"Ping used to be a very good indicator of a machines ability to
receive and send IP packets in general. If you could ping a host,
you could also make an ftp or http connection. With the wider
advent of packet filtering for security, this is becoming less
"There are several useful options to the ping command. ...
These options can be combined to make ping even more helpful.
One thing that you cannot see is that the ping command used in the
previous section is likely to take several seconds to run and
report back. Using the -f switch will reduce
the time spent waiting for the command. Combining this with the
-c 10 and the -q
switches will give you quick results and easier output to read...
Note: The -f and -l
switches can only be used by root, as they can cause serious
network degradation if misused."
"It might be of some benefit to test larger packets, using
ping -c10 -s 1024 -qf will send larger
packets for you. This can be especially useful where you suspect
problems with fragmented packets. To see the route that your
packets are traversing, you can use ping -c10
-R. ... Note: The record route option specified by the
-R switch is not honored by all routers and
hosts. Further, it contains only a limited space to hold router
addresses, traceroute may be a better tool for identifying the path
packets follow through a network."