I have been testing DU-meter as a way to display the network traffic around my computer. It shows a nice little graph to present the network traffic in a very usable/understandable way like here:
This graph is updated in real-time which means that color bar allow you to recognize incoming or outgoing traffic, but this is continuously updated according to the real activity of your PC.
Despite the nice look of DU-meter, I was a bit annoyed by the fact that it is shareware and that the end of the trial period was arriving. Actually, I was able to find another program providing the same kind of services in a freeware package. The look is slightly different:
However, BitMeter2 have about the same set of features. Both are providing the same semi-transparent window (allowing to see the underlying windows through semi-transparency of the graph). The only thing that could be improved is the size of the BitMeter2 window that seems impossible to change (contrary to Du-Meter).
Anyway, both are recommended to gadget freaks: