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Controlling Internet 'noise' using the firewall service

techguy
Grafter
Posts: 2,540
Registered: ‎12-09-2008

Controlling Internet 'noise' using the firewall service

Hi
Since going live on Plus I've kept a close eye on my usage to determine if I need to add any more usage so that I can use the connection as I'd like to while not paying for oodles of bandwidth I'd never use due to work, having a life  Grin
Now I've put the connection through its paces a bit more than I'd do ordianarily to check the network quality etc. (which is the best I've ever used by the way and am currently working on trying to sign up a couple of hard core gaming colleagues)
Anyway I've noticed that I've notched up about 1 Meg in free usage which can only be due to my router replying to control packets or just general noise which is inherent in any network as I have not engaged in any late night surfing sessions this week.
Once I was sure my router/connection was behaving following the issues with my router I switched on the firewall service to low on Monday evening and restarted the router session.
My quesrion is, if I turn the firewall service to high will it reduce this usage as I'm just wondering how much billed bandwidth I'm losing to this when I'm at work or otherwise occupied and my PC is not switched on.
I understand that I'd probably have to turn it down again to engage in gaming etc.
Any advice please?
7 REPLIES
VileReynard
Seasoned Pro
Posts: 11,077
Thanks: 278
Fixes: 11
Registered: ‎01-09-2007

Re: Controlling Internet 'noise' using the firewall service

Is that 1 MByte over 5 days? If so, it is probably typical.
What is your monthly allowance?
That would only amount to less than 1% of the 1 GByte offering.
Some of the traffic is keep-alive data, but most is port-scanning attempts by the spammers.
You don't need a firewall to prevent unnecessary traffic - just to block traffic that your systems might respond to.
The only possible problem is if you are using an unsecured wifi router.
Even very simple encryption will stop the casual user from helping themselves to your service.

techguy
Grafter
Posts: 2,540
Registered: ‎12-09-2008

Re: Controlling Internet 'noise' using the firewall service

Hi Jeremy
usage allowance is 3GB (am on essential and topped it up)
My day job is supporting a large network so if anything I'm paranoid about security (PC linked via Cat5e, router Wi-fi transceiver switched off, firewall set to block anyhing incoming, not to respond to pings, anti DDoS)
Never used an ISP that gives you so much visibility into your usage, hats off to them for that but does make you a bit paranoid.
imroberts
Grafter
Posts: 52
Registered: ‎15-06-2007

Re: Controlling Internet 'noise' using the firewall service

I like the amount of visibility we offer, it does have a tendency to cause paranoia (is that spelt right?) about yours/others activities however, I agree.
The amount of "background traffic" generated will vary from connection to connection, and from router to router. For reference as to a typical amount, however, my connection tends to use around 400KB over a 24 hour period without use.
Turning the Broadband Firewall on to High would probably have a slight effect, in practice however I don't think you would even notice a change in the figures.
techguy
Grafter
Posts: 2,540
Registered: ‎12-09-2008

Re: Controlling Internet 'noise' using the firewall service

Cheers, just thought I'd enquire
I've fixed the cost anyway so I'd revert to a Home Highway nonded ISDN grade connection if I go over the limit.
I am thinking I''ll upgrade to option 2 next year as I like my streaming media too much.  Smiley
Not applicable

Re: Controlling Internet 'noise' using the firewall service

Quote from: Ian
(is that spelt right?)

>pedant=on
Nope, its spelled correctly. Tongue
>pedant=off
Worth remembering that as well as 'noise' from the interwebs, there's also an overhead for signalling etc to keep the connection alive and maintain the session, so it would be impossible to completely eradicate usage in any way other than a hardware disconnection (ie, power off or unplugging phone line)
Some people will find they have more than others, often due to past use of P2P applications (including iPlayer, 4OD, Skype etc) where other nodes attempt to locate your node having looked up stale records in the databases. After a time the records should disappear, and with that the traffic should reduce (until next time you use one again).
paulby
Grafter
Posts: 1,619
Registered: ‎26-07-2007

Re: Controlling Internet 'noise' using the firewall service

@techguy
Using PN's method  1MB = 1000kB  and 1GB = 1000MB 
Even at 2MB/day of background noise during "paid-for" time you'd take 1000/2 = 500 days to use 1GB!
In a 30 day month you're only going to use 60MB!

techguy
Grafter
Posts: 2,540
Registered: ‎12-09-2008

Re: Controlling Internet 'noise' using the firewall service

Sure i do understand that there is always some traffic, just wondered if what I was seeing was around the average for a PN connection.
Like I say I've never had as much visibility into bandwidth use and traffic type so made me a little paranoid but hats off to PN for deploying DPI and giving us access to the info.
I for one think the traffic management has benefits as my connection has been more responsive since switching to PN than it has been on any other ISP I've used (and I've used quite a few)
Thanks for all your replies.