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Topic # 83303 13-May-2011 23:19 Send private message

Recently, I blew my cap by a few GB's, which I thought was odd at the time, but being so close to the end of my billing cycle I decided to leave it until the new cycle and then monitor from that point on.

Now this evening, there seems to be about 200MB of data unaccounted for when I view my cable usage online and compare it to the WAN traffic on my router (running Tomato 1.28).

I deliberately viewed several videos on TC's "unmetered" (yeah right) portal. But, I also included that traffic in the download total.
I've been intentionally frugal in my usage today as I thought it might be one of the other PCs in the home causing the issues. But, it seems not.

Anyone else getting excessive/unaccounted metering on TC cable?

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  Reply # 469025 14-May-2011 10:59 Send private message

No but this month for some reason I have gone over my cap by 18 blocks(!) at $2.95/2G. There are four of us and some of them (kids) do Youtube but I wish I had a way to validate their billing. Their online usage meter is useless since it does not tell you where you've been visiting.





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  Reply # 469114 14-May-2011 18:05 Send private message

lchiu7: No but this month for some reason I have gone over my cap by 18 blocks(!) at $2.95/2G. There are four of us and some of them (kids) do Youtube but I wish I had a way to validate their billing. Their online usage meter is useless since it does not tell you where you've been visiting.



Um , Big brother much? .. Besides the raw computing power to do that its also an invasion of privacy...

Being on adsl not cable I have a greater incentive to watch my usage.. Don't need need another 25gb a day before my cycle ends,

My personal opinion is that its personal responsibly to keep an eye of usage either through the notification emails or via the meter online.


As to original post could always call TCl to get the techies to look into it?
 

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  Reply # 469121 14-May-2011 18:14 Send private message

Morph:
lchiu7: No but this month for some reason I have gone over my cap by 18 blocks(!) at $2.95/2G. There are four of us and some of them (kids) do Youtube but I wish I had a way to validate their billing. Their online usage meter is useless since it does not tell you where you've been visiting.



Um , Big brother much? .. Besides the raw computing power to do that its also an invasion of privacy...
 


Actually, Paradise used to have a feature like this. It showed a list of addresses accessed and the time.

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  Reply # 469143 14-May-2011 19:36 Send private message

Exactly. I liked that feature today T CL took away.




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  Reply # 469577 16-May-2011 12:11 Send private message

Yeah, it's a shame they don't have that old Paradise feature any more.

Would probably save them in support costs if they did. Then again it might be too difficult/costly to implement that feature in their current system? (just a guess)

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  Reply # 469580 16-May-2011 12:13 Send private message

It's not that practical to record that stuff at large ISP scale, takes too long to parse/process.

You can of course record usage yourself with a gateway/proxy eg: pfsense, gargoyle-router, dd-wrt, tomato + iptparse etc.



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  Reply # 469591 16-May-2011 12:35 Send private message

Ragnor: It's not that practical to record that stuff at large ISP scale, takes too long to parse/process.

You can of course record usage yourself with a gateway/proxy eg: pfsense, gargoyle-router, dd-wrt, tomato + iptparse etc.


Right, I imagine it's a matter of cost justification.

Interestingly, the industry for monitoring mobile data traffic (down to the app layer level) is certainly alive and well in the telco space.



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  Reply # 470194 17-May-2011 17:59 Send private message

I raised a ticket to dispute the broadband usage and it came back as being inconclusive (which basically means they don't see a problem at their end).

So, looks like I'll have to setup a dedicated automated archiving mechanism for traffic logging on the WAN port as indicated by Ragnor.

However, it is rather curious that today's metering is significantly more accurate than it's been all week (after I raised the ticket).
Of course, that could be entirely coincidental (whoa, that's one big pink elephant I just saw...).


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  Reply # 470750 18-May-2011 20:25 Send private message

zaptor:
Ragnor: It's not that practical to record that stuff at large ISP scale, takes too long to parse/process.

You can of course record usage yourself with a gateway/proxy eg: pfsense, gargoyle-router, dd-wrt, tomato + iptparse etc.


Right, I imagine it's a matter of cost justification.

Interestingly, the industry for monitoring mobile data traffic (down to the app layer level) is certainly alive and well in the telco space.


Data is data no matter if it's mobile or fixed.  There are reasons why telco's need the gear.  But that doesn't mean that monitoring all traffic is at all realistic.

In most situations it's just bytes in & out after what is zero rated for whatever business reasons.




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  Reply # 470777 18-May-2011 21:12 Send private message

What do you do if your power bill is $35 higher? Do you log a case with them, assuming that they are also wrong?

Data capture is raw, capturing the bits that pass across the point of capture, i.e. your phoneline or your cableline. Unless the ISP has a usage meter fault, you need to re-assess whether you are correct or the ISP's equipment and technology is incorrect.



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  Reply # 471005 19-May-2011 11:23 Send private message

tdgeek: What do you do if your power bill is $35 higher? Do you log a case with them, assuming that they are also wrong?

Data capture is raw, capturing the bits that pass across the point of capture, i.e. your phoneline or your cableline. Unless the ISP has a usage meter fault, you need to re-assess whether you are correct or the ISP's equipment and technology is incorrect.


Will try the tomato + ipt-parse combo. Don't have a spare linux box, so will have to improvise for transferring the results to my Windoze box.

I suspect the problem has been there for some time, but, I've never bothered about it because we never exceeded our cap.
I think TCL look at historical trends when dealing with usage disputes. The obvious ones, like several GB's in a short space are easy to detect - TCL can simply change your IP or filter the offending IP (or both I guess).

As a last resort, I can set up a bridge between the modem and router. I've done it before with a multi-port ethernet card. You get lots of broadcast traffic (as one would expect on a loop), but, at least I can see ALL the packets that are sent my way.

It could be as simple as some pest(s) slamming my router's firewall (traffic we don't see).



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  Reply # 476682 1-Jun-2011 13:44 Send private message

Just to close this one off...

Have setup a Linux box which bridges the modem and router, with a rotating snoop capturing everything to/from the modem, plus ntop running to overview things.
It's a pain to have to run a dedicated box 24x7 just for monitoring my own usage but I'm left with little choice. The L2 TCL guy I spoke with a while ago was quite helpful (not so much in a technical sense, but more in being open to there possibly being an issue - can't say the same for the L1 chap who was somewhat out of his depth).

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  Reply # 476707 1-Jun-2011 15:33 Send private message

tdgeek: What do you do if your power bill is $35 higher? Do you log a case with them, assuming that they are also wrong?



Unfortunately that's a very poor comparison because their have been few electricity metering errors and many many many NZ ISP usage meter problems. 

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  Reply # 476719 1-Jun-2011 16:18 Send private message

Yes, it is not an ideal comparison, but the principle is the same. And there has not been many usage meter issues. By saying "many,many,many" do you mean daily, weekly, monthly? Do these errors stay or are they corrected?

Yes there can be errors, which are corrected, but at the other extreme there are differences that users don't accept. As they do not know why, or percieve that their activities have not changed, so cannot accept that there is a change. The number of possible causes of higher then expected usage are numerous to say the least. Both one-off and ongoing

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  Reply # 477267 3-Jun-2011 01:31 Send private message

Mom and pop users with unsecure wifi aside...

Using say just Telecom as an example in the last two years... yes I would class the number of times the usage meter has been down, doubled data, stopped showing any data as "many" (ok so not many, many many that was obviously hyperbole).

Anyway if I'm bored one afternoon maybe I'd go through and count the number of threads on GZ and GP by savvy users who compared usage recorded at their router/wan vs usage meter and the complaints about the usage meter.

Other ISP's haven't been immune for legitimate usage meter problems either, there have been several notable threads about Telstraclear usage being far above what a savvy user recorded at their WAN/router.

 

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