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I have a simple question, is there any way to determine which computer on LAN is causing network problems? (virus on on of them maybe) Like 10 minutes of 30 minutes of playing online game my ping rockets to 500-1000ms+

I think it's a computer in our household but I can't tell which, I was alone all day at home playing games without a problem and when my parents, brother and his girlfriend, each with their own computer, came home, it just went crazy. Any help would be appriciated. Thanks

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You would need to 'sniff' the traffic from each computer, from the router that supplies them all. What you observe might simply be, say, a Windows computer downloading 72 Mb of updates, or your brother watching YouTube. Special router boxes exists that (and many routers by themselves already can) prioritize traffic, so that a "sideband" sufficient for your needs is kept available even during traffic storms. Check out your router's manual. –  lserni Aug 20 '13 at 18:41
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You could use a tool called Wireshark which will let you see raw packets. However, not all wireless cards support the mode to listen for all traffic. –  nerdwaller Aug 20 '13 at 18:44
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What is more likely is your internet simply cannot handle 5 computers traffic. The alternative is replicate the situation and remove each device until the problem goes away. –  Ramhound Aug 20 '13 at 18:58
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I'm going to take a guess and assume it's because your parents, brother, and his girlfriend all got online when they came home, thus hogging up the bandwidth. –  KronoS Aug 20 '13 at 19:33

1 Answer 1

Not sure why this question was negatively rated. Its not easy to determine this without specialist networking equipment, but you can get some way there through deductive reasoning.

The first thing would be to look at the ports on your switch/router and look at how often the lights blink. The more often, the more data. (This is rather crude an inaccurate, but its simple to look at). If the light is flashing hard when very little is being done on the computer thats most likely the cause of your problem.

It could also be your connection - if you are using ADSL, the upload speed is a LOT slower then the download speed and this could be causing you issues. If someone is uploading large files, this could impact your speed.

It is also possible the problem is simply the server you are connecting to is getting overloaded at peak times (although this is unlikely). Using MTR (or WinMTR or similar) you should be able to see where the latency is coming in, which could show if its a LAN issue (latency spikes on the first hop), a constrained connection to the Internet (second hop), or a problem with your provider.

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