I'm trying to analyze the performance of an application running on Linux. I use a combination of vmstat/iostat/top to see if the machine is disk I/O bound or CPU bound, but I'm not sure what utility to use to monitor network usage. Specifically, I'd like to know if the machine's network pipe is maxed out. What utility should I use?


I typically use the iptraf utility for this purpose. Many distributions have this packaged but do not install it by default.

Additionally, historical graphing such as that which is created by Cacti is useful.

  • netstat can list bandwidth usage, errors, restarts etc. but can be cumbersome. – symcbean Jul 8 '10 at 14:27

Give a look at iftop.
If you want to monitor network performance, you can setup snmp and monitor snmp stats.
Or you could install ntop and have all the information you need

  • ntop's a good one. It's part of my standard toolkit on firewalls and routers. – Warner Jul 8 '10 at 14:32
  • On routers/firewalls i'd install fprobe to export netflow statistics, instead of Ntop – PiL Jul 8 '10 at 14:45
  • Interesting. What Open Source tool do you use as the collector? – Warner Jul 8 '10 at 14:53
  • Ntop on another server ;) – PiL Jul 8 '10 at 15:00
  • haha, nice. Thanks. That's a good idea, I think I'll implement that. – Warner Jul 8 '10 at 15:02

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