Having data caps demands a degree of frugality.
You can view Netflix but viewing in HD will hit your data allowance for about 3 GB per hour so reducing your resolution to SD or lower really helps.
Facebook can eat up a lot of data depending on your settings such as turning off auto-play of videos.
You don't have to buy a "data management app". Hughes supplies you with three different USAGE meters plus two HISTORY displays:
(Click on pictures for larger image)
#1: The download Status Meter
The Download Status Meter is a utility that is available for download from the myAccount page.
Once downloaded and installed it will reside on your computer systray at the lower right corner.
It displays the amount of data that you have used up to the point of the screenshot.
It has a "resolution" of .1 GB (100 MB) and will round to the nearest 50 MB
#2: SCC usage meter:
The SCC meter resides inside your modem. It displays data used and data remaining in all three "data buckets": Anytime (8am to 2am), Bonus Bytes (2am to 8am) and Token Data.
The SCC meter may be accessed by entering 192.168.0.1 into your browsers address bar.
#3: myAccount Usage Meter:
This meter is found after logging in at: http://my.hughesnet.com/myaccount
This is the most accurate of the three meters, reading down to a single MB but it does require that you have a browser actively connected to the internet and data can be used while logging in.
#1: Download Status Meter History tab:
Opening the Download Status Meter and then selecting the History tab in the left column will display a look at your recent history for the last week, 2 weeks, 30 or 60 days.
Remember this is a "history" not a real-time display.
#2: myAccount History display:
Go to http://my.hughesnet.com/myaccount and log in. Select Usage, select History.
You will then be presented with a rolling 24 hour usage display as shown above. There is usually about a 1 to 3 hour delay. You may also select views of 1 week, 1 or 2 months.
In addition to the above many of us in the Community run a third party program named Glasswire:
It comes in a free and a paid version. The free version works very well for our purposes. Glasswire will track all of the data used by both programs and background processes on the computer upon which it is installed.
It will not track usage on other connected devices. If you have two computers, it will have to be installed separately each.
Glasswire main page:
If you have a complex network with many connected devices I would suggest that you purchase a router that has the ability to track data per device;
I have a Asus RT-AC3100 that does so:
There are Asus models that are less expensive than the 3100 that still offer the Traffic Analyzer function so be sure to read the specs carefully,
Newegg.com does offer full warranty factory refurbs at considerable discounts form time to time.
Tracking at the router level really is your best bet because it will pin-point usage by all of your devices even wireless network printers that can, depending on settings and permissions use a great deal of data on their own and are easily overlooked.
I suggest you carefully going through all of your computer and device settings to disable all "cloud" and "sync" functions. Backup services such as Carbonite are also a no-no as they too are cloud based.
Websites themselves are changing with the number of adds they load on your page thereby wasting data but many "auto-start" videos that you may not even see further down the page. Now with the introduction of HTML5 many sites are "preloading" video content.
To the browser related items above I suggest using Firefox as your browser and install the following extensions:
I want to use a satellite service, but the trade off of having to monitor and turn off/on is not worth it to me.That's just the reality of how the technology works. It's very different from anything else you may have used, and it requires involvement on the part of the user, frustrating as that may be.