Hello everybody! Because of the coronavirus, our seminars are canceled for the time being, and so are our local classes. But as a Taoist, there come new opportunities with every situation.
Today I want to write about a topic that has kept me thinking for a very long time. Basically, when I was in China, I had to get high internet speeds and a reliable rendering computer for all the videos I was making in Wudangshan. The following post is interesting when you need the following points:
First, to have access to all of this, we need an internet connection with at least 15mb/s download. So there we should try to optimize your hardware to get the most out of the available internet connection.
For our case, a normal smartphone would work – but it is a little inconvenient to operate a workstation from a smartphone. I recommend at least a tablet or a low-tier laptop. Android, Apple, and Windows work. Since the hardware doesn’t matter for our situation, I recommend a device with functional IO connectivity and battery life.
Here I recommend some devices which fulfill these requirements in a very cost-efficient way:
You should get an AC1200 USB stick. In most cases, this is much faster than any WLAN module inside a laptop and also has a higher range. I recommend not to choose a too cheap one. The antenna should be powerful, and most of the higher-end antennas have beamforming abilities, meaning they can focus the WLAN signal to get the most out of it. Even with the most badass integrated WLAN card, you will have more success with a powerful USB WLAN antenna that can catch the signal properly and give you the speed we need. In most cases, this should get us a download speed of about 15MB/s, even in very bad environments.
Look up these links to get it:
Make sure your WLAN stick has at least an AC1200 module and a large antenna! This should give you at least a 30% performance boost to integrated WLAN modules to reach the required speed.
On the mountain, it can sometimes be a bit inconvenient, but from my experiences, I never needed to take this last resort. If the country is still in development, channel bonding can be a real life-changer.
I am not a partner, nor am I sponsored, but the only VPN that is supporting channel bonding is Speedify. I still recommend VPNexpress service over Speedify, but in terms of channel bonding, it does the job! Channel bonding means you basically use the integrated WLAN card plus the USB WLAN stick to connect to two different internet sources – this can be expensive. Still, it will negate the package loss issue, and you will be able to have decent internet speed for working or even streaming. The two internet connections will be combined, and you will receive a faster internet overall.
If you have the choice – one fast internet connection is still better – and VPNexpress will deliver the faster VPN speeds in China – I tested it and can only confirm this.
Ok now we talked about the requirements – we get internet speed of at least 15mb/s – so what are we talking about exactly? Here comes the real game-changer for your Wudang travels:
We are talking about Virtual desktop machines – they are expensive if you take a glance at what is available. Amazon will ask for this over 100$ a month, and you still would not have the power to render a video properly on it.
The only option that gives you a GTX 1080 and a high-end computer for only 15$/month is Shadow PC. They are market-leading in the US, UK, and EU.
Visit Shadow PC over this link for the friend bonus:
With Shadow PC, we can successfully render on Adobe Premiere or other software 4k videos with ease and fantastic speed. Shadow is a virtual machine, so it will also unblock all websites that are blocked in China, and you will not be affected by lousy internet speeds in China if you want to upload your videos or photos on Youtube or other platforms. Shadow has direct access to high internet speed lanes and provides at least 900mb/s down and 250mb/s upload.
Ok Shadow is excellent and fantastic, but now we come to our next problem:
Since most services are blocked in China, google drive without a VPN is not an option. I had google drive before, and it was not as fast as the option I am about to tell you. It is possible to have a streaming drive that will upload automatically to the cloud regardless of filesize. Onedrive, dropbox, and so on are not optimized for large file sizes, so they are not really an option, and amazon cloud is expensive. We want cloud storage that we can access without a VPN to have the best upload speeds from our local internet connection.
I tested Pcloud myself, and I am very happily using it for most of my work and travels! It works in China and has excellent upload speeds for what I need. I use the cloud storage as a bridge to send these files to my Shadow PC. Once the data arrived on the cloud storage, the Shadow PC can instantly access the data because of its high internet speeds, and we can use it for rendering in Adobe premiere.
Workflow: record your videos during the day and upload it overnight – the next day, you are ready to work. Uploading the files is then the shortest part. In China, uploading is usually the most prominent issue, and with Shadow PC, you entirely go around that issue and upload it to Youtube almost instantly.
Shadow PC requires us to have 15mb/s and for an enjoyable experience around 40ms Ping. Due to the significant distance from China to a Shadow datacenter, there can be a lot of latency and ping issues. This is also why it is not recommended to work over a virtual machine over long distances. If you don’t want to go around this issue – shadow can still work as an uploading machine for you, but working on it will be inconvenient.
How we fix this issue:
We can use the fastest VPN available to bridge the distance between China and Shadow PC. There is only one option available actually because we need the fastest VPN we gonna choose VPNexpress. Check it out over the link for a bonus!
Balancing latency vs ping:
With VPNexpress, you can choose a location between Shadow Datacenter and China. The closer the location is to Shadow, the better your ping will be but with higher latency. Choose a location closer to China to improve latency but worsen your Ping. If the internet speed is fast enough, it should be better to place the VPN location closer to Shadow. But if the internet is borderline, it would improve your experience by placing the VPN closer to China. In this situation, you should experiment a little since there are many factors involved, but this is the general rule, and you should get the idea.
If the internet is good enough, you can choose TCP connection to improve your package loss. If the internet is borderline, you should select UDP connection; this will make your package loss higher but will keep your internet connection faster overall. There is simply more to it then a fast internet speed. To work properly, you should take all these factors in mind, and you should aim to get a stable and reliable connection instead of the fastest one for connecting with Shadow.
I hope this post was informative for you, and maybe this can be your new travel layout. I dislike carrying lots of hardware with me, and in countries still in development, this can make you feel more secure. A smartphone can also be used with the exact same setup – like mentioned before, and if you need a bigger screen, you can simply connect your smartphone to a TV over an HDMI cable; most smartphones have this functionality and work this way. All you need is an HDMI dongle for your smartphone, and you can work over the TV connected with a mouse and keyboard if you like that. For me, a small laptop felt the most convenient way to make use of this setup, but this doesn’t mean it has to be for you.
Pcloud, VPNexpress, and ShadowPC are the market-leading solutions for this specific workflow, and I hope this will help you as much as it did for me! Note that even if your internet connection is unstable and tends to disconnect – your uploads will be secure on Shadow PC and continue to upload. The virtual desktop will work even when you are not logged in!
Thank you for taking your time and check out one of these links!