Data transfer reports
All BitFolk customers commit to a certain amount of data transfer to be included with their plan. The default quota at the time of writing (November 2019) per 30 days is 1000GB in and 2000GB out. More can be committed to in units of 10GB, and higher-bandwidth users can instead opt to be charged on a 95th percentile basis. 95th percentile billing is out of scope for this article, however, which discusses the data transfer reports that BitFolk sends to you as a courtesy.
Typical report format
A typical data transfer report email looks something like this:
From: BitFolk Data Transfer Monitor <email@example.com> To: Your Name <firstname.lastname@example.org> Subject: [1/4] BitFolk VPS 'youraccount' data transfer report Reporting cycle Start: Sat, 21 Nov 2015 19:45:03 +0000 End: Mon, 21 Dec 2015 19:45:03 +0000 Transfer (GB) In: 0.035 Out: 0.050 Projected / Contracted (GB) In: 0.134 / 800.000 Out: 0.204 / 400.000
The reporting cycle is always 30 days. You will receive four reports across this 30 day period, with the first three being a summary of how much data has been transferred so far. Based on this data, an estimation is made of how much will be transferred throughout the entirety of the reporting period. The final report covers the entire period.
The example above is the first report. We can tell this because the subject line reads:
Subject: [1/4] BitFolk VPS 'youraccount' data transfer report
Also based on the dates of the reporting cycle, if today is Sunday 29th November 2015 then we'd be about 7.5 days into it, which corresponds to the end of the first quarter of the 30 days.
These two figures are how much data in gigabytes (109 bytes) you have transferred in and out of your VPS.
Only data leaving BitFolk's network is accounted for, so data going between two BitFolk VPSes or between a BitFolk VPS and any part of BitFolk's infrastructure (such as BitFolk's operating system package caches, mirrors, resolvers, etc.) is for free.
Projected / Contracted (GB)
These figures are BitFolk's attempt to guess what your final report might look like, assuming your usage continues exactly as it has done already. Obviously BitFolk cannot tell the future so if your usage changes dramatically then this projection will be completely inaccurate.
If you do end up exceeding your contractual limits (in this customer's case, 800GB in or 400GB out) then limiting of network access or overage charges would apply, so it is important to keep an eye on your usage.
The data transfer reports are sent only as a courtesy and do not take the place of your own personal monitoring of your usage.
As an additional courtesy, extra email alerts are sent when projected use exceeds contracted limits. At this point, unless you agree to pay overage charges or have indicated in the past that you will be paying overage charges, BitFolk will generally limit your available bandwidth, possibly to zero. If you are projected to exceed your contracted limits you should either take immediate action to reduce usage, prepare for a disruption in your network availability or to pay an overage bill at the end of the reporting period.
Receiving data transfer reports
Data transfer reports are sent to the email address BitFolk has in its database for you.
If you would like for data transfer reports to be sent to a different address or set of addresses you can add these as contacts in your address book in the BitFolk Panel and then add them to the "Data Transfer" role.
If you aren't interested in receiving the data transfer reports then you can also disable them from the 'xfer' section of the Panel.
BitFolk has to plan its bandwidth commitments 30 days in advance and therefore so do its customers. If it looks like you are going to exceed your contracted allowance within the current period, you cannot immediately increase your commitment to cover it. You will need to decrease future usage and/or pay the overage fees. Any change to commitment you make will take effect from the "End:" date/time of the current reporting period.
Looking at your Grafana graphs can be useful to get a more up-to-date idea of how much bandwidth you're using, as these graphs update every 30 seconds. The dashboard also contains a summary of how much data was transferred in the displayed period.
Bear in mind that Grafana shows packets going through your network interface and does not ignore local traffic. It will therefore read higher than what you would be billed for, depending on how much traffic you have that stays inside BitFolk's network.
As well as seeing the sum of traffic across the displayed period, you can estimate future use from the "average" figure. Use of the GNU Units utility may help here. For example, let's say that Grafana says your average outbound traffic is currently 942.37k/sec. Using units:
$ units '942.37kilobit per sec' 'gigabytes per 30 days' * 305.32788
So if you keep that up you could expect to transfer about 305GB per 30 days.