Why is wireless on my MacBook Pro so slow?

tom October 29, 2011
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The wireless speed on my hughesnet wireless is really slow. Using an Airport Extreme on a MacBook Pro 15″. I purchased the least expensive, could that be the reason?

  1. Brendan
    April 19, 2012 at 1:36 am

    I'm having the same issue with my macbook pro. When connected to the router directly the connection is great. Wireless, not so much. Any of my other devices seem to work just fine on the network when being used wirelessly. I am using the standard modem that I got from Rogers. 

    • Mike
      April 19, 2012 at 7:02 pm

      First you should make sure you are having a good signal:

      1. open up System Profiler (10.6) respectively System Information (10.7)
      2. navigate to "Network > AirPort" respectively "Network > Wi-Fi"
      3. find your network name within the "Current Network Information" section and take not of the signal and noise levels

      Take the raw numbers and calculate "noise - signal" which gives you the Signal to Noise Ration (SNR). If this is below 25[dB] your signal simply is weak=slow.

      If it's low you can only:
      (a) try setting a different wireless channel on your router/access point
      (b) try rebooting your router/ap (sometimes they just need it)
      (c) relocate your working space or router/ap

      Things you can try in case the SNR seems to be fine:

      - manually input DNS servers within "System Preferences > Network > AirPort", try those of your ISP, OpenDNS, GoogleDNS

      - try resetting the PRAM

      - try resetting the SMC

      - try changing the wireless security on your router/ap (Macs seem to work best with WPA2)

      Of course there is always the option of a hardware defect. Your AirPort card could be damaged or maybe the internal antennas not properly connected.
      Consider visiting an Apple Store or Apple Authorized Service Provider

    • Anonymous
      September 26, 2014 at 2:33 am

      What cable do you use to connect your mac book pro to the router?

  2. FIDELIS
    October 29, 2011 at 9:57 pm

    Hello, I would say the only way of finding out if it is your adapter or the connection is to try and connect your wireless to another network, preferably one with better speed.  If after connecting it to a network with faster speed, your connection is still slow, then you can try modifying the settings of your adapter to see if it can be improved. 

    If after connecting to faster speed, your wireless adapter picks up speed it, is not the adapter but the speed of your connection.  In that case, the only solution is to see if you can get a better package from your ISP.

  3. Anonymous
    October 29, 2011 at 4:06 pm

    Understanding Your Service
    http://welcome.hughesnet.com/faqs.cfm

  4. Mike
    October 29, 2011 at 10:41 am

    Is the wireless itself slow or the internet connection via HughesNet?

    If your internal network is slow I suggest to change the wireless channel on your AirPort Extreme via the AirPort-Utility.
    The best way to find the optimal channel is to use a tool like iStumbler too see which channel is occupied by nearby networks and then chose one that is the least used or overlapping. iStumbler will also show you signal strength and noise which should also help to improve the wireless signal.

    As for your internet connection I would say the problem is with HughesNet. If this is your provider I would say what you experience is totally normal.
    The fastest plan they offer is only 2Mbit and Satellite internet is not the best option in general.

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