Monitor your internet data usage in Windows 8


Some people have unlimited internet access, but not everyone does and for those that don’t, the question is, how do you monitor the amount of data you have uploaded and downloaded? If you have Windows 8.1 then this is easier than you might expect and it is monitored for you. You just have to know how to access the data.

There are several reasons why you might want to know how much data has been used and an internet contract with unlimited data usage is the best of course, but for financial reasons some people choose a limited account. The monthly cost is cheaper than for unmetered access.

Some people have poor or no internet access and they use a 3G dongle to access the internet through the mobile phone network. The data is very limited and is often 1 to 10 GB a month, so it is essential to keep an eye on the amount used on a daily basis.

If you travel have a laptop, you might buy access to Wi-Fi hotspots and these might limit the data you can use. Once again, it is important to view your data usage so that you don’t incur extra costs.

Down in the bottom right hand corner of the screen is a series of icons. The Wi-Fi indicator is shown here.

 Windows Wi-Fi icon

Click the icon and the Wi-Fi networks in range are displayed in a panel on the right. The one you are connected to is indicated.

 Windows 8 Wi-Fi networks

Left click this connection and the data usage us displayed and the length of time that it relates to. If you have never used this feature before, the length of time could be months and the data usage could be huge.

 Windows data usage

Right click this highlighted connection to access a menu with three options. The data usage can be shown or hidden as you prefer.

 Hide Windows data usage

There is also a reset link and clicking this sets the usage back to zero. It is useful to do this on the day your new billing cycle starts, or if you are at a Wi-Fi hotspot and want to know how much data you are using.

 Reset internet data usage

There is no automatic way to reset the data usage, such as every 1st of the month or whenever your billing cycle runs from. It must be reset manually. It could be added as a recurring event in the Calendar on the Start screen though. You would then be reminded every month to reset it.

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