"Over the past several months we've watched the Internet
bandwidth consumption on our university network jump from an
average of 55 megabits/second to more than 150 megabits/second. The
biggest spike in usage occurred at the end of August and the
beginning of September. Care to take a guess as to what caused the
bandwidth barrage? Yup -- students returning from summer vacation
and taking advantage of their blazingly fast dormitory Ethernet
"While there are several traffic analysis products on the market
(such as Shomiti Systems' Surveyor) they were priced well above our
budget. We elected to go with an open source application for Linux
called Iptraf. Iptraf version 2.3.1 provides network managers with
a console-based network statistics utility that is easy to install,
a snap to use, and robust enough to win a permanent place in our
network management toolkit."
"To build your own Linux-based traffic analysis system, first
get your hands on a decent desktop workstation. We used an HP
Pavilion 6630 that came configured with a Celeron 500MHz processor
and 64MB of memory. We boosted the memory to 256MB and added a 30GB
IDE drive to store logging data. Thirty gigabytes of disk space may
seem like overkill, but log files can grow at an incredible rate.
Put the extra drive in, you'll thank yourself later."
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