How to monitor your Internet bandwidth usage

Have you noticed your Internet is slower or getting over usage charges from your Internet provider and wondered what is causing your high bandwidth usage?  Try out this little program called FREE Meter which is totally free as the name emplies, from Sourceforge.net  I’ve used this many times to see how the internet is being used on various computers at various locations.  It works great!  I used it again last night which is what reminded me to write this article. (Continue reading below)

It’s easy to install and has alot of options if you want to play with them, but on a basic level, you can see how much is downloading and how much is uploading.  To use for troubleshooting, keep it running on your screen while you slowly close each program that is running, including icons down beside your time and system processing while you are looking at your Task Manger.  This program gives information on each computer individually, so you will need to run it on each computer to see which one is the culprit.

Once you notice the speed dropping, give it some time until it stops dropping and see how much of an improvement it was.  The graph shows the changes instantly but the actual numbers at the bottom of the screen take longer to update.  Then you will know what the main source of the problem is causing your high usage, whether it be uploading or downloading.  Keep in mind, if you have wireless, you may have an issue where someone hacked your wireless network and using all your bandwidth, which in that case, you can easily tell by shutting down your computers and asking your Internet provider to see if the usage is still high during those times that the computer is off.  If all your computers are off and the usage is still high, you either have a problem with your modem/router or most likely someone hacked your wireless and you need to change your password and probably look at securing it alot more than you have.