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Noldor
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Laptop without no onboard ethernet gets asymmetrical speeds through USB 3.0 Ethernet adapter

Sun Aug 28, 2022 1:00 pm

Hi, I have a small issue which is puzzling me: I have an older laptop (Asus A509FA with i5-8265U, 8 GB DDR4 2400 and 500 GB SSD, and integrated graphics) which has no ethernet port and I tested it with an USB ethernet adapter to see how it works (I am on a 1 Gbps network). I used for the test two USB Gigabit adapters, one with a USB 3.0 type A connector, the other with an USB 3.0 type C connector. I tested it on speedtest.net and the download speeds were significantly smaller than the upload speeds: 250 - 500 Mbps download versus 700-800 Mbps upload. The USB ethernet adapter work otherwise fine, because I tried them on different machines and I got speeds of 900 Mbps for both download and upload.
Does anyone have any idea why the download speed on this Asus A509 is much slower than the upload? Is the laptop not powerful enough or it is because it does not possess a native ethernet card?
 
meerkt
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Re: Laptop without no onboard ethernet gets asymmetrical speeds through USB 3.0 Ethernet adapter

Sun Aug 28, 2022 2:05 pm

I don't think the CPU is the problem, though speedtest.net isn't the most efficient. Try also:
https://openspeedtest.com
https://fast.com
https://librespeed.org

Does the very same adapter, on the same internet connection, 5 minutes later, work faster on another computer?

Also try testing in the LAN. Either by copying files in Windows, or with something like the iperf2/iperf3 (commandline).
 
Noldor
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Re: Laptop without no onboard ethernet gets asymmetrical speeds through USB 3.0 Ethernet adapter

Sun Aug 28, 2022 2:55 pm

meerkt wrote:
I don't think the CPU is the problem, though speedtest.net isn't the most efficient. Try also:
https://openspeedtest.com
https://fast.com
https://librespeed.org

Does the very same adapter, on the same internet connection, 5 minutes later, work faster on another computer?

Also try testing in the LAN. Either by copying files in Windows, or with something like the iperf2/iperf3 (commandline).


All other three gave the same results.

Does the very same adapter, on the same internet connection, 5 minutes later, work faster on another computer?


Exactly so. I tested that same adapters on my main laptop, a Asus ROG G15 with Ryzen 5800H, and I got 900/900 Mbps speeds. I tested the adapter with an USB 3.0 type A connector also on another older model laptop Asus F506 (which does not have an USB-C port) with i7-4720hq, 8 GB DDR 1600, SSD and Geforce 950M and also got 900 Mbps. Could it be something that throttles the CPU because the A509FA with i5-8265U slows down when running a test on speedtest, although, normally, it should not.
I am aware that an ethernet connected through USB uses the CPU more than one connected through RJ-45, but i7-4720hq and i5-8265u are roughly equal in performance (at least according to passmark) and the latter feels as if struggles at high ethernet download speeds, while the other does not.
 
meerkt
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Re: Laptop without no onboard ethernet gets asymmetrical speeds through USB 3.0 Ethernet adapter

Sun Aug 28, 2022 2:58 pm

Different drivers or different firewall?

Check the CPU usage.
Also some testing over LAN would be informative.
 
Noldor
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Re: Laptop without no onboard ethernet gets asymmetrical speeds through USB 3.0 Ethernet adapter

Sun Aug 28, 2022 3:40 pm

I don't think a LAN test is necessary, though.

I checked the CPU usage as you suggested and it gets close to 50%. It seems that the laptop (probably the cpu) gets throttled due to overheating. I placed it on a cooling pad and the speeds improved to 650-800 Mbps download and to 900 Mbps for upload. Any ideas what to do to remedy this issue? Change the cooler or maybe clean the lapto's interior of dust?

PS: It occurred to me to put in a cooling pad after noticing that the downside of the A509F was getting quite hot.
The Asus F506 with a i7-4720hq does not get hot and it seems it performs much better in speedtest.
 
Noldor
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Re: Laptop without no onboard ethernet gets asymmetrical speeds through USB 3.0 Ethernet adapter

Sun Aug 28, 2022 4:28 pm

After some inspection, there seems to be an issue with the fan on the Asus i5-8265U. Do you know some software for testing the cpu fan?
 
meerkt
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Re: Laptop without no onboard ethernet gets asymmetrical speeds through USB 3.0 Ethernet adapter

Sun Aug 28, 2022 5:12 pm

For speed reporting? HWiNFO is a good all-around hardware info tool:
https://www.hwinfo.com

But doesn't sound likely to be the cause.
 
Noldor
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Re: Laptop without no onboard ethernet gets asymmetrical speeds through USB 3.0 Ethernet adapter

Sun Aug 28, 2022 5:38 pm

meerkt wrote:
For speed reporting? HWiNFO is a good all-around hardware info tool:
https://www.hwinfo.com

But doesn't sound likely to be the cause.


Actually, I would disagree. If a cooler does not work properly, the pc will reduce the performance of the cpu to prevent it from getting fried. And a speed test will stress a cpu a little bit, especially if it's done through a USB.
And the correlation is just utterly obvious: if I place it on a table, the speed drops, if I place it on a functioning cooling pad, the speed rises close to maximum. And this happens again and again, through a dozen tests, every time.

But even if it is not the case, it does not matter anymore. The fan seems dead (the underside gets extremely hot and when I run a check with MyAsus, the fan stays quiet) and needs to be replaced as soon as possible (I have not figured out until now that there was a problem with the fan because it is the laptop of a relative who bought himself a new PC and only recently gave this A509F to me, if I could find some use for it; I am surprised the laptop is still working if the fan died more time ago).
 
meerkt
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Re: Laptop without no onboard ethernet gets asymmetrical speeds through USB 3.0 Ethernet adapter

Sun Aug 28, 2022 6:42 pm

I missed the message about the result changing with external cooling.

Still, odd. I'd think up and down should behave similarly. Also, even with Ookla's inefficient speedtest code, getting bogged down on a rather modern i5-8265U is a bit surprising. Plus, you said it's the same on the other, more efficient, speedtest sites.

Regarding working without a fan: it's a 15W TDP CPU, and on light loads probably far less. It detects the temperature and probably throttles this way or another (you could inspect how the clockspeeds differ with more/less cooling). I think I recall something about CPUs being able to run even without a heatsink, and that was 10 or more years ago.

Anyway, open it up (hopefully not too difficult though it could be), get a suitable fan from China, and replace it. While at it consider checking and replacing the thermal paste too, but that may be messier and possibly unneeded.
 
Noldor
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Re: Laptop without no onboard ethernet gets asymmetrical speeds through USB 3.0 Ethernet adapter

Sun Aug 28, 2022 7:29 pm

meerkt wrote:
I missed the message about the result changing with external cooling.

Still, odd. I'd think up and down should behave similarly. Also, even with Ookla's inefficient speedtest code, getting bogged down on a rather modern i5-8265U is a bit surprising. Plus, you said it's the same on the other, more efficient, speedtest sites.


Well, the download seems to stress the CPU a bit more than the upload (on other machines as well).
And, if the fan is not working at all, is not that surprising, since it gest to 90 degrees Celsius even on lighter tasks.

Regarding working without a fan: it's a 15W TDP CPU, and on light loads probably far less. It detects the temperature and probably throttles this way or another (you could inspect how the clockspeeds differ with more/less cooling). I think I recall something about CPUs being able to run even without a heatsink, and that was 10 or more years ago.


Well, that's probably why it has not been fried yet. A 45W+ TDP cpu probably would have been toast (literally) a long time ago.

Anyway, open it up (hopefully not too difficult though it could be), get a suitable fan from China, and replace it. While at it consider checking and replacing the thermal paste too, but that may be messier and possibly unneeded.


Will do.
 
Noldor
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Re: Laptop without no onboard ethernet gets asymmetrical speeds through USB 3.0 Ethernet adapter

Mon Aug 29, 2022 4:53 am

meerkt wrote:
For speed reporting? HWiNFO is a good all-around hardware info tool:
https://www.hwinfo.com

But doesn't sound likely to be the cause.


HWinfo does not seem to provide info about fan speed (albeit does a very good job providing info about the other components). Could you suggest any other alternative?
 
meerkt
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Re: Laptop without no onboard ethernet gets asymmetrical speeds through USB 3.0 Ethernet adapter

Mon Aug 29, 2022 5:43 am

There are simpler alternatives, like:
https://openhardwaremonitor.org
https://github.com/LibreHardwareMonitor ... r/releases

But HWiNFO should show it somewhere in the Sensor Status window, under the motherboard heading:
Image
 
Noldor
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Re: Laptop without no onboard ethernet gets asymmetrical speeds through USB 3.0 Ethernet adapter

Fri Sep 09, 2022 3:18 pm

meerkt wrote:
There are simpler alternatives, like:
https://openhardwaremonitor.org
https://github.com/LibreHardwareMonitor ... r/releases

But HWiNFO should show it somewhere in the Sensor Status window, under the motherboard heading:
Image


Replacing the fan solved the issue. It was indeed cpu throttling due to overheating, because the fan was not working properly.

I have a question about HWinfo, though. It is only a information reporting software or does it allow tinkering with the PC features (I notice that you can change some values in sensor status, although the changes seems to be meaningless).
 
meerkt
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Re: Laptop without no onboard ethernet gets asymmetrical speeds through USB 3.0 Ethernet adapter

Fri Sep 16, 2022 7:58 am

I never looked. There's an old forum post mentioning fan control, but I don't see it available.

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