Your best friend for file transfer.

Fetch application logoFetch
Fetch Icon Fetch Help > Using Fetch > Why is uploading slower than downloading?

For many users, uploading files is quite a bit slower than downloading files. This is usually normal, because most high-speed Internet connections, including cable modems and DSL, are asymmetric — they are designed to provide much better speed for downloading than uploading. Since most users spend much more time downloading (which includes viewing web pages or multimedia files) than they do uploading, high speed Internet providers have designed their systems to give priority to downloading. So if your upload speed appears to be slower than your download speed, this is probably expected.

Another factor to be aware of is that providers advertise their speeds in kilobits, whereas Fetch reports speeds in kilobytes. 8 bits equal 1 byte, so the numbers you see in Fetch will appear to be smaller than the numbers advertised for your connection. You must multiply the number you see in Fetch by 8 for an accurate comparison. For instance, a 384/128 DSL connection is rated for 384 kilobits per second download, and 128 kilobits per second upload — which is equivalent to 48 kilobytes per second download and 16 kilobytes per second upload.

Your upload and download speeds will almost never match the maximum advertised speed of your connection. It's normal to only get 80-90% of the advertised maximum, and in the small print of your service provider's advertising you'll find that they only promise "up to" the advertised speed, not that you will always get that speed. This happens for several reasons. First, your connection may be shared with other people in your building or neighborhood, so if a lot of other people are using the Internet you may experience a slowdown. Second, servers may be busy uploading and downloading files for many different users, so they are unable to provide the maximum possible speed for your files. Finally, other network activity on your computer may slow down your transfer, since it must all share the same connection. If you try to transfer two files at the same time (in different transfer windows), each transfer will go slower because Fetch must split the network connection between them. Surfing the web or answering your email should only have a minor impact on transfer speeds.

Nevertheless, if you feel you are getting slower transfer speeds than normal, there are websites that you can use to test your connection speed. Your Internet service provider may have one, or you can try one such as the speed test. If you are repeatedly getting transfer speeds much lower than the ones reported by a test, you should try transferring your files to a different server to see if they go faster; and if so, contact your main server's administrator to see if there is a problem.