Slow WiFi in Windows 10

Recently I’ve switched my Internet provider. The new one delivers Internet trough optic fiber to the last mile and the speed should be 100MBit/s. Speed tests over a cable confirm the speed is very close to 100 MBit/s. I however noticed some lags and slowness on my laptop when using WiFi which was not expected. Speedtest.netshowed this:

The results are far away from what I would expect! Again, when attached via LAN cable – everything is fine.

This is not the first time I’ve seen such poor WiFi speed results. But I thought it was because of many WiFi networks near by. Initially I’ve blamed my MikroTik router because there were tons of complaints in many forums on the Web. But the case here was a bit different there was only one WiFi network here – mine. It was open space, with direct view to the router.

So I started digging into the issue. I’d upgraded router’s firmware, then updated Windows, then found newer drivers for my WiFi adapter (Qualcomm Atheros QCA61x4). I’ve also tweaked router’s WiFi params. Surprisingly nothing have changed a bit.

I’ve also tested the speed with my phone. I was amazed – it reached speeds like 60 MBit/s! Pause…so my laptop became the main suspect.

After refining my search I’ve came across some forum threads that were suggesting to disable the Location service in Windows. That was very illogical but decided to give it a try. Well – everything was the same i.e. no change. But by mistake I disabled the Bluetooth service (WinKey + A):

And…wow! Suddenly things got better:

Well, this was not the desired speed but 50 megs is 50%+ increase in speed! That was a surprise 🙂

Then I searched the Web again, this time knowing what to search for. And I’d found blogs like that:FIX: FOR VERY SLOW WIFI IN WINDOWS 10. It seems that some Bluetooth devices may interfere with WiFi cards. In other cases the fact that these devices share the same bus caused problems. Others were blaming encryption settings that degrade performance. I’m not sure what was the root cause in my case, but I was happy to finally find a solution.

Interestingly a friend of mine had similar issues. But he got better WiFi speed results when turning off the Location service. So it’s about experimenting.

In summary if you experience slow WiFi speeds, try the following:

0) Ensure you’re connected at “n” standard

1) Turn off the Bluetooth service via WinKey + A

2) Try stopping the Location service

3) Update WiFi adapter’s drivers

4) Scan networks and signal levels at your place (I’ve used WiFi Analyser via App Store)

5) Update router’s firmware

6) Play with router’s WiFi settings

7) Test WiFi connection with your mobile phone

I’m sure most people (including me) do not know the actual bandwidth they’re using when connected to home’s router. It may be because even 10 MBit/s is enough for Web browsing, communication and YouTube. But given that Internet speed increase over time, slow download / upload speeds will begin to be noticed more frequently. So test the speed and performance of your internet connectionto ensure you get the maximum of your hardware 🙂

Hope this helps!

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