NetMaster
Online User Manual

Getting started

As an Internet connection monitoring tool, NetMaster lets you watch the apps using your Internet in real-time and control their access. Their activity is recorded and certain apps can be prioritised, restricted or blocked from Internet access per your choice. This manual describes common usage scenarios and the benefits they provide.

NetMaster consists of two major components: the System Service that does all the monitoring work, and the Management Console that enables you to interact with the service. During the installation you can choose which components to install, and normally you would need both to get started. Additionally, the Taskbar Extension will let you have a small widget in the notification area to keep an eye on your downloads and uploads.

Choosing components in NetMaster installer
NetMaster installer

After installing and launching NetMaster, the main window will appear — this is where you can see the activity of your applications in real-time and choose what to do with them:

NetMaster main window
NetMaster main window

If you just want to know the Internet usage of each application, you don't need to do anything else. Read on to find out what else NetMaster can do for you.

Prioritising important applications

All applications on your computer have to compete for bandwidth. This is normal, but some applications are bandwidth-sensitive and ping-sensitive, meaning they need the connection to be fast in terms of speed and latency. Examples of such applications include VoIP, games and collaboration suites.

This is where prioritisation is very useful: you can assign a higher priority to important applications, and their data will be sent and received ahead of any other applications. This improves latency, also known as ping time. When a higher priority application is active, any lower priority applications will have reduced bandwidth available to them. This improves bandwidth available to important applications, also known as speed. For example, you could assign a higher priority to Skype or your favourite game, and they should perform better than when they have to compete with other applications.

Likewise, you can deprioritise unimportant applications by assigning them a lower priority. In this case, their data will be sent and received behind any other applications, with effects opposite to prioritisation. For example, you could assign a lower priority to cloud backup programs or Torrent downloading applications. They will still run at full speed until a higher priority application becomes active, in which case the low priority activity will be throttled until more important applications are no longer active.

Priorities are fully automatic and you don't need to know any specific numbers. Simply assign a higher priority to important applications or a lower priority to unimportant applications, and NetMaster will do the rest.

Setting a priority for an application
Setting a priority for an application

Download and upload limits

Unlike relative prioritisation, bandwidth limits are exact and serve as data transfer caps for applications. This can be useful for less important applications that you want to prevent from occupying your entire connection.

You can set a hard limit, for example 100 KB/s, on a downloading program and its download speed will stay under this limit. In the example below we set a limit to Firefox, so that its downloads are capped, while uploads are not:

Setting a bandwidth limit
Setting a bandwidth limit

Download and upload delay

It is possible to artificially increase latency for an application. This is mainly useful in online games, as some games give you advantage if your latency or ping time is high. If you play games a lot, you probably know that and will try this feature:

Setting latency/delay
Adding latency/delay

Blocking unwanted applications

NetMaster acts as a simple firewall allowing you to block access to the Internet for certain applications. If an application doesn't or shouldn't require Internet connection, or you don't want it to “phone home”, you can easily block it. This will save bandwidth and give you better privacy and security by preventing blocked applications from sending and receiving data from the Internet.

Usage reports over a time period

NetMaster collects per-application usage statistics and lets you see how much data was used by each app over a specified period of time. The usage figures are recorded on a per-hour basis, allowing you to see how much data an application used and when it did that:

Usage reports window
Usage reports

Managing multiple computers

If you have more than one Windows PC, you may want to record usage and manage applications on all of them. NetMaster components make this easy to do: you could install the System Service on all the computers you want to manage, and install the Management Console on the computer you want to manage from. Then you can connect from the Management Console to the System Service on those PCs and manage them as if you were sitting in front of them. This setup can be used to manage the computers of other family members, such as cutting off kids Internet when it's bedtime.

So...

We have designed NetMaster to be a simple yet powerful tool that would let you take control over your applications and keep a close eye on their online behaviour. With the features described above, you should be able to use your Internet traffic more efficiently, improve your security, get better privacy, and become the master of your Internet connection! :)

End User Licence Agreement (EULA)

This software and the included documentation is copyright SoftPerfect Pty Ltd. All rights are reserved. The software may be used, installed or copied only in accordance with the terms of the licence described in the following paragraphs.

DISTRIBUTION TERMS

The evaluation version of the software may be freely distributed, provided that the original distribution package is not modified in any way.

EVALUATION VERSION

This is not free software. You are hereby licensed to use this software for evaluation purposes without charge. The evaluation version may be of a limited duration, or have some features limited or disabled. To use the software without these restrictions, you need to purchase a licence.

GRANT OF LICENCE

The software is licensed, not sold. Upon purchase of a licence, SoftPerfect grants you non-exclusive, non-transferable right to use the software and all its features according to the terms of this EULA and the purchased licence type as described in the Licence Types section.

LICENCE TYPES

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Where applicable, additional licence subtypes include:

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DISTRIBUTION OF LICENCE KEYS

Except for the specific purposes described in the Grant of Licence and the Licence Types sections, licence keys issued by SoftPerfect may not be distributed by any person, organisation or their agents without written permission from the copyright holder.

DISCLAIMER

THIS SOFTWARE IS DISTRIBUTED “AS IS”. NO WARRANTY OF ANY KIND IS EXPRESSED OR IMPLIED. YOU USE IT AT YOUR OWN RISK. IN NO EVENT SHALL SOFTPERFECT OR ITS AGENTS BE LIABLE FOR ANY LOSS OR INACCURACY OF DATA, LOSS OR INTERRUPTION OF USE, OR COST OF PROCURING SUBSTITUTE TECHNOLOGY, GOODS OR SERVICES, OR ANY OTHER LOSS OR DAMAGES.

MODIFICATIONS

Unauthorised modification, decompilation or reverse engineering of the software or any subset of the software without written permission from the copyright holder is strictly prohibited.

TERMS OF ACCEPTANCE

Installation or use of this software signifies your acceptance of the terms and conditions of the licence. If you do not agree with them, you must stop using and remove the software from your devices. SoftPerfect reserves all rights not expressly granted here.

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