Slow internet/web traffic under 11.1

I seem to be having a problem with slowness of my internet connection under OpenSuSE 11.1. I have cross-checked everything that I have setup on my own network and I am sure that there is nothing blocking what is going on. As a standard first port of call I initially I have contacted my ISP. I have been talking with them about it but they have not seen any disconnections as far as my ADSL link is concerned. I have also been experiencing DNS resolution issues with things like zypper and within a web browser (pages failing to load, etc.).

The installation that I have is a standard 64 bit OpenSuSE 11.1 install with connection into the public repositories as follows:
KDE4 Desktop
KDE4 Extra-Apps

To answer people’s initial questions:

  • Yes, I am running the latest OpenSuSE stable 3.0.5 version of Firefox.
  • Yes, I am running STABLE updated KDE 4.1.3 - I found that the one that came with the distro had stability issues and upgrading to the newer minor release sorted out a few problems (this I find is a highly recommended activity but stay with STABLE!).
  • Yes, I am using the commercial nVidia drivers for my graphics card.
  • I am not running through a proxy (in fact my 11.1 box at work running through to a locally mirrored repository is a good deal quicker than my publicly connected home machine!).
  • my IP details are provided from my local router using DHCP and this includes my DNS addresses. The DNS servers I have tried are both the ISPs and OpenDNS.
  • I have a carefully constructed firewall/NAT setup in place. I definitely know that there is nothing wrong with it at all.
  • There are only three boxes on my home LAN (two of them are usually turned off) and I am not using wireless.

Specs for box:
Intel Core2Quad
8gig mem
nVidia 8600GTS

Specs for my internet connection:
Currently 9meg/s download, 1.5meg/s upload
Draytek 2820Vn

So, as far at the box is concerned, it is certainly by no means underpowered! My internet connection and ISP are not having any troubles (that I am aware of) and DNS resolution to both OpenDNS and the ISPs DNS servers resolve quickly.

I have compared the speed to one of the other boxes that I have on the LAN running OpenSuSE 11.0 with KDE3.5. I find that its response is a lot faster without any zypper/web browser dropouts at all. It is also using the same DNS setup as the upgraded 11.1 box.

So, my main questions are:
Has anybody experienced slowness with web response under OpenSuSE 11.1?
Has anybody experienced slowness in accessing the public repositories, in particular with repeated DNS failures, under OpenSuSE 11.1?
Has anybody experienced failures to connect to websites that are connectable under a second/third refresh of the web browser under OpenSuSE 11.1?

In general my 11.1 experience has been good except for the DNS resolution problems. I suspect that there may be come underlying problem with the way that name service resolution is being handled by the OS (maybe nscd or nsswitch function not working quite right); however, I am having a hard time trying to get to the source of the problem. There could possibly be issues with KDE4 and the graphics card. I have found that turning off a lot of the animations definitely helps out with the overall long-term “feel” of using KDE4. I would have a hard time recommending updating to OpenSuSE 11.1 (in particular KDE4 though KDE4 may not be to blame) if the name resolution issues persist. However, this doesn’t mean that I will not persist with what I have (and I can’t stand downgrading!).

If anyone has any questions or shares the same symptoms then please feel free to add to this thread!

Disable ipv6

Yast - Network Devices - Network Settings
Global Options
Uncheck ipv6

Thanks for the reply. I think you probably nailed the problem. I have disabled IPv6, rebooted and things are now a lot faster.

I know that there were issues with nscd in the past (that have now been resolved, in particular the generation of the cache files) but the name resolution thing was indeed puzzling. I will; however, continue testing to make sure that I am not going to hit anything else.

Admittedly in the UK the only people I know who are using IPv6 on the home-ISP side are A&A (there may be others but A&A I definitely know about). I don’t use A&A but Be and their DNS servers have been mixed at best - hence the use of OpenDNS, which is a good benchmark (though I sometimes hate how they do a Verisign-like hijack on domains that don’t resolve).

As far as IPv6 is concerned, well, I know from reading various kernel issues, etc. that people have had various experience with having the dual stack enabled. I am fairly sure that I have it enabled on the OpenSuSE 11.0 boxes and they are operating without troubles. Was there a switch under 11.1 to prioritise IPv6 over IPv4 or is there some setting that does this sort of thing?

Then again, my home network isn’t setup (yet) to support IPv6 and my ISP probably doesn’t use it, so not having it turned on is not that great a deal. I may have a look in turning it off on my other boxes that are still in an “IPv4 world”.

There seems to be conflicting opinions with IPv6 and my new install was running fine, but I disabled it anyway. My ISP in the UK is Entanet and I’m not sure it really matters who you are with. But watch out - all major ISP’s are up to tricks at the moment, looking for ways to manage peoples use, the uk infrastructure just can’t cope with the demand. Watch out for new terms and conditions, changes to FUP’s and traffic management.

The IPv6 stuff would probably depend on two things (if it is taken as a priority):

  • support of your router/LAN/ISPs WAN for IPv6
  • support of your router(if you use it as a DNS proxy/caching server)/ISPs DNS server for IPv6 resolution of AAAA records

In the world at large the chances of either two being present is slim. I think that there was a discussion recently about IPv6 DNS servers in the “DNS press” as to who exactly was providing records for the infrastructure (articles also appeared on Slashdot). Since it is now mandatory for all US government departments to buy IT gear that supports IPv6 (N.B. they don’t have to RUN it, just SUPPORT it), then it won’t be too long until wider acceptance happens (the Chinese have already run out of their allocated IPv4 address space anyways). Then again, people have been say that IPv6 is just around the corner for years… :wink:

From personal experience, configuring up DNS for IPv6 is not an easy proposition. It is a lot harder than IPv4 and harder than getting a DNSSEC infrastructure in place (which isn’t an easy task either).

Well, I was originally with Plusnet and they traffic shaped me into oblivion. Moving to Be was a good thing from that POV (though YMMV). They aren’t traffic shaping me (that I can tell) and they don’t have usage limits (not that I am about to pull down terabytes of traffic). I just find it annoying that ISPs (in general) can advertise about providing 24+ meg/s (or 50meg/s in Virgin’s case) connections and then mention that you can only download 20 gig per month and then shape the link as to the speed at which you can get things. All seems like a pretty pointless money-grabbing exercise - such is life! :slight_smile:

Sorry, I digress about the IPv6 stuff. DNS is something I configure/manage/engineer/architect so I can get carried away. However, thanks for answering my response.