Best way to set data limits?

tonytharptonytharp Member Posts: 8 ✭✭
I would like to put a data limit on specific devices on my network and once they reach the limit for the day or month, they automatically get blocked until they are manually reset or they reach a certain time period. Is Fingbox able to do that or if not, working on that functionality?
kltaylorRobinCiarancolscats
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Answers

  • MarcMarc Member Posts: 427 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Hi @tonytharp, welcome to the community!  At this time Fingbox cannot do data limits.  That type of functionality would need to come from something like your router or some other external box as it would need to funnel all external traffic and monitor it.  Perhaps the community can come up with a way for you to do this outside of the Fingbox...  @Pooh , @Hronos , @kltaylor, @SimoneSpinozzi any idea as to what can be used to do this?
    Thats Daphnee, she's a good dog...
    VioletChepilkltaylortonytharp
  • SimoneSpinozziSimoneSpinozzi Member Posts: 71 ✭✭✭
    If you're using windows 10 simply set the connection metered (despite what it actually is) and set a data cap telling it to never go over it. You can even do rather complex data plans.

    Unfortunately "what to use" is very specific to the operating ambient. Soooo what OS are you running and how far down the line is the metering happening?
    VioletChepilkltaylor
  • VioletChepilVioletChepil London, UKAdministrator Posts: 2,232 admin
    Thanks for the replies @Marc and @SimoneSpinozzi - I can confirm that Fingbox is unable to set data limits/limit bandwidth consumption at this time. This isn't on our radar only because that also requires all traffic to always run through Fingbox. If this is an external device plugged into the router this could slow down the network. We tried to avoid any features that require constant rerouting of traffic through the device as the user experience can be very slow and lead to the device being turned off. 

    Perhaps @SimoneSpinozzi can help you more if you answer the above questions! Cheers

    Community Manager at Fing

    SimoneSpinozzikltaylorHronos
  • SimoneSpinozziSimoneSpinozzi Member Posts: 71 ✭✭✭
    It all depends on who owns the PCs and/or what exactly are the devices to be blocked. And who owns the router and what else is attached.

    The simplest solution would be to just flash the router with https://dd-wrt.com/ but replacing your router with something that offers metering and hard limits on consumption is more optimal. Most routers today offer that.

    If it's just to put your kids to sleep or have them not spend too much time on games/internet... yeah, set a pin on your windows PC and meter that connection putting a "daily plan" or something. Cheap, effective and you just need to check weekly that your kids haven't looked around for ways to cheat windows (and, yes, you can use fingbox for that, just set it to meter for an entire day their connection. 😉👍 )
    VioletChepilkltaylorHronos
  • VioletChepilVioletChepil London, UKAdministrator Posts: 2,232 admin
    @tonytharp I've just moved this one over to Network Troubleshooting as we can focus on other solutions like that of @SimoneSpinozzi

    Community Manager at Fing

    kltaylor
  • kltaylorkltaylor Member Posts: 558 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited October 30
    Marc said:
    Hi @tonytharp, welcome to the community!  At this time Fingbox cannot do data limits.  That type of functionality would need to come from something like your router or some other external box as it would need to funnel all external traffic and monitor it.  Perhaps the community can come up with a way for you to do this outside of the Fingbox...  @Pooh , @Hronos , @kltaylor, @SimoneSpinozzi any idea as to what can be used to do this?
    But it is one heckuva good suggestion for a future feature! =)

    There are ways to regulate bandwidth by using what's known as QOS or Quality of Service.  This is a very basic way that you can define which devices have priority when it comes to internet connection sharing.  Most if not all consumer based routers will have this feature, especially those that are configured specifically for 'gaming'.

    While it's not a direct solution of throttling bandwidth to a device, you can however control how much bandwidth they receive in any scenario.
    "There's a fine line between audacity and idiocy."
    -Warden Anastasia Luccio, Captain
    tonytharpVioletChepilMarc
  • SimoneSpinozziSimoneSpinozzi Member Posts: 71 ✭✭✭
    kltaylor said:
    But it is one heckuva good suggestion for a future feature! =)
    Sure... buuuut... it would require a "fingbox 2.0" with about 4 times the processing power it has now, a lot more memory... and also it needs to be a router. 😅

    There is only so much that can be done without routing the data stream and also within the current hardware specs.

    If the fingbox did that in the future... i can see problems cropping up. I think it was already said By violet in this very thread too.
    VioletChepilkltaylorMarc
  • MarcMarc Member Posts: 427 ✭✭✭✭✭

    And possibly another reason for them to partner with a router company to add Fings functionality to a vendors router line.

    Thats Daphnee, she's a good dog...
    SimoneSpinozziVioletChepilkltaylor
  • tonytharptonytharp Member Posts: 8 ✭✭
    Thanks for everyone's input. I have a router that logs traffic by IP and MAC address , and my Fingbox can block or pause Internet traffic by device, just thought it might be able to sync the data from the router and pause the internet upon certain thresholds.
    Here is my issue: I have video games consoles, phones, tablets, PC's, streaming TV devices, etc., used by different individuals and I have a limited amount of data. If I could limit  devices based on my needs, it would help prevent people from using too much data for stuff. Since each device uses different OS's it would be easier to do it from the router/Fingbox since it would be more centralized.
    VioletChepilkltaylor
  • SimoneSpinozziSimoneSpinozzi Member Posts: 71 ✭✭✭
    @tonytharp then i'd say:
    1) check your router's manual. There is a good chance it already does it.
    2) If it does not, gather data about how your ISP interfaces with your router, because you might need it for step 4.
    3) check for a new OS to install into your router like https://dd-wrt.com/ there is a good chance a finding new OS compatible with your router will allow you to do what you need... at little cost over your own personal time.
    4) print the instructions from points 3 and 4 (in case you can't access your phone's services) and start installing the new OS into your router. There is a good chance a new custom OS will also have functionalities which you did not know you needed until you knew they were a thing. 😂👍💖
    5) If none of the above works.... invest into a new router, Possibly before point 4. You will still need the info from point 3.
    6) good luck. 🍀
    VioletChepilkltaylorMarcHronos
  • kltaylorkltaylor Member Posts: 558 ✭✭✭✭✭
    kltaylor said:
    But it is one heckuva good suggestion for a future feature! =)
    Sure... buuuut... it would require a "fingbox 2.0" with about 4 times the processing power it has now, a lot more memory... and also it needs to be a router. 😅

    There is only so much that can be done without routing the data stream and also within the current hardware specs.

    If the fingbox did that in the future... i can see problems cropping up. I think it was already said By violet in this very thread too.
    Don't take my dream away ... lol =)
    "There's a fine line between audacity and idiocy."
    -Warden Anastasia Luccio, Captain
    VioletChepilMarc
  • kltaylorkltaylor Member Posts: 558 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Marc said:
    kltaylor<\/a> said:
    But it is one heckuva good suggestion for a future feature! \"=)\"<\/div><\/blockquote>\r\n\r\nSure... buuuut... it would require a \"fingbox 2.0\" with about 4 times the processing power it has now, a lot more memory... and also it needs to be a router. 😅

    There is only so much that can be done without routing the data stream and also within the current hardware specs.

    If the fingbox did that in the future... i can see problems cropping up. I think it was already said By violet in this very thread too.","bodyRaw":"
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    But it is one heckuva good suggestion for a future feature! =)<\/div><\/blockquote>\r\n\r\nSure... buuuut... it would require a \"fingbox 2.0\" with about 4 times the processing power it has now, a lot more memory... and also it needs to be a router. 😅

    There is only so much that can be done without routing the data stream and also within the current hardware specs.

    If the fingbox did that in the future... i can see problems cropping up. I think it was already said By violet in this very thread too.","format":"Wysiwyg","dateInserted":"2019-10-30T15:36:27+00:00","insertUser":{"userID":460,"name":"SimoneSpinozzi","photoUrl":"https:\/\/us.v-cdn.net\/6031733\/uploads\/userpics\/175\/nE2709SGVMM03.jpg","dateLastActive":"2019-10-27T09:22:25+00:00","label":"✭✭✭"},"displayOptions":{"showUserLabel":false,"showCompactUserInfo":true,"showDiscussionLink":false,"showPostLink":false,"showCategoryLink":false,"renderFullContent":false,"expandByDefault":false},"url":"https:\/\/community.fing.com\/discussion\/comment\/6355#Comment_6355","embedType":"quote"}">
    https://community.fing.com/discussion/comment/6355#Comment_6355

    And possibly another reason for them to partner with a router company to add Fings functionality to a vendors router line.

    I know that they have their API, not sure since I'm not a programmer how easy it would be for router manufacturers to add that to their list of features, but I certainly would recommend that model if they did.
    "There's a fine line between audacity and idiocy."
    -Warden Anastasia Luccio, Captain
    MarctonytharpVioletChepil
  • kltaylorkltaylor Member Posts: 558 ✭✭✭✭✭
    tonytharp said:
    Thanks for everyone's input. I have a router that logs traffic by IP and MAC address , and my Fingbox can block or pause Internet traffic by device, just thought it might be able to sync the data from the router and pause the internet upon certain thresholds.
    Here is my issue: I have video games consoles, phones, tablets, PC's, streaming TV devices, etc., used by different individuals and I have a limited amount of data. If I could limit  devices based on my needs, it would help prevent people from using too much data for stuff. Since each device uses different OS's it would be easier to do it from the router/Fingbox since it would be more centralized.
    I know that there are some parental control applications that could do that for you, may want to look at some of those.  They allow setting a limit and the ability to add to the limit as a 'reward'.
    "There's a fine line between audacity and idiocy."
    -Warden Anastasia Luccio, Captain
    VioletChepil
  • tonytharptonytharp Member Posts: 8 ✭✭
    I can use a utility on PC,  MAC,  or Linux, but that doesn't help on phones, game consoles, streaming TV devices. Also I am looking for a way to centralize administration on this and not have to manage multiple utilities and/or devices.
    kltaylorVioletChepil
  • kltaylorkltaylor Member Posts: 558 ✭✭✭✭✭
    tonytharp said:
    I can use a utility on PC,  MAC,  or Linux, but that doesn't help on phones, game consoles, streaming TV devices. Also I am looking for a way to centralize administration on this and not have to manage multiple utilities and/or devices.
    Now, this becomes a bit more complicated in that, the discovery of finding something centralized to cover all of that.  I'm a bit curious to know if something like that exists as well.  I'm off to ask the great and mighty Google. =)
    "There's a fine line between audacity and idiocy."
    -Warden Anastasia Luccio, Captain
    VioletChepil
  • tonytharptonytharp Member Posts: 8 ✭✭
    It seems like it would be a fairly simple concept to put in place by Fing (depending on the router). My router can already tell me how much data each device is using. It can tell me the device name, IP address, MAC Address, how many packets, how many bytes, etc. The Fingbox can also identify devices on the network and in cooperation with the router,  block or pause individual devices. The only thing missing is to add a piece that says when device "X" uses "Y" amount of data over a certain amount of time, block or pause the internet connection for that device for a determined period of time. 

    Now, I am not a developer, so it could be more difficult than I am making it out to be.
    It would be a great feature though since all traffic goes through the router, it would be centralized, and it would work for all devices and OS's.
    kltaylorVioletChepil
  • tonytharptonytharp Member Posts: 8 ✭✭
    @tonytharp then i'd say:
    1) check your router's manual. There is a good chance it already does it.
    2) If it does not, gather data about how your ISP interfaces with your router, because you might need it for step 4.
    3) check for a new OS to install into your router like https://dd-wrt.com/ there is a good chance a finding new OS compatible with your router will allow you to do what you need... at little cost over your own personal time.

    Thanks for the suggestion. Yes, I have scoured the manual and router itself. It monitors all the connections and data, but it will not block or throttle devices based on the amount of data. It will throttle networkwide or block totally by device. 

    dd-wrt is a great OS but still doesn't have the capability to do what I am looking for all by itself. Both Fingbox and my router have the necessary data and capabilities separately to do what I need, their capabilities just need a little more combining to get there.  
    kltaylorVioletChepil
  • MIBSWEMIBSWE Member Posts: 7
    Have a look at this link. Not sure if it solves your problem, but it may well do.
    https://www.quora.com/How-do-I-limit-data-usage-from-my-WiFi-to-other-users-Is-there-any-free-software 
  • zfreeindeedzfreeindeed Member Posts: 1

    Hi Folks,

    I have spent a good deal of time looking at the ability to just know and report on the data usage by device. I like the idea proposed about being able to set usage limits by device. I have seen the posts in this and other tech locations talking about the firmware of https://dd-wrt.com/, but unfortunately to do that you have to have a compatible router and it also completely replaces the native firewall software. If your router is old and not getting vendor updates that might be a good reason to try it it it is compatible.

    In my case, my router is not supported and the vendor has no option to even view the bandwidth usage by device. The only view is a whole router aggregated view. One feature my router does have is a WAN mirror port. This feature sends a non-interactive copy of all the packets being sent to the WAN (internet) port to one of the internal ports. This can be used with packet capture software and traffic analysis tools to get the information I and so many others are after. Unfortunately, this is quite a geeky adventure to undertake and requires a bit of knowledge to stitch the packages together on a dedicated machine.

    I am trying to do this on my own and come up with a recipe that works. When I do come up with a solution, I will update my post. As a Fing suggestion though, use of a mirror port may still require a bit of 2.0 hardware like an extra ethernet port to connect a mirrored connection to (or possibly two extra to utilize passive taps for systems that don’t have a mirror port) plus it might need more flash storage and ram to handle processing the packet captures. But, this approach would not turn the Fingbox into a router per-se to accomplish the task.

    I do know that with all of the ISP data caps out there, this topic is only going to grow more hot until something like net neutrality can stop the big guys from capping our data stream. People’s usage of the Internet is only going to grow.

    Cheers!

    VioletChepiltonytharpMarc
  • VioletChepilVioletChepil London, UKAdministrator Posts: 2,232 admin
    Thanks @zfreeindeed for the thorough feedback! 

    Community Manager at Fing

    tonytharpMarc
  • SoylentSoylent Member Posts: 4
    edited November 1
    Thanks for the replies @Marc and @SimoneSpinozzi - I can confirm that Fingbox is unable to set data limits/limit bandwidth consumption at this time. This isn't on our radar only because that also requires all traffic to always run through Fingbox. If this is an external device plugged into the router this could slow down the network. We tried to avoid any features that require constant rerouting of traffic through the device as the user experience can be very slow and lead to the device being turned off. 

    Perhaps @SimoneSpinozzi can help you more if you answer the above questions! Cheers

    Most routers support UPnP (and even SNMP) which you can use to poll for traffic. This way you don't need to route all traffic through the Fingbox. 

    I would like to see this feature implemented, because I'm dealing with my ISP data caps and like 20 internet devices in the house. There's no way I can monitor every single device manually. I use a Windows application called "Networx" that uses SNMP and UPNP to poll for bandwidth data from the router, but unfortunately it does me little good when my Windows machine is turned off most of the day. It's a really tiny app that uses almost no resources, and it just polls the router once a second.

    It's pretty basic... this is the entire interface for it. I'm sure this could be added to Fingbox with little performance overhead:



    zfreeindeedVioletChepiltonytharp
  • SimoneSpinozziSimoneSpinozzi Member Posts: 71 ✭✭✭
    that... was not what the original poster asked.

    It's not ***just*** about knowing how much data goes through the router monthly/weekly/whatever.

    It's about knowing that ***and*** the source. Constantly.

    Fingbox can do what it is being asked already.

    But it slows down the entire data stream considerably aaand it's not something that should (rather than "could") be turned on ***constantly***.

    Currently you can only turn it on as a temporary monitor. And it stops as soon as you switch the tab or close the app.

    It works as intended because the fingbox is not made to be able to do that constantly.

    And to stop said sources from going over a limit... it needs constant supervision.

    A router can, however. You get nearly no hits on internet performance, and it's also a lot more reliable than what fingbox is.

    Which is why i asked the original poster if they could check their router manual for a setting which can help limit specific sources and/or knows how to install a new firmware on their modem to do so.
    VioletChepilkltaylorMarc
  • tonytharptonytharp Member Posts: 8 ✭✭
    Thanks for the replies @Marc and @SimoneSpinozzi - I can confirm that Fingbox is unable to set data limits/limit bandwidth consumption at this time. This isn't on our radar only because that also requires all traffic to always run through Fingbox. If this is an external device plugged into the router this could slow down the network. We tried to avoid any features that require constant rerouting of traffic through the device as the user experience can be very slow and lead to the device being turned off. 


    Violet, I think this can be done without all the data running through the Fingbox. For instance my router already monitors all the traffic and tracks IP address, MAC address, packets and bytes. All that would need to happen would be for the Fingbox to talk to the router (SNMP, UPNP?) and shut off or pause the connection to specific devices once they reach a specified limit. Or have options to alert via text or email. Fingbox can already pause or block internet connections.  This seems like it would be doable. I understand it would also be based on the capabilities of the router, too.

    SoylentVioletChepil
  • kltaylorkltaylor Member Posts: 558 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Yeah, Networx is a desktop gadget that shows you what bandwidth you're currently using.  It's a visual do-dad,  nothing more, unfortunately.
    "There's a fine line between audacity and idiocy."
    -Warden Anastasia Luccio, Captain
    VioletChepil
  • SoylentSoylent Member Posts: 4

    I know, my point was that if Networx can gather that data without interfering with or slowing down network traffic, then Fingbox should be able to do the same. Now combine that with Fingbox's ability to pause devices from accessing the internet.

    Why can't Fingbox monitor the data usage, and then pause a device if it exceeds a certain amount of data? Or send a notification that a device has unusual data usage?

    VioletChepil
  • kltaylorkltaylor Member Posts: 558 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I think that they've already discussed the 'why not' either earlier in this thread or in another one.

    Believe me, I understand your viewpoint on it, I believe it's been added to the Fingbox 'wish list' but have no realistic ETA if or when it would be a consideration to add.
    "There's a fine line between audacity and idiocy."
    -Warden Anastasia Luccio, Captain
    VioletChepil
  • VioletChepilVioletChepil London, UKAdministrator Posts: 2,232 admin
    Thanks all yes, it can be added as a feature request over here: https://community.fing.com/categories/fingbox-feature-requests

    Quick question @Soylent (more for my own understanding) - would this be a kind of universal process or something that needs to be done a bit differently for each router model?  

    I don't have any timeline for new features etc. other than our most recent roadmap. https://community.fing.com/discussion/89/the-fing-roadmap

    We're definitely invested and focused on Fing Desktop at the very present time. 

    Community Manager at Fing

  • kltaylorkltaylor Member Posts: 558 ✭✭✭✭✭
    @VioletChepil ; A means to feasibly add this feature would only require knowing the MAC address of the network device that is requesting data packets from the router/firewall.

    Basically it would mean that a 'cap' could be assigned to that MAC address and will temporarily 'block' traffic to that device until the restriction has been either amended or removed.

    Think parental controls, where you could allocate data bandwidth as a reward for a child who has responsibilities at home (chores).  Rewards for good grades, things like that.

    Which could be solved as 'adding parental controls' to Fingbox.  Thoughts?
    "There's a fine line between audacity and idiocy."
    -Warden Anastasia Luccio, Captain
    VioletChepil
  • VioletChepilVioletChepil London, UKAdministrator Posts: 2,232 admin
    This is very interesting - I definitely agree. I suggest to add as a feature request too.
    Quick question @kltaylor or @tonytharp - would this be a feature you'd considering paying a small subscription for? (I hope I didn't say the unpopular word *subscription*) 
    I'm just curious if this is something that users may like so much they would pay for it...
    Any feedback on this does help make a good business case too. 

    Community Manager at Fing

  • kltaylorkltaylor Member Posts: 558 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited November 8
    Yes, that infamous 'S' word pops its head up again.
    Honestly, I can't say that the one-time payment of Fingbox should also provides this feature, I do think however, that there should be some sort of compensation for the service.  Much like how we implemented the 'ads' and how to remove them, especially with the 'keeping it low' cost to remove them.
    It's a function that you won't necessarily need to 'have', but for admins with kids ... could be a viable means for them.
    "There's a fine line between audacity and idiocy."
    -Warden Anastasia Luccio, Captain
    VioletChepil
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