How can I monitor the bandwidth usage on our home wi-fi network
May 23, 2007 5:34 PM   Subscribe

How can I monitor the individual bandwidth usage/data transfer rates for the laptops connecting to my home wi-fi network.

I share a cable internet connection via wi-fi with my roommates, one of whom always leaves large bittorrent downloads on during the day on his laptop, thus slowing our connection to a crawl. Is there a software tool I could use to check how much bandwidth anyone connected to the network is using? The account is in my name and thus I have access to whatever root/administrator level privileges are available both on Comcast account and on the router.
posted by sk381 to Computers & Internet (9 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
If you want to fix the slowness issue you can limit the number of connections his bittorrent client uses (or cap upload/download speeds) or enable QoS on your router and put his computer at low priority.

Generally, consumer grade stuff doesnt have this level of auditing.
posted by damn dirty ape at 5:50 PM on May 23, 2007

We use Bitmeter
posted by 9000.68 at 5:55 PM on May 23, 2007

What flavour router do you have? If it's OpenWRT or DD-WRT compatible, you could probably find some logging software with ipkg.

Alternatively, you could probably just rate-limit high ports - but this again depends on your router's firmware.
posted by pompomtom at 5:55 PM on May 23, 2007

Here's a howto for Openwrt (which I just found and have not used).
posted by pompomtom at 6:08 PM on May 23, 2007

If you have admin rights on the router just check you computers connection, block his IP from the lan, and run the report again to see how he is sucking up the 'width
posted by Megafly at 6:45 PM on May 23, 2007

I use Tomato on a Linksys WRT54GS (beware the later models, they don't run aftermarket firmware).

With that, you get these beautiful, graphs. This doesn't break it down by specific user necessarily, but it can show usage (real-time) during any given day and it will keep track of daily use. With the QoS classification, you can see pie charts detailing the amount of traffic consuming either specific ports or, using L7 filters, the traffic breakdown.
posted by purephase at 7:59 PM on May 23, 2007

With dd-wrt on a Linksys or Buffalo router you can use rflowd and ntop (or the windows collector) and see which IPs are doing what and how much.
posted by wierdo at 9:12 PM on May 23, 2007

Oh, I failed to mention that rflowd is the part that runs on the router and sends the data to whatever system you configure.
posted by wierdo at 9:13 PM on May 23, 2007

+1 to Tomato. It's hawt.
posted by TomMelee at 5:58 AM on May 24, 2007

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