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what is the difference between shaped and unshaped ADSL?

By serial5228 ·
I have a 384 ADSL uncapped and shaped line, looking to improve the connectivity, especially for gaming. which one would be better between upgrading to a 512 line or getting unshaped? there are at least 3 users on the network, and if I upgrade to the 512 line, how will it affect my bandwidth? how does bandwidth work exactly?

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Take control of the shaping!

by TobiF In reply to what is the difference be ...

I guess "Uncapped" means that you have no monthly limit to your usage.
"Shaped" probably means that your ISP may start throttling your traffic if you start doing heavy P2P traffic. If the gaming is also done P2P, you might be hurt if, at the same time, someone is running a bittorrent client.

When you say "at least 3 user on the network", do you mean concurrent users of your internet access?

Conclusions:
If your gaming is P2P, then it would probably be good to have unshaped traffic.
But more important: If this is YOUR internet connection, I'd suggest you take control over it yourself, by "shaping" the access for your co-users or at least giving priority access to internet for your gaming traffic. Check out alternative firmware for home routers (like tomato from polarcloud or dd-wrt) and get a matching home router.

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Network differences

by Charles Bundy In reply to what is the difference be ...

Shaped just means that QoS (quality of service) for port/protocol based services is running. In this instance your provider will probably give priority (meaning more bits per second) to VoIP/HTTP packets.

Unshaped means all traffic is equal and first come first served is the priority. You can change that internally by using a router with QoS as TobiF suggested.

Bandwidth is the maximum speed/frequency of transmission typically measured in bits per second for data. In your case you have a 384 Kbs upstream which if you divide by 10 (8 bits to a byte plus framing) gets you ~38Kb/s. Again that is pretty optimistic depending on load and what is on the other end :).

Lot of times people focus on bandwidth and don't bother with latency. Latency is packet delay. For gaming latency is king. As you have other folks utilizing your Internet connection I would opt for unshaped and then use a gaming QoS router to prioritize traffic and manage latency. Of course if you could have both, bumping up to 512 might be good depending on what all users traffic needs are. Are they needing to push large amounts of data, such as video conferencing?

Hope this helps! (thumbs up appreciated)

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