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Our broadband account has a 60 GB monthly cap but we keep exceeding it. I'm trying to get the younger members of the family to understand they can't watch online videos all day but I need to be able to show who's downloading the most.

Most of the internet usage comes from the main PC in the house. Is there a way of recording network usage per user on a Windows 7 PC? Notice the "per user" requirement - there seem to be plenty of tools that will measure internet usage from a single user account.

Thanks for any help.

Edit: Yes, each user has their own account. I'm not suggesting we use 60 GB per month just on video, but someone is using far more than their fair share - least I think so. This tool would help to prove it!

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Each user logs on to a different account on the Win7 box? – Paul Nov 5 '11 at 4:51
Hmm. My back of the envelope calculation suggest that to use 60GB in a month on video, they would have to watch over 2 hours of 1080p youtube video every day (at 2mbps) (most is encoded at far lower resolution). 60GB is a lot to get through if online video is the largest contributor. Have you done virus/spyware scans to eliminate something unauthorised isn't using the account. Or checked bitorrent/p2p downloaders aren't present? – Paul Nov 5 '11 at 4:58

I was in the same boat - going over our 80GB plan after 3 weeks - and with 5 Win7 computers in my house - I installed something called Rokario Bandwidth Monitor on each computer and it has a log of traffic per day for the computer. I found my 16 yr old was the culprit but he vowed and declared he wasn't up to much so I found another tool called Netbalancer which, even though you only get 30 days free trial, enabled you to see which application was downloading on his machine - it ended up being a virus since he hadn't installed AVG after a recent rebuild he did.

Anyway the tools were useful - I was searching and found too much info and it was hard to find something to do the job. These may not be the best but they sorted our problem out.

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Thanks, but this looks the same as other tools I've seen - they record traffic from the computer but not via user. – parsley72 Nov 6 '11 at 0:04
up vote 2 down vote accepted

I tried Networx and found it could track by user on Windows 7, so that's what I'd recommend to anyone else. As you can see, there's a slight different in network usage after the first week:

enter image description here

Update: I found there's an option in the settings to synchronise usage data across the network, so although I've got Networx installed on all the PCs in the house I can see the overall usage on any PC:

enter image description here

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  1. I don't know any network-usage monitor (with logging and calculating) for Win7, but I'm not a Win7-guru at all.

  2. Just wild idea:

    • Add NAT layer for you connection an any from (any easy Linux-based box with logging capabilities) OR cheap PC-box with http-proxy
    • Give each user on "main PC" different LAN-settings
    • Get per-IP logs

BTW: for exactly such reasons (easy monitoring and accounting, while our internet-usage can't be abused - real unlimited) I have separate contracts and authentifications for each and every user-host at home

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There's no useful information here. – Andrew Schulman Nov 5 '11 at 8:59

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