How To Reduce Ping/Latency In Games?

How To Reduce Ping/Latency In Games On Windows 10?

Generally, latency is the delay from input into a system to desired outcome. This term is used in various contexts and can be understood a little bit differently, there are many types of latency and latency issues also vary from one system to another. Low latency latency causes small delays, while high latency causes long delays.

In online gaming, ping refers to the network latency between a player's client and the game server. The lower the ping is, the lower the latency is, and vice versa. In other words, the lower the latency is, the less lad the player will experience. In games and not only games, where timing is key (such as real-time games) a low ping is always desirable, as a low ping means smoother gameplay by allowing faster updates of game data between the players' clients and game server. Clearly, you want as low a ping (ping time) as possible.

In real-time games like first-person shooter games, a high ping may cause the player to unintentionally gain unfair advantages, such as appear and disappearing from one location and instantaneously reappear in another, simulating the effect of teleportation, thus making it hard for other players to judge their character's position and subsequently making the player much more difficult to target. That's why a low ping is very important in games, especially where your position is everything.

You can check and test the latency of your internet connection at this website. A ping which is below 20ms is considered as a good result, while a ping over 150ms is considered to cause noticeable delay/lag. And it doesn't matter how fast your computer is, high ping will cause lag/delay while playing real-time games, giving you a disadvantage against other players.

There is no single way to reduce your ping, but simplest the solution is to close all other programs and windows on your computer, making sure that there are no active downloads in the background that might be affecting high ping while playing. If that does not help, then read the guide below and find the solution (or solutions) which works for you and lets you avoid high ping in virtual world.

how to reduce ping/latency in games on windows 10

Table of Contents:

Configure Windows Updates

Updates are basically a great thing, but if your Windows starts to download the updates in the middle of your gaming time then it might cause the high ping problems. In this part we are going to show you how you can disable Windows Update service or how to change the way how Windows delivers updates. You can use one of the methods or both of them altogether.

Windows Services (also know as services.msc), are used to modify how Windows services run on your system. These services are responsible for running available programs and managing many system settings and resources. You can modify a service's settings for security, troubleshooting, and performance-related reasons. You need to access Windows Services in order to stop the Windows Update service. Type "run" in Search and click the "Run" result.

configure windows updates step 1

In the Run dialog box, type "services.msc" and click "OK" to open Windows Services.

configure windows updates step 2

In the Services window, find "Windows Update" service and right-click on it. Select "Properties" in the drop-down menu.

configure windows updates step 3

In Windows Update Properties window find "Startup type:" and set it to "Disabled". Then find "Service status:" and click "Stop" to stop this Windows Update service.

configure windows updates step 4

Now Windows won't download any updates at any time, unless you revert these changes. We recommend you to use this method only when you are playing online games, but it is totally up to you.

Another thing you could try out is to change the way how the Windows updates are delivered. Windows 10 downloads updates on peer to peer basis, it has this feature that helps to save download bandwidth, peer-to-peer (P2P) delivery update mechanism. Using the P2P option, you can download a Windows update once, and then use that machine to spread the update to all computers on your local network, you can also download Windows updates from other users in your area. This feature could cause high ping problems while gaming and we are going to show you how to disable this feature on your Windows 10 operating system. First, go to Settings and select "Update & Security".

configure windows updates step 5

Locate "Advanced options" under "Update settings" and click it.

configure windows updates step 6

In the Advanced options window, click "Delivery Optimization".

configure windows updates step 7

In the Delivery Optimization window, turn off the "Allow downloads from other PCs" option by toggling the switch.

configure windows updates step 8

In addition you can also turn on the metered connection option in your Wi-Fi settings (if you are using the Wi-Fi connection on your PC), this could reduce ping/latency as well. Metered connection allows you to prevent background downloads, to turn the metered connection option on Windows 10 go to Settings, select "Network & Internet". Select "Wi-Fi" on the left pane and then click on "Advanced options". In Advanced options window find "Metered connection" and toggle the switch to "On" position under "Set as metered connection".

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Use Ethernet Connection

Ethernet is a family of computer networking technologies commonly used in local area networks, metropolitan area networks and wide area networks. Wi-Fi is more convenient connection than Ethernet, but Ethernet has its advantages. Ethernet is simply faster than Wi-Fi, and Wi-Fi increases latency/ping. If reducing latency as much as possible is your concern, then you should switch to Ethernet connection. Connecting to a device directly with Ethernet is the best way to ensure you have the lowest possible ping and a much more stable connection.

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Optimize Your Game Settings

From a computer resource perspective, it is important to make sure that your game settings are optimized. Setting your graphics to maximum makes games more pleasant, but this also can impact framerates. It is important to make sure that your graphics card, RAM and your processor can support the settings you choose for the smoothest gaming experience.

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Check Which Apps Are Using Your Network Connection

To check which apps are using your network connection you will need to use Task Manager, a system monitor program used to provide information about the processes and programs running on a computer, as well as the general status of the computer. Some implementations can also be used to terminate processes and programs, as well as change processes' priorities. To open it, press Ctrl + Shift +Esc on your keyboard or right-click on the Start menu and select "Task Manager" from the contextual menu.

check which apps using your network connection step 1

You will be automatically directed to the first Task Manager's tab called "Processes", where you will see a list of processes running on your system. Find "Network" section and select it, this will sort the processes list by network usage (processes using the most of the network resources will be shown at the top of the list). Select the process (or the processes) that is using your network and turn it off. To turn it off click the "End task" or right-click on the process and select "End task" from the contextual menu.

check which apps using your network connection step 2

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Turn Off The Wi-Fi Sense Feature

This feature enables you to share WiFi connections. You can share your network's bandwidth with specific people. This feature can also connect you to other WiFi networks that are shared with you by your friends or other people. If you would like to disable this feature, go to Network & Internet, choose "Wi-Fi", and then go to "Manage Wi-Fi Settings". To stop connecting to networks shared with you by your friends or other people, turn off the "Connect to suggested open hotspots" feature. If you want to stop sharing WiFi networks you log in to, uncheck "Outlook.com contacts" and other contacts below. We recommend you to simply disable all of the available options.

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Turn Off Location Tracking Feature

Windows 10 includes a built-in device location tracking feature which helps you easily find the exact geographical location of the device in case it gets stolen or you misplace it somewhere. However, this feature could possibly cause high ping/latency in games. To disable this feature go to Settings and select "Privacy".

turn off location tracking step 1

Now select "Location" on the left pane and then toggle the switch to "Off" position under the "Location service" section. If you don't see the switch click "Change" and then toggle the switch.

turn off location tracking step 2

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Check Your Signal Strength

If you are using Wi-Fi connection, then check your position to the router and the signal strength of the Wi-Fi. There are many apps available that help you to determine the best location for your computer to get stronger Wi-Fi signal. You can use one of the apps, or you can simply try to move your computer closer to the router and see if this makes any difference.

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Disable Your Antivirus

This high latency/ping problem can occur due to antivirus software, your antivirus software can interfere with your network connection. Temporary disabling it might help to fix this problem. If disabling the antivirus software fixes the issue, you might want to consider switching to a different antivirus program or removing your antivirus completely.

Third-party firewalls can also cause this high ping/latency problem, one of them is ZoneAlarm. Try to remove ZoneAlarm and see if this helps to reduce the ping/latency. Some users stated that removing this firewall software actually helped them solve the issue.

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Update Your Game Client

A Game client is a network client that connects an individual user to the main game server, used mainly in multiplayer video games. It collects data such as score, player status, position and movement from a single player and send it to the game server, which allows the server to collect each individual's data and show every player in game. Even though the game server displays each player's information for every player in a game, players still have their own unique perspective from the information collected by the game client, so that every player's perspective of the game is different, even though the world for every player is the same. In most cases a player can't connect to a server without having the lates game client, however, sometimes it is possible to connect to a server using older game client. Make sure that you gave the latest game client installed on your computer. Game clients with the newest patches has more improved connection to the game server than older clients.

We hope that at least one of the solutions helped you to decrease the ping/latency and you can see noticeable difference when connecting to server. If not, then try to connect to a faster internet connection. In some ways faster connection usually means reduced ping. Unfortunately, the reason for the high ping/latency can be something that you cannot control. Sometimes you will just have to wait until the server sorts the problem itself.

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