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ONSPEED Internet Accelerator

Started by iansl, June 24, 2004, 16:33 hrs

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Internet Accelerators... worthless MUI tweakers?  Not in this case.  ONSPEED promises Broadband-comparable speeds over a mere 56K connection for ?1.99 a month without having to change your existing dial-up provider.

I've subscribed to it until we get ADSL sorted (if at all) and I must say that I have been very impressed.

It uses a method similar to AOL whereby pages that you request are compressed on the fly by their servers before being delivered to your computer.  It officially supports Internet Explorer on Windows and they also support Mac OSX.  I have successfully got it working with Mozilla Firefox by entering it's proxy server details (copied from Internet Explorer's proxy server settings)

My current dial-up speeds are appalling - the main Poasters forum page takes about 20 seconds to load from scratch (after clearing the cache).  With ONSPEED in use, it loads in less than 5.  In my current browsing session (Poasters, eBay, Novatech) it has achieved a 8.56X speed increase.  That is, 735KB of original page data has been squashed down to 85KB.

Here are some figures:
Text:  624KB/51KB  ->  12.03X
Graphics:  26KB/13KB  ->  1.92X
Others: 29KB/15KB  ->  1.91X
Upstream: 55KB/5KB  ->  11.0X

Of course it comes at a cost.  Images are compressed to a lower quality, but the option for level of compression is adjustable.  I find that the huge speed increases negate the quality loss altogether and ONSPEED allows you to easily change the compression level instantly via it's system tray icon.  In the case of forums such as Poasters, you do not notice a quality loss at all, and most of the speed increase probably comes from compression of text.  If you really want ultimate speed you can set it to a very lossy quality setting - but I feel that even this is better than disabling images altogether, something I have been known to do in the past.  On the best quality the images look identical to the originals, but you still gain from the text and upstream compression.
There is also a popup blocker and even a facility to block in-page adverts.  The most recent versions of the ONSPEED client also support compressing Flash.

I give this software a full 10/10 and it does deserve the numerous awards it's received.  Anyone with dial-up internet access would be stupid to not try it (14 day money back guarantee if you're not satisfied).

Check it out here:

Discuss ONSPEED here