I upgraded my trading platform software on my computer easily enough. Installation was pretty straight forward. Confident that I was ready for next day’s trading session, I closed up shop for the day.
Next day, price information is lagging big time. In fact, my software kept freezing. I keep refreshing the data and that seemed to help. But, this isn’t right. I shouldn’t have to go to these lengths to get real time pricing data that I need to trade. I don’t have the information to make decent profits. I got the job done, but I could have made more money on some pretty great setups if I would have known up to date pricing.
Expletives are flying around my office at this point. I paid for this nice trading computer and it can’t even keep up. Another problem to deal with when all I want to do is focus on my trades.
This is an issue a client, Tom, called in with a few weeks back. He was frustrated about having issues and not being able to trade. Wouldn’t you be? If you have ever been in this or a similar situation, you know how this effects your day. None of us traders want to start our trading day dealing with issues like this one. However, bumps in the road happen and I want you guys to know how to fix these issues quickly.
In troubleshooting the issue with him, I said, “Tom…not to state the obvious right away, but how’s your Internet speed?” He assured me that the has the highest speed that his Internet provider would let him purchase. I told him, “Don’t get me wrong, I totally trust your information, but just so we can be 100% sure let’s run a quick test on your Internet.” To his surprise, the results were not good. His download speeds were abysmal. He was confused by this finding. Like he said earlier, he pays for the highest tier his Internet provider offers. With one quick test, we found the issue.
It’s so common place for us to assume that some big issue is causing our problems – not to say that isn’t the case sometimes. However, we all fall into this trap at one time or another. In a panic, we can be prone to overlooking the simple fix. Tom’s first response to the solution was “Why didn’t I think of double checking the speed I was getting?” It happens to all of us.
There are tons of value in the small tip and tricks to solve computer issues as they come at us. Because they will. We can’t circumvent that – try as we might.
If you ever come up against a data lag, here is what you need to know:
1. What Causes Data Lag?
If you have an EZ Trading Computer, I assure you all of our machines can process real time data. However, if you have an older machine, this might be causing you an issue. The reality is that older processors just can’t function the way newer processors can. Even a lower end processor like an i3 isn’t going to get the job done for you.
Here’s where the Internet gets tricky. The speeds can ebb and flow depending on how many other users in your area are on the same line as you. It’s even possible for your provider to be throttling the speeds based on traffic throughout the day. As traders, our internet is a crucial component of our business. It’s a good practice to monitor your speeds. This is my go to item if something is happening with data not loading/lagging or my browser is being slow. Be persistent with contacting your internet provider if you are experiencing less than ideal Internet speeds.
2. Why You Should Consider Upgrading
Why Upgrade Your Trading Computer
Ideally, your current computer should have a lifespan of 4-5 years. This is the easiest metric for you to use to know if you should upgrade. If your computer is from 2010-2011, you should consider upgrading. The primary reason for this is that older technology can’t compete against newer processors. Newer software has a much greater demand on your computer then it did 4 years ago. When it comes to technology, everything evolves together – processors, complexity of data, software, etc. Consider this: An Intel processor from 2015 is 191% faster than an Intel processor from five years ago.
Why Upgrade Your Internet Speed
I am all for saving money and more over not paying for services that aren’t necessary. However, this ISN’T an area where you want to be penny pinching. Pay for the highest tier your internet provider offers. It is worth it.
3. Perform These Two Tests
How To Test Your Processor
We recommend testing your current processor by viewing its benchmark score. This score allows you to view the processors performance abilities and compare this score to other processors. At EZ Trading Computers, we say that a minimum processor benchmark score for traders is 7500. I prefer a score more towards 10,000 (In fact, all of EZ Trading Computers installed processors score above 10,000). This allows some extra head room for you to grow with the machine over the next few years. I recommend using cpubenchmark.net. Punch in the model of your current processor and compare that to the processor in the computer you would like to purchase.
How To Test Your Internet Speed
Use speedtest.net to do a quick test. It takes 30 seconds. In the case of my client above, he assumed that he was getting super fast speeds and didn’t even think that could be an issue. Don’t assume you are getting what you pay for.
Tips To Never Experience Data Lag Again
Data lag is unacceptable to us traders. There is just too much on the line in not having the correct price information on your screen.
If you experience data lag, you should:
- Make sure you are getting high speed Internet.
- Pay for the premium tier Internet speeds from your provider.
- NOT be trading on an outdated machine.
- If your machine is outdated and under performing, consider upgrading NOW.
- Test the performance results of both your processor and Internet upload/download speeds
- Be diligent about security upgrades, software upgrades, virus maintenance, and general maintenance on your machine. It’s crucial.
After reading this you may be interested in our buyers guide. It cuts right to the chase about what technology traders need and what they don’t.
Remember, we are here to help with all your technology related questions. If you think of additional questions, give me a call. Myself and team are here to help. We’re happy to answer any of your questions about trading computers via phone: 800-387-5250