Bandwidth usage graphs: Bytes vs Bits

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lepgargoyle
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Bandwidth usage graphs: Bytes vs Bits

Post by lepgargoyle »

I've noticed that Bandwidth usage graph and other metrics are only in Bytes while QoS setting inputs are in bits. When it comes to Bandwidth I prefer bits, is it possible to change which units are used?

Thanks,
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nworbnhoj
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Re: Bandwidth usage graphs: Bytes vs Bits

Post by nworbnhoj »

Possible? Yes. But it would be good to get a consensuses? What to people prefer? Bits or Bytes and WHY?
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lepgargoyle
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Re: Bandwidth usage graphs: Bytes vs Bits

Post by lepgargoyle »

Great! When it comes to throughput it's traditionally measured in bits such as 1Gbps ethernet, 300Mbps 802.11n, or my 50Mbps down 5Mbps up cable service. However when it comes to volume such as file size, hard disk capacity, RAM, or your monthly internet cable provider usage cap, all are measured traditionally in bytes. So in my opinion it's much easier to understand the Bandwidth usage graphs in auto-ranging bps (bits/s) and keep the Usage Table in bytes. :D

Lantis
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Re: Bandwidth usage graphs: Bytes vs Bits

Post by Lantis »

I vote leave it how it is.
It's unambiguous.
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encro
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Re: Bandwidth usage graphs: Bytes vs Bits

Post by encro »

I agree with OP.

If not able to be specified, then the UI should be at least consistent across each section.

At the moment we have:

kBytes/s on the Bandwidth Usage and B/W, QoS Distribution Pages.
Mbit/s on Connected Hosts
UPnP on the Port Forwarding Page is kBytes/s
Quotas Page uses MBytes, GBytes and TBytes.
QoS Pages use bytes, KBytes, kbps and kbits/s

We should be consistent in how information is conveyed in the UI. Right now the mix of spelling, method of displaying it and consistency is all over the place.

It's confusing when you are first learning how to use Gargoyle and still doesn't really look that good. I'd argue that it is very unclear and ambiguous.
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Lantis
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Re: Bandwidth usage graphs: Bytes vs Bits

Post by Lantis »

We should be consistent in how information is conveyed in the UI. Right now the mix of spelling, method of displaying it and consistency is all over the place.


You make a valid point. We should be consistent in how information is conveyed. We shouldn't however use the same units of measurement for everything for the sake of consistency. What we should do is be consistently accurate in our correct usage of the measurement units.

With this in mind, bits are the actual base unit, and a byte is an abstraction of this unit. Eight of them in fact.

By pure convention and mass exposure, we should consider the *standard* for measuring a rate of data transfer as a "bit rate".
We should also consider the standard for data storage to be "bytes".
We should also note the fact that for every "byte" of information we send over the internet, we break it up into smaller chunks, and append information to the front and back of each chunk saying where its going, where it came from, and all sorts of other nonsense.
I'll give a made up example.
You have a 5MB song that you want to transfer to someone over the internet. Your internet speed is capable of 40Mbps (megaBITS).
40,000 / 8 = 5 MB/s (megaBYTES).
This suggests that the song will take 1 second to leave your computer.
BUT, the song is actually broken up into 10 chunks, and each chunk needs 50 bytes of information attached to it so that it ends up going to the right place and being reassembled in the right order on the other end.
5MB / 10 = 500 Byte per chunk
adding the 50 bytes to each chunk, we need to now send
10 x 550 Byte chunks = 5.5MB
blowing this into bits, = 44 mbits
so now it takes 1.1 seconds to send your 5MB song.
The speed of your connection is still 40Mbps, and the reported rate of transfer for your song is 4.54MB/s.
I hope that this example can show you why it is important that even though these units are related by a factor of 8, they each have their own part to play.

At the moment we have:

1. kBytes/s on the Bandwidth Usage and B/W, QoS Distribution Pages.
2. Mbit/s on Connected Hosts
3. UPnP on the Port Forwarding Page is kBytes/s
4. Quotas Page uses MBytes, GBytes and TBytes.
5. QoS Pages use bytes, KBytes, kbps and kbits/s


Lets discuss this list now:
1. It is more helpful to a user to think about these in terms of "Data storage" rather than rates in my opinion. This usage feels fine to me. Subjective i guess, but I don't see the point in fixing it.
2. This fits our convention because we are discussion a maximum negotiated data rate. No need for change.
3. The units used are reflecting the units used by the plugin in the underlying system. This should be kept consistent so that users who are familiar with the system already do not mistake this value. No change required.
4. Quotas are a pretty clear example where it makes sense to think in terms of "data storage" so this is fine.
5. QoS page uses bytes and kilobytes to talk about the size of a piece of data, no problem here. It uses kbps because we are talking about a data rate at this point. So that seems fine to me. It also stands to reason that most (all?) internet connections are specified in bits not bytes, so that is what should be used here.
I'll concede that we should fix "kbps" and "kbits/s". While they are the same thing, we should use one or the other.

encro wrote:It's confusing when you are first learning how to use Gargoyle and still doesn't really look that good. I'd argue that it is very unclear and ambiguous.

Lots of things are confusing at first glance.
I encourage all users to read, research, and ask questions if they are unsure. I'm happy to help.
Argue away though if you disagree with the points I've laid out here. I'm happy to listen, please don't take anything in this post as dismissive.
This post is my opinion.
http://lantisproject.com/downloads/gargoyle_ispyisail.php for the latest releases
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foxyboy
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Re: Bandwidth usage graphs: Bytes vs Bits

Post by foxyboy »

Lantis,

I like your explanation above.

The units displayed should definately be standardized.
Perhaps to using the ISP industry-standard?
kbps or Kilobits Per Second - for representing data transfer rates
kB/s or KiloBytes Per Second - for representing data storage

How these are displayed in the interface is a slightly different matter.
Sometimes it may make sense to have the option of displaying different values - as in bandwidth table, although this may be a little cumbersome

So we would see representations like
Kbps;Mbps;Gbps - for representing data transfer 'bit' rates
KB;MB;GB - for representing data storage 'BYTE' units
http://testmy.net/tools/conversion_table.php


It would also be possible to include a conversion utility,
of which there are many available, here are some with source
http://www.csgnetwork.com/bbrateconv.html
http://www.csgnetwork.com/csdlspeedcalc.html
http://www.csgnetwork.com/memconv.html
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