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Speed up network between OS X and Windows XP Network
I recently started using my Windows XP desktop machine to store backups from my new PowerBook. I noticed that the transfers (over SMB/FTP/SSH) were absurdly slow. I found various ideas on the Internet about changing the duplex setting of the network card, etc., but none of them helped -- it looks like plenty of people are having these sorts of speed problems.

Using the ifconfig command in a Terminal to look at the network settings, I noticed that my Ethernet adapter had IPv6 turned on -- apparently the default configuration in OS X. I don't use any services which require IPv6, so I turned it off in the Network Preferences. Lo and behold, I am now getting full speed transfers to the XP box.

I have a feeling that either my router (a piece of junk from my ISP) or the Windows box were not handling the IPv6 negotiations properly...

[robg adds: If anyone can confirm this problem, or further narrow when it may occur, please post a comment. I have an XP box, and transfer speeds to/from the Mac seem just as quick as Mac/Mac transfers...]
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Speed up network between OS X and Windows XP
Authored by: mikeklein on Mar 08, '05 10:47:20AM

You can turn off IPv6 easily. Go to network control panel. Click on IPv6 configure. In the drop down box, select OFF, click apply.

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Speed up network between OS X and Windows XP
Authored by: adrianm on Mar 08, '05 10:52:11AM

I can confirm that I have no performance troubles to/from a Win2k box from my PowerMac via a Netgear DG834 ADSL router.

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Speed up network between OS X and Windows XP
Authored by: morphis on Mar 08, '05 11:49:24AM

Try installing the IPv6 client on the Windows XP box.

I have had no such problem between my Mac OS 10.3.8 on a Dual 1.25 G4 and my Windox XP box on a AMD 2800+(running at 2.8GHz yes overclocking is GOOD) with the IPv6 client installed over a 1000BaseTX.

Have copied 187GB in 2 hours. it was by the way maxing out the cpu doing so thow. Between my G4 and a G5 pretty much max out the Gigbit in a similar transfer (with hardly any cpu usage when compaired with the XP box). shows you how greedy windows is on network transfers.

The Pegasus NAS units from Maxtronics are like 5x faster than 2003 server runing on a Dual 3Ghz Xeon Intel Box (All stock intel parts down to the 4 channel SATA RAID controller)

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Speed up network between OS X and Windows XP
Authored by: Shawn Parr on Mar 08, '05 01:30:18PM
This is actually a Win XP bug, and it only happens with specific ethernet adapters. Some drivers under XP do not properly support delayed ACK.

I can't remember exactly what happens, but if there is a network colision, or some other issue on the network, the client is supposed to send an ACK to the 'server' and wait for a response. The server on receiving the ACK is supposed to wait a specific amount of time, then answer the ACK.

The buggy drivers overlook the fact that the response to the ACK is supposed to be delayed. So upon not receiving the response they immediately send another ACK.

A 'server' working according to specifications (i.e. Mac OS X or any Samba server) is supposed to increase the amount of delay before responding when it receives multiple ACKs, as that is a sign of network congestion and it is trying to allow the congestion to clear up a bit before sending data.

This process can make a 100Mb network run at less than 1MB/s transfer rate. I have experienced this with Netgear FA312 chipset ethernet cards in Pentium IV machines.

In your /etc/smb.conf file there are some GLOBAL settings you can use to fix this:

These tell the Samba daemon to immediately respond to any ACKs received. This technically makes you out of true spec for IP, but it does significantly speed things up when you have one of the cards afflicted by this issue.

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Speed up network between OS X and Windows XP
Authored by: doneitner on Mar 14, '05 10:35:33PM

I actually have a slightly backward version of this problem between OSX 10.3.8 and WinXP over a 100Mbps network. If I initiate a file transfer from the OSX box to copy a file from the WinXP box, I get decent speed (about 9MB/s). If I initiate the same file transfer (Win-to-Mac) from the WinXP box, I get pitifully slow rates.

I just assumed it was yet another further different MS tactic -- to convince users to not move their files off their PCs by throttling the network to non-Windows systems. It certainly wouldn't be the first time they'd done something like that. The fact that i get much better rates when initiating the transfer from MacOS would seem to bare this out, but yeah it could be just a bug. ;)

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Speed up network between OS X and Windows XP
Authored by: dille on Mar 08, '05 02:18:02PM

I have IPv6 switched off for both network cards (I have a 3Com sitting in my G4 as well), but I still have a sh*tty performance using SMB. I reach maximum speeds (10Mbit, as I'm to cheap to buy a 100Mbit hub while the 10Mbit one still works =] ) using FTP (so that's about 1MB/s), but using SMB I get 64Kbit from the PC to the G4, tops. The other way around is no problem.

Driving me completely bonkers...

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Speed up network between OS X and Windows XP
Authored by: TriNeuro on Mar 09, '05 08:49:53AM

I also experienced really bad transfer rates from a Windows XP machine to my G4, even though the other way around went smooth. So I bugged the smb.conf file a bit, and discovered:

"large readwrite (G)
This parameter determines whether or not smbd(8) supports the new 64k streaming read and write varient SMB requests introduced with Windows 2000. Note that due to Windows 2000 client redirector bugs this requires Samba to be running on a 64-bit capable operating system such as IRIX, Solaris or a Linux 2.4 kernel. Can improve performance by 10% with Windows 2000 clients. Defaults to on. Not as tested as some other Samba code paths."

Why did Apple let this be default when OS X is 32bit until Tiger arrives? So I made a new entry in smb.conf under [Global]:
large readwrite = no

Restarted Windows File Sharing (smbd), and now my transfers are performing well both ways!

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Speed up network between OS X and Windows XP
Authored by: jporten on Mar 08, '05 03:48:52PM

Possibly OT, but my reason for turning off IPv6 was due to horrific problems handshaking with some FTP servers, using multiple clients. Turned it off and the problem went away entirely.

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Speed up network between OS X and Windows XP
Authored by: osxpounder on Mar 08, '05 04:35:36PM

Hmm, what would we need, or want, IPv6 for, anyway? I mean, what does it do for us? I thought it was a standard coming in the future, not in use yet [but I know little about it].

Also, for morphis: you wrote, "it was by the way maxing out the cpu doing so thow." What do you mean? "Thow" isn't a word. Did you mean "Though" or "through"? I can't tell if it's a typo; not sure what you mean here.


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Speed up network between OS X and Windows XP
Authored by: macandrew on Mar 18, '05 12:42:59PM

I've encountered this slowdown problem between my G5 and my WinXP box, but only after the WinXP machine has been "woken up" from sleep. I have to reboot the WinXP to restore normal network speed. It's a nuisance because I don't use the WinXP machine all that much and would prefer to allow it to sleep when not in use.

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Slow printing
Authored by: oculos on Mar 09, '05 06:43:40AM

See, this seems to be a solution for a problem I face since a long time.

I share an HP Laserjet 1015 on a Windows XP box. I print to it via SMB, using a gimp driver on my iBook (the native driver from HP doesn't support printing to SMB - go figure).

My printing is WAY slow. It was so slow - like printing a page and waiting 5 seconds to print the other one - all text pages - that I had to turn on that thing on windows which makes it wait for the last page before it starts printing, in order to preserve the printer, as it was turning the "engine" on and off a lot printing documents.

I'll try turning off IPv6 and see what it does. But did anyone have the same problem with printing to a shared windows printer?



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Slow printing
Authored by: GlowingApple on Mar 09, '05 10:51:36AM

I had the same problem with my HP Deskjet 940C. In Windows it would print very quickly. In Mac, through windows shared, it would print fine per page but then crawl when it had to eject the page and move to the next one. I eventually just moved the printer ot my mac since that's where i use it most, but I will have to try this IPV6 fix.


When Microsoft asks you, "Where do you want to go today?" tell them "Apple."

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Speed up network between OS X and Windows XP
Authored by: Sith1ord on Apr 07, '06 12:14:47AM

Def. not confirmed here... I came upon this hoping it was that simple:

I use SSH Secure Shell to send things I dl'ed on to a PC desktop to my laptop. My iBook sported 2MB/s wireless and 3MB/s LAN... my new MacBook is getting about 1/10 of that. Changing the IPv6 did nothing to it. I would blame XP for it had it not worked at higher speeds via the iBook.

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Speed up network between OS X and Windows XP
Authored by: angusyoung on Aug 30, '06 01:59:07AM

I was scratching my hair out trying to fix this on my network too and have made a key discovery.

The culprit in my case was the onboard LAN card on my motherboard on the XP machine. It uses a VIA chipset. VIA chipsets have given me nothing but grief over the years, and lo, its that again!

Have installed a new NIC with a different chipset, and now I get superfast transfers from OSX to XP and XP to OSX using FTP or Samba.

For a few quid you can pick up a new NIC.
Try it, it worked for me.

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Speed up network between OS X and Windows XP
Authored by: bandrzej67 on Aug 30, '06 08:30:05AM
Microsoft makes it VERY clear that IIS for FTP, SMTP, and its news reader does *not* support IPv6:
File Transfer Protocol (FTP), Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP), and Network News Transfer Protocol (NNTP) services are not supported. IPv6 is supported only for the WWW service. The FTP, SMTP, and NNTP services do not have IPv6 support in IIS 6.0. You may want to attempt disabling IPv6 in a windows environment to see if it helps eliminate your speed problems.

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