Your learning process, business affairs or simply pleasant pastime may suffer from a low-quality Internet connection. In most cases, it means that the provider has some issues. However, quite often the problem is at the user’s end. The overall drop in computer’s performance may cause sluggish Internet as well. When it happens, you cannot blame provider. It is better to monitor the health of your Mac to avoid such situations.

check Internet connection

What are some ways to control the performance of your machine? One of the things a user can do is to check the network speed and Wi-Fi settings. The article covers several simple and tricky methods to scan your Mac’s Internet connection as well as some other system health parameters. So if you’re asking yourself “How can I check the Internet speed to know what the problem is?” read on to discover the answer.

How to Test Internet Speed on Mac and Other Connection Data

Third-Party Application. You can easily find dozens of Internet speed meter services in the App Store (for example, Speedtest by Ookla or FAST by Netflix). If you download and install apps from the trusted sources like this, you may be sure about its safety and accuracy. Such applications work is based on an original algorithm that cannot be tricked by speed enhancement instruments. A test like that is a single-threaded exam. It means the app applies only one connection to download the sample files. That is closer to what a user does during everyday browsing and downloading activities.

An ‘option-click’ method. An ‘option-click’ feature will deliver the result the fastest way, probably. Hold down the Option key when clicking on the menu bar to open the AirPort utility. The next thing you will see in the window that pops up is the detailed information about the Wi-Fi channel, quality of the signal, M.A.C. address of the base station, and – the speed data.

internet sharing off

Network Utility. How about the special network tool to detect the wireless speed? It is possible to apply Network Utility with the help of Command and Space keys. Pull up the Spotlight search field and enter the tool’s name. Another option is to navigate through Applications à Utilities and get the required information in the Network Utility. Find out the IP address, connection speed, error counters, and packets sent and received.

Activity Monitor. It is possible to use good old Activity Monitor feature to test the Internet speed. With the help of this utility, a user may control overall Mac’s state. It is a built-in tool, so there is no need to search for it elsewhere. Once a user launches it, he/she can notice a tiny Network tab. It will display several helpful metrics about your connection. Mind that this app shows data since the last boot of the device.

Two Ways to Check WiFi Speed

If you wish to learn how to measure the exact Wi-Fi speed and connection details, test the methods offered below.

Network Utility

  • Connect to the wireless router you would like to examine.
  • Just push the Cmd and Spacebar buttons anywhere in macOS to call Spotlight and look for Network Utility. Press the Return button to launch the tool.
  • Select the Info menu.
  • Pick the proper network interface from the offered menu. For example, it could be Wi-Fi (en0 or en1).

Discover the active connection speed alongside Link Speed. Notice it appears in megabits per second (e.g., 250 Mbit/s). In the rest of the chosen tab, it is possible to get details about the interfaces vendor and model. Mind that encryption will not show up on the utility

If you are one of the folks who are experienced and confident enough to play with Terminal, launch this utility (it’s in the utility folder) to enter the following code:

/System/Library/PrivateFrameworks/Apple80211.framework/Versions/Current/Resources/airport -I

The output will consist of the details you were looking presented just like in the image below (you need ‘lastTxRate’ and ‘maxRate’):

terminal example

What about Download & Upload Speed?

Do not hurry to complain about your Internet speed to your service provider without checking the speed of downloading and uploading items. Some apps may hog the network bandwidth, which leads to the sluggish Internet performance. Scanning the system for the current upload/download speed will assist in defining whether the background software is to blame for the issues with the network.

It is simpler than you may think:

  • Launch Finder and go to the Applications folder.
  • Launch Utilities and move to Activity Monitor then.
  • Pick Network in Activity Monitor. Discover the list of upload and download speeds. The red value near Data Sent/Sec refers to the upload speed. The green value in front of Data Received/Sec determines the download speed.

Check the mentioned criteria regularly to keep your Apple computer fast and furious when it comes to surfing the Web!

Related Post: 10 Tools To Test Your Internet Speed on Mac