Have you ever wondered how all your devices use your home network? Over time, you’re adding new devices, but you don’t know how this affects your network in turn.
That is why you need to test the speed of your home network. In the past, you could prevent this simply by testing your Internet connection. But a typical home used less technology back then.
You can perform your own internal network speed test using a simple program – LAN Speed Test. With easy-to-read results, you can finally check your home network speed whenever you want.
Install LAN speed test
Before you can test the speed of your home network, you’ll need the LAN Speed Test program. Totusoft provides the base version of LAN Speed Test for free, but also offers a licensed option.
If you pay the additional amount, you can register the software for your macOS and Windows computers. There are also several subtle data management benefits, as well as functionality-based ones. These mostly apply to more advanced users who want to challenge their network or go deeper into their data research.
For the purposes of a quick test, the free lite version works very well.
Discharge: lan speed test (Free, $10.00 for the full license)
Set up network sharing and use your public folder
Once you’ve installed LAN Speed Test, you’ll need a couple of networked computers to complete the test. The simplest configuration is to use the Public folder as a sandbox. To do this, you must have network sharing turned on before you can access the Public folder.
If you’ve never tried network sharing before, see how to easily share files between Mac and Windows for a quick rundown. This is crucial for testing your network speed, and is also useful for easily copying and pasting files between computers on your network.
When you first open LAN Speed Test, you want to set the correct folder for the test. Click start test or select the ellipsis next to the Folder dropdown menu to select your folder. From there you can navigate to the Public folder depending on your system type.
For macOS, navigate to Macintosh HD > Users > [username] > Public. For Windows, just navigate to C:\Users\Public.
Take your home network speed test
Once you’ve reached your shared folder, you’ll want to adjust the package size to set up your test. The package refers to the test file that you are sending to the shared folder.
Totusoft recommends starting with a package size of 1 MB for a quick test. But you can always increase the package size in repeated tests.
In simpler terms, you are basically deciding between creating a short or long test of your network transfer speeds. As you adjust the file size, the duration of the home network test will vary. Depending on the size of your package, it can last anywhere from a few seconds to hours.
For licensed users, you can also submit more than one package. With the added packages, you have more incentive to vary the minimum and maximum values. The added option is not required, but it can create a more realistic test scenario.
Anyway, if any of this information seems too confusing, just think about writing as your upload speed and reading as your download speed on your home network. Totusoft also offers online help documents for the more nuanced details of the program.
The terminology can be jarring at first. Just remember, this is about how to test your network speed at home.
Find out what matters in your report
After the write and read progress with the packet is finished, LAN Speed Test gives you a two-column breakdown of each.
Depending on your needs, you can use different aspects of the test results. However, for most, you will only want to focus on the final result of the Mbps and MBps test.
Mbps stands for megabits per second and refers to the download and update speeds of your home network. Just don’t confuse Mbps with MBps, which refers to megabytes per second. Megabytes would refer to the size of the file or the amount of data transferred.
Use the information from your report
With those notes in mind, you must be wondering what exactly you can do with those numbers. Mbps provides your download and upload speeds for your network, so you can easily use this test to check if something seems wrong with your speed.
If you’re having trouble with your speeds seeming strangely slow, you should investigate whether your older devices might be slowing down your home Wi-Fi network.
You can also use the MBps value to determine how long it would take to transfer any file. For example, if I have an upload speed of 54.26 MBps, it would take 2.7644 seconds to write a 150MB file. Just divide the size of the file you want to transfer by your upload rate.
Regardless, you can project the effectiveness of your setup after the home network speed test. If your rate falls below the promised speed rates and you consistently underperform, you may need to consider replacing your router. Sometimes a router just can’t handle the increased traffic load, so an upgrade can lead to new speed spikes.
Keeping in touch with the status of your network can save you a lot of hassle and headache if you can determine a cause when something goes wrong. Alternatively, check out how to boost your Wi-Fi signal and extend its range to troubleshoot distance-based speed drops.
The utility of an internal network speed test
Knowing the exact status of your network can help you plan precisely what your home can handle. Whether you’re streaming video or transferring files between two computers, you need to be in touch with your numbers, especially if you don’t want to lose quality.
LAN Speed Test offers a free option that does the main calculations for you and gives you a quick or detailed view of your home network speed. With this information, it’s much easier to determine the next step in speeding up your home network.