Re. Onspeed -
I've decided to go for it and registered with them. There's a 14 day money back guarantee, so there's little to lose IMO. I did their 'pre' and 'post' test with the following results:
Loaded a colour pic' and text from server totalling 754,928 bytes.
Pre Onspeed: 144.75 seconds with a throughput of 42K on my 56K dial-up Modem.
Post Onspeed: 122.28 seconds with a throughput of 49K.
I can detect a noticable improvement just opening the pages of this BB so, assuming this continues, I'm happy. However, as the test clearly demonstrates, the improved performance isn't anywhere near as large as Onspeed suggest in their promotional hype.
under what internet conditions did you do your test - was the net busy - was your provider - do you have any contention in your connection - all these may affect the performance improvement which will probably be very variable. You can be sure the onspeed maketing claims will be based on conditions ideal for their product.
I am not trying to denigrate the product or put you off - merely to alert you to the likely variable nature of the improvement. Real time trading seems to me to be more dependent on a constantly fast transfer (and low latency) of a comparatively small amount of continuous data and not based on the one off large file downloads that I suspect this product is aimed at that.
Agree with Ron. Understand from another BB that Onspeed is compression software said (by the poster) to be aimed at email/large files downloads rather than data per se. Should still help though. UK-ISP claim that their dial-up MO tackles the contention (heavy traffic ) problem and recommend Onspeed on their site. Could be moving from a cable to a no-broadband area later this year myself (boo hoo) so must get a length of wire and try both of these out. Useful thread.
When I download large files from internet sites and over vpn I monitor my 100Mbps network utilisation with XP task manager and rarely achieve the full 5.12Mbps download speed (which in itself is only a small fraction of the LAN network bandwidth) - its usually just under 5Mbps and there can be quite short downturns to much lower speeds.
Using task manager to monitor my network utilisation when transferring data for charting and realtime trading I have found this ocuppies only about 10% of the potential broadband internet access bandwidth. The advantage of broadband access in rt trading/charting in my mind lies in low latency transfer and 24x7 low contention uninterrupted connection. There is also the ability to share the connection between a number of networked machines with no degradation at each machine. Of course it is very beneficial in rapid opening of web pages and rapid download of large files too!