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I.E & Firefox Downloads Freezing

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Hello, I am having an issue with downloading files recently.

I've tried searching the internet as well as these forums and haven't found anything conclusive.

Here are the particulars:

I have just setup a wireless router (Belkin 54g 400ft range, though it's less than 20ft from my location), signal level is "very good."
I am using a Belkin Wireless Card (G plus MIMO) and have been for years with no problems. Drivers are new for both products.
Computer is running Windows XP SP2 using either Firefox or IE 7. I have had ZA Pro, Norton 360 and SpySweeper on the computer for a long time now and haven't changed any configurations within any of these programs recently, I even disabled all of them and tried (without success) to download. ISP is through Sprint, haven't called them about the issue yet.

The issue, ad nauseam:

When trying to download a file of significant size (say, one that takes more than 10-20 seconds to complete, etc) the download will simply freeze up. That is to say, it stops transferring any data. almost as if the screen becomes frozen in time at that moment. I am still able to interact with the computer, however, and the screen is in fact, not frozen in the Windows UI. All the particulars are still there (D/L speed, estimated time remaining, total MB remaining, total MB downloaded, and it even shows that the current download speed is 300KB/s or similar) but there is absolute no internet traffic (as corroborated by ZoneAlarm's own little network traffic indicator in the systray as well as the network information tab in Task Manager. Both programs show ZERO network traffic inbound of outbound.)

I am still able to browse the internet at this point (which, consequently, produces normal readings in the aforementioned network traffic monitors, that is, network traffic resumes once I either restart the download or continue browsing the internet), as well as cancel and restart the download. If I choose to restart the download, it will begin immediately (all over, of course) and continue like nothing was wrong but will eventually lock up again. It happens very frequently, and seems to be dependent on time, rather than size of the file. Usually, after maybe a minute or so, it will lock up, though it's not consistent.

This problem is also affecting streaming media in websites such as YouTube. I begin watching a streaming file, it plays well for a little while (actual play time before freeze up is inconsistent) and then simply stops. In Firefox in the status bar at the bottom it displays a message saying it's tranferring data from x web server, then stops when the video stops loading and then reads "done." This has been the normal course of action with Firefox and Youtube in the past, only at that time, when the status bar reads "done" the video has completely loaded. Now, instead, it reads done and the video is maybe 1/3 loaded and refuses to load any further, almost as if Firefox thinks the video has reached its end. I have to refresh the window and attempt to reload it, which is usually unsuccessful as it produces the same results.

Interesting facts:

Limewire is able to transfer files without problem, regardless of size and time spent downloading.

I do not have any other means of accessing a different ISP so I don't know if this is related to my computer specifically, the router configuration or the ISP I currenty use (through my landlord).

Thanks for anyone that has come this far.

Edited by DOh23a1C, 04 November 2007 - 02:31 PM.

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I completed some more diagnostic work this morning (once the roomates left the house, lol).

Using THEIR computer, I tried accessing the same download file I tried on MY computer this morning.

Their computer is set up WIRED to the router that I purchased, mine is set up to be WIRELESS on the same router.

Their computer exhibited the SAME problem while it was connected to the router via a wire. So I now know it's not a Windows or computer hardware related issue with my computer.

I the disconnected THEIR computer and plugged it directly into the ISP modem, effectively bypassing the router. To my surprise, the problem was corrected. I was able to download a 200MB file whereas before it only got to about 30MB.

I have since concluded that the problem lies within the router itself, connecting wirelessly or through a CAT cable made no difference as both computers exhibited the same problems, only to be corrected by bypassing the router and plugging directly into the ISP's modem.

My question now becomes, where do I go with my troubleshooting?

I set up the router with almost default configurations. The only changes I made was turning on the NAT firewall (even then, I left it default and didn't add any special rules), I turned on WPA encryption, enabled MAC address filtering (of which I added my computer's wireless and wired LAN addresses as well as their computer's LAN address to the exceptions list) and limited the DHCP list to two maximum IP addresses (my computer and theirs'). I did NOT change the router's default IP address, nor did I mess with port forwarding of any sort.
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