PathPing

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It's 8:30 Monday morning and you are getting calls from the other

support teams at your company telling you that they are having troubles

connecting to a server in one of your remote data centers. They inform

you that when they connect, things are extremely slow. You ping the

server, and for the most part, everything seems okay - though it does

seem a little sluggish. Is it the server or the network? If it is the

network, where is the problem? It would be nice to have a utility to

help in this situation. Luckily for you, Windows XP and Microsoft have

come to the rescue with a new utility called PathPing.

PathPing is a simple utility that allows you to do a combination ping

and tracert, and which builds a group of useful statistics for

troubleshooting where a network problem may occur. By typing the

command, "pathping -n serverName", PathPing will return a useful set of

information to help you troubleshoot.

For starters, PathPing gives you a quick list of the IP addresses of all

of the routers between the machine running PathPing and the server in

question. Next, it performs a series of pings to each router in the list

and builds a set of statistics telling you the performance of the link

(see Figure 1).

Figure 1 - PathPing statistics output

http://www.itworld.com/image_download/pathping.html

As you can see from this sample output, 33 percent of the packets are

being lost between 172.80.8.110 and 192.168.207.1. This is probably the

source of the problem. The next step would be to contact your network

team to look at the two routers in question.

PathPing is definitely a utility you want to add to your troubleshooting

toolbox.

See you next week!

Bryan

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