Tsmon

Written by Clive Swanepoel
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ISPs that offer their users unlimited network access all face a common problem, the so-called "Network Hog". These individuals abuse the system by staying connected to the network even when they are not active, tying up a phone line, and other system resources. Terminal Server Monitor, or TSMON, is a utility that can be installed on the Remote Access Server to identify which accounts are being abused.

Service Monitoring

One way to address the problem is to make users aware of a clearly defined Acceptable Use Policy, and then to use TSMON to enforce it. TSMON can be configured to identify abused accounts and disconnect users who fall under a "minimum bytes transferred" rule. It can also be used to impose session timeouts, eliminate multiple simultaneous logins and automatically send email notifications to offenders. Classes of users can be set up with different access limits.

When to Increase Capacity

ISP managers use the TSMON utility to help them decide when to order more telephone lines. When the usage on the last available line gets to more than 10 percent of the usage on the first line, new lines should be ordered. The ratio of the number of users to the number lines is another way to determine how many lines are needed.

For ISPs with fewer than 1,000 subscribers, a ratio of 5 to 1 is recommended. This can gradually rise to a maximum of about 8 to 1 for ISPs with a large subscriber base. Newer remote access servers, such as the Patton DigiFire, have built-in management systems that can produce detailed access activity reports.


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