If you are thinking about renting a server, you should ping it first to see what kind of a delay you will get. This is especially important if you are thinking of renting a game server because every few milliseconds count in most games. Even if it is just a Web server, however, you still might want to consider opting for the server closest to you. Generally, a lower ping will mean you have less traffic to go through. This could prove beneficial when trying to upload a large amount of data to your server. Ideally, you want a 100-millisecond ping or lower. If you have the static Internet protocol of a server you are interested in, you can ping it through the Windows command prompt.
Click on "Start" and then on "Run" if you're using Windows XP. Click on "Start" and then on "Search" if your computer's operating system is Windows Vista.
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Type "CMD" without the quotes.
Press the "Enter" key. This loads the command prompt.
Type "Ping -n 50 X" and replace "X" with the actual static IP address. For example, if you wanted to ping the IP "192.168.0.1" You would type "Ping -n 50 192.168.0.1" This sends 50 ping requests. You will see 50 lines that start with the words "Reply from ..." The ping statistics will then display below the final ping request.
Look at the first line in the statistic for "Packets: Sent=" This number is the total number of ping requests that you sent to the static IP. In this case, the number will be "50."
Find the next statistic called "Received=" in text. This is the total number of pings that were returned to you. Optimally, this number should also be "50." If you are experiencing packet loss, however, this number may be lower. If you have packet loss, it will be represented in the next line, which is called "Lost=" This displays the total percentage of loss.
Continually having a packet loss of more than 10 percent is excessive and should be reported to your service provider.
Look at the very bottom for the final sets of statistics called "Minimum, Maximum, and Average." These represent the overall ping delay in milliseconds (ms). An optimal connection would have all of these numbers close together with little variation.
Refer to the following information for a general guideline: 0 to 50 ms, excellent; 50 to 100 ms, good; 100 to 150 ms, average; 150 to 250 ms, fair; and 250 ms or more, poor.
Due to the nature of the Internet, ping times can vary from one moment to the next. If considering a server rental, you should run the ping at various times of the day, particularly at the time of day you would most use it.