Setting Local Area Connection Properties
Getting a fast Internet connection speed is reliant on numerous factors. However, you only have control over a few of them. By adjusting the properties of your Local Area Connection to the best settings, you may speed up your Internet slightly by reducing some of the bottlenecking caused by unnecessary services.
WARNING: Disabling (or uninstalling) certain items within the Local Area Connection Properties may prevent communication on a network or cause other errors.
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Note: Before you start to disable or uninstall items for your connection, you should first read our properties details below. It will give you a better understanding of the services, protocols, and clients within the Local Area Connection Properties.
Have you uninstalled a Local Area Connection Property you need?
See how to Re-install Local Area Connection Properties in our guide further down this page.
Disable or Uninstall Local Area Connection Properties
Before we start haphazardly changing our Local Area Connection Properties, let's see what is the difference between enabling or uninstalling the connection properties.
Disable a Property Item:
Disabling a property item means it's no longer binded to the connection you're adjusting. This is the preferred method as opposed to full uninstallation since you can easily re-enable a property item if it's needed in the future - such as; you install a local network to share files from one PC to another and need File and Print Sharing enabled. If you just use your PC to access the Internet and never intend to create or join a network, consider uninstalling some items.
Uninstall a Property Item:
If you fully uninstall a Property item, the Windows queue will be reduced while accessing Internet routines. Admittedly, the speed increases of uninstallation versus disabling will be negligible. However, a property item may act as a filter or longer path for each Internet action, so there has to be something said for less computation (less error risk) while moving data to and from the Internet and your PC.
Note: In Windows 7 & Vista, the Internet Protocols can NOT be uninstalled, only disabled. Notice the Uninstall button is grayed out when you select them.
Use the 5 Steps detailed below this diagram to Disable and/or Uninstall property items.
Before you begin, did you read our properties details below? It will give you a better understanding of the services, protocols, and clients within the Local Area Connection Properties.
Open Connection Properties
Windows 7 and Vista: Open the Local Area Connection Properties by right-clicking on your Internet connection icon in the lower right of your task bar beside the desktop clock. Select Open Network and Sharing Center. Then click on Local Area Connection located on the right side of View your active networks. When the Local Area Connection Status box appears, click on the Properties button at the bottom left to launch the Local Area Connection Properties box. Now proceed to Step 2 below.
Windows XP: Open the Local Area Connection Properties by right-clicking on your Internet connection icon in the lower right of your task bar beside the desktop clock. Select Status and then click on the Properties button in the window that opens.
For ALL recent Windows versions (XP, Vista, and 7) just click on the Start icon at bottom left of your desktop and type ncpa.cpl in the Start Menu Search or Run field. You can also bring up the Run box by simply pressing the Windows key and the R key together. After opening the Network Connections window, highlight the Local Area Connection, then Right-Click on it and select Properties. Next, advance to Step two.
You can also find the Network and Sharing Center (or Network Connections) in your Windows Control Panel within the Start (lower-left of desktop) Menu.
Uncheck to Disable Properties
To disable a Property item, simply Left-Click the check-box to empty it. Skip to Step 4 if you are content with just disabling the unneeded items. If you want to take it a step further and uninstall the items completely - continue to Step 3 below.
Select and Click Uninstall
Uninstalling a property item is done by highlighting (left-click) the property item and clicking the Uninstall button. An Uninstall box will open asking for confirmation, click Yes to uninstall. A Local Network box may then open asking, "Do you want to restart your computer now?" - just click No. Then redo this procedure to continue uninstalling any other items you don't need. Of course, don't restart yet, but you'll have to eventually Restart your PC to activate the new settings.
Note: If you un-install Client for Microsoft Networks and then wish to re-install it immediately before a restart, please be aware that it will not show up in the Install selection list until it has been fully uninstalled with a PC restart. So you will have to restart your PC and then open up Local Area Connections Properties again to see it within the install list.
Uninstall QoS Packet Scheduler
In our example, we have cleaned up the items to only the ones necessary for Internet access. Since there is some debate concerning QoS, we left the QoS Packet Scheduler installed but disabled - so we can try to surf the Internet without it. Then if all goes well with it disabled, such as successfully watching videos, downloading files, and general web surfing - we would only then uninstall it. Update: QoS has been uninstalled as I found no detrimental effects using the Internet with it disabled.
Close and Restart
After uninstalling or disabling the Local Area Connection Properties, it is time to click OK or Close - it seems to change to Close when you uninstall items. After clicking, a box may appear (if you uninstalled Client for Microsoft Networks) asking if you wish to shut down and restart your computer. Clicking Yes will automatically shut down all of your open programs and perform a restart. Click No if you want to restart at a later time. Just remember, the changes will not take affect until you restart your PC.
Enable or Re-Install Local Area Connection Properties
Sometimes we unintentionally make mistakes and need to redo some things. It happens to all of us. Use the 5 Steps detailed below this diagram to bring back (Re-install and/or Enable) your property items.
Install Connection Properties
Open your Local Area Connection Properties as described in Step 1 of How to Disable... above or simply open your Run box (Windows + R keys together) and type ncpa.cpl in the Run field. Right-Click on Local Area Connection and select Properties. It's easy to enable a property listed, simply click on the empty box and a checkmark will appear meaning it is enabled. To install an item not shown, Left-Click the Install button.
Network Feature Type Categories
After you clicked the Install button, the Select Network Feature Type box will open. Shown are the Client, Service, and Protocol categories. You can find more information on each property organized by categories in our properties details section below. You can enter each category section by highlighting it with a Left-Click and then click on the Add button. Alternatively, you can simply double-click the item category to open up the linked item box. If you're not sure where the property is located that you want to install, just click through to each category and Cancel until you find it.
Note: If you un-installed Client for Microsoft Networks and never Restarted your PC, please be aware that it will not show up in the Install selection list until it has been fully uninstalled with a PC restart. So you will have to restart your PC and then open up Local Area Connections Properties again to see it within the install list.
Selecting the Property to Install
After the category box opens, select the property you wish to install and click OK. Alternatively, you may simply double-click the property to install it. Now the property should be installed and enabled in your Local Area Connection Properties list.
Click OK or Close (OK changes to Close when changes are made) within the Properties box. A Local Network box may open asking, "Do you want to restart your computer now?" Clicking Yes will Restart your PC and clicking No will simply close the box. Close any other open boxes. Remember, you'll have to restart your PC to complete the install procedure, such as for the Client for Microsoft Networks.
Local Area Connection - Properties Details
Each property item is classified by type. If you click on the Install button within the Local Area Connection Properties box, you will see the categories within the Select Network Feature Type box.
Below are the various types and items listed for my PC - Windows 7 (64 bit). All of these were enabled by default except for the last one, Reliable Multicast Protocol which was disabled. Of course, other versions of Windows may differ slightly.
Edit: A Wireless Local Area Network (WLAN) Security Protocol such as AEGIS Protocol (IEEE 802.1x) may be included in your list if you use a wireless connection or other wireless device to communicate with your PC. Also, on our older Windows XP computer, Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) was listed and is just the XP version of the Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4) item shown in Windows 7 and Vista.
The Thoughts below are based on my configuration which does NOT share files with other computers on a network. I only access the Internet with this PC, so I do not need the networking clients or services, but I do need the Internet Protocols.
Your configuration and needs may differ, so make your decision based on that - you will be proceeding at your own risk. It's easy to disable and enable the items - so you could try surfing with one or more disabled and see if you are experiencing any problems... if so, simply re-enable them.
Client for Microsoft Networks
Used for Networks to remotely access other computers or devices such as shared printers and data drives. Essential for file sharing on networks. Controls the password function of Internet log-on's such as with Dial-Up Internet. Not an issue if you use always-on direct Cable Internet or any other without a log-on requirement.
Thoughts: Needed for Home or Private Networks, but if you're just an Internet user without any local networking needs, you should consider disabling or uninstalling it. Be aware; if you use a password to start your Internet connection such as Dial-up, you may lose the Saved Password function of this service if you disable or uninstall it.
File and Print Sharing for Microsoft Networks
This network service is only needed if you share files or resources (such as a printer) with other computers.
Thoughts: Same as above, you do not need it if you only connect to the Internet, but if you share files or a printer on a network, you will need to keep it.
QoS Packet Scheduler
QoS means Quality of Service. It controls Network and IP services by allocating bandwidth priority for running programs that use the service. Used for Real-Time-Communications (RTC) programs such as audio and video streaming.
Thoughts: I debated a long time over this one due to the myths and stagnant misinformation concerning this service. For many years I've heard... it eats Internet bandwidth... slows online gaming... improves online gaming... or... has no effect at all on your Internet. So I just disabled it and have been surfing for over a week with it disabled. Didn't notice any problems, so I went ahead and uninstalled it. As always, it's your decision. I'll update if I run into any problems online or get more clarification.
Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4)
Comprised of over 4.29 billion Internet addresses, the IPv4 is the current 32bit standard for computers and devices accessing the Internet. At one time, this protocol was thought to contain an abundance of room to support all the web sites (addresses) ever created. Unfortunately, the Internet grew larger than anyone could have realized back in those early days. We are currently approaching the 4.29 billion limit and will soon need the new IPv6 Protocol (below) to provide expansion room for the World Wide Web.
Thoughts: Clearly this item needs to be enabled if you want to access the Internet. If you don't access the Internet (how did you get here?), you will still need this enabled if you access a Local Home Network.
Internet Protocol Version 6 (TCP/IPv6)
IPv6 uses 128bit addresses as opposed to IPv4's mere 32bit. So make room for over... actually I don't know how to say the number, it's so large, it's actually 39 digits long - whereas IPv4's 4 billion was only 10 digits long. Suffice to say, it's big enough for any amount of Internet addresses ever created in the future - but didn't we say that before? Please note that some web sites are currently using the IPv6 protocol, but it is in unison with the IPv4 protocol, so it is not affecting your ability to view web sites... as of yet. Also, Windows 7 HomeGroup uses this protocol for communication between devices on your Home Network - so you will not be able to create or join a HomeGroup unless IPv6 is enabled.
Thoughts: Some say... "We're almost there." With ISP's and major Internet routers preparing for the surpassing of 4 billion web addresses, it makes sense to leave this enabled so you are prepared when the new IP's are finally used. Otherwise, a web site you visit in the future will appear non-existent to you. The question remains, how far in the future - it could be years, maybe decades. If you do disable it, just remember to turn it back on IF and WHEN IPv6 goes mainstream. Note: If you set up a HomeGroup (Local Home Network) in Windows 7, you need this protocol enabled.
Link-Layer Topology Discovery Mapper I/O Driver
The LLTD Mapper processes the Network Mapping in Windows 7 and Vista. It is used to configure the communication network between devices in private networking. Imperative for a network but it has no effective use concerning the Internet.
Thoughts: If you're the average Internet user without any network setups, then consider disabling or uninstalling this item. However, if you're on a private or home network, you will need this item enabled to access other PCs running Windows 7, and Vista; or even to access other devices such as an Xbox 360.
Link-Layer Topology Discovery Responder
The LLTD Responder is used to discover a private or home network. The Link-Layer Topology Discovery (LLTD) services also help Windows to diagnose errors and mis-configurations within the private or home network setup. As mentioned above, these LLTD services are for networks and not used for the average Internet user.
Thoughts: Same as above - not needed for the Internet. Consider disabling or uninstalling; UNLESS you are on a Home or Private Network or plan to in the future.
Reliable Multicast Protocol (Default setting was Uninstalled on my PC - Win7 64-bit)
An advanced protocol intended for specifically configured computers or devices. Reliable Multicast Protocol (RMP) will deliver data packets simultaneously to aggregate users at the same time; such as streaming data. intended for network use, this item will have no effect on your Internet connection.
Thoughts: Unless you're a networking guru, who knows the intricacies of this protocol, you don't need it - and it was uninstalled by default on my PC.
After adjusting your Local Area Connection Properties, you may have a more stable (less overhead) connection and slightly faster Internet speed. If you had some sort of data corruption or error within your PC system causing slow Internet performance, it may correct itself by uninstalling and re-installing a property as described within this article. In these rare cases, you may experience a major boost to your Internet.
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