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Help with firewall and connection speed


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I have 2 problems that I need help with.

First my hardware:

Desktop computer

Dell 8200 Dimension 2 ghz, 768 mb ram, Linksys 10/100 NIC card (100TX LNE), Linksys 54g wireless router (WRT 54G), Sprint Broadband with internet router. Norton 2005 AV


Dell Inspiron 5100 2.6 ghz, 512 mb ram, Dell 1100 WLAN Card. Norton 2005 AV.

My first problem:

I disabled the firewall on the Linksys router, and I disabled the XP firewall.  When I go to Symantec's website and click on the link to check for security risks


It tells me that I am not at risk in all catagories.  I don't understand how I can not be at risk with the firewalls being disabled.  I also confirmed with Sprint Broadband that the router they provided me does not have a built in firewall. I also am pretty sure the Symantec web site works as I did the same thing to my father in laws computer and it told us he was at risk in all areas.  I have no 3rd party firewall software installed.  Am I missing something or do I somehow have a ghost firewall?

My second problem:

Since disabeling the firewalls my desktop download speed tests have been in the 3800 - 4000 range.  With firewalls enabled I was anywhere from 1200 - 2100.  The problem lies with my laptop.  With firewalls enabled I would get between 1200 - 2100.  No since disabling the firewall I can not get above 1000, while the desktop gets 3800-4000.  Why would this be?

I hope I have given you enough info, if not please let me know what else you need.

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