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I have a belkin wireless router and four computers (2PC's + 2 Mac's) that connect to it regularly. Recently we have been consuming a lot of bandwidth. Is there a way to find out which computer is consuming most of the bandwidth without having to install monitoring software on all of the computers? (no two computers have the same OS!). Can I just install software one one PC and solve this problem?

EDIT: The router model number is F5D7632-4

EDIT: One PC with windows XP is connected directly by cable to the router.

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The first question has one answer which is linux based software... my two PC's have windows XP and windows 7. –  Mick Nov 7 '10 at 9:34

2 Answers 2

up vote 1 down vote accepted

See the overview for ntop

  • Analyse IP traffic and sort it according to the source/destination
  • Display IP Traffic Subnet matrix (who's talking to who?)

EDIT

Ntop can show traffic statistics between other PCs and the internet, you just have to make sure the computer running ntop is able to see all the traffic. Modern ethernet switches segregate traffic so the a computer only sees traffic addressed to it. A managed switch will allow you to set up port-mirroring to the computer running ntop.

It seems the Belkin's built-in switch doesn't support Port-mirroring. Maybe you could interpose a suitable inexpensive switch between the Belkin and the four wired PCs.

Old ethernet hubs (not switches) also allow any computer to see all traffic. I have an old Netgear EN104 10-Base-T hub I used to use for this. I see they are available for a few dollars

See ntop blog about this

If the PCs are on the WLAN you'll need a different solution. http://www.tech-faq.com/how-to-monitor-wireless-traffic.html

There are commercial products that claim to do this. E.g. http://www.tamos.com/products/commwifi/

If the Belkin F5D7632-4 supported RMON or Netflow, you might be able to use that.

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I just ran the demo - it all looks very complicated, and my impression is that its only telling me about the traffic flowing to and from my PC. I may have misunderstood - are you sure it can tell me about internet bandwidth usage on the other computers? –  Mick Nov 7 '10 at 12:30
    
Comments moved to edited Answer above. –  RedGrittyBrick Nov 7 '10 at 13:01

If you are worried about consuming your Internet account bandwidth and your ISP has a monitoring tool, you could switch on one computer at a time for a fixed period and see how much the ISP tool says has been used.

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