Tips to Limit your Internet Data usage


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Internet is open and available to all people on the world. Now a days, internet users have increased to billions. Most of the users have a fast broadband internet connection. The days when people used dial up internet connection has been slowly eroded away. Meanwhile, people who play havoc on computer has also increased. We might have heard about defacing websites and the rage of cyber war between certain countries. Most of the Internet Service Providers provide a faster internet with limited data usage. If you want to go for an unlimited plan, then the connection speed might be slow. So, to have a faster internet connection, at most of the times, we need to go for a limited data usage plan. It is very necessary to maintain a security and also to limit internet usage in a faster internet connection.

If you use a internet connection which provides a limited data usage, then it is very essential to monitor the data usage. You must know each and every software or background activity that is carried out in your computer. May be, you will be knowing an Antivirus might run in the background. Turning off the automatic updates of Antivirus is not recommended. By turning off, your computer will be more vulnerable to new virus attacks. But if you wish to limit your internet data usage, you may update your Antivirus regularly at free hours. I mean, every Internet service provider will give certain period for free internet or time for high data usage. At that time, your Antivirus can be updated.

To view what's going on in your computer, you may check on processes tab on Task Manager, but how will you make sure that which application uses internet connection? You may not check in Task manager. Just go to Start > Run or use Windows logo key + R to open Run dialog. Type cmd and press OK. Just type netstat -b 2 and hit Enter. It displays all the services which uses internet connection. This will also show services which uses a local network connection. If you find any difficulties in viewing in the command prompt, then you may use the software TCPView which shows the same in graphical interface. This will be much easier to view than in command prompt. And, I think, the command prompt method might attract geeks. You may download the TCPView here:
http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/bb897437.aspx

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The above tool will help you to find keyloggers, if it runs in the background. A keylogger can steal your data unknowingly. This may send all your keyboard impacts, mouse movements and screenshots to the attacker. This can drastically decrease your data usage limit. Using command prompt or TCPView, find any programs accessing your internet anonymously. If found, just end their process. TCPView will refresh ever second and shows you all the programs that uses internet.

To limit your data usage, it is very much essential to monitor your data exchange over internet, that is, upload and download. If your Internet Service Provider provides information about your data usage, then it is good. I think any Internet Service provider will update your data usage information only for last session. To know your recent data usage, you must disconnect and connect again to the internet for data usage information. If you use Windows operating system, you may find lot of applications for monitoring the data usage of internet. Some of the applications are Ntop and Surplus Meter. Ntop may run on both Windows and UNIX operating system whereas, Surplus Meter will run only on Mac.

It is always essential to maintain a secret and a strong password for your wireless internet connection. Buddies near you may connect without authorization and you will end up in large data usage if you allow them to connect without any password.

Parental control is much essential. Most of the Antivirus software provides Parental control which can be used to monitor child's activities on the computer. You may also block certain applications that use internet connection. This not only reduces your internet data usage but also cares for your child's safety.

Browsing is a major activity that is carried out on internet. As, this also effect on your data usage, it is always necessary to monitor own browsing behavior. If you are a Video lover or music lover, please make sure you are not exceeding the data usage limit. Just a 10 minutes high quality video can eat up more than 200 MB from your data usage limit.

Downloading must be taken in care. Torrent download will seed even after downloading. If you want to download a file which weighs too heavy in size, then you may schedule download at the time of free usage. I think most of the providers will give a Night time for high data usage.

I have listed above the top tips for reducing your data usage. If I have missed out points, you may also comment here.

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  • Amit says:

    Hi, Arjun

    Thanks for the nice write up! to just tell you why i m surfing for above topic, i exhausted 5GB of Internet data in 1 week, without downloading single big sofware/ movie/ game or songs..
    i was amused and approached the ISP but they couldnt justify the usage. so I am looking ofr some good tool to monitor data usage.. even in new cycle i have lost 400 MB in one day in span of 5-6 hours, wuthout much activity. i.e. no video or anything, i looked at TCP Viewer but it doesnt show any anonymous process. what else can be there? i feel something is wrong with my machine, but cant find it, do have the antivirus.. and it doesnt show any trogen or any virus as such. can you recommend anything? i d be obliged.

    rgds
    Amit

    • Arjun says:

      Check whether you have enabled automatic updates on windows and antivirus software. That may be the reason. Use a proper Firewall software to block unwanted applications to access internet.

  • Best way is to use Wi-Fi while on Home and office.