Common questions relating to our test and your results
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Is an assessment test a speed test?
No, an assessment test is a very deep and thorough test that is measuring throughput speed, capacity and packet quality in order to assess the user experience of a connection. This includes efficiency, data loss, recovery, duplication of data, retransmissions and even correuption.
What is connection efficiency?
The efficiency of a connection is essentially a measure of the increase in delay as the data volume increases. Which would be the most efficient? an 60mph Interstate with no traffic lights or a 60mph highway with several traffic signals. As traffic volume climbs traffic will slow under lighter loads on the highway because of signal delays. A low efficiency connection will affect the user experience more often!
What is the difference between capacity and speed?
One of the biggest misnomers in the market is that more bandwidth is faster. Bandwidth is not a speed it is a capacity. No mater what anyone says 2 cars doing 60mph on an Interstate is not the same as 1 car doing 120mph. More lanes on the high way just allows more cars to share the highway… See efficiency?
Why is packet quality important?
Packet quality is a significant issue on all connections. This is because most data on a network has to be in order to be usable. If packets are lost or delayed then the data arriving to be processed must wait. These delays can be extreme, several hundred milliseconds. Keep in mind that a 100 megabits per second is 100,000 bits per millisecond. A 300ms delay is essentially a 30, million bit hole in the data stream.
What is buffer delay (same as buffer bloat)?
Buffer delay is the metric that fuels efficiency, more delay is less efficient. Many so called speed test applications report buffer delay but these metrics are almost certainly incorrect. It is impossible to measure true buffer delay unless the test can measure packet quality and health. As an example consider a car being delayed because of a puncture versus a traffic signal. Delays that result from, Packet loss, packets out-of-order, retransmissions, duplicates etc. are not buffer delays but quality delays. The MyConnection Server Quality assessment test uses a specialized platform that is able to differentiate quality problems from normal delay problems.
What is a MOS score?
MOS stands for Mean Opinion Score? It is an assessment of packet quality for media based applications such as VoIP. The MOS score ranges from 1-5, as a rule of thumb anything above 4 is good, between 3.5-3.9 not so good and below 3.5 will have voice quality issues, poor.
What is the difference between VoIP packet loss and data packet loss?
Unlike data packets such as browsing and email some packet types are time dependent, as is the case for VoIP packets. If a VoIP packet does not arrive in time for the application is simply of no use and is discarded… A bit a car like arriving late for a flight versus arriving home for dinner.
Is a connections trip time important (RTT)?
Absolutely yes, trip time is singularly the most important measure of a connection. Sometimes you see electronic road signs along a highway that reports ‘minutes to location’ messages. Ask yourself 2 questions:
  • What would you rather a road sign reported, ‘Traffic flowing at 400 cars per minute’ or ‘Time to SFO airport 34 minutes’
  • If you had to do several trips to the airport in a day, which is faster? Several 2 hour trips or several 20minute trips?