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post #1 of 1 (permalink) Old 09-04-2015, 04:18 AM Thread Starter
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Lightbulb tracert and Google are your best friends

There is a command in Windows called tracert that shows not only the latency to each hop an packet takes, but the IP address and FQDN of those hops.

To use this command it is tracert <ip address>

example:

C:\>tracert 8.8.8.8

The first hop will be your home router, then bounce around in your ISP a bit (you can tell by the FQDNs), then go to some other networks until you get to your destination. Not all routers are configured to respond to ICMP Echo (better known as ping) as a security measure.

The 8.8.8.8 is Google's public DNS server, which not only does respond to ICMP Echo, but has a big, fat, nice pipe connecting it to the Internet, and a very easy to remember IP address. The command does work with URLs as well, but an IP address allows you to check for layer 3 connectivity to a network outside your ISP when you can't get DNS to work.

The reason why this should be the first thing you check is because it checks layer 1 (is it plugged in?) and layer 2 (MAC addresses, CAM tables, VLANs, etc.) as well as layer 3 (DHCP, IP addressing, etc.). at the same time, because if layers 1 or 2 are not working, then layer 3 CANNOT work (there is no physical connection or no physical address to map a logical address to). So if you get a response, then you don't need to bust out the flashlight and look to see if the cable is plugged in, the router is turned on, etc.

Last edited by Elsydeon; 09-04-2015 at 04:23 AM. Reason: added why layer 3 first
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