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When I copy a file over my network using windows (in this case 7), it seems to use all available bandwidth which means that I can't do anything else on the network while the transfer is in progress. How can I limit the amount of bandwidth that windows uses so that I can keep using my network during file transfers?

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marked as duplicate by nixda, Kevin Panko, ukanth, Tog, James Jan 15 at 15:07

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A better switch? –  surfasb May 6 '12 at 12:12
    
"I can't do anything else on the network" - Examples please? What is your network configuration? –  sawdust May 7 '12 at 0:09
    
@sawdust The route between the computers is two network cables and a switch with another cable going to the router for internet. For example? Barely allowing anything that uses the network to dent it's 100% utilization of network resources. If I try to remote desktop in at the same time, the client essentially freezes. If i'm accessing any other files, when I try to read/write, it takes considerably longer (from a few seconds, to at least 5 minutes). Even music streaming from the computer has to pause and re-buffer every 3-4 seconds which takes usually about 10-15 seconds each time –  cgoddard May 7 '12 at 11:57
    
Your examples of "using the network" are also accessing the PC that is involved in the file copy. Seems like you really want to limit the I/O bandwidth used just by the copy process on one PC, rather than "stop Windows from consuming the (LAN) bandwidth". This does not seem like a network issue (as @surfasb 's comment addresses), but may be a resource allocation issue localized to just the one PC that has one process hogging its disk and NIC devices. Windows tends to favor the copy process so that it can complete in a timely manner & avoid complaints that transfers are slow. –  sawdust May 7 '12 at 20:55
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Don't know. A Unix user can adjust the priority of a process with the nice command. But I'm not sure how that would affect I/O usage. Process priority and schedulers tend to focus on the CPU resource. Prioritizing I/O is more complicated (e.g. an I/O operation typically cannot be interrupted or suspended, and aborting it could require a lot of cleanup) because of variable and/or unpredictable completion time. For example one disk request might be quick (from the cache), but the next I/O request could require a long seek and take 1000 times as long to complete. –  sawdust May 9 '12 at 0:50
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1 Answer

Have a look at the robocopy command (use the /? switch for full help). It has the /IPG Inter-Packet Gap switch which adds a delay between each packet (in milliseconds) designed to reduce bandwidth usage.

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