There are only two options for your solution - you either have to monitor the network at some point where all the traffic flows (typically the router), or you have to install some agent on each device and aggregate the logs/reports from each machine.
There's nothing the server can do on its own since it doesn't see the vast majority of traffic (unless it was, as you say, acting as some kind of relay/router/proxy/etc.)
The AirPort Base Station doesn't have this facility built in, so a central monitoring point would require replacing your router - e.g. with the Linksys as you mention).
That leaves installing an agent on each machine to capture the data, and you've also found some of the options there.
Hi Kdoubt, I have been looking for this solution on and off for a while, I have 4 individuals all feeding off the same router (Airport Extreme), Camelot is correct, the only solution that makes sence to me is to obtain the information from the router that is connected to the Internet.
To do that I beleieve a program could pole the router using the the SNMP protocall, this would have the potential to return the MAC address associated with the data and log it onto your computer. Once you have the MAC address of all the users it would be an easy matter to review the date per machine.
This type of feature is in hot demand, it surprises me that it is not available, or at least I am unable to find it. So the question is, does anyone know of a program that could poll the router (Airport Extreme) and obtain the MAC address associated with the data usage on an individual port (WAN)?
does anyone know of a program that could poll the router (Airport Extreme) and obtain the MAC address associated with the data usage on an individual port (WAN)?
Quite simply, there isn't one. the AirPort Extreme (like most 'consumer' routers) simply doesn't track this data.
The overhead of the CPU time required to calculate all the data flows, as well as the memory to store the data, and the management interface to report it is just more than these boxes can do for $50-$100.
These features are more common on enterprise routers (typically via the sflow protocol), which cost an order of magnitude more.