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I apologize I think this question is in the wrong forum, so....

How can I tell if the DSL/CABLE/... connection to my home is generally working?

Right now, the various broadband speed tests all show a very reasonable (for the US) latency of about 40ms, with a download speed of 15Kb/s.

And yet, as I surf CNN, Amazon, Office Max, and various other sites this afternoon, I notice that many of the images, but not all, are broken, and the big wheel in the tab keeps on spinning indicating connections that are still downloading, slowly, and not completing.

What tools do you use, and what attributes do you look for to conclude Internet connectivity to your site is generally good?


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What's your ping to services like amazon S3? If you have a slow connection to content distribution networks, you're likely to have slow loading times on many pages, as lots of big companies have their images and such on CDNs. – nhinkle Apr 4 '11 at 0:33

Youtube Video's - If they load up quickly then it determines a good speed for me.

Facebook and other social sites - if I can view pictures etc.

general browsing - if it's snappy

give a try again about 3 times to test to make sure your speed is consistent.

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Determining whether a connection is 'good' is subjective and can be broken down into factors - these two come to mind.


You want to detect for present packet loss. This is to ensure that all (or enough) information is getting through the multitude of cables between the 'internet' and the computer you're in front. On a *nix-based system, this can be achieved with:

  • WireShark (a utility to yield thorough analysis
  • ping ($ man ping will give show you how to do a quick test).

On Windows, try:

  • Reading this guide.

Bandwidth - how quickly you're able to download/upload

A simple speed test (Bandwidth Place) would show accurate results.

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15 Kb/s?!?!

That's slow

Broadband should be measured in Mbps, or at the very least in hundreds of Kbps.

I suggest you go to and do a speed test there, then click 'share this result' and put the resultant image in your post so we can be certain of your figures.

Here's mine:

My Speed Test

Yours would equate to 0.015Mbps...

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