Pretty much everyone has a home network in some way. Due to internet service providers, providing very affordable broadband services. Home networks are a very common thing. Without users even knowing about how to set up a home network, the router which is usually supplied from your ISP will create one straight out of the box. They also make it so simple to extend your home network with either ethernet ports or wireless connectivity that are plug and play. Testing your home network speed with network benchmarking tools isn’t just for business companies or IT technicians.
Nowadays our home network speeds are important to achieve the fastest file downloads and transfer speeds necessarily for hardware like NAS systems etc. It is also ideal for streaming services like Netflix, which needs a stable fast connection, to get the best experience possible. Here are some free network benchmarking tools, you can use to test your home network.
Free Network Benchmarking Tools
If you have used network benchmarking tools before, you may have come across one called EVEREST. AIDA32 is the first free network benchmarking tool spin of from the popular tool EVEREST. Even though EVEREST is still available, they no longer support the network benchmarking plugin now known as AIDA32. To test your home network and run the network benchmark, you’ll need to download and run the network benchmarking tool on both computers.
Download, unzip, and run AIDA32.exe. On the menu bar, click on Plugin – AIDA32 Network Benchmark. On the main computer, select Master on the drop-down menu at the bottom of the window. Then go to the Bandwidth tab and click on the start button.
On the secondary computer, select Slave on the drop-down menu. Then enter the IP address of the main computer. Select the Bandwidth tab and click Start.
2. LAN Speed Test (Lite)
Probably the easiest to use network benchmarking tool on the list. It is the free edition of the shareware LAN Speed Test. It tests your home network speed, by copying a dummy file across two machines on the same network. The best thing I like about this network benchmarking tool, it’s that unlike AIDA32, you don’t need to set up a master and slave connectivity. If you wanted to, it also gives you the ability to print your results.
To get started using LAN Speed Test (Lite), download and run LAN_SpeedTest.exe. Under Folder and Server, IP hit the browse button. Search for a location on another computer that you have written permissions and hit Start Test. You will then be prompted to enter a dummy file size, so the test can begin. I find the larger the dummy file, the better network benchmark reading you get.
Created by Nuts About Nets, NetStress is a free and simple network benchmarking tool which is now been released free to the public. Similar to AID32, NetStress needs to be run on two computers on the same network. But you won’t need to set up a master and slave connection. NetStress can automatically find the receivers IP address. Another key feature of NetStress is the ability to change MTU settings.
To get started testing your home network, open up NetStress and click 0.0.0.0 on the left of where it says Remote received IP. Select the IP address which is listed in the window, and click OK. You should now see that the Start button has been enabled. To begin the test, hit Start, you should now see it benchmarking your network.
4. LAN Bench
Further down the list, and LAN Bench is another free and simple to use tool for testing your home network. You will still need to run this on both computers, and set one as a master and another as a slave. With the master computer, you’ll only need to hit Listen. With the slave, a little more configuration will be required, to perform the benchmark.
To run the test, on the slave computer, select File – Configure and enter the IP address of the master computer.
You can also configure test duration, packet size, connection and transfer mode. During the benchmark, you will be able to view the current transfer rate and the average transfer rate.
NetIO does look a little more advanced than the other free network benchmarking tools. It’s actually a command-line application for benchmarking the network throughput.
After downloading NetIO, run the extractor, and then run NetIO-GUI.exe. NetIO-GUI will need to be running on both computers, one acting as a server, the other as a client. The server will only require you to click on the Start Server button. While on the client, you will need to enter the server’s IP address. It also gives you the option to select TCP or UDP protocol. NetIO will then test the connectivity.