I recently needed to test the network speed of the ISP from my Ubuntu 10.04 LTS server. I was trying to think of a better way to test it than going out to a Linux Distro's web site and downloading an ISO from them. I stumbled across this post on StackOverflow that had a URL to a speedtest.net test file and my speedtest scripts were born. I created two scripts, one utilizing wget and on utilizing curl. A lot of machines don't come with curl by default, but it has a lot more output than wget does while downloading.
What Do They Do?
The scripts utilize wget or curl to download the speedtest.net 500M test file and you can view the speed results in real time. This is an entirely unscientific method of testing your speed, but much better than say, going to Ubuntu and downloading their latest ISO via wget. Finally, the output is set to go to /dev/null, which means it simply throws away everything it downloads (no cleanup).
Download both scripts here
#!/bin/bash wget --output-document=/dev/null http://speedtest.wdc01.softlayer.com/downloads/test500.zip
#!/bin/bash curl -o /dev/null http://speedtest.wdc01.softlayer.com/downloads/test500.zip