Knowledgebase: Troubleshooting
Understanding your tracert
Posted by - NA - on 03 April 2012 09:04 AM
Understanding your tracert

If you are having issues connecting to your site, CP, sitezadmin, or wp-admin, we may ask you to run a 'tracert' (otherwise known as a 'traceroute), to help us determine what the root cause of your inability to connect may be. 

A tracert is a program accessed via your Command Prompt, that traces the "path" from your computer, to the server your site is hosted on, including all routers the connection must pass through to connect. 

PRIOR to running your tracert, we will ask you to flush your DNS as well. This page explains the importance of flushing your DNS, and provides instructions for many different platforms and browsers: http://www.tech-faq.com/how-to-flush-dns.html

TRACERT SAMPLES:

A CLEAR tracert result will look like this:


----------------CLEAR SAMPLE---------------

Microsoft Windows [Version 6.1.7600]
Copyright (c) 2009 Microsoft Corporation.  All rights reserved.

C:\Users\portfoliositez>tracert portfoliositez.com

Tracing route to portfoliositez.com [98.564.875.12]
over a maximum of 30 hops:

  1     1 ms     1 ms     1 ms  router.belkin [123.168.2.9]
  2    27 ms    31 ms    73 ms  c-67-154-150-1.hsd1.co.comcast.net [12.167.198.1]
  3    10 ms    21 ms    11 ms  te-9-4-ur01.englewood.co.denver.comcast.net [12.34.567.890]
  4    85 ms     9 ms     9 ms  te-8-4-ur02.englewood.co.denver.comcast.net [68.86.103.114]
  5    18 ms    20 ms    11 ms  te-0-0-0-4-ar02.aurora.co.denver.comcast.net [98.23.103.45]
  6    12 ms    14 ms    11 ms  pos-2-3-0-0-cr01.denver.co.ibone.comcast.net [68.86.91.1]
  7    27 ms    28 ms    28 ms  pos-2-11-0-0-cr01.dallas.tx.ibone.comcast.net [68.86.87.30]
  8    29 ms    27 ms    29 ms  pos-0-1-0-0-pe01.1950stemmons.tx.ibone.comcast.net [68.86.86.94]
  9    28 ms    38 ms    26 ms  theplanet-cr01.dallas.tx.ibone.comcast.net [75.102.228.2]
 10    32 ms    34 ms    33 ms  et1-1.ibr01.hstntx2.theplanet.com [70.87.253.50]
 11    32 ms    35 ms    40 ms  et3-3.ibr01.hstntx1.theplanet.com [70.87.253.153]
 12    48 ms    33 ms    33 ms  te2-2.dsr01.hstntx1.223.218.207.in-addr.arpa [159.218.987.30]
 13    42 ms    33 ms    33 ms  po1.car06.hstntx1.theplanet.com [207.218.223.22]
 14    34 ms    33 ms    33 ms  75.125.148.173

Trace complete.

C:\Users\portfoliositez>
----------------CLEAR SAMPLE---------------

In this example, we can see that the connection to the server was completed within 14 'hops' (an intermediate connection in a string of connections linking two network devices. On the Internet, for example, most data packets need to go through several routers before they reach their final destination. Each time the packet is forwarded to the next router, a hop occurs. The more hops, the longer it takes for data to go from source to destination. You can see how many hops it takes to get to another Internet host by using the PING or traceroute utilities. Some Internet Service Providers (ISPs) advertise how many hops away from Internet backbone they are. Theoretically, the fewer hops it takes to get your data onto the backbone, the faster your access will be - http://www.webopedia.com/TERM/H/hop.html)


A problematic tracert may have results that look similar to this:

---------------PROBLEMATIC SAMPLE--------------

Microsoft Windows [Version 6.1.7600]
Copyright (c) 2009 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

C:\windows\system32>traceroute yourdomain.com
'traceroute' is not recognized as an internal or external command,
operable program or batch file.

C:\windows\system32>tracert yourdomain.com

Tracing route to yourdomain.com [74.55.17.250]
over a maximum of 30 hops:

1 1 ms <1 ms 5 ms 123.456.7.8
2 * * * Request timed out.
3 28 ms 27 ms 27 ms c-67-154-150-1.hsd1.co.comcast.net [12.167.198.1]
4 * * * Request timed out.
5 29 ms 28 ms 27 ms 99.168.141.18
6 30 ms 25 ms 29 ms 72.157.40.252
7 41 ms 38 ms 58 ms 12.85.41.52
8 40 ms 36 ms 38 ms 12.81.44.1
9 39 ms 36 ms 38 ms 12.81.104.178
10 37 ms 40 ms 36 ms 12.81.34.7
11 46 ms 48 ms 39 ms 12.81.13.61
12 39 ms 38 ms 39 ms 12.81.46.3
13 37 ms 39 ms 36 ms 12.81.56.8
14 40 ms 37 ms 37 ms 12.81.56.13
15 38 ms 41 ms 37 ms 65.83.238.186
16 52 ms 55 ms 54 ms cr2.rlgnc.ip.att.net [12.114.157.110]
17 64 ms 97 ms 50 ms cr1.scdre.ip.att.net [12.122.3.170]
18 53 ms 47 ms 114 ms abcdef12g.ip.att.net [12.122.220.245]
19 52 ms 105 ms 50 ms 192.205.32.30
20 * * * Request timed out.
21 113 ms 50 ms 48 ms ae11.bbr02.eq01.wdc02.networklayer.com [65.121.136.130]
22 48 ms 48 ms 51 ms ae7.bbr01.eq01.wdc02.networklayer.com [123.192.18.194]
23 47 ms 46 ms 106 ms ae0.bbr01.tl01.atl01.networklayer.com [123.192.18.153]
24 70 ms 66 ms 106 ms ae13.bbr02.eq01.dal03.networklayer.com [123.192.18.134]
25 76 ms 131 ms 71 ms ae5.bbr02.sr02.hou02.networklayer.com [123.192.18.221]
26 71 ms 70 ms 73 ms po32.dsr02.hstntx2.networklayer.com [123.192.18.239]
27 79 ms 76 ms 73 ms po15.dsr02.hstntx1.networklayer.com [70.87.253.118]
28 76 ms 72 ms 88 ms po2.car06.hstntx1.networklayer.com [154.218.245.22]
29 74 ms 74 ms 71 ms fa.11.374a.static.theplanet.com [74.11.17.250]

Trace complete.

C:\windows\system32>


---------------PROBLEMATIC SAMPLE--------------

The presence of the astrics (* * *) indicate a TIME OUT (your individual tracert may or may NOT actually say 'Request timed out.'). 

When the timeouts occur at the BEGINNING of the tracert results, they indicate a connectivity issue on the ORIGINATING END (at your computer, router, or modem).

When the timeouts occur at the END of the tracert results, they indicate an issue at the RECEIVING END, at the server. This could be an actual issue with the server, or, most often, and IP block. 


When your tracert indicates a timeout on YOUR END, we will first ask that you POWER CYCLE your equipment. 

Here are some steps:

1. Shut down your computer.
2. Unplug the power to your modem. This is the box from your cable or DSL provider.
3. Unplug the power to your VOIP phone adapter. If you don't have one skip this step.
4. Unplug the power to your router.
5. Wait 45 seconds.
6. Plug in your modem and wait for lights to stabilize on a specific pattern. (Usually takes about 1 minute)
7. Plug in your router and wait until the lights stabilize or the router has started up.(Usually takes about 30 seconds)
8. Plug in your VOIP phone adapter (if you have VOIP service) and wait until you have a dial tone on your phone again. If you don't have VOIP or know what VIOP is, skip this step.
9. Start your computer.
10. You have now completed a power cycle and you should be able to get back online.

After you have completed the power cycle, please also clear your cache and browsing history, and close & relaunch your browser.


When your tracert indicates a timeout on the SERVER END, we will first ask that you verify your IP address by visiting http://whatismyipaddress.com, and forward it to us, so that we can check for a block against it at the server.

If your IP address is NOT blocked, we will continue to troubleshoot, with the assistance of the server company if necessary, to find a solution to your issue.


If you would like to learn more, there is an excellent (non-Psitez) Traceroute tutorial available here: http://www.exit109.com/~jeremy/news/providers/traceroute.html


Please contact support@portfoliositez.com if you have additional questions or concerns about your tracert!
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