The effort started late last year when Weathermap was brought up on another thread, and I started playing with the tools on my home network. It's been a while since I've done these type of things, so I got a bit excited.. do you really need to monitor the traffic in your home network? Well.. I follow a strategy where I don't put those little plastic boxes to do too much, ADSL router is just for the ADSL line, Mikrotik router for the actual routing/firewall/NAS, WiFi AP's do just WiFi, etc.
We are in the process of moving to NZ. I've built a basic understand what's happening down there, and as I've never had a capped internet access (we had volume charges in the 90's but I was founder of the first ISP and all our employees got a free, leased line internet access to home) I wanted to know more about our traffic. I enabled Netflow on the Mikrotik router and installed NFSen to collect and graph the data.
The final straw was a bad capacitor that broken the router during our holiday to middle east. I figured out there's no excuse to have a decent home network so I got a new router, upgraded rest of the switches to SNMP capable, installed local, redundant DNS, DHCP servers on hosts instead of the router, and IPv6 ND (I was doing static before). I split the internet traffic to three queues so that the limited bandwidth on the ADSL2+ would work better for e.g. IPTV.
A weathermap that gives an overview of the network. Traffic on the LAN, internet access is split to native IPv4 and IPv6 tunnel, traffic is split to three queues ("low life", "normal", "IPTV/AppleTV"). In the past when there was a file transfer happening, the IPTV would start breaking up. Now with the queues, things work pretty nicely. IPv6 is happening as slow as everywhere to the consumers, HE IPv6 tunnel to Stockholm and a backup SiXSS tunnel to a local ISP.
For each user computer, the Time Machine backup status is shown, number of clients on WiFi AP's, disk space status (IPTV PVR, NAS), printer trays, DNS traffic, etc. The more mobile devices, iPads, phones, etc. are not monitored apart from showing as a WiFi client.
Our house was finished in 1999 and unfortunately missed the proper LAN cabling. All the newer houses have LAN cables.. We changed the sockets for the telephone cables (Cat3) to RJ45 and we can get 100M around the house, I also managed to install a few Cat5e cables in some unused conduits for GE. The construction is a bit heavy for WiFi and there are four floors plus balconies to cover. Living room is with new Netgear XAV5001 PLC units that give a pretty decent performance.
NFsen is a great tool to see what is really happening with the internet connection.
Our monthly traffic is roughly between 150-200GB, half goes to video (see below), a quarter is my own use and the rest is other use (GF mostly and "noise"). We don't play online games, run torrents, or other host any traffic.
Video? We rent movies from Apple TV frequently, 4-8 times a month. Back in 2008 we stopped using our HD PVR and we don't really watch "live TV". Our ISP is offering an IPTV PVR service (Kreatel STB) that includes a DVB-T STB and IPTV STB. The service includes 5 terabytes of storage, web EPG for recordings. We are filling up the storage slowly, cleaning old recordings a few times a year, and keeping recordings since 2008. The service includes video rental, pay channels (multicasted), HD, etc. They record everything only once so only EPG recording is available, watching the recordings is unicast traffic.
Two years ago when we were traveling quite a bit, we followed a local TV serie while in New Zealand. Downloaded those multi-gigabyte TS stream files to our laptop while staying at the B&B's in NZ. Sorry for the traffic, at the time I didn't know that capped internet still existed.
All the servers are also monitored, along with the services the run. The DNS statistics have already proven to be useful as there was a software running that was querying the DNS ~100 times a minute for no obvious reason.
One of the more useful things that people tend to forget -- backups. I put couple of old external drives to an old Mac Mini and among other things, it serves as a Time Machine server. I've changed the backup schedules for various host to better suit their usage. And yes, I have restored files and it works.
For the music and photo archives I run a different backup procedure. Both have a master copy and they are being mirrored to the RAID5 NAS. As disks get cheaper and bigger, I plan to start mirroring them locally as well as their content is the most valuable content in the house. The NAS unit is an old FreeBSD machine with 8x1.5T drives, I've wanted to replace it with a Qnap/Synology unit but I'm kind of waiting for bigger drives that would enable a different strategy all together.
ADSL line is pretty steady, they had a rare national maintenance break in January and I decided to take a screenshot. It's been pretty much the same since around 2005, ADSL2+ giving 16+ Mbit/s. Friends at the ISP enabled Annex M at some point but the configuration disappeared 6 months later. Damn automatic provisioning..
We have both cable TV (since ages) and fiber (from last summer) 250 m away from our house but no means to get connected until they decide. Cable TV is offering 10/40/110/200, up to 100 NZD/month but with 6-month half the price offerings. Fiber is usually offered as 10/10 or 100/10, 50-75 NZD/month. 1000/100 has been announced but I don't how well it's available. No double or trip play's but IPTV PVR with pay channels and HD as a service is offered. The basic broadband is not a term contract but usually the IPTV service is, giving a 12-24 month contract.
No VDSL, no cabinetization nor any FTTC efforts. What is happening is FTTB/FTTH and the carriers are doing it on their own pace without noticeable government influence. I'm jealous to the friends who have that option ;-) Often people in smaller cities, in the countryside, have the option first as they are covered by a local carrier, energy company or similar. The bigger the carrier, the more "planned" the fiber deployment is.
I have planned to install a mobile broadband backup for the ADSL but it's still on the TODO list. I don't remember when the ADSL broke the last time so it's not such a big deal. There is UPS next to the NAS for a controlled shutdown but otherwise I'm still running unprotected -- again, power breaks are very rare as well.
Quite a lot of other things are being monitored as well but this is just to give a glimpse, perhaps to encourage other people to do similar things or to get some new ideas. Or just to show what's happening in another small country, on the edge of Europe. Drop PM if any questions, happy to help, give further details, receive work offers in NZ, beer invitations (happy to buy a round as well), etc..