I just tested futerquest and it came in really graeat at 103 ms - but gees what is this speedy web thing coming in at 39 ms?? I have never seen a time like that!
Put in laymans terms .. imagine it this way.
Red Car and Blue Car decide to race in order to see which one is the faster car.
Now Red Car has a space shuttles engine in it
and Blue Car has a lil lawn mower engine in it (trying to avoid downing anybody's favorite brand names here hehe)
It would seem obvious that the Red Car is going to be faster.... but surprisingly it's easy to cause the Red Car to lose. Here's how.
The race has no starting line... to win you must arrive at Disney World in Orlando Florida first.
Now if the Blue Car starts at the front gate of Disney World in Orlando Florida and the Red Car starts in oh let's say the planet of Mars... the Blue Car is going to win by a long shot.
This is essentially what comparing trace routes is doing to servers.
If you test TopHosts.com on that trace route they come in with an impressive zero ms. Which even makes SpeedyWeb look slow. But TopHosts is sitting at the finish line.. and speedy web is sitting 32ms away from the finish line, and FutureQuest is sitting over a 100ms away from the finish line.
The key here -- Where is the starting line?
If you really want to compare hosts you need to assure they are both starting at the same place, try doing a trace route from your own computer to the hosts you want to compare... the one that wins there... has had a fair shot as well as the losers.
But if you do this as a way to determine speed it is also important to consider your visitors.. are they too starting from the same line as you? e.g. using your ISP... odds are not. So your 'winner' could be their 'loser'. *sigh*
It's important to not depend solely on trace routes.. there is so much more to it and they are just a piece of the puzzle....
What if the blue car only weighs a couple of ounces and the Red car weighs 5 tons...(what if one server is hosting 4 thousand sites and one is only hosting 50 sites)
What if the blue car starts out on dirt roads in the back woods and the red car has a brand new freeway to start at...
What if the red car has 'Goofy" building the engine and the blue car has NASA's whole engineering team building the engine? (it wouldn't matter how fast the red was if Goofy can not figure out how to start the engine)
The list goes on and on and on....
A Day In The Life..... hehe
Unlocking the Power of the Internet!