Neil Turner's Blog

Blogging about technology and randomness since 2002

Feel the bandwidth

While Telewest is now starting to offer a 2Mbps broadband service, which lets you download files at 240KB/sec, it pales in comparison with the ~8Mbps connection speed I was getting yesterday in one of the computing suites. I was helping a coursemate download and burn a Knoppix CD to use at home – she wants to be able to use Linux at home so that she can build up experience with it but is too afraid to repartition her hard drive in case something bad happens.
Seriously, the download speed was amazing – around 1.02MB/sec – which meant that the entire 700MB CD downloaded within around 10 minutes. Compare that to over 6 hours on my parents’ 256Kbps connection and well over a day on this pathetic little 56k attempt. I have a feeling I may be around there with a few blank CD-Rs when Mandrake 9.2 ISOs are released to non-subscribers.
The only annoyance is that while the CD writers are 12-speed, which isn’t bad, they don’t support Smart-BURN, as we found out when she accidently hit a button on the scanner during the burning process, causing the scanner application to start and inducing a buffer underrun error. Still, I was running out of drinks coasters anyway.


  1. Knoppix rocks! 🙂
    Just update everything from the lab…
    apt-get update
    apt-get upgrade

  2. I had been toying with the idea of trying Linux for several years now. Two things finally gave me the impetus to do so: using Knoppix in the Internet Lounge at the Toronto World Science Fiction convention, and buying a sixty gig drive at Office Max. I put Red Hat 9 on the new drive, and only boot Windows 98 to update Quicken with the household accounts.

  3. Linux Format is due to have Mandrake 9.2 on its cover disc(s) next issue [ Christmas 2003, I think ]

  4. correction : December 2003 Linux Format [ just got my subscription copy ]