Live Traceroutes Feature

Jean-François Lévesque
Jean-François Lévesque Last updated on Aug. 4, 2020

Live Traceroutes Feature

Today, we are proud to release a new core feature to our Network Performance Monitoring Solution: the Live Traceroute! With this feature, our users can troubleshoot network performance issues faster. Live Traceroutes show the forward and the reverse traceroutes with latencies and packet loss. It’s the perfect tool to pinpoint the location of network performance issues. Also, our users can share the results within their team but also with third-parties such as IT consultants or service providers.

What are traceroutes?
What are traceroutes?

Traceroute is the most popular tool that network engineers use to troubleshoot networks. It was invented in 1987 and is still highly relevant today. As its name suggests, the main purpose of a traceroute is to trace the IP route from a source to a destination inside an IP network. It shows to the user the routers but also the round-trip latency from the source to each of the routers.

To help everyone understand how to use traceroutes, we have written a series of articles on traceroutes. Subscribe to our blog for upcoming articles.

Live Traceroute Feature
Live Traceroute Feature

The live traceroute feature is used in combination with the network monitoring sessions. This means that a monitoring session must be configured between two agents to be able to use that feature. Inside the App (Web or Mobile), users can go to any network monitoring session page and click the Live Traceroute button to launch the live traceroute feature. Note that a separate live traceroute window (popup) is opened.

Below is a screen capture that shows how to do it.

Obkio Live Traceroute Screen Capture

Live Traceroute Sharing
Live Traceroute Sharing

In the live traceroute page, there is a button Share Link that can be used to share the page with someone else. People that use the link do not need to have an Obkio account or be logged into the App. The link is valid for 48 hours.

With this sharing feature, it is easy for our users to share the traceroute results with their colleagues, IT consultants but also their service providers’ support team. With access to the live traceroute feature, everyone will be able to troubleshoot as fast as possible. Faster troubleshooting means faster fix and less pain for the end-users.

Traceroute From Both Directions
Traceroute From Both Directions

Traffic in IP networks is asymmetrical, meaning that the path used from a source to a destination is probably not the same used from the destination to the source. Network engineers will tell you, when looking at traceroute, you must have traceroute from both directions.

This is exactly what the live traceroute gives you. You can see, in real-time, the traceroute from both directions.

Traceroute Settings
Traceroute Settings

When the traceroute is not running, it is possible to change the settings of the traceroute.

You can change:

  • the traceroute packet interval to have a more aggressive rate than the default 1 packet per second.
  • the protocol used from the default ICMP to TCP and UDP and select random source and destination ports to detect multiple paths.
  • the ToS (IP Type of Service) which includes the DSCP code to troubleshoot a specific QoS class of service similar to our QoS Monitoring feature.

As you see in the screen capture above, Live Traceroute is an advanced feature. Traceroute is a powerful tool that is easy to misinterpret and get to false conclusions. This is the main reason why we have spent so much time writing the traceroute series articles to help our users understand what they are reading. Subscribe to our blog for upcoming articles.

Network Performance Monitoring
Network Performance Monitoring

Every IT pro wishes that everything could run smoothly so they can work on new projects and deploy new infrastructure. But it is part of IT; things can break, capacity can be insuffisant or a configuration change can affect performance. At Obkio, we think that you should not rely on your users to raise performance issues.

Our solutions monitor the performance 24/7, establish a baseline for each network monitoring session and let you know if anything goes wrong. Feel free to contact us or book a demo to learn more about what we do.

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