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  • Going to Windows 10 on a very slow internet connection

    Home Forums AskWoody support Windows Windows 10 Questions: Win10 Going to Windows 10 on a very slow internet connection

    This topic contains 11 replies, has 7 voices, and was last updated by  Charlie 5 months, 3 weeks ago.

    • Author
    • #1856797 Reply

      AskWoody Lounger

      Hi, I’m Kate. I’m in England in a rural area. I don’t get a mobile signal at home so I have to use a landline connection with a broadband speed of only 0.4Mbps at best.

      Openreach (the network provider) states that because I live more than 2.5km from a green cabinet (that would provide fibre/fast broadband) they won’t do anything to help us and they said we’ve got to pay a lot of money for fibre/fast broadband to be brought to our house while people in towns and cities get it free.

      I’m currently on Windows 7 Home Premium and I’m dreading switching to Windows 10. My slow connection works ok with Windows 7 because I’ve been following Group B but it still takes hours to download updates and install them but at least that’s only once a month and occasionally for other updates. At least on Windows 7 I can browse, do online banking and shopping etc.

      Downloading the updates on Windows 10 is going to be a problem for me.

      1. Because of my slow internet connection and the time it will take to download and install the monthly updates and the feature updates, it could take days, possibly a week and I won’t be able to do anything until that process is completed.
      2. With our slow connection especially at peak times I wonder if Windows 10 updates are going to download at all, it seems to me they will take much longer, perhaps several days.
      3. If Windows 10 is constantly updating and being changed in the background that will mean I won’t be able to do anything on the internet until that is completed too.

      I want to go to my Member of Parliament to try to make Openreach give me a workable internet connection but I need to know some facts before I do so.

      I’ve read so much on the internet and been told so much, I don’t know what is right or wong so any information to help me would be great.

      I’ve been told that the monthly updates can be as big as 5GB, is this correct? If I know the size I can work out roughly how long it would take me to download and install, I will have to discount the peak times when it is too busy though.

      I know you can’t turn off the updates but that you can hide them. Can you hide them on Windows 10 Home or is it just Pro?

      I’ve been told that after an update Windows 10 can revert to default settings so you have to change everything back to what you want. Are the hidden updates restored at that point?

      If the updates require a reboot does this happen automatically, some people have said you get no warning it just happens, others have said you’ll get notice.

      I know that there are feature updates that happen twice a year and I’ve been told these can be 4GB to 8GB, how big are they? Again I can work out the download and install time, if I know the size.

      Looking at a couple of threads, Windows 10 runs something like 130 processes just to support an empty desktop and if I use it for a few minutes it can push up to 200 running processes and beyond. Is this going to slow down my connection even more or will it be ok on a brand new desktop computer.

      I believe Windows 10 Pro would be better than Windows 10 Home because it’s got more setting for the updates, is this the only advantage?

      I’m trying to find out what is the minimum connection speed for Windows 10 to work properly, to be able to download all the updates etc and to be able to browse at the same time like other people do.

      I do apologise that this post is a bit long but I really do need help because I’m beginning to seriously wonder whether Windows 10 is going to be workable on a connection speed of only 0.4Mbps at best

      Any help, advice, information or links would be great. Thanks!

    • #1856801 Reply

      Da Boss

      Here is some size information:
      The latest monthly update for Win10 v1809 KB4503327 was 238.0MB (updates will vary month to month).
      Downloading the ISO for a fresh install of v1809 64-bit was just under 5GB.
      Sizes will vary for different versions, but this is a rough estimate.

      Hiding updates with wushowhide is very similar in its effect to hiding them in Win7. There are a few recurring updates (like KB4023057 which you have t keep hiding every time it’s re-released), but for the most part, hidden updates stay hidden.

      Win10 Pro gives you much more control over updates than Win10 Home. It gives you the opportunity to defer updates, and in Group Policy you can set it to notify download/install so it doesn’t automatically down the updates.

      Win10 is more resource hungry thanWin7. Don’t ever believe Microsoft’s minimum specs for a Win10 PC. You will need a better PC than that.

      1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #1856802 Reply

      AskWoody MVP

      So you’re further out from your exchange than 7.5km, Kate? Do you know the approx. line length?

      1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #1856809 Reply

      AskWoody Lounger


      At 400 kbps the question isn’t really whether Windows 10 can be made to work, it’s how much it’s going to take…

      One thing though – the number of processes isn’t directly relevant to network traffic.

      Updates aren’t supposed to reboot without warning but that does still happen occasionally in practice. Then again so do random crashes too.

      There’s a slider to adjust how much (in %) of your network bandwidth is used for updates, maximum. In theory. It might not know your actual link speed though, so…

      If you get a separate firewall/router device to block the connections to Windows Update, well, then it won’t get updates automatically. With a complicated enough setup you could make it so you could only connect to the Windows Update Catalog manually with a specific non-default browser… so it’d be your own responsibility to stay up to date manually … with the help of the friendly Master Patch List over there in the site link bar 😉

      (Also probably more reliable that way, and don’t have to re-download to retry an update installation unless you manually delete the files. But more work… then also, if you regularly visit a place with better connectivity… “never underestimate the transfer capacity of a vehicle loaded with storage devices”. )

      As to the update sizes, well, a regular monthly cumulative varies, they grow continuously after a feature update. Early in the feature lifecycle they might be 100-200 MBytes, later over a gigabyte, and you get 1-3 of those a month if you’re on the automated cycle. The smaller updates, as in servicing stack and whatever, add up to a few hundred MBytes/ month.

      Feature updates… hm, the latest ISO seems to be about 4.7 GBytes. If you block the automatic updates, once per year is enough for those, but then you get the late-lifecycle larger cumulatives.

      The update-related difference between Home and Pro is mostly just that Pro gets to delay the updates, not directly adjust the amount… of course anything that gets withdrawn during the delay is skipped, and hiding updates is in addition to that.

      Pro does have other advantages too, which may or may not apply in your situation. (I keep saying that the Home edition is only for single users – not families.)

      Oh and over here, rural people don’t get landline ‘net much any more. 4G (unmetered but with speed limit) with rooftop directional antennas is the usual way.

      1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #1857028 Reply

        AskWoody Lounger

        Thank you all, I really do appreciate your replies!

        Hi satrow, at the moment our telephone and broadband service arrives at our house from the local telephone exchange via the existing copper phone line (not fibre optic cable) over a distance of about 5 miles (8.05km). This is no doubt why our broadband speed is so slow even at off peak times.

        However there is talk that our nearest (green) street cabinet is due to be connected to the telephone exchange via fibre optic cable. Openreach have stated that the speed at the cabinet will be 80Mbps but that our connection to the cabinet will still be via the existing copper wire, the length of which Openreach states to be 1.55 miles (2.5km). This is where things get confusing because Openreach has stated that “…the distance of the copper cable from the cabinet to the premises needs to be within 1.5km (0.93 miles) to support the service.”

        I took that (and similar remarks) by Openreach to mean that we simply live too far away to receive any speed increase even when the cabinet is eventually connected by fibre to the telephone exchange. I gained the impression that the copper wire cable connecting our house to the cabinet was simply too long to enable any speed increase at all.

        On the other hand, I’ve now seen graphs on 2 sites on the internet, plotting broadband speed against distance showing that I might actually have speeds approaching 10Mbps to 15Mbps if the green/street cabinet were enabled and if that happened, I would be ecstatic. It is a case of if and when though. Kate

    • #1856810 Reply

      AskWoody Plus

      I’m currently on Windows 7 Home Premium and I’m dreading switching to Windows 10

      First, why do you want to switch to Windows 10 ? You can still use your Windows 7 for years to come even after Windows 7 EOL.
      There is a forum, here at Woody for those who want to stay with Windows 7:

      New forum: Windows 7 beyond end-of-life

      I would suggest you wait with Windows 10 until you decide to buy a new PC.

      • This reply was modified 5 months, 3 weeks ago by  Alex5723.
      3 users thanked author for this post.
      • #1857103 Reply

        AskWoody Lounger

        Hi Alex5723, thank you for the link to ‘Windows 7 beyond end of life’.

        It’s not that I want to switch to Windows 10, I don’t, I very much doubt that Windows 10 would work on the connection I’m on. I’m just concerned about the security aspects after EOL but having read the thread, I would be so pleased and so relieved if I could follow a Group B type of list to keep me on Windows 7 for as long as possible. Seriously, if it wasn’t for the contributors on this site and the Group B monthly list, I wouldn’t be on the internet at all. Kate

    • #1857114 Reply

      AskWoody Plus

      Hi Kate, I’m almost in the same predicament as you in that I only have a 89 KBps over-the-phone land line DSL connection.  That’s one of the reasons why I’m a Group B person.  I’m planning to stay with Win 7 as long as I can and then switch to Linux (which I’m getting acquainted with now, and you can buy Linux disks and try it out right from the disk).

      Microsoft has indeed put many people in a bad way.  Even if you could do Win 10 and put up with all its idiosyncrasies, you still might not be safe and secure.  When I read all of the problems voiced and talked about on this site concerning Win 10, it would be a cold day in you know where before I subjected myself to it.

      Just my two pence.

      Win 7 Home Premium, x64, Intel i3-2120 3.3GHz, Groups B & L

      1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #1857267 Reply

        AskWoody Lounger

        Hi Charlie, 89kbps that’s awful, I do hope you get an increase in speed. Group B has been a lifesaver for me too.

        When people were mentioning switching to Linux on here, I thought I’d contact my bank and building society but unfortunately, neither support anything on Linux only Windows or else I would switch to Linux myself.

        By the way, I completely agree with your second paragraph. Kate

        1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #1857221 Reply

      AskWoody Plus

      and you can buy Linux disks and try it out right from the disk

      Linux is FREE.

      2 users thanked author for this post.
      • #1857264 Reply

        AskWoody Plus

        Discs aren’t.

        Windows 10 Pro Version 1909 (Group ASAP)

        1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #1858643 Reply

      AskWoody Plus

      Sorry for not being clear.  Yes, Linux is free – if you have a super high speed internet connection and can download Gigabytes without it taking forever. Then after downloading it you have to burn the ISO file onto a DVD.  I personally preferred to pay the $10 or less for the disk and shipping to my door.

      Win 7 Home Premium, x64, Intel i3-2120 3.3GHz, Groups B & L

      1 user thanked author for this post.

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