Steam Being Throttled?

  • 1
  • Problem
  • Updated 3 years ago
  • Acknowledged
Hi, I was wondering if anyone else using the platform Steam for gaming was experiencing throttling while downloading? I do a speed test and I'm getting like 9 megabits but when I go to download a game from Steam, its only downloading at around 100 Kb/s. The download speed on Steam is fine during the day, but it slows down drastically at night. I see speeds as high as 2.2 Mb/s during the noon hours. But, that isn't when the Late Night Free Zone is, and downloading games without the Late Night Free Zone can be punishing to my data cap. Would love to know if anyone else has recently developed this problem. Thanks! 
Photo of Timothy James

Timothy James

  • 62 Posts
  • 18 Reply Likes

Posted 3 years ago

  • 1
Photo of thorneo

thorneo

  • 90 Posts
  • 33 Reply Likes
YES they throttle and block it out completely when you go over your limit. this happens to me every month when I go over my limit..
Photo of Timothy James

Timothy James

  • 62 Posts
  • 18 Reply Likes
I haven't went over my limit though, and it is Late Night Free Zone as well. My bill just reset a couple days ago.
Photo of thorneo

thorneo

  • 90 Posts
  • 33 Reply Likes
it may be that your beam is swamped  on LNFZ. I know that my beam "327" is that way from 12:30a-3:30a every nite
Photo of Timothy James

Timothy James

  • 62 Posts
  • 18 Reply Likes
I wasn't awake to monitor this, but I think my speed might have kicked back up to 2.2 Mb/s at 3:30 because a lot of downloads starting finishing around 3:40. 
Photo of Timothy James

Timothy James

  • 62 Posts
  • 18 Reply Likes
But I do a speed test and it isn't as slow as the Steam Downloads.
Photo of Diana

Diana, Viasat Employee

  • 2231 Posts
  • 419 Reply Likes
Hi Timmy James, I would be glad to look into this for you. Please send your account and contadt information to exedelistens@viasat.com. Thanks  Exede Diana
Photo of Jason

Jason

  • 28 Posts
  • 20 Reply Likes
I have confirmed this as well.  Ran numerous speed tests showing 10 to 12mbit yet its ironic how Steam can only download games / updates at a whooping 50k/sec during LNFZ.  Also pure coincidence too I'm sure that this doesn't happen outside of LNFZ.

You do realize now Exede that based on recent net neutrality legislation passed by the FCC it is ILLEGAL to (de)prioritize or throttle traffic!?  Perhaps we should just have them look into this?  Or how about you quit with the shenanigans already!
(Edited)
Photo of Brian Shackelford

Brian Shackelford

  • 847 Posts
  • 243 Reply Likes
Just chiming in here....Steam is slow for me in the same time frames you are noting.  But then so is downloading ANY content from the internet at the same time.  Every download is showing slow speeds in spite of testmy.net and speedtest.net showing 4-5 Mbps.  This means to me that IF traffic shaping is occurring on Exede (which I am sure it is in some fashion) that applies to downloads, it is indeed being applied equitably to all download traffic.

The real test would be to try to download some larger files (greater than say 50 MB) at the same time and see what kind of rates you get on those.  My experience is that during really congested times (5:00 PM - 2:00 AM) when I use my connection Web browsing works fine, webmail works fine, most of the time netflix on the low setting works OK (times out every 30 minutes or so), however downloads are horrendously slow (12 - 30 Kbps) which is the same for Steam.  On my beam (329 in Virginia) it is will known at Exede that we are at (in my opinion over) capacity and are on one of if not the most utilized beam / gateway that they have.

I imagine other beams are catching up to us, however.
Photo of Brian Shackelford

Brian Shackelford

  • 847 Posts
  • 243 Reply Likes
Just chiming in here....Steam is slow for me in the same time frames you are noting.  But then so is downloading ANY content from the internet at the same time.  Every download is showing slow speeds in spite of testmy.net and speedtest.net showing 4-5 Mbps.  This means to me that IF traffic shaping is occurring on Exede (which I am sure it is in some fashion) that applies to downloads, it is indeed being applied equitably to all download traffic.

The real test would be to try to download some larger files (greater than say 50 MB) at the same time and see what kind of rates you get on those.  My experience is that during really congested times (5:00 PM - 2:00 AM) when I use my connection Web browsing works fine, webmail works fine, most of the time netflix on the low setting works OK (times out every 30 minutes or so), however downloads are horrendously slow (12 - 30 Kbps) which is the same for Steam.  On my beam (329 in Virginia) it is will known at Exede that we are at (in my opinion over) capacity and are on one of if not the most utilized beam / gateway that they have.

I imagine other beams are catching up to us, however.
Photo of Old Labs (VS1-329)

Old Labs (VS1-329)

  • 3803 Posts
  • 3844 Reply Likes
FWIW, comparison of Steam downloads vs. others (e.g. speedtest.net) may not be valid either - Steam appears to have its own client (not a Steam user so don't know) while others rely on standard browser functionality. Maybe something to consider in the analysis - but who knows what they do in that cllent (having written some web enabled desktop clients myself which give greater control in what I'm doing not to mention sometimes a lack of control).
(Edited)
Photo of John

John

  • 28 Posts
  • 5 Reply Likes
I've noticed slow downloads overall, for sure. I downloaded a file that was around 1gb a few days ago when I first got my laptop. I think it went around 250kb/s or so. But that is still 10 times faster than Steam gets. Maybe I just got lucky then, or am getting unlucky now. But if 25kb/sec is going to be the new normal then Exede really should not have oversold the Virginia beam.
Photo of Old Labs (VS1-329)

Old Labs (VS1-329)

  • 3803 Posts
  • 3844 Reply Likes
Same observations as Brian's here on Beam 329 - equally slow or equally fast or equally mediocre depending on time of day.

Unfortunately entering 22406 to check availability yields...

"Exede Internet service may be available in your area."

That is a change from the last check a while back where it said "is". Perhaps they see that 75 foot tulip poplar infringing on my LOS - gone tomorrow and perhaps it'll change back to is ;)
(Edited)
Photo of Jason

Jason

  • 28 Posts
  • 20 Reply Likes
Feel free to view these statistics

https://www.fcc.gov/measuring-broadband-america/2014/charts-fixed-2014#chart1

Primarily chart 17 regarding sustained download over time.  As you'll see Viasat / Exede (in 2013) did an exceptional job providing greater than advertised speeds.  Even in their worst performing time of day 20:00 to 22:00 they held standards greater than 100% of their advertised speeds. 

As I mentioned previously - performing speed tests from various sites do coincide with these FCC results.  How do they perform so well?  Answer: traffic shaping for specific data types.  Now these results do NOT match certain specific data streams (e.g. steam, youtube, netflix, etc.)

If I'm connected to Exede - perform a speedtest and see 10mbit then goto download from Steam and see less than 1mbit there are two possible causes 1) the ISP or 2) Steam.  If I immediately switch to some other ISP low and behold the Steam cap appears to disappear.  Are you then stating its some extremely brief and repeatable coincidence Steam magically speeds up when I switch do this?

650,000 total users with 140gbps of bandwidth allots for 2.1 mbit per user assuming every single subscriber were online simultaneously and had a sustained download going.  I'd be content with 2mbit if it meant unlimited usage.

Now lies a gray area - what's considered fair for everyone?  Some folks feel if they pay for service they should be able to use it 24/7/365 @ 100% full tilt.  Every single person reading this thread will have a varying opinion on the matter.  For me I use this service primarily for large downloads.  I regularly need to download server images from my MSDN subscription to build labs from for work.  most of which are a minimum of 3GB.  We're a house of gamers running Windows rigs all of which need updating quite often.  Not to mention the amount of data required when you build a fresh Windows machine and all the updates it requires.

If I don't use this connection all day then yeah I expect it to run full tilt for the few hours I do during LNFZ.  Is that too much to ask?  In my opinion no especially since this is happening during off peak hours.  I'm sure your opinion will differ.
Photo of Timothy James

Timothy James

  • 62 Posts
  • 18 Reply Likes
Let's be fair. Exede is the online satellite company to offer hours of unlimited data, and in some parts of the country, unlimited data. They are in the process of putting up a 2nd satellite, so everyone can have unlimited data. Now, I will agree that the issues with downstream speeds on certain applications needs to be looked into. Because, it is pretty much useless to use the LNFZ with those speeds. I am a PC Gamer. I have a Mobile Hotspot for gaming, for the low latency, but I download my games over Exede during the LNFZ. I also like to watch a few shows over Netflix, HBO GO, or Amazon before I go to bed, around 1 AM. My opinion is that the internet service needs to be tuned, and worked on. But they're already doing that, so we just have to wait. You have to consider they have good speeds during the day, it will probably return to that eventually.  
Photo of Brian Shackelford

Brian Shackelford

  • 847 Posts
  • 243 Reply Likes
The problem isn't with the number of total users using the satellite overall, it is the number of subscribed users on a particular beam or gateway.  Some beams are oversubscribed (I know, I know someone from Exede will shortly hop on here to say it isn't so....) and some are underutilized.  The underutilized ones can get Liberty plans and nearly unlimited data at the same speeds others in the oversubscribed (I mean...congested) beams can get for their allotment for the month.  Unfortunately there is no way to take the spare capacity from one beam and add it to another (or if there is, no one has mentioned it).  So the next step is to try to move around the number of folks in the congested areas using the Free Zones.  The first of these in my area was the Evolution plan which gave unlimited web and email and then the EBFZ (3:00 AM to 8:00 AM).  This solved some issues, however once this was implemented many users experienced a problem where the unlimited data and email users were getting much better speeds than those of us that still had not gone over our allotments for the month.  This lasted a few months and has since been corrected.  

Then there were some other plans floated and now there is the Liberty Plan which is rumored to be coming to our particularly congested beam by "installers" and "support representatives" when friends of mine have called into support complaining of the abysmal speeds they were getting.  I doubt highly congested areas will ever get the Liberty type plans even with the new satellite.  Heck I am willing to bet there will be special offers for new customers that existing loyal customers will be unable to take advantage of to lure the new users onto the new satellite.

Just an opinion worth less than the cost of the bits to transmit......
Photo of Donald Hardwick

Donald Hardwick

  • 1 Post
  • 0 Reply Likes
  When I signed up for this service, I was told I could play battle field 4 on it. Wrong. I been getting a ping problem with the server. Either too high or too low. Im sorry but my game is alot more important to me than the exede service. I had a tech at my house three times now. 1 to install. 2nd didnt even bring a latter. The 3rd one told me well this system is not meant for gaming. Talk about ticked. If they would had  said look its not meant for gaming, nor net works. I would a never signed up for it. I live in a area where i have no other choice. Not only am i looking to move. I will be contacting the B.B.B. . I been looking into cell phone hot spot. Im nott getting a str8 answer on that either.
    Like i said if you plan on playing games on this service, Do not sign up. It would thrill me to death to see the government prove there worthiness and fine this company maybe that would set them str8 on lying to customers and future customers. So not happy. I apologize to the reps that had to hear me complain. Least they are able to get a job. And i am happy with there curtsey attitude and willing to help.
   After all its not there fault its a crummy service.
       Sorry for venting.
    A unhappy customer. God bless.
Photo of david

david, Champion

  • 539 Posts
  • 385 Reply Likes
If you had bothered to read the faq right on Exede's Web site it says Exede doesn't work with some games.
Photo of Exede Lindsey

Exede Lindsey

  • 1827 Posts
  • 163 Reply Likes
Hello Donald, I can certainly understand your frustration with gaming problems in relation to your Exede service. Per a previous conversation on this forum, one of our moderators had mentioned some knowledgeable information regarding the following:

The actual usage varies depending on the specific game, any programs or updates your console is running behind the scenes, how your specific console is reaching the servers it needs to hit in order to function, and many other factors that we can't control on our end. If your console is connected to the internet -- even if it's powered off or you're playing a single-player game -- it could be using data. As you probably know, consoles send a lot of data back and forth to the manufacturer (as well as game manufacturers such as EA) and it's not always obvious when it's happening.

The best advice: Schedule your system updates and DLC downloads for the Free Zone if you have it, and disconnect the console from the internet when you don't need it. Hope that helps!

https://console.getsatisfaction.com/exede/conversations/ps4-xb1

If I can be of any further assistance please feel free to send an email with your account and contact info to exedelistens@viasat.com. Thank you. 
Photo of Timothy James

Timothy James

  • 62 Posts
  • 18 Reply Likes
This issue most of us are upset about is the fact that the internet is unbearably slow during the the free zone where we can't download anything.
Photo of Steve Frederick

Steve Frederick, Champion

  • 2779 Posts
  • 1750 Reply Likes
The free zone is being utilized by a very large number of users, downloading games, files, videos, thus causing the congestion. Many users are using download programs allowing them to download while they get their sleep.

This conversation is no longer open for comments or replies.