rabbtux rabbtux wrote:
> I am designing the migration of my network to a MT hotspot solution
> for fixed wireless subs.  It appears there are two ways to account for
> customer bandwidth usage, radius accounting or use IPflow data from MT
> routers and a an application like IPTrack to do the accounting.
> Anyone have suggestions?

They'll both get you very nearly the same information, just in different
ways.

RADIUS accounting will usually lag a bit further behind, and is arguably
more prone to losing data. If that one little tiny accounting packet
gets lost, you've lost hours or maybe days of customer traffic data. And
the RADIUS protocol doesn't have positive acknowledgement, so those
packets seem to get lost rather frequently. On the other hand, you
probably already have a RADIUS server, so it'll probably cost little or
nothing to get going there.

NetFlow data will be a lot more comprehensive. A LOT more. It basically
logs summaries of every packet flowing through your network, and you'll
need a lot of resources and disk space (relatively speaking) to keep
track of the data, and summarize it into something useful. (Our network
usually peaks at about 20Mbps aggregate traffic, and the netflow files
for last month took about 24GB of disk space. My traffic summary script
has been running overnight; I expect it'll be done soon. I could
probably get better performance with a commercial NetFlow analyzer, but
that involves money.)

If you're using it primarily for informational purposes, RADIUS will
probably suit your needs just fine. If you plan to use it for billing
purposes, NetFlow would likely be a better way to go.

David Smith
MVN.net
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