Over the years I have used these three utilities from time to time and have found them quite use full. All three of these utilities are free and they are not crippled or have any type of nags in them. The three utilities I will cover here are all for the Internet. If you don't have a Internet connection then none of these programs will be of much use. However if you goto the Analogx web site you will find all sorts of utilities that range from audio utilities to system and network utilities as well.
The First one of these three programs I will look at will be Packet Monitor. As you can see in the above screen shot it has a pretty simple display to it. With this main display you can go and click on each entry you see on that list and the program will display the raw data that was sent across the net. Before you see any information at all though, you will need to have a web browser or something that can access the Internet in order for Packet Monitor to be able to intercept the data.
Where this program comes into real use though is if you want to see whats going on in terms of seeing Internet traffic coming and going from your machine. Say you want to know what all a certain service in XP for example is sending out onto the Internet you could see that information with this program.
Another use for it might be if you want to figure out how a program communicates to a server for example so that you could write your own client. A good example of this would be a Instant messenger or the like where the specs to it are not made public or very hard to find.
So over all this tool despite how simple looking it is its very power full when you know how to utilize it. There is also a rules system in the program that you could setup to only log say certain bytes that maybe sent out onto the Internet. The reason for the Rules you can set and even make your own are so that you can filter out the stuff you don't want to see and hone in on what it is your after.
As you can see in the above screen shot this program only has the main display your seeing and with that it can tell you how much data you sent and received. If you right click on the main screen of the program you can bring up the options page. With this page you can select how you want your information formatted as in either Bits or Bytes. Considering the line speed of most modems is in measured in Bits I normally leave it set to this and all the data on the screen will be converted to that. If you want to see how much traffic you have sent and received in Bytes then you have that option as well. You can also monitor your CPU usage with this program.
Overall this program is pretty straight forward and should only take a few minutes to completely understand it.
Like the program above this is also a simple program in that it doesn't take much to figure it out. Where you would use this program is say for example you were trying to access a web site and it was going way slower then normal with this program you type in the IP into the address bar and it will trace back through every computer that your connection is taking to the web site. This can then tell you if for example somewhere along the route there is a computer thats screwing up or not responding at all. A program like this is handy for confirming that something somewhere is wrong in your connection path.
Once again this program doesn't have much in the way of options and has a simple interface. You just load it up enter in your IP you want to check and off it goes and does it thing.
Thats it for this article I hope you find a use for these utilities or anything else that you might see on the Analogx web site. It really is a good web site and the utilities are top notch and better yet they are free.