A few data consumption's that people are typically unaware of are: storage, media, updates, apps, or communications. The number of wireless devices on your home network can also play a big role with data usage. If you’d like I would be more than happy to review your account and advise of your data consumption based on your daily traffic. Please send us your account and contact info to firstname.lastname@example.org
Its a subject I tend to specialize in "over there" and for the most part the missing data is the result of users not having a complete understand of computers, routers, other devices ... wireless in particular and networking in general.
To that end I am going to repost a reply I made in another topic in the hope of increasing understanding of the subject:
Having a router in the mix makes it nearly impossible to pin down the culprit(s).
Lets look at a basic home network:
The above example has GlassWire installed on one of the wired computers and it will measure all of the data used by that computer but we also have to consider all of the other connection avenues that having a Router connected allows
Also to be most effective GlassWire needs to be set up to exclude "local traffic" but more on that later.
We need to take a closer look at the router itself:
The above block diagram shows THREE potential avenues of use:
A router consists of three potential traffic areas:
#1: Its firmware/hardware:
This would include automatic update checks, Remote Access accounts/vulnerabilities, WPS settings/vulnerabilities and "front end" username/password setup to name a few.
#2: Wired LAN connections and the types of devices connected
as well as their settings. Specifically end users not understanding the
differences between "hard off", "sleep" and "hibernate" as well as other
system settings such as Wake On LAN, Wake On Ring and even extending to
We need not even go into the details of forced updates and data "sharing" inherent to Win10 and being back ported to Win7/8/8.1
#3: We come to the most difficult to control ... Wireless activity
can start with what encryption level, if any, has been set up. We also
need to consider the username and password that limits access to the
routers front end so that unauthorized users can add themselves to the
wireless users list. It needs to be changed from the default values.
also have the multitude of settings of the many types of devices that
can connect wirelessly be they computers, notebooks, tablets, cell
phones or even thermostats.
It is often not apparent when all
apps on all devices have had their update ability turned off. Very
frequently an update will cause other settings to change to their
Considering the number of "connection avenues" provided by a router it is mandatory that it be excluded during initial troubleshooting steps.
During the troubleshooting phase the "network" MUST be reduced to the minimum number of variables.
It needs to have the router removed from the equation so as to look like this:
The number of variables has been brought down to a manageable level.
It now is time to download and install some software to track usage and identify what program and what process is or has been running and using data.
For this we need Glasswire:
An important point here .....
GlassWire will only monitor the single computer upon which it is installed.
Later as the router is reintroduced, GlassWire will have to be installed on every Windows computer that is connected to the router
Another point to be made here is that if Windows IS the root of the issue ... it uploads/downloads sporadically .. it may take time to "catch it in the act".
So as to not "torque" the amount of usage displayed by GlassWire we need to change a couple of settings ... we don't need to count (later on when more devices are connected) "local" traffic.
Here are my suggested settings:
(click on picture for larger image)
Understanding the results:
Each computer, one by one needs to go through this process.
Once all wired computers have been "cleared" we can add the router back in to the mix with one major exception .... we have to disable the "radio" ...
We then want to test the "network" consisting of all "cleared" wired devices and the router "guts" to ensure they work well together as a whole.
Now comes the stickey part the re-introduction of the routers wireless function.
Its tough because I know of no software that will load on the variety of devices that CAN connect ... cell phone, tablet and so forth.
On laptop computers you can of course load GlassWire but that still leaves many potential avenues open.
The "Poor Mans" method requires great discipline. ALL devices other than a single one have to be and remain in a "hard off" state and that is not easy to do.
Run that single device over time and monitor usage carefully while still running Glasswire and the "difference" is ... the amount used by THAT device.
Of the devices ... Apple stuff is probably the worst ... VERY large updates on a random basis and the updates are very prone to "break" during download causing them to restart from the beginning ... massive data loss there.
It is essential that the router be properly set up !
Guest access MUST be disabled in the routers internal GUI
No "open network" :
WPA-PSK [TKIP] encryption at the very minimum !
Clear all devices one by one with the understanding that the usage may be sporadic.
There are higher end routers that WILL track usage by individual device but these may be out of reach (about $200) for the casual user. That is the only way to be SURE of what is going through a network.
There are a number of Routers available that with the inclusion of third party firmware will allow a user to track usage by device within the Routers interface.
That would include these Asus Routers: