FAQWhat is a Ping and what does it do?


'Ping' (actually its full name is 'ICMP Echo request') is a simple command that may be issued from the DOS Command Prompt (Start/Programs/Command Prompt). Ping tells you if you can contact an IP address. Basically it sends a small message to another computer which causes the receiver to echo back the same message (the message pings forward and back). Ping is the simplest and most useful diagnostic tool to become familiar with and well worth spending a few minutes experimentation. To use Ping 

  1. Run a command prompt (sometimes called a 'DOS box') (Start/Programs/Command Prompt)
  2. Type ping xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx (where xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx is the IP address that you want to check) followed by ENTER. You can also use a URL with a ping e.g. 'ping www.hyperlink.co.za but this means the DNS service must be working.
  3. If the ping works (you have successfully sent a message to the remote computer and received a response) you should get up to 4 replies  of the form

Reply from xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx: bytes=32 time=yyms TTL=zz

Were xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx is the IP address that is responding, yyms is the time (yy) in milliseconds (ms) that the ping took and zz can be used to calculate the number of routers that it passed through on its journey.

  1. If the Ping failed you will see a message like:

Request timed out

Host unreachable

Network unreachable

Or something similar which indicates a fault somewhere in the network.


Date Created: 2010-10-15 01:53:21

Date Modified: 2010-10-15 08:55:25


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