Like most people who have broadband, my account doesn’t have excess charges, just ‘shaping’ – dropping back to crawling ‘dial-up’ speeds until the end of the billing period. It is just horrible and I really do my very best to avoid it.
Obviously the best way to avoid it is to keep a close eye on your usage. Easier said than done, my ISP usage page is behind a login and they don’t have an easy way of keeping an eye on it, so short of visiting a really boring page on a regular basis, there’s no easy way of keeping track. Enter the wonderful NetUsage Firefox plugin, which has helped me ration my bandwidth down to the last day on a couple of occasions.
So, when I changed my plan and NetUsage encountered some sort of error, I was a little disappointed. A week or so of checking the ISP page convinced me that this was a situation that had to be resolved. I checked the documentation for NetUsage – tried (I really did!) to understand how it worked – then gave up and emailed the author… this was a Sunday afternoon.
A couple of emails to and fro and by Sunday evening, the author has emailed me a patched version of the plugin which worked perfectly – amazing reponse. I am delighted to once again be able to monitor my usage at a glance – actually, mostly my daughter’s usage – streaming trashy US soaps!!