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Thread: Lag spikes

  1. #1
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    Lag spikes

    For at least a month, I have had lag issues while gaming. I have only really noticed it playing "New World" which I believe uses TCP vs UDP. I downloaded Ping Plotter and every hour I get lag that is a saw tooth pattern for 3 minutes over a period of more than a month. I also get complete disconnects for a few minutes every 16-18 hours. I just started collecting data from my cable modem, did a factory reset, and I have some more odd data. My modem is an SB8200, and I have been using it for more than a year without issue. It is supposed to be 32 channels, but I have a channel 33 that has had millions of "corrected" packets, or whatever it is called for cable modems. In 90 minutes, it is at 800 million corrected, but uncorrected is unchanged. I absolutely notice performance in gaming, but buffering while streaming video and music hides it. The 3 min lag spike every hour is almost absolute; I lost my Ping Plotter data when the free period ended to test drift (may be an hour and 30 seconds). Outside of this period my connection is awesome. How do I approach my ISP? What can cause these issues? All of my power levels for channels are about 1DBmV-3, except channel 33 at 3.8. All of my corrected and uncorrected on the other channels are either 0 or double digits, not worth posting a screenshot.

  2. #2
    Administrator Philip's Avatar
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    Some corrected errors are common with Cable technology in general, it's hard to approach this as just one channel problem. It is possible that there is some interference exactly in that frequency range, but the system should pick the best channels on it's own.

    1 DBmv sounds great, anything +-7DBmv should be fine. How does it change, and how is the upstream power though, especially when experiencing issues? If upstream power gets too high you will run into problems. To approach issues you should always make sure you have tight connectors, keep cable modem a foot or two away from sources of electromagnetic interference (routers, power strips, UPSes, fluorescent lights, etc.). Also, if you have the option to remove any splitters before the cable modem do it, even if it brings the downstream power a bit higher.

    To approach your ISP you'd have to get them to send a tech to check the line and node, but it's hard to troubleshoot such intermittent issues, so you should make sure to cover whatever you can on your end first.

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    The irony is, is that is not intermittent... It is very frequent; *every* hour with a few second drift (started at 28 after the hour and after a week or two at 38 after the hour). I only have a single splitter currently, one that splits it from my living room and my bedroom, but this only recently happened. I did have a technician out on an unofficial capacity recently; my neighbor had cable installed recently and the tech disconnected my connection to redo the connector at the patch panel. The system tried to use an old modem for provisioning (no clue how that happens) and customer service literally told me to go for a walk and see if anything was happening, and that is how I found this out. Tech tested cable to the home and cable to the plug and everything was great. My cable modem is clean, so I don't think I spilled a beer on it to affect circuitry every hour for 3 minutes. I am not sure when the numbers of corrected errors roll over, but I definitely went past a billion over night. As I was typing this, I had another 3 min lag spike and refreshed my cable modem web portal a dozen times with no fluctuation in power levels and no increase in the rate of corrected codewords (i still had another 3 million corrected on this channel 33 though).

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    Is the only way to add an image, from a url?

  5. #5
    Administrator Philip's Avatar
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    Is it possible that some device/router on your network is running something that produces network traffic every hour? How is your upstream power? Does the number of errors increase at that particular time every hour, or is it random? (could be unrelated).

    You can upload an image from your local computer too.. However, there may be some limit for new users, you don't have many posts and we get a lot of spammers so there are some limits.


    As to the splitter... Is it before the cable modem? I would look at it carefully, it is possible to be replaced by a tap (directional coupler), that way you can get another 3db+ of clean signal to the modem, without much difference to the TV side.
    See: https://www.speedguide.net/faq/what-...tter-and-a-425
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  6. #6
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    Well, now my ISP *insists* it is an issue with Motorola products and that they no longer recommend Motorola devices. I am just going to go to their store front and pick up a Netgear CM1000 from them (I could probably get a bunch of months waived from the rental fees since Motorola is listed on their page). It sounds just a little too convenient to blame Motorola, but I figure it is worth a shot. As far as errors and signal levels, the errors increase at pretty much the same rate. I would have to toss it on a graph to verify, but it is constantly increasing and does not appear to increase in rate during the spikes. Same with up and down signal levels, I am unable to monitor them real time, but I refreshed the page a few dozen times in the 3 min period with no changes. Right now I am just watching a bar graph for network performance in task manager to see if there is any significant traffic during the lag spike, like some app trying to use massive traffic every hour.

  7. #7
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    So I watch the network resource monitor and task manager, and while there was a little jitter as it was resending and not receiving packets, nothing else was randomly using data. Ping Plotter is sending pings to 13 hops every half second and my send/receive is a constant 16Kbps/24Kbps respectively.

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    Also, about the splitters, there is a single splitter that splits the cable to my living room (where my computer is located) and the bedrooms, with an additional splitter between the other two, but I do not have cable service and there is nothing connected in either room. I was originally connected to one of the rooms as an office with satisfactory signal levels as well. My upstream channel power is between 40-45 dBmV consistent as well on 4 channels plus the ofdm channel at 34.

  9. #9
    Administrator Philip's Avatar
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    Upstream power is ok. I am not sure local network monitor on your PC can detect network traffic from other devices (if any), but at least you know that PC is likely not the source. Changing the cable modem could make a difference, as every make/model responds differently to power levels, but the modem may not necessarily be the issue even if this works. You could always buy a matching Netgear modem if it works to avoid the company fees.

    Removing a splitter that is before the cable modem is an easy/cheap way to try and get a cleaner signal. You can replace it with a coupler, or a tap if you need the split. In general, eliminating unused cable runs with unterminated ends reduces noise ingress, as external RF signals leak into the unterminated line ends and can cause issues.
    Linux is user friendly, it's just picky about its friends...
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