Imagine living a day without the internet. Can’t even imagine, right? Nowadays, the internet has become an essential part of our lives. People are using internet to automate homes. Almost everything we do needs an active internet connection. Right from education to job, everything is computer based and hence needs the internet. But just having the internet doesn’t suffice. The speed of the internet also matters. A slow internet connection is of no use. Many times, we face a slow internet even if we have Wi–fi in our house. Ever thought why this happens? Ever heard about home network monitoring.
There are many reasons for a slow internet, one of them being excess devices connected to Wi-fi. This hampers the speed and performance of the Wi-fi. Therefore, studying and monitoring the performance of our home networks is very essential. The need of having bigger and better home networks is also increasing day-by-day. A bigger network means a bigger chance of some failure of the components in the network. Hence, network monitoring becomes more crucial. In this article, we have jotted down everything you require to know about home network monitoring and how to perform it all by yourself. So, without further ado, let’s get started!
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- 1 What Is Home Network Monitoring?
- 2 How Is Home Network Monitoring Performed?
- 3 Picking A Monitoring Computer And Installing Tools
- 4 Conclusion
What Is Home Network Monitoring?
We can define Network monitoring as the use of a system that constantly monitors a computer network for slow or failing components. This system notifies the administrator in case of outages or issues. In short, in network monitoring, you can keep an eye on devices which connects to your network, how much data are these devices consuming, are these devices faulty. Whether these devices can hamper the speed of your network.
Also, the network monitoring system informs the administrator about the faulty machines that connects to the network and how they will be responsible for hampering the network. You will get a visualization of the things happening in your network. Home network monitoring can also be useful for checking which device is consuming maximum bandwidth, To keep a check on what the kids are watching on the net or having a check on zero–day malware infections that antivirus software do not get detect.
Now, how do we perform home network monitoring? Let’s see.
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How Is Home Network Monitoring Performed?
Home network monitoring can be performed either on one computer or multiple computers. Performing network monitoring on a single computer is quite simple. But monitoring multiple computers that connects to a network is a bit complicate. We will take you through both ways.
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Performing Network Monitoring On A Single Computer
To perform network monitoring on a single computer is pretty simple because it already has access to its traffic. Follow the below steps to monitor a single computer:
- Open any browser window.
- Enter https://www.glasswire.com in the address bar.
- Download ‘glass wire’ software. This software is available for free.
- After the download is complete, run the glass wire software.
- Once the software is installed successfully, open the application.
- You will see all the network traffic on the homepage of the software in a graphical form.
- If you want to see the network traffic of individual apps then you can view it in the apps section.
- There are many other features that this software includes like a firewall, usage, network, and alerts.
You can easily monitor the network traffic on your computer using the glass wire software.
There are many other free software available for network monitoring a single computer. Each software comes with a different set of features that may be of interest. You can try and test different software and then choose the optimal one.
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Performing Network Monitoring On Multiple Computers
To perform network monitoring on multiple computers, a bit complex setup is required. You require to add two main components to the setup of the network you desire to monitor:
- A separate computer that has network monitoring tools installed in it.
- A network apparatus which has port mirroring abilities for sending a document of the entire network traffic to the monitoring computer.
Now, let’s get your home network monitoring set–up operating. Follow the steps below:
Picking A Monitoring Computer And Installing Tools
You are required to install two important tools on your monitoring computer.
Tool For Packet Capturing
A packet capturing tool keeps a total record of all the datagrams being sent among the monitor machines. Some packet capturing tools that you can install are Wireshark and tshark.
These tools are open–source.
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A flow record provides an abstract of home network monitoring activity. They provide information like ports and source as well as the destination IP addresses, the protocols that are used, and the amount of packets and bytes that are sent. But they do not provide details about the packet contents. Some well–known open–source flow record tools are Argus and Tcpdump.
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Configuring Network For Exemplifying Packets To The Monitoring Computer
Port mirroring is define as setting up source ports to deliver a photocopy of each packet revived to a destination port. We will perform port mirroring by connecting the home network monitoring machine to the destination port. Now the monitoring machine will be able to view a replica of all packets on the network. If port mirroring does not perform, the packets will omit the monitoring computer and go and come from the router. Some routers come with built-in uphold for port mirroring. If not, then NETGEAR’s ProSAFE Plus GS105Ev2 switch is a convenient option for performing port mirroring.
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Assuring That All The Devices Links Properly
The devices that we want to monitor have to be linked to the mirroring source ports. Also, the ethernet port of the home network monitoring computer should link to the destination port. Along with all this setup, you will need two routers for imposing all packets through the mirroring switch.
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Testing The Setup
You can test whether the home network monitoring computer is capturing network traffic or not. You can run the tcpdump command on an ethernet interface and percolate the tcp traffic that is not related to the IP address of the monitoring machine.
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Voila! Now, you can easily perform home network monitoring all by yourself. We hope this guide was useful for you. The software that we have mentioned above are just suggestions. There is a pool full of software available online which you can choose from according to your requirements. Do leave your valuable responses that motivates us to write more for you. Thank you and good luck for your home network monitoring endeavors. Ciao!
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You can always find me with a cup of coffee Googling anything and everything related to the networking. Refer to our detailed How-To Guides on wifi routers and never face any issue with router again!