Need tool recommendations to help diagnose a network problem!

Hey guys,

I’ve been having intermittent issues where my internet connection drops or hangs for anywhere from 2-5 seconds. This typically happens a few times a day.
Since I’m a Comcast customer I of course started from there, but they couldn’t see any issues on their end (from their logs, the cable modem had a good connection except for one blip on Sunday at 3:00AM, which I wouldn’t have noticed). They sent a tech out to the house and he (surprisingly) was really competent and spent a lot of time testing everything on the cable side of things that he could. He replaced the connectors in the outlets, checked out everything at the cable box down the road, and tried reducing the number of cable splitters in the house (I’m only using internet and not TV, so I didn’t need a few of them). Signal strength and everything all looked good.

I’m still getting issues since the visit, and I’m starting to get suspicious that it may be either my router (a different piece of hardware than my cable modem), a switch, or I suppose my cable modem. The latter is looking a little less likely since Comcast can’t see any issues on their end and when my network connection drops I don’t see any change in the LED status lights. I also believe I’ve had a couple blips when using my SteamLink, which is using a wired connection to my router.

In any case, I’ve reviewed the logs on the cable modem as well as the router and I’m not seeing anything there. I also tried updating the firmware but no luck there. What I would like to do is find some sort of network monitoring utility that could help me pinpoint where the issue is when I get one of these disruptions, even something as basic as continuously pinging the hardware on my local network and logging failed responses. Does anyone have any recommendations?

Domotz or Fing?

mtr, Matts traceroute for a quick check. There is also a Windows version available.
For continued monitoring, smokeping or probably easier, the free version of prtg.

Are all machines on the network losing connectivity simultaneously?

It seems to be all machines. They’re all wired and the disruption isn’t long enough for me to pull out my phone and double check if it is similarly having problems over WiFi.

I had something similar happen. It was occurring because my network card was set to “green mode” and “allow system to power off this device”. If my computer saw traffic hiccup a little bit, like a packet or two dropped, it would shut the whole thing off and then take 5 - 10 seconds to power it back on. Took me weeks to get it debugged. The card had green mode set by default and it couldn’t be turned off through normal means. In order to fix it, I had to download the latest network drivers for my card, which added the ability to turn off green mode.

Since shutting those off, it has stopped happening.

This would only apply to laptops and desktops. It it’s universal or if it’s on something like an iPad, you can disregard my whole post.

Alright, I’m getting more and more suspicious of my wireless router (most everything is connected via ethernet ports, my phone and Kindle are the only things on wireless). I’m thinking it’s either that or perhaps a bad ethernet cable, but either way I got some packet loss to the router itself.

I’ll probably try to find a new ethernet cable before buying a router, but in case I go down that route does anyone have recommendations on a good/reliable router? Brand or model recommendations to get or avoid?

I have the Archer recommended there. It’s fine. Wifi is good across floors. Better than the Asus RT-N66U

Interface is somewhat spartan.

Has no QOS. Has no traffic monitoring (total bandwidth used atm for example.) I think it’s missing a couple of other minor things like DHCP client list, for example.


I had the c7 and it was the worst router I have ever had.

To quote:

It worked great, I would get 10-20MB wifi in my car 4 floors down outside our apartment, 150mb wifi in the same room on my 802.11ac compatible phone.

But mostly, it didn’t work and I’d struggle to get 30mb in the same room, and performance even one room away would be dire.

I’ve tried 2 stable firmwares, 2 beta firmwares, tried dual band (you have to have identical SSID names for dual band to function correctly), 5ghz only, 2.4ghz only. I’ve tried it with 3 different 200mb internet connections in 3 different houses.

Ouch, sorry Kedaha. It’s the best wifi signal I’ve used in my home. It’s my first AC router thought, I’ve never compared it to another AC router.

It seems they’ve released a v2 that’s less temperamental, so that’s probably what you have.