Karsten Solheim’s first putter, the "1A," was manufactured in Redwood City, California in 1959. It appeared in Sports Illustrated in August of that year. He named his putter for the musical sound it made when it struck the ball. The name stuck, and he started manufacturing and selling the Ping 1A putter out of his garage.

In January of 1967, Solheim resigned from his position at General Electric to make golf clubs full time. Ping now makes a full range of irons and woods, but it was the putter which made Mr. Solheim a golf legend.

When your connection attempts to a remote machine fail with time-outs, "host unreachable" and "network unreachable" errors, you can check the connection between your local machine and the remote with the ping command.

The ping command sends an ICMP Echo Request message (ICMP stands for Internet Control Message Protocol). This message asks the remote machine to send an echo reply that includes the sent message data. If the remote machine's networking software is functional, it will reply.

How to use ping:


> Ping www.everything2.com 100 10
PING www.everything2.com: 100 byte packets
100 bytes from icmp_seq=0 time=63ms
100 bytes from icmp_seq=1 time=109ms
100 bytes from icmp_seq=2 time=140ms
100 bytes from icmp_seq=3 time=47ms 
100 bytes from icmp_seq=4 time=78ms 
100 bytes from icmp_seq=5 time=141ms
100 bytes from icmp_seq=6 time=32ms 
100 bytes from icmp_seq=7 time=63ms 
100 bytes from icmp_seq=8 time=140ms
100 bytes from icmp_seq=9 time=32ms 

www.everything2.com PING statistics--
10 packets transmitted, 10 ackets received, 0% packet loss
round-trip (ms) min/av/max = 14/72/140

Windows NT:

C:> ping www.everything2.com
Reply from bytes=32 time=63ms TTL=241
Reply from bytes=32 time=109ms TTL=241
Reply from bytes=32 time=140ms TTL=241
Reply from bytes=32 time=47ms TTL=241
Reply from bytes=32 time=78ms TTL=241
Reply from bytes=32 time=141ms TTL=241
Reply from bytes=32 time=32ms TTL=241
Reply from bytes=32 time=63ms TTL=241
Reply from bytes=32 time=140ms TTL=241
Reply from bytes=32 time=32ms TTL=241

  Notes: If your packet loss is high, the connection
         is not getting through somewhere along the

If you lost a connection, try the ping command. Usually, if you wait for a few minutes, the connection will re-establish. Run an occasional ping to see when the connection is available.

pilot error = P = Ping O' Death


[from the submariners' term for a sonar pulse] 1. n. Slang term for a small network message (ICMP ECHO) sent by a computer to check for the presence and alertness of another. The Unix command ping(8) can be used to do this manually (note that ping(8)'s author denies the widespread folk etymology that the name was ever intended as an acronym for `Packet INternet Groper'). Occasionally used as a phone greeting. See ACK, also ENQ. 2. vt. To verify the presence of. 3. vt. To get the attention of. 4. vt. To send a message to all members of a mailing list requesting an ACK (in order to verify that everybody's addresses are reachable). "We haven't heard much of anything from Geoff, but he did respond with an ACK both times I pinged jargon-friends." 5. n. A quantum packet of happiness. People who are very happy tend to exude pings; furthermore, one can intentionally create pings and aim them at a needy party (e.g., a depressed person). This sense of ping may appear as an exclamation; "Ping!" (I'm happy; I am emitting a quantum of happiness; I have been struck by a quantum of happiness). The form "pingfulness", which is used to describe people who exude pings, also occurs. (In the standard abuse of language, "pingfulness" can also be used as an exclamation, in which case it's a much stronger exclamation than just "ping"!). Oppose blargh.

The funniest use of `ping' to date was described in January 1991 by Steve Hayman on the Usenet group comp.sys.next. He was trying to isolate a faulty cable segment on a TCP/IP Ethernet hooked up to a NeXT machine, and got tired of having to run back to his console after each cabling tweak to see if the ping packets were getting through. So he used the sound-recording feature on the NeXT, then wrote a script that repeatedly invoked ping(8), listened for an echo, and played back the recording on each returned packet. Result? A program that caused the machine to repeat, over and over, "Ping ... ping ... ping ..." as long as the network was up. He turned the volume to maximum, ferreted through the building with one ear cocked, and found a faulty tee connector in no time.

--The Jargon File version 4.3.1, ed. ESR, autonoded by rescdsk.

One of the main characters in the webmanga Megatokyo, Ping is a prototype of Sony's Emotional Doll System (EDS). She is a robot girl, in the tradition of far too many manga and anime series, and is designed to work with a Playstation 2 to provide a physical representation of characters from ren'ai games (that is, dating simulations). She is a non-H model, however, so she cannot be used with H-games. The really spectacular feature of the EDS, however, is that her basic personality absorbs characteristics from all of the dating sim girls she represents, becoming over time a personalised mixture of ren'ai characters. Her model number is SEVS-44936, and she comes with a copy of Princess Maker. She only speaks Japanese, which causes frequent trouble with Largo, who only speaks English. Many other important system details are revealed in strip #274. She can eat and derive energy from food (#218), and she is incredibly strong, able to uproot lampposts (#141) and shove people through walls (#252). She uses this strength when she experiences rejection (#138). She can take care of people when they're ill and can connect to the Internet (#245). Both Dom and Ed are in Japan to find Ping, Dom to steal her for Sega, and Ed to return her to Sony (#191).

She was originally owned by Tsubasa, who invested in the EDS project (#106). However, she soon convinced him to go to America in search of his first true love (#128), and thus came into the possession of Piro and Largo, also causing the three of them to move out onto the street (#135). She ends up attending the high school Largo teaches at (#151), and befriending Miho Tohya. People have trouble seeing Ping as an actual person (#261), but Miho eventually comes to see her as a sort of being in her own right (#277) and takes her home with her (#298). When Miho and Ping end up at Anna Miller's, they witness a meeting between Piro and Kimiko (#360) and Ping realises the marginal role she's restricted to by her programming. Recently, she's been baited by Largo (#368) into attacking a rampaging giant turtle (#371). After being surprised by it (#376), she throws it through a building (#378).

ping -f

The question one may ask, is "Why would ping -f exist, if it can be used as a denial of service attack?"

Well, ping -f wasn't originally for ping-bombing someone's network to death - it was for testing. If you look at the ping manpage in a standard linux distribution, it states that it's for testing a network. From my experience, a small home network (3 or 4 computers) doesn't have much latency to it - 10 or 20 ms at most.

The "ping -f" command shows a number of dots - one for each hundred pings sent. If a ping is replied to a hundred times, the dot gets erased. This can be used to determine a network's health.

For instance, you're on computer "" - let's call this one "moonshade". Computer two is "luna" at *.2, and computer three is "minimoonshade" at *.3. You're on "moonshade", the server, and you send a flood-ping (ping -f) to luna. The dots only stack up slowly - one dot or so per second. By comparison, flood-pinging minimoonshade stacks up the dots almost immediately. This could be telling you one of a few things - either the cable going to minimoonshade is bad, the connectors are bad, the NIC on minimoonshade is bad, the switch connecting the network together has a problem, or possibly the NIC on moonshade is bad. It's a quick and dirty way to test the line from NIC to NIC. More testing, say from luna to minimoonshade or luna to moonshade may help narrow down the problem using basic troubleshooting techniques.

The network configuration shown is based, very loosely, on the three computers I have on my home network.

Some notes on the command - first of all, it sends either 100 pings per second, or sends pings as quickly as they are replied to. Secondly, on a linux machine, it can only be run by the root user. Third and last, on a Windows machine, it sends the "Don't Fragment" command along with the packet.

Ping (?), n. [Probably of imitative origin.]

The sound made by a bullet in striking a solid object or in passing through the air.


© Webster 1913.

Ping, v. i. [imp. & p. p. Pinged (?); p. pr. & vb. n. Pinging.]

To make the sound called ping.


© Webster 1913.

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