Ping is a network utility that is available on virtually all network enabled devices such as switches, routers, access points, mobile phones, PCs, tablets, firewalls, and others. Ping is primarily used to test the reachability of a host on an IP network. Ping uses ICMP packets, and sends out an ICMP echo request to the target host, and waits for an echo reply.

Ping tests reachability and also measures the round-trip time for messages sent from the originating host to a destination computer that are echoed back to the source. The following is an example of the output from a ping command on a Cisco IOS device:

R1#ping Type escape sequence to abort. Sending 5, 100-byte ICMP Echos to, timeout is 2 seconds: !!!!! Success rate is 100 percent (5/5), round-trip min/avg/max = 1/1/2 ms R1#

The following is the output of a ping command issued on the command prompt of a Windows computer:

C:\Users\user>ping Pinging with 32 bytes of data: Reply from bytes=32 time=182ms TTL=57 Reply from bytes=32 time=264ms TTL=57 Reply from bytes=32 time=187ms TTL=57 Reply from bytes=32 time=172ms TTL=57 Ping statistics for Packets: Sent = 4, Received = 4, Lost = 0 (0% loss), Approximate round trip times in milli-seconds: Minimum = 172ms, Maximum = 264ms, Average = 201ms C:\Users\user>