Using the Ping Command

Using the Ping Command

Every device that sends messages across the Internet must have an Internet Protocol (IP) address to identify it to the other devices in the network. IP addresses are assigned by network administrators. When a new device is added to a network, or if an existing device is having problems, it may be necessary to test the network to determine if the IP address assigned to the device can be reached by other devices on the network.

Using the Ping Command

Using the Ping Command

The ping utility tests end-to-end connectivity between the IP address of the source of the message and the IP address of its destination. It measures the time that it takes test messages to make a round trip from the source to the destination and whether or not the transmission is successful. However, if the message does not reach the destination, or if delays are encountered along the way, there is no way to determine where the problem is located.

The format of the ping command is universally implemented. Almost all network attached devices provide a way to perform a ping test. The format of the ping command is ping xxx, where xxx is an IP address or domain name:

ping

For example, ping 192.168.30.1.

Following the Path

The Internet is not really a place, it is the interconnection of many different networks that provide services to the users. We can see this connectivity by using a network utility call traceroute.

As shown in the figure, the traceroute utility traces the route a message takes from its source to the destination. Each individual network through which the message travels is referred to as a hop. Traceroute displays each hop along the way and the time it takes for the message to get to that network and back.

If a problem occurs, use the output of the traceroute utility to help determine where a message was lost or delayed. The traceroute utility is called tracert in the Windows environment.

Ever Wonder How it Works?

This chapter began by discussing how we communicate in a connected world. It explained what a network is and who owns the Internet. It covered what data is and how it is transmitted on a network. The speed at which data is transmitted on a network is measured in bandwidth and throughput.

All computers connected to a network that participate directly in network communication are classified as hosts. The network infrastructure contains three categories of hardware components:

  • Intermediate devices
  • End devices
  • Network media

In small businesses and homes, many computers function as the servers and clients on the network. This type of network is called a peer-to-peer network. Every device that sends messages across the Internet must have an Internet Protocol (IP) address to identify it to the other devices in the network. The ping command lets a network administrator test end-to-end connectivity between the IP address of the source of the message and the IP address of its destination. The traceroute command lets a network administrator trace the route a message takes from its source to the destination. Each individual network through which the message travels is referred to as a hop. Traceroute displays each hop along the way and the time it takes for the message to get to that network and back.

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