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  1. #1
    New Lounger
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    Monitoring software for Wi-Fi connection

    I have a ATT HOTSPOT that I use to connect my computors when I'm traveling. This month, usage has move than doubled our previous high, when I don't think it should have hit the 5gb as we have been using our daughters wi-fi at least half the time.
    I thought I had read something in the newsletter about software to monitor your WIFI connection and give you an idea what is using bandwidth for what.
    I have gone back several issues and don't find what I thought I read, and have had no luck with a search.

    Does anybody have any suggestions?
    Thanks.

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  3. #2
    Gold Lounger
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    Depends on where you need to monitor. If you only use one or two PCs you can load software on each PC that monitors network traffic. If you have a lot of computers you need to put something between the hotspot device and your network to monitor the traffic (m0n0wall or pfSense etc).
    What is your set up?

    cheers, Paul

  4. #3
    New Lounger
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    Just the laptop that is connected to the HotSpot.

  5. #4
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    inSSIDer from MetaGeek
    BACKUP...BACKUP...BACKUP
    Have a Great Day! Ted


    Sony Vaio Laptop, 2.53 GHz Duo Core Intel CPU, 8 GB RAM, 320 GB HD
    Win 8 Pro (64 Bit), IE 10 (64 Bit)


    Complete PC Specs: By Speccy

  6. #5
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    Here's a simple meter that will measure bandwidth.
    It's a small lightweight app. Probably too simple for your needs.

    Article: How To Check If Someone Is Stealing Your WiFi & What You Can Do About It (James Bruce ✎On 13th February, 2011)

    Your best bet would be to get away from using WEP, and or turn off your wifi when not in use.
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

    Windows 8.1, 64 bit
    Motherboard: DX58SO2*Chipset: X58 Express/Intel ICH10*BIOS: SOX5820J.86A.0888.2012.0129.2203*Processor: Intel Core i7 CPU X 990
    GPU: Nvidia GTX 580*Memory: Corsair 12 GB, 4x3@1600*PSU: Corsair HX1000*Hard drives: REVO X2 160GB*OCZ VERT X3 120GB*5 mechanical storage drives (12 TB) total.

  7. #6
    New Lounger
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    I am not using WEP, and this is not a case of somebody stealing my WI-FI. This is more of a case of what the heck is using all my bandwidth.
    I have already figured out that MSN homepage is using up bandwidth if you leave it up, even if nobody is using it.
    I turned of MSN for my wifes homepage, and have her simply come up in her mail. If she wants to look at anything else, she starts a new tab and closes when she is done.
    According to the Hotspot, we used amost 1/2 a gb (out of 5) yesterday, just doing what she normally does (mail, ancestry research via searches from the PC based program, etc). Up until last month, we could go most months and never hit the 5 gb.
    If we were someplace where we had both PCs using the Hotspot, we might hit 6 gb in a whole month.
    Last month, we hit 11 gb, and part of the time the laptop was at my daughters and we were using her WIFI.
    Something has radically changed.
    We don't do YouTube, Video news clips, and stay as far away from news articles with automatic videos embedded in them as we can.
    (If anybody knows how to stop those cotton picken auto start videos from running, I sure would like to know)
    What I am looking for is a way to monitor usage inside of the laptop. I thought I read something in Windows Secrets awhile back about a program that would track and analysis your PC/Network and give you a clue.

  8. #7
    Gold Lounger
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    Netlimiter?

    cheers, Paul

  9. #8
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    I am not using WEP, and this is not a case of somebody stealing my WI-FI. This is more of a case of what the heck is using all my bandwidth.
    I have already figured out that MSN homepage is using up bandwidth if you leave it up, even if nobody is using it.
    Process explorer/Monitor, Window's task manager, & TCPView can all be helpful in tracking down those apps and Windows processes that are eating away at your limited wifi.
    If nothing has changed in your installed applications then a thorough AV/AM scan would be in order.
    I also recommend going through all your installed programs to determine which of those have "phone home" capabilities that can be curtailed.
    Newer operating system's like Windows 8's start tile apps can be configured to limit their access as well. (they can eat into a limited internet access quite easily)
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

    Windows 8.1, 64 bit
    Motherboard: DX58SO2*Chipset: X58 Express/Intel ICH10*BIOS: SOX5820J.86A.0888.2012.0129.2203*Processor: Intel Core i7 CPU X 990
    GPU: Nvidia GTX 580*Memory: Corsair 12 GB, 4x3@1600*PSU: Corsair HX1000*Hard drives: REVO X2 160GB*OCZ VERT X3 120GB*5 mechanical storage drives (12 TB) total.

  10. #9
    New Lounger
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    I'm running Win 7 64bit. I had already ran a couple of different scanners with no hits, so didn't think I had a bug.
    I've been pretty careful with installations and either not installed or turned off programs and services that might be phoning home.
    I installed NetLimiter and haven't found any huge problems, but did confirm something that I found just checking 'status' on my network icon on the taskbar.
    The browsers (MSN is worse than Yahoo), eat up bandwidth when the are just setting on their homepage. My wife would go to MSN first thing, then a new tab would get opened for mail, then another. Then she would start up her research program and eventually get a couple of more tabs opened. The homepage would get left up for several hours and just keep nibbling away at the bandwidth.
    I'll just keep NetLimiter running and maybe I will be able to find something as we cruise along.

    Thanks for the suggestions.

  11. #10
    New Lounger
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    there are a number of reasons why your systems are using more bandwidth than expected. one reason are windows updates. others can be spywares. others can be antivirals (and other programs) that are configured to do daily checks for updates and then automatically download them. and then there is a possibility that your systems are connected to the cloud, like google drive, and files are being saved to your local google drive folder which are then uploaded to the cloud. and yet there is still more behind the scenes activities that can be found via your task manager control panel.

    so i would not bother with installing more software which in itself could be more spyware.

    instead i would begin by uninstalling software that you don't need and reconfiguring software that is already running by turning off their automatic checks for updates and downloads. also, if you accounts on the cloud, i would temporarily change the password online "but not change the passwords" for them on your local system. then if an error pops up on your desktop because something or another can't log in, then this will be a clue revealed to you.

    otherwise, if none of the above pans out as being erroneous user settings or malware, then i would switch to an internet service that gives you more bandwidth or unlimited bandwidth. measuring bandwidth for your machines that are connected to the wooorld wiiiide web, is a waste of valuable time on earth.

  12. #11
    New Lounger
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    Hi geezer1
    I hope you find the problem, in the meantime however if you would like to know how much bandwidth you are using and actually watch it as it comes and goes, this is what I use, NetSpeedMonitor. Its very small and sits along side your clock. It monitors all traffic coming and going 24/7. kbit/s in, kbits out, per month, day, and session. It lists your controller and system up time. Not many bells and whistles, but it does what it says. http://netspeedmonitor.en.softonic.com/
    Last edited by newdeal; 2013-10-24 at 11:52.

  13. #12
    3 Star Lounger
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    Quote Originally Posted by Geezer1 View Post
    The browsers (MSN is worse than Yahoo), eat up bandwidth when the are just setting on their homepage. My wife would go to MSN first thing, then a new tab would get opened for mail, then another. Then she would start up her research program and eventually get a couple of more tabs opened. The homepage would get left up for several hours and just keep nibbling away at the bandwidth.
    Yes, the MSN homepage (also Yahoo and many others) "refresh" themselves frequently and keep changing some graphics to highlight different news stories, etc. All of that stuff is using up bandwidth. If you can find a homepage you like without all the graphic stuff it's probably safe to leave that up while doing other things. One method could be to look for a Personalize option or a MY MSN option that lets you choose what content appears on the page. I have done that on Yahoo resulting in a My Yahoo startpage with groups of headlines/subjects grouped in categories such as World News, US News, Top Headlines, Sports News, etc. It doesn't refresh often and there are few, if any, graphics.
    Good luck!

  14. #13
    Lounger Wiley's Avatar
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    With your browser open click on Options, go to Internet Options,
    on the general tab, I.E. settings, under [I]browser history settings,
    (check for newer versions of stored pages) select Every time I visit the web page.
    Exit IE to effect the changes.

    the default in IE is to automatically update all the stored webpages
    stop the pages from updating in the back ground without your knowledge

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  16. #14
    New Lounger
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    Windows and a couple of other programs are the only ones set up to automaticallycheck for updates. Nobody is allowed to automatically download and install.

    This laptop is primarily used by my wife and her ID is not set up for admin, so she can't apply any updates. If there is anything besides a few kb of virus/mw definitions, I generally take it to a location where I can use WIFI. Under her ID, there are a minimal number of programs even installed and operational.

    We don't have anything using clouds, and we don't use anything Google. (I just spent several hours convincing Windows 8.1 on my daughters new ACER R7 Aspire, that we weren't using a MS ID for login, we weren't using Skydrive, we weren't doing automatic anything, and we weren't having a bunch of tiles updating all the time)

    We are fulltime RVer's (over 5 years), and using anybody besides ATT and Verizon for HotSpots doesn't work out too well. We have talked to alot of folks who have tried different vendors, and either don't get as good of coverage, have poorer performance, and have talked to several whos thoughput was throttled when they went over 2.5 GB.

    We don't get throttled, just charged $10 a Gig when we go over 5 Gig.

    We may go 2 or 3 months using nothing but the HotSpot (using the laptop and my desktop), then we may go 2 or 3 months where we have WiFi 24/7. For the last two months, we have been using the HotSpot where the RV is parked, but taking the laptop to my daughters during the day (and applying it's updates, and downloading new versions of software for both machines to my external drive). That's why the 11 gb was a big surprise.

  17. #15
    New Lounger
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    Since we stopped going to a homepage when we open the browser, and have kept it closed when not actually reading something, the 'data remaining' line on the HotSpot and NetLimiter information have looked a whole lot better. Just for kicks, I left MSN homepage up for over 4 hours (we were using my daughters WIFI) and just let the PC set with nobody using it. Netlimiter says the IE used about 3/10 GB (between uploads and downloads) in that time period. Leaving the machine set with Yahoo Mail open in IE for a couple of hours used a few kb.

    I'm still looking for a way to stop the automatic videos that play when we go to read an article (or worse yet, find out there is no article just a video). We never watch the videos and generally just backout when we see there is a video. They appear to just keep downloading even if you pause them after the commercial.

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