Network - Wireless & Wired Connections

Help & troubleshooting for network issues, including connecting your device to your home Wi-Fi network, connecting to public networks, troubleshooting wireless issues & ethernet connections, and optimizing streaming performance.
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Level 8

Roku ethernet direct connection low speed.

I have a Roku Ultra direct connection to an ethernet network. My network speed on my PC is usually around 90 Mbps and peeks at 130 Mbps. If I do a speed test with Netflix on the Roku my speed is 56 Mbps. If I run a Roku network check 50% of the time it fails with 0 Mbps. When it does pass I get 0.26 or 1 Mbps. Once I got 6 Mbps, but only once.

If I do a Netflix speed test on my Amazon Fire Cube I get 35 Mbps or better. On my Samsung Smart TV the test is 88 Mbps.

The Ruko does not establish a fast connection. I have tried to go wireless on my Netgear R7000 to the Roku with the same results; i.e., between fail 0.0 Mbps and pass 0.29 Mbps. Tried resetting the Ruko, I have an ethernet switch so I tried removing it and going directly to the Roku, no joy. Hulu only works about 25% of the time and takes forever to load when it does work. Hulu usually has Error-5 or P-DEV329. 

Do I have a bad Roku Ultra? Should I send it back?

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11 Replies
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Level 21

Re: Roku ethernet direct connection low speed.


@Stand wrote:

I have a Roku Ultra direct connection to an ethernet network. My network speed on my PC is usually around 90 Mbps and peeks at 130 Mbps. If I do a speed test with Netflix on the Roku my speed is 56 Mbps. If I run a Roku network check 50% of the time it fails with 0 Mbps. When it does pass I get 0.26 or 1 Mbps. Once I got 6 Mbps, but only once.

If I do a Netflix speed test on my Amazon Fire Cube I get 35 Mbps or better. On my Samsung Smart TV the test is 88 Mbps.

The Ruko does not establish a fast connection. I have tried to go wireless on my Netgear R7000 to the Roku with the same results; i.e., between fail 0.0 Mbps and pass 0.29 Mbps. Tried resetting the Ruko, I have an ethernet switch so I tried removing it and going directly to the Roku, no joy. Hulu only works about 25% of the time and takes forever to load when it does work. Hulu usually has Error-5 or P-DEV329. 

Do I have a bad Roku Ultra? Should I send it back?


Which model Ultra do you have? There are several of them, and the hardware isn't identical. That said, my Roku devices have never matched my Internet speed. I current have an 87 Mbps DSL connection, but the highest I've ever had any Roku device report is 74 Mbps, and usually the wired connections are more like 65 Mbps. Changing to wireless, which in theory has the potential for far higher speeds, is actually worse, with 55 Mbps the best I've ever been able to get from my Ultra, which is 3 feet away from my 802.11ac access point. I have some calibrated videos that I can play back from my server, so I can take the Internet speed completely out of the equation. My home network is Gigabit, with all computers, switches and access points also Gigabit. My wireless access points (both capable of .11ac) all connect slower than the Fast Ethernet connection on the Ultra or my Sharp TV (My other Roku devices are wireless only). My Ultra and Premiere, both 4K/HDR devices, should be able to play a video with 120-150 Mbps bitrates without an issue over WiFi, but neither can even play my 90 Mbps test videos. They all buffer. My Shield has Gigabit Ethernet, so of course it can play the 240 Mbps video without issue. 

Is your unit defective? Hard to say. Remember that since Roku players don't have Gigabit Ethernet, the absolute maximum speed you'll ever get wired is between 85-90 Mbps. But your speeds are pretty much in line with what I see with my Ultra 4640, although my wireless is far better than yours. If yours is new enough to return and exchange at your place of purchase, it wouldn't hurt to try. Make sure you factory reset yours before returning it, to ensure your personal stuff is wiped. 

However, before you return it, there is one last thing you can try. In the Settings/System/Advanced system settings menu there is a Network connect reset. You can try that to see if it clears anything from your network settings. It will delete all stored network settings, so you'll have to enter your WiFi password again. But other than that everything is safe on the Roku. 

Dan
Roku Stick (3600), Ultra (4640), Ultra (4670), Premiere (3920), Insignia 720p Roku TV, Sharp 4K Roku TV, Nvidia Shield, Windows 10 Pro x64 running Serviio and Plex on a wired Gigabit network.
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Level 8

Re: Roku ethernet direct connection low speed.

Thanks for the reply. I think you misread the speeds I'm getting through the Ultra 4670X. I'm getting from 0 (zero) to 0.1 0.26 Mbps  (zero.26 Mbps). 50% of the time it's 0. Once it reported 6 Mbps. If I access Netflix from the Roku, Netflix reports from 56 to 80 Mbps. My PC, on the same ethernet (Netgear R7000) reports up to 120 Mbps with fast.com.

I am going to take my Roku to a friend's and try it on their system. They have a Roku that is working to stream Hulu. I'll see what mine does there.

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Level 21

Re: Roku ethernet direct connection low speed.


@Stand wrote:

Thanks for the reply. I think you misread the speeds I'm getting through the Ultra 4670X. I'm getting from 0 (zero) to 0.1 0.26 Mbps  (zero.26 Mbps). 50% of the time it's 0. Once it reported 6 Mbps. If I access Netflix from the Roku, Netflix reports from 56 to 80 Mbps. My PC, on the same ethernet (Netgear R7000) reports up to 120 Mbps with fast.com.

I am going to take my Roku to a friend's and try it on their system. They have a Roku that is working to stream Hulu. I'll see what mine does there.


I did see those numbers, but I now realize I thought you had tried switching to wireless and the zero speed was with that. I missed that the wired connection reported the same. Sorry.

It is strange that Netflix would report a respectable speed, as you mention, but the Roku itself reporting virtually no speed with the same connection. So does Netflix work fine, but Hulu is the major issue? In other words, is anything/everything else working correctly, and Hulu is the only problem? Or does the Ultra display the same connectivity issues with other channels? If it's only a single channel, that would appear to point to the channel. But again the report by the Roku connection test doesn't seem right, no matter what. If you are still within a return window where you bought it, I'd exchange it. If you're outside that window but still under the Roku warranty, I'd request a replacement. Just remember to do a factory reset before you return it either way. 

Dan
Roku Stick (3600), Ultra (4640), Ultra (4670), Premiere (3920), Insignia 720p Roku TV, Sharp 4K Roku TV, Nvidia Shield, Windows 10 Pro x64 running Serviio and Plex on a wired Gigabit network.
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Level 8

Re: Roku ethernet direct connection low speed.

Thanks again. I only have the Roku so I can watch Hulu. However, I have problems watching it with my Samsung Smart TV as well (75" Q7D 4K). So I may be looking at two problems. I have no issues with Netflix on my TV, my Amazon Fire Cube, Roku or Dish. They all report acceptable speeds using the Netflix network test. Vudu appears to work on the Roku. All of those are on my ethernet. I have tried just having the Roku connected directly to the modem by itself. No joy.

In any case, I think the Roku should report higher speeds. I am beginning to think Spectrum is limiting the streaming of Hulu some way. In particular, I can't watch Das Boot of The Hand Maidens Tale. I do get to load them sometimes and once they start they go to the end. After that, going to the next episode it usually fails.

I'll try using my Roku at my friend's location and maybe bring his working one to my house. If I return the Roku I'll be sure to take your advise and do a factory reset.

Cheers!

 

 

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Level 7

Re: Roku ethernet direct connection low speed.

I too am having a similar symptom since yesterday's update to 9.2 build 4806-29 on my 4630X. Hard wired to Gig switch and 150 Mb service. Swapping my Ultimate and 2nd Premier the other units that also had the upgrade work fine.But the 4630 shows 0 Mb / slow connection. If it does connect it stops after about 15 seconds as well as stops taking data from the WAN and Lan. This is evidenced by the DD-WRT bandwidth monitors on my AP. It looks like the symptoms are tied to the upgrade. Can the upgrade be reversed?

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Level 8

Re: Roku ethernet direct connection low speed.

I've been playing with my connections. On my TV I find that Hulu is more reliable if I don't use wired and switch to 5gHz WiFi. So digging a little it turns out my ethernet switch is a Netgear 8 port gigabit ethernet UNMANAGED switch (GS908). Should I be using a managed switch and prioritize the ports streaming movies? Is this what's causing my erratic Roku behavior?

What switches are you all using with success on Roku?

 

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Level 21

Re: Roku ethernet direct connection low speed.


@Stand wrote:

I am beginning to think Spectrum is limiting the streaming of Hulu some way.


I have to say that I had a similar issue with Netflix years ago. My ISP (CenturyLink) insisted they weren't doing anything, but after months of slow Netflix (which made viewing 4K impossible) I filed an FCC complaint. My ISP finally took it seriously and did some research. They did find that I was being throttled on Netflix (and only Netflix), but that it was outside their firewall. Of course, I have no way of knowing for sure if that was true, or if it truly was them, but within a month my problem went away. There are some bad players out there, both within the ISPs and just on the general Internet. But it just shows that it is possible. 

Dan
Roku Stick (3600), Ultra (4640), Ultra (4670), Premiere (3920), Insignia 720p Roku TV, Sharp 4K Roku TV, Nvidia Shield, Windows 10 Pro x64 running Serviio and Plex on a wired Gigabit network.
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Level 21

Re: Roku ethernet direct connection low speed.


@Lambtron wrote:

I too am having a similar symptom since yesterday's update to 9.2 build 4806-29 on my 4630X. Hard wired to Gig switch and 150 Mb service. Swapping my Ultimate and 2nd Premier the other units that also had the upgrade work fine.But the 4630 shows 0 Mb / slow connection. If it does connect it stops after about 15 seconds as well as stops taking data from the WAN and Lan. This is evidenced by the DD-WRT bandwidth monitors on my AP. It looks like the symptoms are tied to the upgrade. Can the upgrade be reversed?


No, in general you cannot roll back the OS. Roku does have the ability to push specific builds to individual players, but will not do so for numerous reasons. And I can understand the difficulty in maintaining OS versions on a per device basis. 

Dan
Roku Stick (3600), Ultra (4640), Ultra (4670), Premiere (3920), Insignia 720p Roku TV, Sharp 4K Roku TV, Nvidia Shield, Windows 10 Pro x64 running Serviio and Plex on a wired Gigabit network.
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Level 21

Re: Roku ethernet direct connection low speed.

In a home environment there's really no value at all to spend the money for managed switches. It becomes far more worthwhile in an enterprise environment with special routing and security requirements. Even the medical group for which I served as IT manager for almost 20 years, I didn't move to managed switches until we built a new medical building with several hundred networked devices. All of my home switches are simple Netgear or TP-Link unmanaged switches. 

You just don't have enough different devices on your network competing for internal bandwidth to justify the expense. Now adding a QoS rule to your Internet router might be of value, assuming it's even capable of it. My Actiontec equipment supplied by my ISP really don't offer that sort of control. And in reality, you probably don't have enough distinct devices all attempting to fill your Internet connection at the same time to need to worry about it. Using QoS does nothing if your Internet connection is not heavily loaded. 

Dan
Roku Stick (3600), Ultra (4640), Ultra (4670), Premiere (3920), Insignia 720p Roku TV, Sharp 4K Roku TV, Nvidia Shield, Windows 10 Pro x64 running Serviio and Plex on a wired Gigabit network.
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