How to Increase AT&T DSL Speed

By Leighton Sawatzky

The Internet service package you bought from AT&T sets the upper limit of your DSL connection speed. Higher speed packages are generally more expensive. You can upgrade your service package to attain higher speeds but there are a few things you can do before upgrading to get the most speed out of your DSL. DSL modems share phone lines with your phones; sometimes their signals interfere with each other. Here's how you can minimize line interference and increase your AT&T DSL speed.

Things You'll Need

  • DSL modem
  • DSL filter dongles
  • Network router (wired or wireless, optional)
  • Ethernet cable (2 or more if using wired network router)

Step 1

Unplug any phones, fax machines, answering machines or other devices connected to phone outlets in your house. Do not unplug your DSL modem.

Step 2

Plug a DSL filter dongle into the phone outlets you unplugged.

Step 3

Plug the phones and other devices into the DSL filter dongles. Do not plug your DSL modem into a filter dongle.

Step 4

Call AT&T Customer Service and ask them to install a "POTS-splitter" or "DSL-splitter" at your address. Make sure someone is home to note where the POTS-splitter is installed. AT&T Customer Service is linked in Resource 1.

Step 5

Connect your DSL modem to the "Internet" or "Data" port of the POTS-splitter with a telephone cable. Plug the other end into the phone jack on the back of the modem.

Step 6

Connect an ethernet cable to the ethernet port on the back of the modem.

Step 7

If you are not using a router connect the other end of the ethernet cable to an ethernet port on your computer. If you are using a router, plug the other end into the ethernet port on the router labeled "LAN," "WAN," "WLAN," or "Internet." There is only one of these four ports on the back of the router.

Step 8

Connect another ethernet cable to one of the numbered ethernet ports on the back of the router, then plug the other end into an ethernet port on your computer. If you are using a wireless router or connecting your computer directly to your modem, skip this step.

Step 9

Turn on your computer and log in to your user account. If you are using a wired router or connecting directly to your modem, your computer automatically reconnects to your AT&T DSL Internet.

Step 10

Click on the wireless network signal strength icon in the bottom right hand corner of your screen if your are using a wireless router. Select the name of your wireless network from the list and enter the password if asked. If you haven't set up your wireless network yet, the network name is the same as the manufacturer of the wireless router and doesn't require a password. For example, a D-link wireless router creates a network named "dlink."

Tips & Warnings

  • A POTS-plain old telephone service-splitter splits your phone line where it enters the house. One side is for your phones, etc.; the other is for your DSL modem. The splitter also filters the information coming over both lines so that only DSL signals go to your modem, and only phone signals go to your phones and other devices.
  • AT&T technicians install DSL filter dongles on your phones when setting up your DSL modem at home, but new phones might have been plugged in in the meantime. It doesn't hurt to check.