Internet Connection Speed Analysis

Martin Brinkmann
Mar 20, 2009
Updated • May 22, 2018

While bandwidth prices are slowly declining, it is still quite common that some Internet Providers try to influence the traffic consumption of their customers by manipulating transfer speeds.

One common method that Internet Service Providers use is traffic throttling. Traffic throttling methods limit certain kinds of traffic, for instance P2P traffic or Internet streaming, to reduce customer bandwidth.

ISPs select high bandwidth traffic usually for the throttling as they yield the highest return and may affect only a small part of the company's customer base.

Up until recently customers had little options to detect traffic shaping (or throttling); this changed with the release of online test tools provided by Measurement Lab.

Internet Connection Speed Analysis

internet connection tests

Internet connection speed analysis is part of the tool collection at M-Lab Measurement Lab gives consumers access to online troubleshooting tools to identify different kinds of connection speed issues including traffic shapring.

Measurement Lab was founded by the New America Foundation's Open Technology Institute, the PlanetLab Consortium, Google Inc., and academic researchers.

It provides access to online tools, some of which have been mentioned earlier on Ghacks. The tools that are provided on the MLAB website are (crossed out tools are no longer available(.

  • BISmark -- Host a home router that tests network performance over time.
  • Network Diagnostic Tool - Test your connection speed and receive sophisticated diagnosis of problems limiting speed.
  • Network Path and Application Diagnosis - Diagnose common problems that impact last-mile broadband networks.
  • MobiPerf -- Test designed to measure network performance on mobile platforms.
  • Neubot -- Run periodic tests to test network performance and network throttling.
  • OONI Probe -- Measures specific cases of network interference.
  • SamKnows -- Performance testing platform that runs several tests to check performance and quality of network connections.
  • DiffProbe (coming soon) -Determine whether an ISP is giving some traffic a lower priority than other traffic.
  • Glasnost - Test whether BitTorrent is being blocked or throttled.
  • Shaperprobe -- A test designed specifically to test traffic shapping.
  • Windrider -- Test to detect whether mobile providers performed application or service specific differentiation.
  • Pathload2 -- Tested the available bandwidth of Internet connections.

Click on any of the available tests to open the tests main page on the Measurement Lab website. Each page includes information on the test that you may want to read before you run the test.

Just click on "start test" if provided to run the test and wait for it to complete. All tests can be run without plugins or runtime libraries such as Java or Flash.

Each analysis provides results and detailed information on the test. When you run the Network Diagnostic Tool test for instance, you get the Internet connection's upload and download speed returned on the test results page. You may click on details or advanced to display lots of information that the text collected.

In this case, it collected packet loss, TCP receive window data, round trip time, timeouts, TCP time-out counter, and lots of additional collected data points.

Some tests may require that you select a server to run the test on. To achieve best results a server closest to you should be selected when you run the test. The only situation where this should not be done is if you need to analyze the connection to a specific region. The speed analysis provides the means to identify problems with the connection or certain protocols.

Internet Connection Speed Analysis
Article Name
Internet Connection Speed Analysis
The article takes a look at the Internet connection test tools of Measurement Lab which help you find out if your ISP or someone else throttles your speed.
Ghacks Technology News

Tutorials & Tips

Previous Post: «
Next Post: «


  1. ilev said on August 4, 2012 at 7:53 pm

    Doesn’t Windows 8 know that www. or http:// are passe ?

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on August 4, 2012 at 7:57 pm

      Well it is a bit difficulty to distinguish between domains and files for instance.

    2. Leonidas Burton said on September 4, 2023 at 4:51 am

      I know a service made by google that is similar to Google bookmarks.

  2. VioletMoon said on August 16, 2023 at 5:26 pm

    @Ashwin–Thankful you delighted my comment; who knows how many “gamers” would have disagreed!

  3. Karl said on August 17, 2023 at 10:36 pm


    The comments section under this very article (3 comments) is identical to the comments section found under the following article:

    Not sure what the issue is, but have seen this issue under some other articles recently but did not report it back then.

  4. Anonymous said on August 25, 2023 at 11:44 am

    Omg a badge!!!
    Some tangible reward lmao.

    It sucks that redditors are going to love the fuck out of it too.

  5. Scroogled said on August 25, 2023 at 10:57 pm

    With the cloud, there is no such thing as unlimited storage or privacy. Stop relying on these tech scums. Purchase your own hardware and develop your own solutions.

    1. lollmaoeven said on August 27, 2023 at 6:24 am

      This is a certified reddit cringe moment. Hilarious how the article’s author tries to dress it up like it’s anything more than a png for doing the reddit corporation’s moderation work for free (or for bribes from companies and political groups)

  6. El Duderino said on August 25, 2023 at 11:14 pm

    Almost al unlmited services have a real limit.

    And this comment is written on the dropbox article from August 25, 2023.

  7. John G. said on August 26, 2023 at 1:29 am

    First comment > @ilev said on August 4, 2012 at 7:53 pm

    For the God’s sake, fix the comments soon please! :[

  8. Kalmly said on August 26, 2023 at 4:42 pm

    Yes. Please. Fix the comments.

  9. Kim Schmidt said on September 3, 2023 at 3:42 pm

    With Google Chrome, it’s only been 1,500 for some time now.

    Anyone who wants to force me in such a way into buying something that I can get elsewhere for free will certainly never see a single dime from my side. I don’t even know how stupid their marketing department is to impose these limits on users instead of offering a valuable product to the paying faction. But they don’t. Even if you pay, you get something that is also available for free elsewhere.

    The algorithm has also become less and less savvy in terms of e.g. English/German translations. It used to be that the bot could sort of sense what you were trying to say and put it into different colloquialisms, which was even fun because it was like, “I know what you’re trying to say here, how about…” Now it’s in parts too stupid to translate the simplest sentences correctly, and the suggestions it makes are at times as moronic as those made by Google Translations.

    If this is a deep-learning AI that learns from users’ translations and the phrases they choose most often – which, by the way, is a valuable, moneys worthwhile contribution of every free user to this project: They invest their time and texts, thereby providing the necessary data for the AI to do the thing as nicely as they brag about it in the first place – alas, the more unprofessional users discovered the translator, the worse the language of this deep-learning bot has become, the greater the aggregate of linguistically illiterate users has become, and the worse the language of this deep-learning bot has become, as it now learns the drivel of every Tom, Dick and Harry out there, which is why I now get their Mickey Mouse language as suggestions: the inane language of people who can barely spell the alphabet, it seems.

    And as a thank you for our time and effort in helping them and their AI learn, they’ve lowered the limit from what was once 5,000 to now 1,500…? A big “fuck off” from here for that! Not a brass farthing from me for this attitude and behaviour, not in a hundred years.

Leave a Reply

Check the box to consent to your data being stored in line with the guidelines set out in our privacy policy

We love comments and welcome thoughtful and civilized discussion. Rudeness and personal attacks will not be tolerated. Please stay on-topic.
Please note that your comment may not appear immediately after you post it.