Many users are familiar with the concept of network ping. Especially those who like online games. If you are having connection problems, the most reliable way to check it is to use the "ping" command. But not everyone can answer what a ping really is. In simple words, it is a measure of the time it takes for a network request to get from user to server and back.
Therefore, in most situations, a high ping means a problem with the quality of access to a certain Internet resource due to problems with one of the intermediate network nodes or connections between them. Or due to excessive distance between them. And it is important not to confuse the ping request and the ICMP protocol, which determines the integrity and quality of communication, with TCP and UDP protocols, which determine the speed of data transmission.
Why to ping an IP address
At its core, Ping is an ICMP (Internet Control Message Protocol) request containing a data packet. As discussed above, web ping is measured in terms of the time it takes for a request from a user device to reach the server and return. Sometimes this indicator is not displayed in network-related applications. So in case of problems with a particular website, you must manually complete the IP ping test by sending this request via specific software. But in most cases, this request is sent automatically by the network related application.
In fact, in this case, the word Ping means a program in the operating system. With this web pinger, every user can send data to any of the site or IP address and calculate how long it will take them to return back. The same command via OS software (command prompt) can also be used as a way to test the overall quality of the Internet connection. That is, to ping test internet nodes and connections closest to the user for anomalies and delays in sending and returning a data packet.
Accordingly, if you make a request to a ping test server, ideally one that does not belong to your ISP, you can perform a basic level test. It is enough to run the string "ping" from the Windows command line or Linux and MacOS terminal with the website address or IP. If it is successful and takes a minimum of time, then everything is relatively okay with the network. But if there are delays in pinging an IP address or there is no indication of data packet return time - it is better to check the command on another website. And then start worrying.
How ping test IP works
Standard internet ping test tool, which can be used under Windows, Linux or MacOS, works in a relatively simple way. It sends ICMP Echo-Request to the specified host and captures incoming responses ICMP Echo-Reply. And the usual package is 64 bytes long (with an addition of 20 bytes of IP header). An IP ping tool utilizes RFC 791 IPv4 standard that states that total packet size cannot exceed 65,535 bytes.
The time between my ping test sending request packets and receiving a response (RTT, Round Trip Time) allows you to determine two-way delays on the route and the frequency of packet loss.
With this utility, if you have a router, you also can try to answer a question like “ping my IP address” and make a direct request to the home router. On top of it, with this utility or by using ping IP online on advanced services like HostTracker online monitoring platform, you can:
- Find out the IP address from the domain name. It is possible due to DNS server query (DNS lookup) in the beginning of a test.
- Check if the pinged server is working. For example, the system administrator can find out if only the web server is hung up or if there are problems with the host.
- Find out if there is a connection to the pinged server.
- Test quality of the network channel by looking at how many responses did not come.
Also take note that a complete absence of ICMP responses may mean that the remote host or any of the intermediate network nodes is blocking ICMP Echo-Reply or ignoring ICMP Echo-Request. Both situations are visible due to the lost Ping response. Of course, this excludes situations like ping my IP requests to the home-based router.
How to test ping
If you are curious about how to ping an IP, it is relatively easy. Running a Ping test in Windows is relatively easy, regardless of version. Just open the Command Prompt or PowerShell and enter the appropriate command. Like Windows, Mac and Linux use the Terminal. And, for example, the command "ping google.com" will send an ICMP request to google.com.
After initiating the test, your computer will send a test data packet to the target host. Your computer will send four pings to make sure that the test is up to date. Then you will see the check results and IP address of the site. To confirm the result, be sure to repeat pinging, replacing the website with the same IP address to ping it a couple more times.
To test server or website connection speed without using your own web-address, you need to use online services. One of the most accurate among these services is latency test website checker at HostTracker, an online website monitoring platform. You can also do it on a permanent basis after registering the connection of the automatic monitoring system.
Also, a tool to test ping speed sends ICMP packets from a location or locations from any of 140+ access points around the world. Which allows you to find out if a web resource has problems with access from any region of the world. As for how to ping website with HostTracker, it's simple.
To run the test, you need to go to the web service website and then enter the online ping utility section. There you need to enter the website or IP address in the command line. After that, it remains to select the country from the access point in which the request will be sent. You can also conduct a full-scale test from all countries available to the service. And you will get results from all regions where there are HostTracker access points.
After the ping test sequence, you will receive the same data as when running a website ping test through the Command Prompt utilities in Windows or the Terminal in MacOS and Linux. But they will be provided taking the specified region into account.
Why it is important to Ping an IP
As described in detail above, Ping is used to troubleshoot connection problems. It is most often used to check the connection to a certain web resource. So it is important to know how to do a ping test and analyze it.
If you are having problems with a website hosted on a server, one of the first steps is to check the connection with a series of ping commands to help you search for the problem. If ping comes back with a fast response time, your connection is good. So the problem is probably in the server or the application.
So, for example, if you take care of website monitoring, you need to have a website ping tester that works round the clock without stopping. At least as a basic method to ensure a basic networking accessibility. And the aforementioned IP pinger online service at HostTracker will be the best choice by all means.