Our internet speed depends on a number of factors, with our internet connection package and technology playing the most crucial role. More often than not, however, the default settings on our operating system may create some kind of bottleneck on our connection. In this guide, we will see how we might be able to boost the internet speed by choosing the most appropriate TCP/IP settings.
Table of Contents
What is the TCP/IP protocol
TCP/IP (Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol) is a collection of communication protocols. Most computer networks, from our local LAN to the whole internet, are based on these protocols.
The TCP/IP program works on two levels. On the one hand, the Transmission Control Protocol undertakes the task to divide the messages we send over the internet into little pieces and accordingly to join these parts for the messages that we receive.
On the other hand, the Internet Protocol manages the address of each piece, to reach the correct destination. Most of us know this protocol as an IP address.
In short, the TCP/IP defines the way the data is packed and transferred over the internet.
How can I boost the internet speed
The network settings in Windows are predefined. This means that they don't change automatically according to the speed of our connection.
However, each of us has a different connection with a different internet speed and - of course - a different latency.
Since the network settings have the generic, one-size-fits-all values and therefore are not customized to our connection, it is only logical that they will create some kind of bottleneck on the speed and the latency, at least to the majority of the users.
So, to boost the internet speed and to make the most of our network capabilities, we have to change the TCP/IP settings according to our connection.
Advanced users that have a lot of experience with networks can fix these settings manually, either by altering the Windows registry or with the command line. For the rest of us, here comes TCP Optimizer.
TCP Optimizer is a freeware program, which allows us to configure the TCP/IP settings.
With its help, we can quickly and easily alter the advanced settings, without having to interfere manually in the Windows registry or to use a command line.
The program is small, light, and portable - which means there is no need to install it.
In the guide, we will use it on Windows 10 64 bit. However, TCP Optimizer supports all versions of Windows which we might come across.
In fact, it works on Windows XP, NT, 2000, 2003, Vista, 7, 2008 Server, 8, 8.1, 2012 Server, and Windows 10.
Downloading and first use
The only thing we have to do, therefore, is to download it from this webpage, by selecting the link to the latest version.
As of this writing, the newest version is the TCP Optimizer 4.06, which was released in September 2016.
In the Downloads folder, we will find the TCPOptimizer.exe file.
For it to work correctly, we should run it with admin rights, by right-clicking on the file and selecting “Run as administrator.”
At first glance, the main window of the application will seem somewhat complicated.
However, things are quite simple, and we will set the appropriate settings to boost the internet speed in a relatively automated way.
If you are the kind of person that wants everything ready and done with a mouse click, or if you just don’t want to deal with every setting separately, then the TCP Optimizer is made especially for you.
The only thing we have to do is set the highest speed of our internet plan at the Connection Speed field, which we will find at the top of the window.
We should note that we don’t want the exact speed we get, but the highest possible, according to our plan. For example, if we have a 24Mbps plan, but we only get 16Mbps, we should still set it at “24”.
Then we click on “Optimal” from the lower part of the program. With this button, the program adjusts the optimal settings automatically for our connection. Then, we simply press “Apply changes.”
In the window that will open, we tick the boxes “Backup” and “Create Log,” so that we create a backup of our previous settings. We click “OK.”
To apply our changes, we should restart the system, so we click on “Yes.” If we wish to reboot/restart later, we can still click “No.”
That was it. We finished with the optimal settings to boost the internet speed.
If you want to know what every option does, you can take a look at the manual of TCP Optimizer. You will find detailed information about every available setting.
As we mentioned above, there are numerous settings we can set manually, but first, we need to activate the custom profile. To do so, we select the box “Custom,” found at the bottom part of the window.
If we tick on it, we will see that we now have access to all the previously greyed-out fields.
On the Advanced Settings tab, we can apply several changes automatically to the Windows registry, so that the performance of our network at online games is enhanced.
For example, with a click, we can deactivate Nagle's Algorithm or the Network Throttling Index, which are popular methods among gamers to boost the internet speed.
We point out once more that these settings are addressed to more advanced users. If we don’t know what a setting does, it is advisable to avoid modifying the values.
Resetting default settings
In case that something goes wrong, or we didn't get the results we expected, the program offers us several ways of restoring the default Windows settings.
First of all, we can click on the box “Windows Default” which we will find at the bottom part of the window. Then, we click “Apply changes, ” and we perform the necessary reboot.
Furthermore, if we go to File, we can back up our current settings with a simple click.
The backup files are saved as a ".spg" file format at the same location we have placed the TCPOptimizer.exe. In our case, it is the Downloads folder.
By clicking on the option “Restore backup settings,” we can restore our preferred options at any given time. The only thing we have to do is select the backup we want and click “Open.”
The options “Reset TCP/IP” and “Reset Winsock” are quite useful as well.
Sometimes, we may encounter connection problems, where we cannot connect to the internet due to TCP/IP or Winsock errors. We can solve the problem with a simple reboot of the protocol or the Windows service via a command line.
In this case, the TCP Optimizer saves us the trouble and performs the reboot with a simple click.
Did you boost the internet speed with TCP Optimizer?
It is certain that we can achieve higher internet speeds with the proper TCP/IP settings. All we have to do is use a program like TCP Optimizer to tweak them.
How about you? Did you like TCP Optimizer or do you use any other programs to boost the internet speed? If you have tried the program or you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment below.
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