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Why Is My Internet So Much Slower With Windows 10?

Why Is My Internet So Much Slower With Windows 10?

A question we have been getting quite frequently since the release of Windows 10 is: Why is my Internet slower now?

The answer we have found for most clients comes down to three issues:

  1. Users are ‘reserving’ their copy of Windows 10 which is generating 2-3GB of downloading per system.
  2. Systems that have upgraded to Windows 10 have driver issues, particularly with wireless drivers.
  3. Issues related to systems that have upgraded to Windows 10 but have not yet been locked-down to prevent Microsoft from using your bandwidth for file-sharing.

Below we have posted the most common solutions for these issues.  We recommend that you consult your ESG engineer if you are using Windows 10 in a production environment for help on rolling any/all of these out to your systems.

Windows 10 Reservations

Microsoft’s system for Windows 10 deployment involves each system downloading and storing upwards of 3GB of files for the upgrade.  This download can come in the form of a 2GB or 3GB set of files once a user ‘allows’ the Windows 10 reservation.  The best solution in the short-term is to disable the Windows 10 alert/ads.  We have an article about this process here.

Wireless or Wired Network Driver Problems

When a system upgrades to Windows 10, any drivers that do not meet the Microsoft certification process can be replaced automatically with generic Microsoft drivers.  Unfortunately Microsoft does not warn you about this process.. it simply happens.  Running the Windows 10 pre-check can sometimes identify these issues, but if you have already updated to Windows 10 the damage is done and you have a driver that might not be optimized to your wireless or wired network adapter.  This situation results in dramatically slower network access times and web surfing.  Worse yet, in some cases you might not have any wireless at all after the Windows 10 update.

The solution for these network driver issues might vary based on your network adapter.  If you have an adapter from one of the large makers like Intel, check their website for the proper Intel Windows 10 updated drivers.  As always, we recommend MAKING A BACKUP of your system before you try changing drivers.  If newer drivers are not available, there are many ‘hack’ solutions that have been suggested on the web for fixing driver performance or lack of wifi driver functionality.  The validity of these solutions may vary greatly so proceed with extreme caution and as before, MAKE A BACKUP of your system before you begin troubleshooting.

Windows 10 Using Your Business Bandwidth

A hidden feature of Windows 10 is that by default it allows other users to access files stored on your computer in order to upgrade their own.  In theory, this is done so that downloads do not always have to come from Microsoft.. Microsoft can spread the load by allowing updates to come from your computers instead of theirs.  However, this is a really bad idea for a number of reasons in a business environment, not the least of which is that we have seen client networks being slowed by Windows 10 ‘sharing’ traffic.  You can read more about the issue in this ZDNet article.

The easiest solution to this issue is to either mark your network connection as METERED.. as the feature will not use connections marked as metered… or DISABLE the feature altogether.  To mark a connection as metered click Start > Settings > Network & Internet > Wi‑Fi > Advanced options and use the toggle switch under Set as metered connection.  To disable the feature, go to Start > Settings > Updates & security > Windows Update > Advanced options and then select Choose how updates are delivered, and use the toggle to turn Delivery Optimization off.