Testing the computer-router connection

The ping command is a handy little utility in Windows, Mac and Linux based operating systems. This diagnostic utility sends a request (a signal, packets of data) to a specific target (router’s default IP address or website URL) and measures the number of replies versus the number of sent signals, and the time between the sending of the signal and the reply. Although quite simple, the ping utility is one of the tools mostly used in network troubleshooting.

One of the basic uses of this tool is to test the communication between the computer and the router and see if it functions properly.

Pinging the router IP address in Windows 7

1. Open up the Start menu in Windows 7 and type CMD in the Search Programs and Files field.

cmd

2. When the Command Prompt opens (read here how to open it in Windows 8), you should type ping and then the routers default IP address. For example, if you have a Linksys router the command should look like this:

 ping 192.168.1.1

 3. Press Enter on the keyboard.

4. After 4 packets of data being sent, the result window will appear.

ping-results

If you want to test the communication for a longer time use the Continuous ping command: ping 192.168.1.1 -t. This command sends unlimited number of signals until the user stops it.

If the communication between the computer and the router is functioning properly you will see the following:

Reply from 192.168.1.1: bytes=32 time=xx ms TTL=xx

The time and TTL values may vary because of different reasons that is why we have we added xx at their end.

However, if there is a problem in the communication you will receive a Request timed out message.

Why did I get Request timed out message?

The 2 main causes of the Request timed out message are:

• Wrong network configuration

– In this case it is good to check if the Network drivers are properly installed along with the TCP/IP

– Check if you have pinged the right router IP address, generally they start with 192.168.

• Bad physical connections

To check this, take a look at the LAN port. It should be ON. However, in case it is OFF do the following:

– Check if the Ethernet cable is firmly connected to the router and the computer.

– Check if the computer is turned ON

– Check if the lights on the computer’s Ethernet card are on.

Well, now you know how to test the connection between your PC and the router and whenever you experience some problems it is worth trying the ping command.

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