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Gaming usage?

BrianE
Grafter
Posts: 29
Registered: 22-07-2010

Gaming usage?

Here's a screenshot of our current broadband usage (will restart on the 16th):

Note the 'Gaming' usage - the help pages for the usage monitor state that browser games won't be counted towards 'Gaming' usage, but will (as you'd expect) go towards 'Web' usage.
I'm certain that no online games have been played this month, other than browser games. Where could this Gaming usage be coming from?
Cheers,
-Brian
8 REPLIES
Steve
Seasoned Pro
Posts: 6,817
Thanks: 315
Registered: 13-07-2009

Re: Gaming usage?

My first thought Is, Is your network secure?
If life gives you lemons, make lemonade.
Plusnet Staff
Plusnet Staff
Posts: 12,169
Thanks: 18
Fixes: 1
Registered: 04-04-2007

Re: Gaming usage?

Hi Brian,
Gaming includes the things that you would expect to be in gaming like Xbox, Playstation and Wii games as well as PC games like World of Warcraft and Call of Duty. It can also include some game downloads like Steam. Generally browser based games use things like Flash so these will go in to Web or occasionally streaming but some games like online poker (like Ladbrokes or Party Poker) go in to gaming as do some games on a few websites (Scrabulous I think is one of them and a few other games on Facebook) because we've had to build signatures for them as they don't use HTTP/port 80 so otherwise would end up not getting identified.
Have you used anything like this?
BrianE
Grafter
Posts: 29
Registered: 22-07-2010

Re: Gaming usage?

Steve M - Yes
dave - We have a PS3, but it isn't on the new network yet and so hasn't been used online in a couple of months
I'm fairly sure that no online games have been played =\
Would 'Mafia Wars' on Facebook count as a game? It uses Facebook's standard application API (client uses the game over HTTP), so I can't see how it would unless you've added it manually  Undecided
Any ideas? In the end it isn't going to majorly impact our usage quota, I'm just wondering where on earth it's come from
-Brian
jojopillo
Grafter
Posts: 9,786
Registered: 16-06-2010

Re: Gaming usage?

Hi BrianE,
there are that many new applications that use similar signatures or the same port that the system will often 'best guess' at what it may be and classify it as gaming if the signature or the port is similar or the same as a known gaming application.
Jojo Smiley
Dom
Grafter
Posts: 277
Registered: 09-03-2010

Re: Gaming usage?

That usage seems like quite a high proportion of your total usage as well. At least, it is compared to ours. We have 3 people who play online games every day and the total usage comes to about 2% or so.
Then again, our experience is that the categories are a bit vague. I've used FTP services for a few days in a row, and it's not registered any FTP traffic at all. Similarly, I've downloaded a couple of major game updates using the game's own updater, and it's registered as peer-to-peer traffic due to the nature of how it updates.
So it's all a bit hit and miss really. It might be that some other traffic has been put into the 'Gaming' category.
BrianE
Grafter
Posts: 29
Registered: 22-07-2010

Re: Gaming usage?

Jojo: Facebook games can ONLY go over HTTP, they CANNOT go over any other port, especially as the laptop that Mafia Wars is played on doesn't even have Flash installed.
The website can't connect to other ports from our network, so any web games would definitely show as 'Web' usage  Undecided
It could be something to look into...
Also, I'm "streaming" most of the day, every day. Spotify uses around 15Kb/s bandwidth to stream music, whilst the average game (such as Modern Warfare 2) uses around 10Kb/s... So to get usage that's far higher than our streaming usage, we'd need to be gaming most of the day, every day (our total is ~32GB in that graph in my OP)
So, yeah =\
I'm almost definite no games have been played, and even if they had been played, they'd have to be online constantly to crank up usage like that
Can anyone give any insight?
jojopillo
Grafter
Posts: 9,786
Registered: 16-06-2010

Re: Gaming usage?

Hi BrianE,
I can't see where I said anything about facebook games, but I will have a more indepth look tomorrow and see if I can get you some answers.
Jojo Smiley
Community Gaffer
Community Gaffer
Posts: 13,430
Thanks: 1,187
Fixes: 92
Registered: 04-04-2007

Re: Gaming usage?

@BrianE, it is far from unusual for our traffic management platform to misclassify certain types of traffic. It's not an exact science and many applications/services share ports and have other commonalities (particular the stuff that's send using UDP as opposed to TCP/IP).
You're making an assumption that the traffic management systems are based solely on the originating port when that's not the case. e.g. there is stuff delivered over port 80 that we intentionally don't class as web traffic.
From what you've said, I reckon it will be the Peer-to-Peer element of Spotify or something similar that's contributing to the Gaming figures.
It's little to worry about unless it's affecting your use of the service.

Bob Pullen
Plusnet Product Team
If I've been helpful then please give thanks ⤵