Testing Site Connection with the Ping Command

If your browser will not open a website you can use the following test to check your computers ability to receive a response from the website's server.

Please note, this test is NOT conclusive. Many sites block ICMP (ping) requests, which can give a false negative to your ping test. If you do receive a reply to your ping it confirms reply from the server you are checking.

Windows Environment

Ping can be accessed at a DOS or command prompt. An Internet connection must already be established.

Windows 8 & 8.1

-- Swipe up for Apps screen. Or, with a mouse, click on the down arrow icon at the bottom of the screen.

Note: Prior to the Windows 8.1 update, the Apps screen can be accessed from the Start screen by swiping up from the bottom of the screen, or right-clicking anywhere, and choose All apps.

-- On the Apps screen, swipe or scroll to the right and find the Windows System section.
-- Under Windows System, click on Command Prompt.

Windows 7

-- Click on Start > In the search box, type "command". Click on Command Prompt in the search results listing.

Windows Vista

-- Click on Start > All Programs > Accessories > Command Prompt.
OR: Click Start > In the Search box, type "Command Prompt", then double-click Command Prompt.

Windows 95 thru XP

- - Click on Start > Programs > DOS Prompt (Windows 95-98) or Command Prompt (NT). In a Windows 2000 or XP environment, click on Start > Run. Type command into the dialog box, then click OK.

In the resulting command line window, type ping hostname, (Hostname can be a domain name, a machine name or an IP address.)

- - Press Enter.  (ie. C:\> ping google.com)

Mac Environment

- - Double-click on the Hard Drive icon > Applications folder > Utilities folder > Network Utility program

- - Select the Ping tab and enter the hostname, where hostname can be a domain name, a machine name or an IP address.

- - Press Enter.

Linux/UNIX Environment

- - Launch a command line interface (will vary depending on operating system distribution).

- - In the resulting command line window or screen, type ping hostname, (Hostname can be a domain name, a machine name or an IP address.)

- - Press Enter.

Additional Ping Commands

These extra commands will work in any environment except the Novell operating system.

- - To stop ping, type Ctrl-C.

- - To print the results of ping to a text file on a local drive, add > textname.txt to the command:
(ie. Ping www.yahoo.com > ping.txt will save the results to a ping.txt file located on the primary hard drive.

- - To append the results of more than one ping to the same text file on your local drive add >> ping.txt to the command:
(ie. Ping www.yahoo.com >> ping.txt will save the results to the same ping.txt file located on the primary hard drive.)

The following commands can be entered in the same way.

Pings the specified computer until interrupted.
(ie. C:\> ping www.google.com -t)

-n count
Sends the number of echo packets specified by count. The default is 4.
(ie. C:\> ping www.google.com -n 7)

-l length
Sends Echo packets containing the amount of data specified by length. The default is 32 bytes; the maximum is 8192.
(ie. C:\> ping www.apple.com -l 1024)

Sending larger packets may reveal network problems (dropped packets, slowness) that may not be apparent when smaller packets are utilized.

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