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Ping – What is Ping?

What is Ping?

Ping is a command-line application that checks if a networked device is accessible and is available on practically any operating system with network connectivity.  It delivers a request to a particular device via the network.  The machine pinged back to the original computer and responded to a successful ping.

Ping “Packet Internet Groper” is a technique for determining latency or the time it takes for data to transit between two devices or across a network.  Communication effectiveness increases as communication delays are reduced.

What are the Functions of Ping?

A Ping is a signal delivered to a host and asks for a response.  It has two main functions: 

  1. Checking if the host is available
  2. Measuring the response time

The Ping command, a typical command in most command-line interfaces, can send a ping request. Ping is a function in some network programs that allows you to ping a server by inputting the IP address or domain name.  Most ping programs send many pings and then calculate the average of the pings.

The ping comprises a single packet usually 32 or 56 bytes containing an “echo” request.  If the host is available, it replies with a single packet.  The ping time is the time it takes for a packet to contact the server and for the response to return to the client, measured in milliseconds.

You can learn more about pings at Mailboxlayer’s documentation portal. 

One of the most often used command-line interfaces is the PING function. PING is made up of a single packet that contains an echo request. The host answers with a single packet if it is accessible.  PING time is measured in milliseconds, which corresponds to the time it takes for the packet to contact the host and for the response to return to the sender.

PING also employs the Internet Control Message Protocol (ICMP). By reporting an error, ICMP substitutes for gaps in the IP protocol.  The system requires this because the IP protocol lacks an error reporting mechanism.  This reports issues and expects the OSI architectural model’s upper layers to handle and rectify them.  PING application operates similarly to a sonar echo-location system.  It transmits tiny packets of data containing an ICMP ECHO REQUEST to a designated computer and then receives an ECHO REPLY.

Why Do We Need Ping?

A Ping is a tool for troubleshooting connectivity issues.  It’s most typically used to check if two machines are connected.  For example, Ping can test a network printer or copier connection to see if it’s online or to make sure you can connect to a router. 

If you’re having problems with an application on a server hosted over a network, you should check the connection with a series of ping statements to pinpoint the problem.  If a ping returns fast response times, your connection is fine, and the issue is most likely with the server or application.

A ping will react to almost any network-connected device, making it extremely useful for checking networking connections.  Ping can be used to test the throughput and performance of routers and servers.  You may also use ping to find each associated device in a certain range of addresses. You can run tests on computer names and locations.  There’s a name resolution problem if you can ping an IP address but not a hostname.

If a ping shows a successful connection but takes a long time to respond, you’re most likely dealing with a routing, traffic, or networking issue.

A ping command can be used to monitor the network’s reliability manually or as a scheduled procedure.  There’s a problem when a ping fails.

How to Use a Ping?

The Ping program employs the Internet Control Message Protocol (ICMP), which is an essential feature of any IP network, to send echo requests and echo reply messages.  An echo-request packet is sent to the designated location when a ping command is executed.  The remote host replies with an echo reply packet when it receives the echo request.

The ping command sends numerous echo queries by default, usually four or five. Each echo request’s result is presented, including whether the request was successful, how many bytes were returned in response, the Time to Live (TTL), and how long it took to obtain the response, as well as data on packet loss and round trip timings.

Are you curious about how to use ping? Mailboxlayer can help! 

Using a Ping 

The instructions for doing a ping network test vary depending on the operating system.

In Windows 10, go to the taskbar and type:

  • To open the Command Prompt, type “cmd.”
  • Open a Command Prompt window
  • Type “ping” and press the spacebar in the black box
  • Ping the IP address you want to ping (e.g., XX.XXX.X.X)
  • Examine the ping results that have been displayed

On a Mac, repeat the process by launching Network Utility and entering the hostname or Internet connection to ping.

Open Terminal if you’re using Linux.  Use the traceroute command to examine the many IP addresses through which your request travels.  To do so, simply follow these steps:

  1. Open the Terminal application
  2. To trace an IP address or URL, type “traceroute” accompanied by the IP or URL you want to trace
  3. Press Enter to see the results

What About Enterprise Usage Of Ping?

Ping software is used in network management toolkits to give a comprehensive network performance assessment and management features.  This software uses Ping data to evaluate device availability, track latency, and assess overall network health.  Performing ping sweeps regularly has a number of advantages. 

Pinging provides IT professionals with information about the health of their network, including the accessibility of all endpoints, network request latency rates, data packet loss percentages, and more.

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