Think you smash your NBN connection? Try this guy, with 26TB downloaded in one month

One of the great things about having a fast Internet connection is that you can download more stuff. Whether it’s faster Playstation updates, streaming your favourite movies and TV shows, or .. um .. downloading some Linux ISOs .. a fast NBN connection can meet your needs.

It’s not uncommon to see plans with 500GB (or Unlimited) included data, which is a huge change from a couple of years ago where plans with 20-50GB weren’t uncommon.

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However, some people are taking it to extremes. This week, IT News reported (via Alex Walker at Kotaku) that one NBN customer managed to download 26,807GB of data in June this year. That’s 26.8 terabytes of data, which is absolutely phenomenal.

I’m not sure about you, but in my place, we struggle to get through 300-400GB a month, and a lot of that is streaming videos watched by the family and YouTube by the kids. We don’t download that many Linux ISOs or gaming updates these days.

To understand just how much data 26 TB actually is, you could download the entire collection of Spotify music within that allowance, or hundreds of games off a service like Steam.

This particular user managed to achieve this feat on a residential NBN connection, and doing the math, that means almost certainly a 100 / 40 Mbps connection, and assuming an average round-the-clock speed of about 90 Mbps, that connection was running 24/7 for a month to reach the 26 TB figure.

About the only way I can think of to be able to consistently download at such speed – given popular data sources get swamped in early evenings – is using Bittorrent, which means that this user has almost certainly drawn attention to themselves they probably neither want nor need.

How much NBN data do you use each month? I bet it’s not 26 TB!

Chris Rowland: @ozcjr Chris has been at the forefront of smartphone reporting in Australia since smartphones were a thing, and has used mobile phones since they came with giant lead-acid batteries that were "transportable" and were carried in a shoulder bag. Today, Chris publishes one of Australia's most popular technology websites, Ausdroid. His interests include mobile (of course), as well as connected technology and how it can make all our lives easier.

View Comments (13)

  • That’s impossible because all broadband providers would of been alerted at 1tb and throttled it for it to be even half achievable you would have to have numerous devices connected and have them all downloading virtually 24/7 then with so many devices downloading it would slow down depending on your services i.e super fiber or just fibre unlimited because you sure as shit won’t be able to get it on a normal broadband connection and as someone else said above they were probably downloading torrents which use silly amounts of GB for movies example I’ve seen some torrents for movies at 40gb or more for a HD 1080p link when you get the average movie between 1-4gb on normal download links not torrents so then again I’ve seen whole collections of game ROMs or movies at 1tb or so that’s for a huge collection of whatever

  • 26 TB is a lot, and also not possible on NBN’s fastest plans. The 100/40 option is 100 megabits, not megabytes, per second, and to utilise every single megabit is next to impossible. An example: a school is empty and its internet has a 1 gbps port; but the highest download speed Steam will go to (unlimited, not throttled) is 38 MB/s. And mind you; thats a 1 gigabit port. A tenth of that is 3.8 MB/s, and thats the same speed I get on 25/10.

    I bet it’ll be double that speed so I’ll give it the benefit of the doubt here, so 7.6 MB/s.

    7.6 MB every second, which means 456 MB every minute (which i won’t believe), which means 27.4 GB every hour, 656.6 GB every day.

    656.6 x 30 (one contract period/month) = 19,698, or 19,698 GB, or 19.7 TB.

    And that’s leaving a 20 TB download on for 30 days straight, without any breaks, periods, gaps, nothing, which is simply next to impossible to do as your connection, being NBN, will have to throttle or crash eventually.

    Another question: If it’s a single person, how the fuck do they have 26 TB of storage? The highest HDD available to the public is 12 TB, the largest iPhone is 960 GB, and the largest console sizes are 2 TB…. how?

    • I reckon theoretically it's possible. Our connection will, if downloading torrent data like Linux ISOs, cruise at 11MBps. That should be able to reach 26TB a month. Just. But yes we'd well run out of storage much earlier than the month being up.

  • I just moved to NBN this month, I would regularly hit 27-30tb a month on my previous connection, it's pretty easy once you start connecting your home data to GCP or AWS for work reasons. This data is based on home plans but doesn't preclude people using home plans for work purposes.

    I guess I'll be taking his crown soon 😅

  • Anyone else think this “news” story iOS a convenient plant right on the heels of the government insistence that NBN isn’t shit and the non-NBN tax they are introducing.

  • This is the classic example of why unlimited data plans are bad news for the average consumer. Contrary to popular opinion that data does cost money to supply and that cost is shared across all consumers.

    • I dunno, mine hovers consistently around 89 Mbps. I reckon it could, but I have no idea what the hell I'd download that was 26TB, apart from "every movie ever recorded".

  • I was semi surprised this month with 2 days to go I am already sitting on 1.2TB on an average ADSL2+ connection but that is still a long way off 26+TB. Assuming my usage scaled when I get my 100/40 connection I will still be only half what this guy has done.

  • I just checked my NBN usage and this month (3 days to go this cycle), we have used 1068.42GB. (2 teenagers, me in my 20s and my parents, plus my two grandparents who live across the street as we beam our internet over using two Ubiquiti Nanostations. NBN 100/40 on Aussie Broadband.

      • Yeah, it works great. Means they don't have to pay for internet, also their side of the street didn't have NBN yet. HFC has been more reliable on NBN than it was through Telstra.