MSN-TV ONLY HELP PAGES
SLOW LOADING AND PERFORMANCE
The Causes And Possible Cures
CONNECTION SPEEDI have a 56K modem. When I checked my connection speed a few weeks ago it was running at 52,000 bps. A couple of days ago it showed 50,666 bps. Your connection speed will never be at the actual baud rate of the modem but will vary with the quality of your phone line connection.
You may CLICK HERE to check your current connection speed.
If you do alot of web surfing then your browser may be slowed by an excessive amount of stored cookies which can use allot of your cache space. While you're at the utility, view your cookies. If the entire list doesn't fit in the screen then you might want to reset your cookies. This can improve the performance of your browser considerably if the cookie list is long.
RECEIVER AGEProbably the most common reason for your terminal to be consistantly running slow and having poor performance is the age of your MSN-TV receiver. This has nothing to do with components wearing out, but has to do with the size of your memory. If your terminal was manufactured prior to the year 2000, there is a good chance that it has only 8 Megs of RAM for a "Plus" or 4 Megs for a "Classic". This is not enough memory to accomodate the browser upgrades since the 2.6 version was released. We have all been forced to upgrade our browsers since the name of our service was changed to "MSN-TV", and that means that many of the older terminals are now obsolete.
If your terminal was purchased prior to the year 2000 and you are experiencing poor performance with it, the only way to correct the problem is to replace the box with a current model.
FULL CACHEThere are two more primary things that will slow down your terminal. One is a full cache. The "cache" is the area of the RAM (Random Access Memory) where web activity data is temporarily stored. When it gets full, it takes more time for the browser to find available space for new information and may have to spend time deleting and overwriting data. It may cause an overflow and cause the box to lock up or just shut itself off then turn back on again. In any case, it causes a noticable slowing of your terminal. The first thing to do when you notice slowing is to shut your box off and restart with a clear cache. This is the only reliable way to clear your cache.
Another thing that will effect your cache and consequently your browser speed is full Favorites Folders or a full Mailbox. These two things use your receiver's memory leaving less space for web navigation. Dump those Favorites that you never use or upload them to your Pagebuilder and clean out your mail list. Instructions on uploading Favorites to PageBuilder for storage are posted in this section. Cleaning out these two areas will do wonders for your speed, navigation, and performance.
PHONE LINE CONNECTIONSThe other thing is a "dirty" phone connection and this problem is very common. If this is the cause of your slowing, you will notice it shortly after powering on your terminal and the problem will continue throughout the session. This can sometimes be corrected by disconnecting from the web (Cmd+power button), then reconnecting.
If the problem still exists, then check your phone cord and jacks to be sure everything is in good condition. Disconnect any other phone equipment (phones, answering machines, fax, etc.) using the same line. Cordless phones are said to cause this problem frequently. Then check your terminal to see if the speed has improved with nothing else connected to the line. If it has then isolate the phone or device causing the problem by reconnecting each device one at a time and checking your terminal loading speed with each one. Do not check it by reloading a page that has already been loaded, this page is already in your browser and will be read from there, not loaded from the web. Choose a new page with each test, you can use your emails for this.
If the problem is not being caused by any of your inside phone equipment then call your phone company repair service (611) and ask them to check the line for noise and other conditions needing repair. This will only take a few minutes and if a problem is found, they will schedule a repair on their lines.
BAD OR BUSY SERVEROne last thing that might be responsible for the slowness is a busy or defective MSN-TV server in your area. I had this happen to me on my primary dial-up number once and after a couple of attempts at reporting it to Webtv, they did test that server and verified a problem. They took it off line and repaired the problem. Often, and particularly in rural areas, MSN-TV service is limited to only one or two local servers. When they get busy they slow down due to the large number of requests they have to handle. This may be your problem if the slowness comes and goes and none of the above things I have mentioned apply. This is likely the problem if it occurs regularly during certain busy hours. I hope this helps.