Slow internet speeds on WLAN

  • I'm getting really slow internet speeds on my wireless access points when they're connected through pfSense, desktops and other wired devices get full download speeds up to 100mbps.

    I've tried different access points and all of them are getting roughly 5-10mbps when connected through pfSense, if I connect one directly to the modem, wireless speeds shoot up to 60-80mbps even far away from the access point.

    I've also tried factory settings, different switches, and connecting the AP directly to the lan port with the same result.

    Using version 2.4.4 on a Dell Optiplex 780 w/ Intel dual gigabit nic, Dell PowerConnect 2716 switch, TP-Link EAP115 access points

  • That doesn't make sense. All the traffic between the APs and pfSense is plain old Ethernet. Does it matter how many APs are connected through the switch? Are you seeing errors? A difference like that sounds like a configuration error or perhaps a bad cable. Also the switch is capable of Gb, but the AP only 100 Mb. Does the switch configuration show 100 Mb or Gb enabled? Full/half duplex?

  • AP is showing 100m full duplex connection any way I connect it, I’ve tested all involved cables and they check out. Made a new cable anyway just to test got same result. No errors show in any logs, no tx/rx errors on the AP. Switch is definitely giving gigabit connection on all clients capable of it.

    Only thing I haven’t tried is a different router so I can’t say for sure pfsense is at fault yet.

  • LAYER 8 Global Moderator

    @landonk said in Slow internet speeds on WLAN:

    TP-Link EAP115 access points

    Love that design they state 300Mbps N, but only 2.4 and only a 10/100 nic - brilliant <rolleyes>.. You can only see a 300Mbps PHY on 2.4 if using 40mhz - which is not actually a valid configuration supported by the standard.. And your 10/100 nic would limit you to top speed of max 90ish mbps anyway.. Just freaking brilliant ;)

    If your showing 100mbps full duplex and not some sort of mismatch - you sure your not at 10 with those speeds? What does the client show for its PHY connection?

    Pfsense has no clue to if the client is wireless or wired... What does a wired client connect to pfsense see?

  • In the AP firmware, the lowest rate I see is 47mbps and the highest is 128.8mbps. Still only seeing 10-12mbps to the internet.
    Looking at the switch the lights indicate 100m connection for both APs.
    Wired clients get full speed on the internet (roughly 100mbps down) and gigabit on transfers locally.

  • I seem to have solved it, I added a new interface on OPT1 and gave the access points their own network. Now they're operating at full speed. Not sure why it would be any different but it's working

  • No, you haven't solved it. You've found a work around. To solve it, you have to find out the cause of the poor performance.

  • Good point, but I still have no idea what was causing the slow down ☹

  • LAYER 8 Global Moderator

    So you moved the AP to a different network and now good?

    If so my GUESS would be your other network is flooded with broadcast/multcast traffic and or traffic just between wireless and local.. Eating up your wireless bandwidth.

    Since you say it went away when you isolated to own network - this would SUGGEST large amounts of broadcast or Multicast traffic that does not hurt your overall gig speed.. But can kill wireless.

    How many clients on your network? Do a simple sniff from one of them do you see large amounts of broadcast traffic? Move it back - is there something going on between wireless clients and devices local.. Say local dropbox or something trying to sync, etc.

    Just sniff on one of your wireless clients on the network where your slow - do you see lots of broadcast/multicast traffic? But you have seem to have found on your own one of the many reasons you isolate wireless to their own broadcast domain ;) and don't just connect them to your 200 host flat network.. With chatty kathy windows boxes are the worse!!!

    Does tplink have any sort of broadcast/multicast filtering? Unifi has option to block it from the lan side to the wireless side - this could break some stuff depending on what your doing..


    I don't need to block it because my wireless networks are not connected to large lan networks with lots of broadcast traffic. I see 300+ mbps on any of my clients that support such speeds.. And even the clients I have I tend to tweak them to lower noise output. I sniff my networks now and then and if I see any sort of weird noisy traffic I investigate and disable.. Not a big deal if you have a handful of clients but if your have hundreds then sure it could kill wifi networks that are not filtered from having to send that traffic over the wifi. And block multicast at the switch port the AP is connected to anyway.

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