With Comcast announcing a 250 GB cap on its broadband service and Time Warner trialling a tiered service with limits that range from 5 GB to 40 GB, we’ve decided to challenge people to break those caps. Obviously we can’t verify if someone actually downloads everything they claim to, but we’re looking for real examples of how a heavy bandwidth user could breach either the 40 GB or 250 GB limit. Leave your attempts in the comments. [digg=http://digg.com/tech_news/250_GB_Challenge_5_Tools_To_Monitor_Your_Bandwidth]
Unless you have a large family that consists of early adopters (and teenagers), or you want to step up your seeding for BitTorrent files, most people should try for the more easily attainable Time Warner caps. And since you’re going to need some software to measure your current consumption, below is a list of free and cheap programs. Now grab your Roku box, hook up the kids with Hulu and see about buying some HD video conferencing software. Do it now, because soon this stuff won’t be free.
- Rackeys: For $9.95 you can download this broadband usage software for Windows machines.
- Net Meter: This software from Hootech can be tried for 30 days for free; after that it costs $19.95. Measures usage, broadband speeds and allows you to save the data. Only for Windows machines.
- Broadband Check: Free software from the UK, but your stats will be uploaded to the site.
- iStatMenus: Free broadband usage tool for Macs.
- Surplus Meter: Free broadband usage meter for Macs and PCs