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View Full Version : What's my Bandwidth?


Nick Parkin
June 20th, 2005, 05:01 AM
I am currently paying 25/Month for unlimited Bandwidth, it's 512K 50:1 contention ADSL & I am very happy with speeds. :) HOWEVER there is a whole host of alternative & cheaper packages available, starting from 9.99p. The cheapest are for limited bandwidth & thing is - I have no idea how much data I shift, & my ISP can't tell me either. Can someone suggest:

a) how I might measure it

b) what sort of ball park I might be in - 1G, 5G, 10G ?

I have a 3 PC 2 user network & we edit a website, browse the web several hours a day, get POP mail & Hotmail. When my teenage daughter visits there's a whole bundle of music downloading going on :eek: , but it's only a couple of times a month.

Any pointers appreciated.

Dan in Saint Louis
June 20th, 2005, 11:35 AM
I have no idea how much data I shift, & my ISP can't tell me eitherAre the plans you are looking at limited as to BANDWIDTH (bits per second), or QUANTITY (just bits)? Most are bits/second. The most common DSL in the US is 1.5 Mbps downstream, about 128 kbps for uploads. For approximate Bytes, divide all of the above by 8.

You can get some idea of instantaneous speeds, in WinXP at least, by keying {Ctrl-Alt-Del} to open the Task Manager and clicking the "Networking" tab. The text info under the pretty graph should tell the maximum speed of your network card (such as 100 Mbps) and the percent of that which is currently being used. IE, 1.5% of a 100 Mbps network is 1.5 Mbps.

There are several other utilities that can monitor instantaneous speeds. One that is no longer easy to find on the Web is NetPerSec, and it also displays a short-term average. I cannot post it here, but email me if you want to know where to find it.

Peter Creasey
June 20th, 2005, 01:06 PM
>> Any pointers appreciated. <<

Nick, I pay about $36 and get 2+ Mbps with my enhanced ADSL (wireless). If I were you I would be VERY reluctant to switch from a service that you like to one that might not as reliable. It is no fun trying to deal with internet connection problems.

Nick Parkin
June 20th, 2005, 02:39 PM
Sorry Dan,

I was being technically sloppy & using common parlance. Here in the UK providers are differentiating their products by limiting the quantity in a price package. So typically I can get 512K unlimited for 25, or 2 Gig for 9.99 + 3/Gig, or 4M speed limited to 5 Gig for ..... the options are endless (which is what the marketeers want) & I have just no idea what quantity I use.

Are the plans you are looking at limited as to BANDWIDTH (bits per second), or QUANTITY (just bits)? .

Nick Parkin
June 20th, 2005, 02:44 PM
Hi Pete great to see old friends (or sparring partners!) again!

Your advice about sticking with something that works is soooo right! But here in the UK the regulator has made moving easy, & I am currently with a very very expensive provider (cos they were the only one when I signed up). Even if I stay with them the information is important to ensure that I have the best plan. I could go from 512K to 4 Mbps at no extra cost if I limited my quantity, but I have no idea how much I use!


>> Any pointers appreciated. <<

Nick, I pay about $36 and get 2+ Mbps with my enhanced ADSL (wireless). If I were you I would be VERY reluctant to switch from a service that you like to one that might not as reliable. It is no fun trying to deal with internet connection problems.

Dan in Saint Louis
June 20th, 2005, 04:59 PM
I have just no idea what quantity I use.I see. Over here on the west side of the Atlantic, they tend to charge for bandwidth, not bulk; although some users have been chastised for using that bandwidth continuously (P2P sharing).

I think NetPerSec accumulates a total Bytes sum until the machine is re-booted, you could get some idea that way.

Peter Creasey
June 20th, 2005, 08:40 PM
>> I am currently with a very very expensive provider <<

Nick, Thanks for the kind words...I agree!
My guess is that if you tell your current provider about the competitive price quotes they will either match them or come close enough to make staying with your current provider worth your time.

aglai45
June 21st, 2005, 02:50 AM
Nick,

Get AnalogX NetStat Live. Gives totals for month, daily and something I can't see (low vision).
Price is right FREE. URL
http://www.analogx.com/files/nsli.exe

Gene.

Nick Parkin
June 21st, 2005, 08:38 AM
That's great Gene - looks like it's going to do the business :o