Monitoring Central

2 Posts authored by: jamesd85

Let’s face it. Traceroute is not what it used to be.


Van Jacobson and Steve Deering created the original “Traceroute” in 1987. They discovered it by editing the IPv4 packet header’s TTL field, so that they could derive a path from the packets being taken from each network hop. Network professionals quickly realized how valuable this tool was in terms of solving daily network issues. However, in recent years, Traceroute has not scaled to adapt to modern technologies, and has lost most of its useful functionality.


We note the following issues: When probing the network, the ICMP and UDP packets are blocked. The paths that the tool indicates, often don’t exist. And, ridiculously enough, there is no history function available. Even Ping has that! The list of issues is so vast that we’ve actually been able to find scholarly journal articles on the subject.


What’s the good news? The good news is that SolarWinds fixed Traceroute, and is offering it for free!


SolarWinds® Traceroute NG is a standalone free tool that effectively offers path analysis visibility via a CLI. By all standards, it’s a new, improved, and fully functional version of the older Traceroute generation tool. Yielding results in mere seconds, it provides an accurate single path from source to destination, and notifies users when the path is changed.


This new and improved version of Traceroute delivers the following information:

  • Number of hops
  • IP addresses
  • Fully qualified domain names (FQDNs)
  • Packet loss measured as a percentage
  • Current latency and average latency (ms)
  • Continuous probing that yields an iteration number for the user
  • Probe type used (if TCP, it also shows the port probed)
  • Issues (change in path, inability to reach destination)


SolarWinds Traceroute NG is able to get through firewalls, supports IPv6 networks, and can create a txt logfile containing the path number, probing time from source to destination, number of hops, IP addresses, FQDN, packet loss percentage, and average latency. It’s also able to copy data from the screen via the clipboard (copy/paste functionality), switch the probe type between ICMP and TCP using the switch command, and enable logging using the logging command, all while you’re probing simultaneously.


To sum it all up, Traceroute NG by SolarWinds brings back the power of the old Traceroute with new functionalities and capabilities that are adapted to modern technologies, so that you may once again reign supreme over the paths of your network, and never be lost when probing your long journey across the vast world wide web.


We hope you will enjoy this powerful new free tool. Click on the link below to download your Traceroute NG free tool by SolarWinds.


Traceroute NG Software - Download Free Traceroute Tool | SolarWinds


To find out more about what you can do with SolarWinds Traceroute NG, be sure to have a look at this article: Troubleshoot your network with a new free tool – Traceroute NG


SolarWinds® Port Scanner is a standalone free tool that can be used in various ways to identify the ports running on your network. It also helps unveil network vulnerabilities.

This versatile tool has many applications. Check out the ideas shared in this post, and let us know in the comments below how you use Port Scanner.


Idea 1: Use Port Scanner to run a security analysis

A security engineer would like to see how vulnerable his network is by performing an analysis of open and closed ports within his network. By running SolarWinds Port Scanner, he is able to scan IP addresses and their corresponding TCP and UDP ports. In doing so, he can verify if the ports that are supposed to be filtered are, in fact, filtered.

Once he establishes whether the corresponding ports are open, he can run a security analysis using Port Scanner and receive the status of all the TCP and UDP ports on his network. If he finds an open port that is not supposed to be open, he can go into his firewall or router to disable traffic on that port.  


Idea 2: Run the CLI to export results

Network administrators must understand the peaks of IP usage within their network to see if they will still have IP addresses available during peak hours. To achieve that, the network administrator must run recurring scans to see the differences in IP usage.

Using Windows® Scheduler to run the command line interface (CLI) of SolarWinds Port Scanner every 15 minutes, network admins can export the results to a CSV file. After that, he can run a PowerShell® script to compare the results from all of the CSV files. This will give him a clear understanding of IP usage within his network, which is critical to his job. Without this information, it is nearly impossible to maintain a secure network with optimal performance.  


Idea 3: Use Port Scanner to detect rogue devices

Network administrators need to know if only whitelisted devices are connecting to their Wi-Fi network. To achieve that, he needs to run recurring scans to see the differences in host names and MAC addresses. 

To do this, the network admin can use the Windows Scheduler to run the CLI of SolarWinds Port Scanner every 15 minutes and export the results to an XML file. He can then run a PowerShell script to compare the results from all of the XML files, which will give him a clear understanding of the devices connecting to his network. If he finds any rogue devices, he can simply disable them from his wireless controller.   


We hope you find Port Scanner to be a useful free tool, one of many new SolarWinds free tools to come. How will you discover your network with SolarWinds Port Scanner?

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