What the hell is downloading in the background?

wrinklyo

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Joined
Sep 26, 2008
Messages
203
I connect up to the internet using my cellphone (MTN). I check email, do some banking, and read the news on Google. When I check my data counters I've downloaded 27MB of data. And I can't find out what the hell it is that's downloaded. Windows updates switched off, Adobe updates switched off, Antivirus hasn't updated, and I can't find any new files. :confused:

Is there any software out there (preferably free):erm: that can monitor what is being downloaded, who or what is doing it and other info like that?

This happens often and is driving me nuts.:twisted:
 

Necuno

Court Jester
Joined
Sep 27, 2005
Messages
58,567
use something like tcpview, fiddler or netlimiter to see what is connecting to where.
 

w1z4rd

Karmic Sangoma
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Jan 17, 2005
Messages
48,424
I connect up to the internet using my cellphone (MTN). I check email, do some banking, and read the news on Google. When I check my data counters I've downloaded 27MB of data. And I can't find out what the hell it is that's downloaded. Windows updates switched off, Adobe updates switched off, Antivirus hasn't updated, and I can't find any new files. :confused:

Is there any software out there (preferably free):erm: that can monitor what is being downloaded, who or what is doing it and other info like that?

This happens often and is driving me nuts.:twisted:

What you are doing there could be 27MB of browsing and mail though... The internet is getting biggerer :D
 

Positively Negative

Expert Member
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Nov 18, 2009
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1,108
Netlimiter is great for sure. If you want you can also try a firewall like Zone Alarm. It will notify you what is trying to connect to the net and you can block the programs/processes for good
 

wrinklyo

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Sep 26, 2008
Messages
203
Netlimiter is great for sure. If you want you can also try a firewall like Zone Alarm. It will notify you what is trying to connect to the net and you can block the programs/processes for good

I tried netlimiter and it did something bad to the PC while installing - I had to kill the mains and reboot to clear it, but it may just have been finger trouble, coz I loaded two other suggestions OK.

I'll check out zone alarm too - thanks:)
 

bdt

Executive Member
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Jun 7, 2004
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7,001
If you have Windows 7, go: [window-key+R] - "resmon" (sans the quotes), go to the [Network] tab and expand the various blocks. Study same. :p
 

wrinklyo

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Sep 26, 2008
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203
If you have Windows 7, go: [window-key+R] - "resmon" (sans the quotes), go to the [Network] tab and expand the various blocks. Study same. :p

This is nice! I knew the old resource monitor which wasn't anywhere as nice as this new one. Thanks
 

bubbatentoe

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 3, 2008
Messages
763
The best way to find & disable suspect processes that "eat" bandwidth (without anti spyware/malware software).



a) goto command prompt and do "netstat -b -n"

b) Look for unknown processes that are connected to foreign hosts.
write down the names of the foreign host and also try stopping the offending process.
If it's spyware/malware then the processes will merely start again when you stop it = pointless to stop them.


c) open your "hosts" file in "windows/system32/drivers/etc"


d) add the host names which you wrote down earlier at the bottom of the file and add the IP address "127.0.0.1" to each hostname
e.g.:
problem.hostname1 127.0.0.1
problem.hostname2 127.0.0.1

e) save the file

f) refresh the cache by typing "nbtstat -RR"

g) stop/restart the offending processes an let them try to re-establish their connections.
They will now try & connect to 127.0.0.1, instead of connecting to the foreign host that "eats" bandwidth.


By using this method the malware/spyware/funny apps still try & create connections to foreign hosts (in order to download something), but they never do,

Instead, they constantly try and connect to 127.0.01 (the localhost) = no bandwidth is used.

Your machine however is most probably still infected with something.. but it's not using bandwidth or downloading a payload.


:)
 
Last edited:

stevovo

Expert Member
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Apr 24, 2008
Messages
1,496
^^

That is very good advice.

Also go to your services and stop the "background intelligent transfer service". Sometimes you may have stopped the windows updates but for some reason windows still chows your data if the above service is on.
 

NeoProg

Member
Joined
Sep 28, 2011
Messages
22
27MB of data is not that much. Try and watch the bit rate for your incoming and outgoing data and see if it drops to zero when you log onto your E-mails. If not, it could just be that emails are being loaded "in the background" so that you don't have to wait for them to load if you view them. Disconnecting while you are reading an E-mail will stop this.
 

wrinklyo

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 26, 2008
Messages
203
27MB of data is not that much. Try and watch the bit rate for your incoming and outgoing data and see if it drops to zero when you log onto your E-mails. If not, it could just be that emails are being loaded "in the background" so that you don't have to wait for them to load if you view them. Disconnecting while you are reading an E-mail will stop this.

Normally when I go through this routine the data used is 1 to 4 MB - that is why I know that 27MB is excessive. Also, it usually happens when I'm not actually doing anything at all on the web, like I'm reading some letter (real paper) or playing solitaire while connected, if you know what I mean. I have caught Adobe reader doing this in the past - it downloads updates of 25-34MB in the background without any indication that it is doing so except your data usage - but I've disabled that feature. I suspect it may be some Google thing doing this - they think data is free.
 
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