Performance tuning the network controller (MTU)

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This article Based on work by tklee, briand, frontalot, and nix. Originally by frontalot. at

  • Every time you send a 1500 size packet out on a MTU1492 network you end up with two packets: 1492 + 8. That's why the speed drops - The second packet is almost empty! If you type:
ifconfig eth0
  • It will show:
MTU = 1500
  • The standard MTU[1] for DSL and cable is 1492 maximum, for DSL via PPPoE[2] it is often 1480 (you best ask your provider for the correct value). You can:
  • Add the following line to one of your startup files in the start section, e.g. in
/sbin/ifconfig eth0 mtu 1492
  • Add "mtu 1492" (a line by itself) to /etc/network/interfaces
echo "mtu 1492" >> /etc/network/interfaces
  1. :maximum transmission unit
  2. :Point-to-Point Protocol Over Ethernet