I am researching a mobile satellite internet solution (I know it's terrible, I have my reasons). The plans are slow and they have harsh bandwidth limits. I'm a single user that is spoiled by home and office broadband. I need to perform two tasks before I can decide on the satellite service:

  1. Perform my daily work using the speeds I'm likely to experience with the satellite system: 700Kbps UP, 100Kbps DOWN with 1,500ms latency
  2. Determine how much data I actually use through the day (categorized by application/domain would be a bonus)

I suspect (and hope) that a proxy server running on my home computer would be able to assist me with both of the two above tasks. However my initial googling is confusing me with so many options and terms I'm unfamiliar with.

If a proxy is the way to go, can you please suggest an appropriate application that I can install on Windows? If a proxy is not the best approach, what would you suggest?

  • 1
    There us an infinity of products that measure bandwidth and data usage. Is that what you are after?
    – harrymc
    Oct 20 '14 at 7:29
  • More than that: I need to throttle speed up and down and also simulate high latency.
    – Steve K
    Oct 20 '14 at 19:38
  • 1
    While not exactly what you’re looking for, VMware Workstation can limit bandwidth and introduce packet loss. Nothing about latency, though, sorry.
    – Daniel B
    Oct 20 '14 at 19:44

Here are several products that can control bandwidth and latency :

Charles Web Debugging Proxy (shareware $50, trial version fully functional)
The bandwidth may be throttled to any arbitrary bytes per second, and the latency to any arbitrary number of milliseconds.

Network Simulator (free)
Can define rules for traffic control, regarding bandwidth, latency, and even packet loss rate.

Fiddler web debugging proxy (free)
This wonderful monitoring and development tool can also simulate slow connections using the Connection Simulator add-on. For more info see this article.

  • Charles Proxy is a great app, it did the trick
    – Steve K
    Oct 30 '14 at 3:27

Net Limiter would probably do what you wanted. It will certainly chart how much data you use, both overall and by application, and you can filter the speed of individual applications. I honestly don't know if it would properly simulate a slow connection or not, but you would get a close approximation.

A proxy server could do what you wanted too, however I don't have any experience with a locally installed proxy that does what you want.

What router/edge network device are you currently using? Most mid range and onwards have some form of speed limiting included. Certainly routers that offer Guest Wifi will usually offer some form of throttling, connect over a throttled guest network and see how you get on.

  • I suspect a proxy is also what I need but I don't have any experience. I need to simulate a satellite connection: 700kbps DOWN, 100kpbs UP, 700-2000ms latency. I want to install this yet-to-be-identified application and then attempt to work as normal to determine how painful the speeds are.
    – Steve K
    Oct 20 '14 at 19:38
  • Net limiter can do what you want to do. You can throttle your network connection in either direction as you describe. There is a 30 day trial too so no harm in giving it a go.
    – Patrick
    Oct 21 '14 at 8:10

You can use WANem to simulate a low-latency, limited-bandwidth connection. It can be used as a LiveCD app on some computer in your network and then you adjust the routes on your windows PC to go through it. You could probably run it as a VM and route your traffic through the virtual NIC.

Check out the documentation link on their site and see the examples in their PDF but there is a nice web interface you access to adjust all parameters you'd like including Bandwidth, Delay time (ms), Jitter (ms), Packet Loss, Duplication, Reordering, Corruption, etc.

The PDF documentation also describes how to get packets routed through your WANem environment under Windows and Linux. You can also find further examples on business networks in the wild such as this one http://openmaniak.com/wanem_network.php.

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