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  # 961015 4-Jan-2014 09:31
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geekIT: (coffeebaron, you asked if I "still have a VFX VoIP line" with XNet? No, I've never had the need for VOIP)

As I noted earlier, the consensus of opinion seems to be that I should have my modem firewall ON, so it's done. However, it hasn't affected my 'upstream' data traffic in any way.

Regarding this traffic, many of you are saying that your own usage figures are in accordance with mine - ie, 10%-14% of data traffic is UPLOADS.

Fair enough, if that's the way the game is played. But I would suggest that the bulk of internet users, in NZ and the rest of the world, would be totally unaware of this situation. Also, I still don't understand why the upstream traffic is so hefty. Meaty downloads I can accept: Movies and TV episodes can be anything from 150MB to 10G. But 'straight' data - which is what I imagine packet requests and acknowledgments to be, shouldn't be that bulky, IMHO. I mean, anyone who's ever downloaded an eBook knows that entire novel of 150,000 words is rarely larger than a few megabytes. So where does the volume come from?

And why the variation in volume? Referring to my table of traffic that I posted earlier, the ratio of uploads to downloads on 6th Dec was 64% and on 24th Dec 4.6%.

I don't mean this unkindly, so I hope nobody takes offense, but there's been a considerable amount of supposition in this thread, rather than hard knowledge, and it seems to be that many of you are curiously incurious about this business. I think it's time we heard the facts from a telecommunications engineer.

I'll email Campbell Live and see if it arouses their interest.


I'm yet to be convinced there is any issue here so I hope you're not going to end up leading Campbell Live on a wild goose chase.

Just because internet users may not understand how TCP works doesn't mean anything is broken. Most people don't understand how an internal combustion engine works either. If you're sending 1500 byte TCP packets the ACK size is the same 40 bytes as it is sending 64 byte TCP packets, so the ratio between upload/download will change accordingly. If you were transferring a lot of data over WiFi this could also result in very different results as well due to WiFi being a half duplex medium, so TCP performance over WiFi will always be far worse than UDP. TCP retries on WiFi are a really common real world issue.

Something could have easily happened to your router on that day causing a big spike, the most obvious cause would have been a DNS amplification attack because of your firewall being disabled (and assuming the modem responded to DNS requests, which I believe it does with the firewall disabled).

Without trying to have a dig at you I think you simply need to accept that nothing is wrong - and if you want to understand more then learning a little about how TCP works will help a lot.




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  # 961017 4-Jan-2014 09:39
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if you have a poor connection this can also increase the uploaded traffic as it has to ask for packets to be sent again.

 
 
 
 


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# 961018 4-Jan-2014 09:40
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well this thread made me check my modem.  I have a TP-Link TD-W8970 modem and used the disk that came with it to set it up.  I ASSUMED the firewall would be on by default so never bothered checking.  On checking now I see it was off.   So now have turned it on.   I always say never assume but here I did what I tell others not to do.




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  # 961020 4-Jan-2014 09:44
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Maybe OP, on a work day can restart his modem, restart his PC before bed. Leave PC running. Don't use any internet the next day and nite then check daily usage from his ISP meter. Next test is to have PC off. See what the upload is when both are on and not in use and when the PC is off.

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  # 961023 4-Jan-2014 09:55
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To the op, since you say you don't do any sort of online backups, you should definitely investigate this as a way of securing your personal data offsite in the event of catastrophic loss, such as a house fire, flood etc which can wipe out any on site backups you currently make.

I'm extremely surprised somebody with such a lengthy experience in IT doesn't already do that. I recommend services like Mega, Dropbox, Google Drive, or skydrive.

ETA: yes, those are storage, sorry, but point remains that storing your stuff only on your home hard drives is very risky.

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  # 961025 4-Jan-2014 09:56
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Those are not exactly backup, but online storage. Online backup is something like Crashplan, Symform, Carbonite.

But I think this is OT.




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  # 961789 6-Jan-2014 10:45
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Correcting a fallacy that has been stated a few times in this thread.  There is not usually a one-to-one relationship between TCP "data" and "ACK" packets for a download.  There is a little more to it, but in basic terms, one "ACK" packet acknowledges multiple inbound packets.

This is tunable, but for Windows I believe the default is 2, resulting in a 2:1 ratio for a healthy download.


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  # 961794 6-Jan-2014 11:03
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hashbrown: Correcting a fallacy that has been stated a few times in this thread.  There is not usually a one-to-one relationship between TCP "data" and "ACK" packets for a download.  There is a little more to it, but in basic terms, one "ACK" packet acknowledges multiple inbound packets.

This is tunable, but for Windows I believe the default is 2, resulting in a 2:1 ratio for a healthy download.


Talkiet: [snip] In general, even if you don't actively upload things, every single packet (well, there are exceptions, but basically this is right) has to be acknowledged so for every large packet you receive, there's a small packet that your computer sends out. [snip]


I didn't think that level of detail was needed really, and not all OSes do it.. (Granted I think most current ones do).

In any case, a significant number of people still don't understand what dialup speed is, or the difference between Mb/s and MB/s when describing download speeds, and there's not likely to actually be anything wrong in the OP's case, so I felt a gross generalisation was called for :-)

CHeers - N




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Please note all comments are the product of my own brain and don't necessarily represent the position or opinions of my employer, previous employers, colleagues, friends or pets.


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  # 961810 6-Jan-2014 11:57
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Does the OP have a smartphone? I know he said earlier that he "doesn't do any syncing with iCloud" but if he's got something like an iPhone then there's a very good chance that this is happening without him even realising it. For example if he's enabled Photostream it will be uploading every single photo he takes. Stuff like this is probably the most likely culprit.

Personally I think the internet and the devices we connect to it have got to the stage where we really shouldn't be wanting to keep tabs on every single upload and download they do. Caps have become plentiful and cheap - let your devices do their thing and forget about usage. The internet is meant to make your life easier but if you're sweating over every megabyte up and down then that's lost. There's no conspiracy to uncover here.

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  # 961819 6-Jan-2014 12:08
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steve98: Does the OP have a smartphone? I know he said earlier that he "doesn't do any syncing with iCloud" but if he's got something like an iPhone then there's a very good chance that this is happening without him even realising it. For example if he's enabled Photostream it will be uploading every single photo he takes. Stuff like this is probably the most likely culprit.

Personally I think the internet and the devices we connect to it have got to the stage where we really shouldn't be wanting to keep tabs on every single upload and download they do. Caps have become plentiful and cheap - let your devices do their thing and forget about usage. The internet is meant to make your life easier but if you're sweating over every megabyte up and down then that's lost. There's no conspiracy to uncover here.


Tend to agree here.
Sounds like the op is on the 30GB plan which is $75.
For between $4 and $24 more he could move to an unlimited plan with a different ISP.. Seems like the peace of mind would be well worth it if he is that worried by a few MB here and there.

Slingshot unlimited naked $90. $15 more
Orcon unlimited with voice, $99 $24 more (but includes voice)
BigPipe unlimited naked $79. $4 more
Flip unlimited with voice $85. $10 more (but includes voice)

I'm sure there are more

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  # 961946 6-Jan-2014 14:56
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geekIT: (coffeebaron, you asked if I "still have a VFX VoIP line" with XNet? No, I've never had the need for VOIP)

As I noted earlier, the consensus of opinion seems to be that I should have my modem firewall ON, so it's done. However, it hasn't affected my 'upstream' data traffic in any way.

Regarding this traffic, many of you are saying that your own usage figures are in accordance with mine - ie, 10%-14% of data traffic is UPLOADS.

Fair enough, if that's the way the game is played. But I would suggest that the bulk of internet users, in NZ and the rest of the world, would be totally unaware of this situation. Also, I still don't understand why the upstream traffic is so hefty. Meaty downloads I can accept: Movies and TV episodes can be anything from 150MB to 10G. But 'straight' data - which is what I imagine packet requests and acknowledgments to be, shouldn't be that bulky, IMHO. I mean, anyone who's ever downloaded an eBook knows that entire novel of 150,000 words is rarely larger than a few megabytes. So where does the volume come from?

And why the variation in volume? Referring to my table of traffic that I posted earlier, the ratio of uploads to downloads on 6th Dec was 64% and on 24th Dec 4.6%.

I don't mean this unkindly, so I hope nobody takes offense, but there's been a considerable amount of supposition in this thread, rather than hard knowledge, and it seems to be that many of you are curiously incurious about this business. I think it's time we heard the facts from a telecommunications engineer.

I'll email Campbell Live and see if it arouses their interest.


I think one of the issues you have here is that you seem to be of the opinion that the folks responses thus far aren't experts in the field.

Myself I've been doing this 15+ years and I have a nickname of "grep" for my ability to read lan traces extremely quickly. Neil g aka talket has been around longer than me and built a lot of the CDNs including the latest being the speed test server's. Steve too has been doing this a while.

We all agree this is pretty typical usage and the spike would have been caused by something that happened on your end either on purpose from what you did or inadvertently from something in the background.

So I am wondering what else you need apart from the expert opinions of 3 professionals that work in this area that all give you the same answer?

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  # 961990 6-Jan-2014 16:40
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And Campbell would sort you experts out! Tui ad coming.

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  # 962210 6-Jan-2014 22:18
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Interestingly geekIT seems to have disappeared? Unless they've signed in today?

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