Comcast: Metered Usage, But Where's the Meter? - HotHardware
Comcast: Metered Usage, But Where's the Meter?

Comcast: Metered Usage, But Where's the Meter?

On Thursday Comcast announced a 250 GB cap for their broadband service.  We applauded the fact that they finally gave some transparency to their "hidden" cap, which had always snagged a few users, without telling them exactly how much their use should be, but then we realized: where's the meter?

Time-Warner Cable is currently trying out metered service in Beaumont, TX. Their caps are lower, but they do provide one thing: a page you can go to in order to check your usage. And what's interesting is the response you get if you ask Comcast about any plans for a meter:

Charlie Douglas, who is Director of Corporate Communications for Comcast's Online & Voice Services, and who wrote us back yesterday when asked about the cap, says the following:
There are numerous free or fee-based meters that are widely available on the Internet to anyone who wants one.
Ah, OK. So if we want to know our usage so we don't go over your cap, we have to pay for that as well? He's right, you can find meters that you can install on your PC that track your usage. But, ahem, how many of you have only one PC at your home using the Internet? Perhaps some, but plenty of you use a router and have a one or more PCs for your children, a PC for yourself, etc. etc.

Not that easy to track usage if you have to track them across a tool on each PC. We couldn't find anything that could do that. So I guess if we really wanted to track my usage, we'd be pulling out a calculator and manually adding up stats across different PCs.

As we said earlier, the odds of people running up against this cap right now are small. 250 GB is pretty generous. But as more and more "attractions" such as Netflix, Olympics on the Go, and Disney.com pop up, we Americans will inevitably use more and more bandwidth each month. So Comcast, at least give us a tool so we know when we are going to hit the cap, will ya?
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Yes if a limit is the rule i believe it should be available online at your isp's website under your useraccount info. Otherwise whats to stop misuse

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As a workaround, route all of the PCs in your house through a single proxy system and restrict your router to only allow outbound requests from that MAC. You can then meter on that single machine.

I run like this anyway: I have DansGuardian and squid on my arcade cabinet so that I can filter content - in case some spammer sends my kids a "bad" link. That way, I don't have to constantly worry about looking over their shoulders 24x7 (though every parent should take an interest and do frequent spot checks).

It also is interesting to see exactly which URLs the PS3 and Wii are accessing for their updates/downloads. :)

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There are several ways to do it but i think it should be the responsibility of the isp. In simuliar fashion to utility companys to not only meter from there end but provide at no additional fee a industry approved method of said metering to keep the honest honest. I see far to many ways for a isp to abuse this cap rate.

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Warlord nailed the situation as I see it. Are we expected to simply trust Comcast or the other ISPs which will more than likely take this or a similar route? I want to SEE my meter and check it myself. What a bunch of horse*%$&!!!

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Checking out comcast.net I can't find anything about the cap. Not even in the FAQ. I'm glad they finally came out and told people about the cap that they have always had but really shaddy comcast.

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if it helps anyone I believe the DD-WRT, Tomato, & OpenWRT all have bandwidth meters built into them if you are so inclined to try running a diiferent O/S on your router, if its supported by either of these projects.

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I have tomato on a old linksys router. Very nice!

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