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The Next Generation of Traceroute is Here

Level 10

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


17 Comments
MVP
MVP

Sounds like a nice tool - looking forward to trying it out.

Level 13

Hi

Is there any documentation. I'm trying it out on a Windows 2012 server that I RDP to but don't seem to be able to set the TCP port. On my Windows 10 Laptop I seem to be able to do this. Do I need to install anything else for this to work? Is it the installers listed under the dependencies folder?

Level 10

Hi, david.botfield​. Check out this article and let me know if this helps: Troubleshoot your network with a new free tool – Traceroute NG​ This is a standalone free tool, so you should not have to install anything else in order for Traceroute NG to work. The System Requirements are as follows: Windows® 8, Windows 8.1, Windows 10, Windows Server® 2012 R2, and Windows Server 2016. Hope this helps.

Level 10

I'm pretty sure it installed nMap or something, but I can't remember...

Level 13

Thanks - looks like it was the device I'm trying to trace to. if I try another device it works.

Level 8

Is this a wrapper for MTR?

MTR (software) - Wikipedia

Level 10

Hi, gonnason​. Definitely not! SolarWinds Traceroute NG offers TCP probing as an option, and it continuously probes your network accurately. I'm sure many alternative versions have been created since Traceroute's original 80s version, but we think this will version will offer fullfunctionality that others have not until now. Have you downloaded it yet?

Level 8

well MTR offers TCP probing too...

Ubuntu Manpage: mtr - a network diagnostic tool

Level 10

Since there are various open-source Traceroute options available, I cannot be familiar with them all and have not used MTR. Again, give SolarWinds Traceroute NG a try and see how you like it. We've already received unbelievable feedback for this free tool from Jonah Kowall CISSO, CISA, referring to it as "brilliant". I think that this version will offer much that will be an improvement on previous versions you've used. Enjoy!  

Level 10

Very helpful tool. Just tested it out.

Level 7

Can this work with npcap?

Level 12

Will not install if Npcap is installed, at least with Npcap 0.995.

In my opinion, SolarWinds should stop using WinPcap.

Npcap vs WinPcap

As this thread is showing signs of life again, I would like to share my view on TraceNG.

i have installed it on all my personal and work equipment. I don’t use Ping or tracert any more.

I just open up a cmd, type “traceng” and off we go.

great addition to the daily admin tools.

Level 12

I did a bunch of testing on this today.

Installing SolarWinds-FT-TracerouteNG-1.0.0 with the latest npcap 0.996 already installed produces error popup:

pastedImage_0.png

This error happens whether you install npcap and check off WinPcap API mode in Nnpcap or not.

You can uninstall Npcap, install Traceng and its winpcap, and then reinstall npcap ok. I tested that on my home system without selecting Install Npcap in WinPcap API-compatible Mode. Traceng still works. Wireshark and NMap both work. Traceng's WinPcap and Npcap installed.

When instaling Npcap, and do NOT select Install Npcap in WinPcap API-compatible Mode:

pastedImage_5.png

The Npcap install then warns:

pastedImage_7.png

Do NOT use the Npcap 0.995 that comes with the latest Wireshark V3.0.2. It has a bug that causes a blue screen crash at reboot on some systems. My home system has an AMD CPU, and would not install Windows 10 1809 successfully until I uninstalled Npcap, WinPcap, and Kiwi Syslog. I haven't gotten round to reinstalling Kiwi syslog yet, though.

Npcap 0.996 seems to have fixed the blue screen on my system. But keep an eye on their release page:

Releases · nmap/npcap · GitHub

Also, the latest NMap tries to install Npcap 0.99r2. I told it to use my 0.996 instead.

I tested Wireshark 3.0.2 and NMap/Zenmap 7.70 while simultaneously doing a multihop Traceng successfully.

Level 12

Do you add the dir for traceng to your path?

The installer only seems to do some licensing. It will check each time for presence of WinPcap, though, and run the installer for it if it doesn't find it.

You are correct, traceNG directory is added to the “PATH” variable.. as the tool is something that is installed quite shortly after OS installation, I haven’t come across the WinPCAP issue.

Level 12

Do you use it with other SolarWinds products, such as NPM or Kiwi Syslog, or with Wireshark?

I think that by installing Traceng 1st, you can dodge problems created by other products that also install some sort of pcap.