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Determining network traffic on LAN

Discussion in 'Networking' started by Kevindv10, May 31, 2007.

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  1. Kevindv10

    Kevindv10 Thread Starter

    Nov 13, 2001
    I've got a client who has his office in his home. Unfortunately, his two teenaged sons are also on the network with their own PC's. Last month there was over 200 GB's of traffic through the ISP. I've gone through the business end of the network and haven't found any viruses or spyware (due dilligence) and I know its those two little *$#^. Of course, the owner thinks the kids are the best thing since sliced bread, so he's pointing the finger at me. Soooo...I need to not only capture packets as they route through the server, but I need to determine the nature of the packets either via protocol or better yet application, and it would be nice to determine the IP they're coming from. I'm sure they're doing extensive file sharing, but other than getting onto their PC's I can't prove it.
    Can someone suggest an app that can provide this kind of detail? I've tried Ethereal but I either dont' understand the logs or they simply don't provide the info I need.

  2. durant125


    Aug 15, 2004
    I remember seeing hardware that does this for you, I forget the name of it but I'll look around.
  3. JohnWill

    JohnWill Retired Moderator

    Oct 19, 2002
    I'm at a loss as to why this client would think you were responsible for this issue. :confused:

    If these are wired connections to all the stations, you can insert a hub (not a switch) in front of the router and connect all the machines to the hub. You can then have monitoring software on a machine that can see all the traffic through the hub.

    I'm also totally at a loss why you can't look at their machines. If they have a network problem, and they want you to solve it, that's a mandatory step, right? After all, they might have a virus or other malware that is causing the issue.
  4. Cosinus


    Jun 14, 2007
    The best professional technology to analyze client's traffic for an ISP is Netflow. It was developed originally by Cisco, but you don't need to use a Cisco router. You can install an opensource Netflow probe - a daemon that intercepts all network packets and creates detailed traffic statistics (e.g., ndsad, ipcad). This data could be analyzed then by using, e.g. Flowtools.
    Some ISPs prefer using Netflow to realize traffic usage based billing (like $0,10 per MByte) and they store this detailed traffic data within the month for the similar issues like resolving various subscribers' complaints. Some billing systems (e.g., UTM5) are able to collect Netflow data. Good luck!
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