to work with the speeds you have.

 

When it comes to streaming, it is recommended to manually set your resolution settings, as it is usually on the auto setting by default. This can cause severe buffering since it is trying to cycle between many different resolutions during a stream. This can be done by logging on to your streaming services account on a desktop computer and clicking on your account/settings. There you will usually find a section for playback settings, where you can adjust it accordingly. Also, try disconnecting most of the devices from the network and streaming on one device connected to the modem via LAN cable if available. This will provide a quicker, more stable connection. If buffering is the main issue, downloading shows and movies locally on your phone is another option for you. You can do this by downloading the Netflix app and initiating a download to watch a show or movie offline. This would eliminate buffering completely and save you on data, since it is playing from a stored file and not streaming in real-time. You can find more information on this process below for many streaming services.
https://www.cnet.com/tech/mobile/every-way-to-watch-movies-and-shows-offline-netflix-youtube-hbo-ama....  

 

-Damian 

if it's network congestion then would it be a possibility that changing the beam i'm assigned could help? the impression i got from the technician that came to the house is that this could help.

unfortunately, since he changed the beam/polarity, i feel as though speeds have been even  worse. as i'm writing this i'm getting speeds less than 1mbps.

 

i appreciate the tips on working with my current speeds. and i have made changes: wifi turned off and modem hardwired to whichever device i'm using.  however, that's not a solution for slow internet speeds. it's a workaround.

maratsade
Distinguished Professor IV

Kelly, I don't think they change the beam you're on. I think we're stuck with the beams we're assigned to. The best thing we can do is adapt to what we have. Satellite internet is not ideal for streaming (because congestion and latency), and we need to accept that. Streaming does work for some, but not everyone.   @GabeU mentioned Play On Cloud, and it works really well.  

 

fyi about the beam assignment thing: the tech who came to the house did change the beam i was on. he said i had been on 19 right (polarity? i think he said) and he switched it to 17 left. his reasoning was that everyone around me was on 17 left so he assumed that it would be the better choice. he also told me that the suggestion from whatever software he was running said i should be on beam 63, but that it isn't up and running. said it was for the jupiter 3 satellite...it was supposed to have launched already but was delayed.

GabeU
Distinguished Professor IV

@kellycha0s 

 

You're likely in just the right spot, geographically speaking, as there are places that beams from the two Jupiter satellites can overlap, giving the ability to be switched to the other beam/satellite if the original is problematic.  It sounds like you were originally on the Echostar 19 satellite and your service was switched to the Echostar 17 satellite.

 

I think a lot of the delays in the Jupiter 3 (Echostar 24) launch were due to Covid.  From what I can find on the net it looks like it won't be going up until 2023.  🙁


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maratsade
Distinguished Professor IV

Yeah, it may have to do with this. Other people have been switched but in general I thought this was not doable. I hope I'm wrong and the OP can try switching to see if things improve, though latency won't improve as it's due to the laws of physics, and those aren't changing any time soon. 

 


@GabeU wrote:

@kellycha0s 

 

You're likely in just the right spot, geographically speaking, as there are places that beams from the two Jupiter satellites can overlap, giving the ability to be switched to the other beam/satellite if the original is problematic.  It sounds like you were originally on the Echostar 19 satellite and your service was switched to the Echostar 17 satellite.

 

I think a lot of the delays in the Jupiter 3 (Echostar 24) launch were due to Covid.  From what I can find on the net it looks like it won't be going up until 2023.  🙁


 

GabeU
Distinguished Professor IV

@kellycha0s 

 

To add to the information Damian has provided, and though at this point you're probably already aware of this and have tried it, I figured I would mention the Video Data Saver, just in case.  Turning it off or snoozing it may help, especially when the stream is in HD.

 

Also, in addition to what he mentioned about downloading films/programs, one of the things a number of HughesNet subscribers have found helpful, including myself and @maratsade, is PlayOn Cloud.  It's a service that takes your chosen item, whether a TV episode or a movie, streams it to and records it on a 'cloud based' DVR, then converts the recording to an mp4 file that you can download, whether manually, automatically or by schedule.  The scheduling can be a great way to take advantage of the Bonus Zone data.  You can then watch the item on anything that can play an mp4 file, including smart TVs, computers, phones, tablets, etc.  Even some DVD and BluRay players can play mp4s, whether they're written to a disc or from a USB flash drive.  For myself, I copy the mp4s to an external USB HDD that I connect to my Smart TV in order to watch them.  The mp4s never expire, and being that you're watching from an already downloaded file there is no buffering.

 

Over the last few years I've built up a library of literally hundreds of movies and TV shows.

 

It's just an idea, but if you have any questions about PlayOn Cloud please feel free to ask.  


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i've played around with the video data saver feature. it never really seems to do much by way of improving video quality.

 

i just recently discovered cloud based dvr! i'm still learning about it...trying to understand how it works but i think it could work... i don't have a smart tv. i have a roku player. and my laptop.

 

looking at the playon cloud app now, thanks.

maratsade
Distinguished Professor IV

Do you have a smartphone? Play On Cloud works best as an app on a smartphone. You can set up the recordings, then download them to your laptop, and from there you can put them on a USB drive. I connect my laptop to the TV with an HDMI cable and watch stuff without any buffering. Plus you can keep the files forever. 

GabeU
Distinguished Professor IV

@kellycha0s 

 

Does your Roku have a USB port on it?  If so, it may be able to play mp4 files from a USB flash drive.


Ryzen 5 3400G | MSI B450M Pro-M2 MAX | 16GB Corsair Vengeance DDR4 3000 | XPG SX8200 Pro 512GB NVMe | Windows 10 Pro
maratsade
Distinguished Professor IV

Good point!

i have a smartphone, yeah. i'll look into it.

there is a usb port on the roku. problem is that from what i gather you can't download netflix, amazon or hulu and put them on a thumb drive...at least that's what google seems to be telling me. maybe with the cloud dvr it works differently? i'll keep looking into it.

all good ideas and i'm sure i'll figure out some ways to make it easier to watch movies.

 

having said all that i'd be remiss not to point out the obvious: these ideas, good as they may be, are still workarounds and not a solution. speeds should be better. simple as that. i'm paying for a service/product and not really getting what i pay for. so i'm still going to be pesky and still going to complain.

GabeU
Distinguished Professor IV


@kellycha0s wrote:

problem is that from what i gather you can't download netflix, amazon or hulu and put them on a thumb drive...at least that's what google seems to be telling me.


That's what PlayOn Cloud does for you. I've gotten scads of movies and TV shows from all three of those services, and from HBO Max, Disney+, Paramount+ and a few others. I've even rented movies from Amazon and gotten them using PlayOn Cloud.  Remember, when you set up a movie or TV show to record using the PlayOn Cloud app on your Android or Apple phone or tablet, PlayOn streams it to their server and records it like a DVR.  Then, when it's finished recording, they convert it to an mp4 file, they send you a link, and you then download the file.  Or, like I mentioned, you can schedule the file to download during the Bonus Zone time period. You can then copy the downloaded file to a USB flash drive, insert the drive into your Roku, and using the Roku's built in player you can play the file, just like watching it from a DVD or BluRay.  I tend to use my Android tablet to set up the recordings, but I download them to my Mac in order to write them to the USB drive.  I actually use an 8TB USB external HDD instead of a flash drive, as I have far too many movies and shows to fit on a flash drive.   

 

It works with all of these services....

 

Screen Shot 2022-06-10 at 1.18.19 AM.png 

 

PlayOn Cloud has monthly plans, but what maratsade and I do is just buy cloud credits.  The only catch with using cloud credits instead of having a monthly plan is that the recordings are only stored on their server for seven days, so you have to make sure to download the file within seven days or it gets deleted.  But the credits themselves never expire.  It 'costs' one credit per movie or TV show in 480p/SD or 720p/HD, or three credits per movie or TV show in 1080p/Full HD.  We often get emails with cloud credit sales.  One I often use when I'm running low is 219 credits for $24.  It's a 'Game of Thrones' sale, the idea being that there are 73 episodes of GOT and you'd need 219 credits to get them all in 1080p (or one credit per in SD or HD), but the credits can be used for anything, not strictly Game of Thrones.  They have a sale on their site for 50 credits for $7, so if you just wanted to try it to see if you like it that might be the way to go.  The PlayOn Cloud app is free, and other than the recording credits there's no cost, unless you sign up for a monthly plan, which includes a specific number of recording credits per month and a set amount of cloud storage space that doesn't expire after seven days, but if you're able to download the file(s) within seven days I wouldn't bother with a monthly plan.

 

I should also mention that, when comparing data usage for streaming and using PlayOn Cloud, you can actually save a bit of data by using the latter.  Like if you're trying to stream a two hour movie from Amazon Prime in Full 1080p HD, it might take upwards of 4GB or more data.  But with PlayOn Cloud it would likely be around 2.3GB or so.  The closest I could find on my recent recordings is a 1:40 Prime movie from Monday that ended up being 1.91GB.   

 

It can seem a bit confusing at first.  It took me a couple of months to even get up the nerve to try it as I didn't quite understand how it worked, but it didn't take long to get the hang of it.  And again, please feel free to ask questions.  

 


@kellycha0s wrote:

having said all that i'd be remiss not to point out the obvious: these ideas, good as they may be, are still workarounds and not a solution. speeds should be better. simple as that. i'm paying for a service/product and not really getting what i pay for. so i'm still going to be pesky and still going to complain.


Absolutely.  They're a way to get around the buffering issue.  But do keep one thing in mind: with streaming, if you wanted to watch a movie again you'd have to stream it again, using that much more data to do so.  With PlayOn Cloud, once you download a movie or TV show it is yours forever, to watch as many times as you want, and the only data you'd use is when you download it that one time.

 

And just in case, no, I don't work for or have anything to do with PlayOn Cloud.  LOL.  I just like it and use it a lot.


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maratsade
Distinguished Professor IV

"speeds should be better. simple as that. i'm paying for a service/product and not really getting what i pay for. so i'm still going to be pesky and still going to complain."

 

You're paying for a data package that comes with certain limitations, and you're getting a data package that comes with certain limitations.  Simple as that. You can complain, of course, and likely you will continue to do so, but it won't change the limitations of the technology, as they are inherent to it.  As the Rolling Stones put it, you can't always get what you want. 

"You're paying for a data package that comes with certain limitations, and you're getting a data package that comes with certain limitations. Simple as that. You can complain, of course, and likely you will continue to do so, but it won't change the limitations of the technology, as they are inherent to it."

 

We'll have to agree to disagree here. I don't believe my slow speeds have anything to do whatsoever with the "limitations of the technology" rather it has everything to do with Hughes overselling their service and not updating/expanding technology in a timely fashion.

 

Anyway...just an update: my speeds magically got faster after I started this thread. Then I was out of town for over a week. Got back yesterday and afternoon and evening speeds are 1/2 mbps. Unacceptable. So I'm having tech support out to the house to change the beam again. See if it helps.

 

**What Gabe originally wrote and then edited out: "You have already had many cases escalated over the last 2 years and a lot of them allude to the fact that the only gateways your able to be switched to both experience issue frequently."**

 

So both beams (gateways? same as beams?) have "issues"... but maybe one is better than the other.

 

Change doesn't happen because people complacently accept poor business practices. It's naive to believe that the only problem here is "limitations of the technology".  Obviously Hughes has control over speeds. They can throttle and deprioritize, right? I also know they can boost speeds...they've done it for me and told me they were doing it.

 

Okay, time to get the cloud video thing up and running. Thanks for all the great information and help with that.

 

If this thread is still alive after my service call I'll report back here....it may help someone else who is struggling with slow speeds.

 

 

 

 

maratsade
Distinguished Professor IV

"If this thread is still alive after my service call I'll report back here"

 

Great, thanks.