How to block streaming content from all computers on our wifi.

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I have visitors coming who do not observe boundaries. I am unwilling to tell them not to watch streaming content, as they do it anyway and then get angry at me when we run out of usage. Can I block all streaming content from all computers on our wifi?
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Wil Cavanaugh

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Posted 4 years ago

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david, Champion

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You don't have a password on your router? Lie to them, tell them you're out of data. Of course, you could just tell them no.
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Wil Cavanaugh

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Thanks, David.  No, in order to get along (this is the family of my husband), I have to pull in my horns and ameliorate the situation.  After having researched this subject, it is notable that it would be contrary to Exede's interests to have a control like this.  It is something I cannot do.  Our company will be here long enough to wipe out our 25 gigs, and I'm quite certain they will.  My mother-in-law is caught in the middle.  She does not want controversy, but all I can do to avoid it is let things run their course.  I WILL tell the mother of the children that we made the effort to accommodate her children by buying the largest package available in our area, which is the truth (though she'll never believe it.)  <sigh>  Exede SHOULD have a solution, but they do not.  As soon as possible, I'll find another company that does.
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Old Labs (VS1-329-L12FZ)

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Consumer class routers generally don't have the level of control that you're probably wanting although business class routers and firewalls do; however many routers do have features that might alleviate the bleeding such as firewalls, parental controls, setting up guest networks, limiting hours during which it can be used, etc.

Post your router brand as well as the model # and someone might be able to offer some advice to at least slow the bleeding but each brand/model is different - not really an Exede issue but a router/firewall issue.

Regardless do password protect changing both the administrative password as well as the access password giving out the access password on a need basis.

My guests only receive the password after a short course on satellite internet usage and the reality of data caps. 
(Edited)
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Wil Cavanaugh

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My apologies for placing blame at the wrong point.  When my current company leaves, I shall do as you suggest.  Thank you very much.
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david, Champion

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Some routers have a guest mode that you can limit the speed on. Sometimes sat Internet is slow, REAL slow, unusably slow. :-) If they don't believe, just point them here.

Depending on how long they're there, that sorry Exede could just be down again wink wink knudge knudge.
(Edited)
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Brad, Viasat Employee

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Hello Wil,

As suggested being able to block this sort of content is mostly done via parental controls on devices, router password changes, guest networks and such. More than likely your guests are probably used to DSL or Cable internet connection where data can be pumped in via fiber optic cables and are probably unaware of Satellite internet having a data cap. Like Old Labs said above, educating on the situation can probably lead to a peaceful resolution.

On our end if needed we do offer the Buy More option where additional data can be purchased. I would also maybe recommend they try holding the streaming during the Late Night Free Zone so their usage won't count against you. 
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Wil Cavanaugh

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Thank you for being a peacemaker.  Actually, I educated them thoroughly.  They simply chose to ignore the lesson.  They are teenagers and do not believe what we older folks tell them.  They ran us out of our usage within an hour.  Even after our service was turned off, once we re-loaded it, they still sneaked onto videos.  They will be here almost a week, which means we likely will have to re-fill 4 or 5 times.  If I make any direct statements, there will be a family row and I will be the bad guy, so I apparently have no choice but to allow us to be violated.  I noticed some things on your site that MIGHT help if I can wade my way through.  Thanks, again.
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Knight Rider

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All I have to say is your nicer then I would be..I wouldn't buy more data
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Kentuckienne

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So if your guests were going into your dresser and taking money out of your wallet, you wouldn't be able to say anything? The lesson you will teach the kids is that they can ignore what you say because who cares, and it isn't convenient for them? You should simply change the password and explain that yes, there is a problem with the internet, sorry. I don't like family rows, either, but does that mean the alternative is rolling over whenever a bully says boo? 

Do you think they won't get just as mad if you block the streaming content, and make just as much trouble? What good will it do to figure out how to block streaming if it just makes  you the bad guy again? I'd let the data run out, and don't refill it. Just explain that it all got used up by the streaming, how could that happen when everyone promised not to do videos, you tube, netflix, etc? Must be something wrong with the router, you'll check it out when you have a chance after they leave, in the meantime they can use the service during LNFZ. 
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Old Labs (VS1-329-L12FZ)

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All I have to say is your nicer then I would be..I wouldn't buy more data
You've obviously never met my in-laws... there's no price too high to keep them happy ;)

I do find flipping the circuit breaker on the well pump encourages them to leave however.     
(Edited)
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Wil Cavanaugh

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You sound like my husband.  It's his family, after all.  He's pretty p. o.'d about their inconsiderate behavior, also, but he keeps peace because of his mother (her niece & daughters are the culprits) and because his mother is in poor health.  But to your point, that is precisely what we shall do -- let them run us out of service and not refill it.  Thanks for concretizing our resolve.  You're right, btw, they are bullies.  They use loud and vitriolic language while we speak softly and with reason, and they believe volume stands in the place of right thinking.
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Jacqueline Tierney

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Sorry you have to put up with such inconsiderate and selfish inlaws.  :(  I probably wouldn't be nice either, fortunately my brothers are both very considerate and my husband is an only child.  ;)  I like Old Labs solution though shut off the water pump.  We are currently stuck on rural water but have our well fixed and as soon as we get a well test done I can use that idea if I have rude company too.  ;) Amazing though that they can run water lines out here and charge people for what we already own, but not Internet lines.  :/
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Wil Cavanaugh

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We think so much alike.  My husband is also an only child, which is part of the reason we must take his mother's feelings into account.  <sigh> I DO love her, though.
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J&J

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Delete Flash Player and Java.  Firewall all Adobe and Oracle sites so it can't be put back, or block installations of add-ons.
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Kentuckienne

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I'm so sorry you have to be caught in a situation like that. And I'm sorry I wasn't supportive enough - you don't need internerds adding to your stress. I do find that the complexity of technology allows for some fudging. Many people really don't understand how things work. Not volunteering to fix a problem is much less confrontational than explaining why you aren't going to fix a problem. Technology can be a convenient scape-goat. 

There are a couple of good points in your post that I hope others notice. One, you explained about the data use, and your guests ignored that. I expect that this is a not insignificant factor in the households whose data is vanishing. Maybe it's easier to blame the internet provider than to consider that one's perfect child might be at fault, but many posters insist that their family/friends/guests would NEVER do any of those prohibited things because they know better. 

And speaking of blaming the internet company - Exede does seem to have some way to throttle customers. Isn't that how the Evolution plan works? When you use up your data, you lose access to streaming and high bandwidth activities but can still access web pages and email. In theory there should be a way to put your account, temporarily, into such a restricted state. Anybody here know anything about that? 

Not to mention, Exede, a simple bandwidth application has been promised for years. How hard can it be when the modem itself keeps track of data uploaded and downloaded? Don't need to integrate anything on the back end. Just have the modem write to a file, collecting the total amounts, and reset them each billing cycle. The users can already see the modem from the browser, and all you have to do is add one more icon. In addition to displaying data uploaded/downloaded since reset, display total data since billing cycle start. So simple ...
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Old Labs (VS1-329-L12FZ)

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Mostly speculation since ViaSat is pretty tight-lipped about the whole thing.

First, I suspect throttling (or QOS if wanting to think of it that way) is a function of the Accelenet Server (sometime referred to as your core node) your assigned to and it's probably not so much throttling but rather traffic prioritization based on your plan and applicable DAP. When dapped you're likely placed at the bottom of the prioritization queue naturally resulting in slower speeds. It's also possible the the Accelenet client (embedded in the modem) plays a role in this. 

As far as the data usage meter and after poking around the javascipt on the modem status page guessing at what mangled/cryptic variable names and looking at the script portions we don't see, I'm not really convinced there's an actual meter embedded in the modem. More like a counter that's queried every 15 minutes (under normal circumstances) and a delta is performed on the server to determine usage during that interval (much like the electrical meter reading process).

Similarly, I'm not really convinced that there's a clock in the modem (a timer yes but a clock I just don't see one) and that the LNFZ/EBFZ is determined on the server side along with some magic reset on the modem for those that are dapped.

As noted all guesses (some educated some not), and we'll never really know.

P.S. As far as the delay in a new usage meter goes, I suspect ViaSat uses third party software for customer facing sites (like this one) and it may simply be a matter of getting that to play nicely with the actual ViaSat infrastructure - most third party software wasn't designed with satellite internet in mind and it's common for companies to outsource administrative functionality that isn't necessarily in their wheelhouse.      
(Edited)
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Wil Cavanaugh

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You guys are AWESOME.  I'm simply going to HAVE to learn more about this computer stuff.  I'm a good navigator, but don't ask me to look under the hood.  Oh, wait!  That's EXACTLY what I need to learn.  Thank you so much.

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