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3888 posts

Uber Geek
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  Reply # 521972 16-Sep-2011 14:26
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BiDi: Here's one day's usage that really stands out:

A bad day for traffic!

 


Cool picture... perhaps we should have a competition to see who can present the best image?




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TelstraClear

  Reply # 522032 16-Sep-2011 15:43
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TelstraClear usage meter

Hi all,

There’s been a lot of discussion about the usage meter, not all of it accurate. In a simplified nutshell, we have one system that counts the traffic that is sent to and from your modem. We can ‘see’ the modem (which we installed) but can’t ‘see’ past that so don’t know what your router/WiFi and computer, networked TV, game console, media centre etc are doing.

The system that counts the traffic is the one that is used to bill your traffic. It also feeds into another system that drives your usage meter in the Customer Zone on the web. This isn’t real-time, but is regularly updated and is usually pretty close. We’ve had a couple of occasions when the second (usage meter) system hasn’t talked nicely to the first (traffic counting) system. That means that when they do start talking again, the usage meter updates with the backlog so it just looks like you’ve suddenly had a lot of usage.

The usage meter in Customer Zone is accurate up to the time it updated. You can see when this was (to the second) so you can tell how recent the data is. If you go right up to your cap every month you need to take into account that last update.

For those using Firefox, there’s a useful add-in called the Net usage item: http://netusage.iau5.com/

If you’re on cable, go to Preferences and use ‘Cable Login Details’, not ADSL. Some people suggest setting the update to two hours.

Finally, a few general notes for those who have raised specific issues in this thread. I’ve asked the broadband team to look into these and they have. We’ve found no TelstraClear network or metering issues. We’ll contact each of you individually as we don’t publicly discuss the specifics of a customer’s internet usage. If you want to update the thread that will be up to you.

I hope this information helps. For those who are concerned about the security of their home network (and may not be mater geeks like some here!), note that a benefit of being a TelstraClear customer is special pricing from Geeks on Wheels: http://www.telstraclear.co.nz/offers/

If you do have any major concerns about you account, please PM me with the details.

Gary

 
 
 
 


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Master Geek
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  Reply # 522095 16-Sep-2011 18:11
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TelstraClear: We can ?see? the modem (which we installed) but can?t ?see? past that so don?t know what your router/WiFi and computer, networked TV, game console, media centre etc are doing.


So you are saying that people are actually not billed for usage when their modem is off, and it just so happens that at the same time the usage meter and the billing system had one of their little spats? (As in the person supposedly billed for traffic that (supposedly) happened over a week long period)

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  Reply # 522100 16-Sep-2011 18:31
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jnawk:
TelstraClear: We can ?see? the modem (which we installed) but can?t ?see? past that so don?t know what your router/WiFi and computer, networked TV, game console, media centre etc are doing.


So you are saying that people are actually not billed for usage when their modem is off, and it just so happens that at the same time the usage meter and the billing system had one of their little spats? (As in the person supposedly billed for traffic that (supposedly) happened over a week long period)


How do we test this exercise properly?

Do we need to turn a modem off, snap shot the usage, then ping flood it with udp and tcp traffic for an hour then turn it back on and run a netflow collector on it for the next 24 hours and keep watching the usage meter to see what it does?

Would that be enough of a controlled test?






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Master Geek
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  Reply # 522109 16-Sep-2011 19:04
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DonGould:
jnawk: So you are saying that people are actually not billed for usage when their modem is off, and it just so happens that at the same time the usage meter and the billing system had one of their little spats? (As in the person supposedly billed for traffic that (supposedly) happened over a week long period)


How do we test this exercise properly?

Do we need to turn a modem off, snap shot the usage, then ping flood it with udp and tcp traffic for an hour then turn it back on and run a netflow collector on it for the next 24 hours and keep watching the usage meter to see what it does?

Would that be enough of a controlled test?


As everyone by now knows, I've got a box that can deliver 15mbit/sec (at least). But I don't want to turn my modem off - then I'd have no internet!

But perhaps someone who turns their modem off overnight could tolerate 100mbit/sec of pings coming their way for perhaps 1 hour at say 1am.

Lets see - 100mbit/sec for 1 hour is 44GB. Perhaps we might want to wind it back a little.. And that person would probably want to be the kind of person who doesn't use all their quota.. Just in case they go get charged for it!


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  Reply # 522112 16-Sep-2011 19:08
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Gee 7 pages later someone from TCL finally makes an appearance

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  Reply # 522114 16-Sep-2011 19:15
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jnawk: As everyone by now knows, I've got a box that can deliver 15mbit/sec (at least). But I don't want to turn my modem off - then I'd have no internet!

But perhaps someone who turns their modem off overnight could tolerate 100mbit/sec of pings coming their way for perhaps 1 hour at say 1am.

Lets see - 100mbit/sec for 1 hour is 44GB. Perhaps we might want to wind it back a little.. And that person would probably want to be the kind of person who doesn't use all their quota.. Just in case they go get charged for it!



Ya 44GB might be over doing it just a little.  We don't need to throw 100mbit at it either.  We can just throw 100k at it to prove the point.  We're only attempting to understand if the counters trip when the modem is off.

We need to run netflow when it comes back on incase the billing system just drops the data into the next period when the link comes back on.

I've got enough local transit capacity to throw 100k for an hour or so at any time of day.... in fact I could throw it international as well if we want to prove out the proxy farm.

I can also get access to a cable link that we can drop off for an hour to run some tests.  That's not a problem at all.

It's just the methodology that I'm keen to figure and get feed back on.

I would need to figure a netflow collector thou that would stay up.

Edit: but should we really be running a TCPDump to just catch the traffic for the following time, so then we really just want a linux box sitting on the connection directly rather than a router?











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  Reply # 522117 16-Sep-2011 19:18
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Athlonite: Gee 7 pages later someone from TCL finally makes an appearance


That's not bad.  Took me 12 emails, a dozen phone calls and a number of months the last time I wanted to ask about buying a service.  Tech support is quite good by comparison.  Let's remeber that no one asked TC for comment here... the OP was just asking for feedback and expressing his frustration and others where sharing their experiences.






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Geek


  Reply # 522119 16-Sep-2011 19:24
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Athlonite: Gee 7 pages later someone from TCL finally makes an appearance


? first reply to original post 30min after?

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  Reply # 522120 16-Sep-2011 19:34
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jeffreyh:
Athlonite: Gee 7 pages later someone from TCL finally makes an appearance


? first reply to original post 30min after?


lol... owned...

I would have to agree with any suggestion that the online support though this forum is clearly much better than any direct channel.

* Speaks English
* No annoying IVR
* No templated scripts
* Fairly quick follow up...
* Follow up...

:) :) :)






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  Reply # 522149 16-Sep-2011 21:07
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DonGould: Do you know how much storage space is involved to track NetFlow data?


Lets run some numbers...

Let us assume a netflow record is 64 bytes long (its probably shorter, I've just done a rough addition of the sizes of the data stored).
Let us assume the average flow is 10kb.
Let us assume the average user uses 40GB/month.
So, we arrive at about 4 million flows for the month. (~43 billion bytes / 10,240 bytes per flow)
At 64 bytes per flow, that's about 250MB/month per user. Double that storage requirement to allow for a generous redundant disk setup. At half a gig per customer per month, you could store about 2000 customers' data per 1TB disk.
Let us assume that a 1TB disk costs about $75, so you'd need to spend 3.75c per customer per month on storage.
Let us assume the disks are actually really crappy and fail once per month (ridiculous). So that is 7.5c per customer per month in storage.
Let us double it again, because we want all this data backed up. 15c per customer per month.
Personally, I'd be happy to pay $1 per month to be able to get this data. Perhaps TelstraClear can offer it as a service for those customers who want it? 2000 customers paying 85c over a reasonably generous estimate of cost = $1,700 a month to pay someone to maintain it (how much maintenance would it really require?), and to pay for the electricity for the 4 disks it would require, and the machine(s) to do all the rest of the work.

What do you reckon? Am I being unreasonable with my estimates?


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  Reply # 522153 16-Sep-2011 21:12
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DonGould:
jeffreyh:
Athlonite: Gee 7 pages later someone from TCL finally makes an appearance


? first reply to original post 30min after?


lol... owned...


Not wishing to blow my own trumpet unnecessarily here, but the first message was on the 8th of Sep, a Thursday. Then 30 minutes later, TC's reply, and OP's "I'll keep everyone posted", then it was 2 days later when I stirred the pot. After that, it really kicked off.

/trumpets

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  Reply # 522180 16-Sep-2011 22:36
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jnawk:
DonGould: Do you know how much storage space is involved to track NetFlow data?


Lets run some numbers...

Let us assume a netflow record is 64 bytes long (its probably shorter, I've just done a rough addition of the sizes of the data stored).
Let us assume the average flow is 10kb.
Let us assume the average user uses 40GB/month.
So, we arrive at about 4 million flows for the month. (~43 billion bytes / 10,240 bytes per flow)
At 64 bytes per flow, that's about 250MB/month per user. Double that storage requirement to allow for a generous redundant disk setup. At half a gig per customer per month, you could store about 2000 customers' data per 1TB disk.
Let us assume that a 1TB disk costs about $75, so you'd need to spend 3.75c per customer per month on storage.
Let us assume the disks are actually really crappy and fail once per month (ridiculous). So that is 7.5c per customer per month in storage.
Let us double it again, because we want all this data backed up. 15c per customer per month.
Personally, I'd be happy to pay $1 per month to be able to get this data. Perhaps TelstraClear can offer it as a service for those customers who want it? 2000 customers paying 85c over a reasonably generous estimate of cost = $1,700 a month to pay someone to maintain it (how much maintenance would it really require?), and to pay for the electricity for the 4 disks it would require, and the machine(s) to do all the rest of the work.

What do you reckon? Am I being unreasonable with my estimates?



You haven't factored software in there... what would that cost?

I would have said ~2.5mb per day, which is just under a gig per year, I can get disks a bit cheaper than you can, but I agree that we should allow for a bit of redundancy, but RAID5 would seem more appropriate than RAID1, so I'm going to go with 20 cents per year for storage, but I agree that perhaps a redundant back up system as well and perhaps we need dual flow collectors and we do need to consider power, so let's call it an even $1 per customer per year?

Really, it should be done for all customers not just 2,000 interested ones.  So let's say $6 per customer per year....  how many customers does TC have?  How many FTEs would be required to manage this?  What would such people want to be paid?






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  Reply # 522228 17-Sep-2011 05:13
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jeffreyh:
Athlonite: Gee 7 pages later someone from TCL finally makes an appearance


? first reply to original post 30min after?


ok first useful TCL post was 7 pages later then is that better

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  Reply # 522250 17-Sep-2011 08:49
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Athlonite: ok first useful TCL post was 7 pages later then is that better


Bit unfair.

TelstraClear: If you email your account number and contcat details I'll ask one of the technical team to look into this for you:


Not really sure what could have been more helpful than that than perhaps the call center staff answering BiDi's questions to his satisfaction before he had to post here.

BiDi: We have asked Telstra for help (We have tried telephoning their service line and also sent in several emails requesting support):
  • can they give us the mac addresses of the downloading machine - apparently not (privacy!),
  • can they explain how it is possible to download half a gigabyte when the cable moden is switched off - apparently not (they avoided the question by telling us they did not support our wireless router - which was also off!)
Telstra have not (yet?) been helpful, but this might just be because we have yet to find the right person to answer these questions. Our problem does seem odd.


I would agree that it seems fair that Gary might not know the answers to those questions himself and might need to consult with some people to find the right person (something that even BiDi points out).

BiDi:
Does anyone know if
  1. it is possible to manipulate another subscriber's download statistics?
  2. the time-stamp used for the on-line Telstra download reports is accurate (ie could it be one or more hours wrong)?
  3. it is true that privacy law prevents Telstra from telling us (the bill payer) who is using our service by releasing MAC addresses?
  4. there is someone in Telstra who is willing to answer such questions?
Another possibility seems to me that the Telstra billing software could be buggy.

Any thoughts, advice?


Which one of those questions did Gary's answer not actually address?






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