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56K Tweaks

Posted September 2003 by Steve Sinchak

One of the most frustrating things to have with a computer is a slow internet connection and 56K is about as slow as it gets these days. I feel the pain that 56K users have and hope that by following this thread they can experience a faster more reliable internet connection. There are a few things that one must understand prior to tweaking their 56K connections. The first is that it is actually a 53.3K connection since that is the speed that the FCC limits you to, on top of that most dialup users actually connect in the 40,000 – 50,000K range, which is excellent by dialup standards. Being that you actually connect in the 40-50K range you need to understand that your maximum throughput is only going to be around 6 kilobytes per second.


•     First and most important is for you to download the latest drivers for your modem from the manufacturer’s website.

•     Make sure you have a “clean” phone line, no static on your line. If you have static you will have a very low connect speed and no tweak will fix that.

•     You need to download CableNut from here, it is the most comprehensive internet connection tweaking app available.

Setting your TCP/IP and AFD registry parameters for optimum performance.

Use the following settings in CableNut:

DefaultReceiveWindow = 8192
DefaultSendWindow = 4096
DisableAddressSharing = 1
InitialLargeBufferCount = 20
InitialMediumBufferCount = 48
InitialSmallBufferCount = 64
LargeBufferSize = 40960
MaxFastTransmit = 6400
MediumBufferSize = 15040
PriorityBoost = 0
SmallBufferSize = 1280
TransmitWorker = 32
FastSendDatagramThreshold = 1024
EnableFastRouteLookup = 1
EnablePMTUDiscovery = 1
IgnorePushBitOnReceives = 0
GlobalMaxTcpWindowSize = 8760
MaxFreeTcbs = 4000
MaxHashTableSize = 8192
MaxNormLookupMemory = 1500000
SackOpts = 1
SynAttackProtect = 1
Tcp1323Opts = 0
TcpLogLevel = 1
MaxDupAcks = 3
TcpMaxHalfOpen = 100
TcpMaxHalfOpenRetried = 80
TcpRecvSegmentSize = 1460
TcpSendSegmentSize = 1460
TcpTimedWaitDelay = 30
TcpUseRFC1122UrgentPointer = 0
TcpWindowSize = 8760
MaxConnectionsPer1_0Server = 8
MaxConnectionsPerServer = 4
DefaultTTL = 128
DisableUserTOSSetting = 0
TcpMaxDataRetransmissions = 6
DefaultTOSValue = 90

Other important tweaks to improve your connection.

Open your control panel and select the phone and modem properties icon – select the modems tab, under the modems tab highlight your modem and select properties

•     General tab:

Set your speaker volume to your preference
Maximum port speed – 115,200

•     Advanced tab:

•     Extra Settings – this is where you put in initialization strings, they can help stabilize your connection. Try the following websites for init strings for your modem.

•     Advanced port settings – check “use FIFO buffers” then slide both bars to the far right.
•     Change default preferences:
Port Speed - 115,200
Data Protocol - Standard EC
Compression - enabled
Flow Control – hardware

•     Advanced:

Data bits – 8
Parity – None
Stop Bits - 1
Modulation – Standard

Now select the Network and Dialup Connections and right click on your ISP’s icon and select properties.

•     General tab:

Highlight your modem and select “configure”, set the maximum speed to 921,600 and under “hardware features” all the boxes are checked.

•     Networking tab:

Uninstall all the protocols you don’t need. If this is a stand alone pc then all you need is Internet Protocol TCP/IP.

Select the settings button and make sure all the boxes are checked.

Setting your COM port speed properly:

Right click on My Computer and select properties – hardware – device manager – select your COM port – port settings tab – bits per second 128000 (you may need to set this a few times to make it stick).

Other important registry tweaks:

•     Speeding up network browsing.

Open regedit and navigate to:


Delete the key: {D6277990-4C6A-11CF-8D87-00AA0060F5BF}

•     Faster webpage tweak by giving priority to DNS lookup.

Copy and paste the following and make it a .reg file and merge it into your regstry:

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00



•     Forward buffer memory tweak, this controls how much RAM TCP/IP uses for storing packet data in the router packet queue.

Copy and paste the following and make it a .reg file and merge it into your regstry:

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00



•     By default Windows 2K & XP cache everything in the DNS cache service, both correct and faulty DNS lookups. To increase performance by eliminating the caching of faulty DNS lookups, copy and paste the following and make it a .reg file and merge it into your regstry:

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00



Internet Explorer important settings:

Open Internet Explorer and select Tools - Internet Options - under the General tab in the Temporary Internet files section select the Settings button.

Select "Every visit to the page" and set the amount of disk space to use: to no more than 80MB. Now select the Connections tab and select LAN Settings make sure EVERYTHING there is unchecked and select OK.

Select the Privacy tab and choose Advanced check the box "Override automatic cookie handling" and for First-party Cookies - Accept, Third-party Cookies - Block and check "Always allow session cookies. Now NO MORE SPYWARE COOKIES.

Open Internet Options and under temp internet files - settings select – every visit to page.

If you have a dial up connection I HIGHLY recommend using a download manager, it will help maximize your download speed, resume downloads if you are disconnected and you can even schedule downloads for the middle of the night (it will automatically dial up and download the desired file and hang up when done) when you aren't using your pc.

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