Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Moo0 ConnectionWatcher: A GUI frontend for Netstat

Moo0 ConnectionWatcher is a simple program that lets you watch over any TCP/UDP connection made to and from your computer. It lets you find out which applications are connected to the network, to where it is connected and the number of bytes transferred. Essentially, Moo0 ConnectionWatcher is a frontend to the netstat command, targeted towards users who are not comfortable with the command prompt.

What is Netstat?

Netstat (abbreviation for network statistics) is a command-line tool that displays network connections (both incoming and outgoing), routing tables, and a number of network interface statistics. It is available on Unix, Unix-like, and Windows NT-based operating systems.


When used in conjunction with different ‘switches’ the command netstat can display a truckload of information about what’s going behind the network interface – which applications are accessing network, at which port, the status of the connection (established, listening, waiting), remote IP address where the connection is made, number of bytes transferred, speed of connection, contents of the routing table and so on.

Under the hands of an efficient network administrator, netstat can be a powerful tool when troubleshooting network problems. Moo0 ConnectionWatcher brings this essential tool within the reach of mouse loving Windows folks.

The Graphical Frontend

Moo0 ConnectionWatcher does a decent job as an alternative to netstat. The program displays the following information: protocol, connection status, process ID, process name, local port, remote port, remote hostname, duration of connection, total number of connection, and speed of connection. There are also columns for number of bytes transferred, but this information is not available for all processes. This is explainable: the netstat command doesn’t give that information.


The entire statistics are constantly updated at a frequency set by the user. The default rate of 1 second ensures the user gets a near real-time update about the state of the network.

Although the netstat command is much more powerful and is capable of providing more detailed information, Moo0 ConnectionWatcher is an equally useful tool to have.


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