April 4, 2014

18 commands to monitor network bandwidth on Linux server

This post mentions some linux command line tools that can be used to monitor the network usage. These tools monitor the traffic flowing through network interfaces and measure the speed at which data is currently being transferred. Incoming and outgoing traffic is shown separately.
Some of the commands, show the bandwidth used by individual processes. This makes it easy to detect a process that is overusing network bandwidth.
The tools have different mechanisms of generating the traffic report. Some of the tools like nload read the "/proc/net/dev" file to get traffic stats, whereas some tools use the pcap library to capture all packets and then calculate the total size to estimate the traffic load.
Here are the command names segregated upon features

1. Overall bandwidth - nload, bmon, slurm, bwm-ng, cbm, speedometer, netload

2. Overall bandwidth (batch style output) - vnstat, ifstat, dstat, collectl

2. Bandwidth per socket connection - iftop, iptraf, tcptrack, pktstat, netwatch, trafshow

3. Bandwidth per process - nethogs
1. Nload
Nload is a commandline tool that allows users to monitor the incoming and outgoing traffic separately. It also draws out a graph to indicate the same, the scale of which can be adjusted. Easy and simple to use, and does not support many options.

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18 commands to monitor network bandwidth on Linux server

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