What is pinged??????

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Chat' started by Crazysop, Mar 17, 2005.

  1. Crazysop

    Crazysop Member

    My Firewall just said my computer has been pinged, what does this mean???? anyone???????
  2. pegleg

    pegleg Member

    I think you're alright...I understand that the firewall has stopped the computer from trying to send you something.
  3. Jan H

    Jan H Moderator Staff Member

    As far as I know, "pings" aren't dangerous at all (please correct me if I'm wrong!), so you should not worry about it. You can "ping" another PC that's connected to the internet. When you do that, a small package of data is send to that PC and then returned to your own computer. You can then see the time that it takes, to get an idea of the speed of your internet connection. It's also a way to see if the other computer is online. When you ping another PC, and the package isn't returned, that means that the other PC is not online.

    I think the actual technical explanation is much more complicated, but this is how I understand it.
  4. johnmartin

    johnmartin Active Member

    It's something to do with your computers knicker elastic. :)

    Seriously, it just means another computer has probed your IP address to see if anyone is there. Often used by hackers and script kiddies looking for victims, but equally as often it's a valid request. The fact your firewall caught it probably means you don't need to worry about it.
  5. Naomi McFadyen

    Naomi McFadyen New Member

    Ping is the sound of a microwave whens it's finished cooking.... *PING!!!*

    Sorry, couldnt resist.... :D
  6. brasscrest

    brasscrest Active Member

    *** warning *** extreme geekiness ahead ***

    A ping is as Jan said. It's a means of trying to determine if you can communicate with another PC. However, I disagree with Jan in that some pings are definitely dangerous. It's not the ping itself, it's the information that is conveyed by the response. Even knowing that you computer is online a particular IP address gives the hacker the first bit of information needed to begin attacking your machine.

    For example, if I wanted to hack some random machine, I might send pings to a wide range of Internet addresses. The reponse to the pings would tell me which machines are online. I could then use that list to attempt to connect to vulnerable ports that might have been left open on those computers.

    Personally, I do not accept any pings on any of my computers from any address outside my own home network. My firewall is configured not to respond to ping requests. The incidence of unwanted connect attempts to my network decreased by about 75% after I stopped accepting pings.

    Fortunately, my internet service provider allows me to turn off ping responses. Many providers use ping to test their network connections and therefore do not allow it to be disabled. Check you ISP's Terms of Service before disabling or blocking pings.
  7. Jan H

    Jan H Moderator Staff Member

    OK Robert, you're definately a bigger geek than me :biggrin::biggrin:
    I guess as long as your firewall is up, everything should be ok
  8. bagpuss

    bagpuss Active Member

    OK to add to geekiness, PING stands for Packet Internet Groper (I kid you not) and as has already been said, they can be harmless but can be dangerous or at least the precursor to something dangerous.

    If your PC responds to a ping, you do indeed let hackers etc know that you are there and that your computer is on. More importantly to the hacker, it allows him/her/it to know your i.p. address is active. If the hacker finds this out, he can then initiate a MSRPC for your computer (Microsoft Remote Procedure Call). When this happens, the hacker is 'asking' your computer for access or asking it to perform a function.

    Your computer or more importantly your firewall (if you have one) can respond in one of three ways to these MSRPC's (and pings for that matter).

    It can reply 'yes' and thereby allow the hacker unhindered access to your pc and hack your pc for ever and a day and indeed do much nastiness to your computer.

    On the other hand it can reply 'no' in which case the MSRPC is returned to the hacker and 'tells' them that although the IP address is active and online, it was refused access. This means the hacker will try to get into your pc using another open port (hopefully for him/her/it not protected by your firewall).

    Finally it can just not reply at all. The MSRPC then returns to the hacker telling him/her/it that the ip address is inactive or off. The hacker then strikes your ip address from their 'list' and goes to pick on an easier target. This is why you will notice hack attempts decrease markedly in the few weeks after you install a firewall. I installed a firewall on a friends PC, he didn't think he had a need for a firewall until I showed him that in the first 10 minutes after re-connecting his broadband link he'd had over 1000 hack attempts. Since then this has dropped off over the intervening 3 months or so until he has about 10 per week now.

    I'm sure someone can come up with a more technically accurate and jargon filled response to this question of pinging and firewalls but in laymans terms, that's how I understand it!!!

    Hope it helps

  9. bagpuss

    bagpuss Active Member

    Almost forgot. Not ALL MSRPC's are bad. If you disable them all, I think you will lose your internet connection!!!

  10. Crazysop

    Crazysop Member

    cheers my minds a little mire at rest now!
  11. yonhee

    yonhee Active Member

    how do you ping people?
  12. Jan H

    Jan H Moderator Staff Member

    start -> run...
    type "cmd" and press enter. his will open a "command window"
    in this command window type (for example) "ping www.themouthpiece.com"
  13. yonhee

    yonhee Active Member

    can i do it?
  14. Jan H

    Jan H Moderator Staff Member

    Of course, I don't think John will mind...
    If you do it like I described, you won't harm anyone!
  15. yonhee

    yonhee Active Member

    ok :) what does it do then?
    it says ''minimum=120ms, maximum=131ms, average=127ms'' whats that mean?
  16. Jan H

    Jan H Moderator Staff Member

    that means that it takes on average 127 miliseconds to send a message from your compyuter to the tMP-computer and back from the tMP-computer to your own computer.
  17. yonhee

    yonhee Active Member

    is that good?
  18. bagpuss

    bagpuss Active Member

    Not bad at all. I would deduce from those times that you have broadband however and not dial-up.

    Incidentally, for those of you who are FAR TOO IMPATIENT to click the start button and then click the 'Run' command. Holding down the Windows key (between Ctrl and Alt on the bottom left of your keyboard usually) and pressing 'R' will have the same result. Similarly, if you hold down the Windows key and press 'E' you will be able to explore the files and folders on your PC much the same as if you had clicked on the 'My Computer' icon.

    Also when trying to 'Ping' someone using the method above, BE CAREFUL!!!!! For those using Windows XP it shouldn't be too much of a problem but for those on older systems (especially anyone unfortunate enough to still be using Windows 95/98 ), by going into the 'cmd' screen you have the ability to do great damage to your PC. If you don't know how to use the 'cmd' screen, best either to stick to 'pinging' or not bothering at all. Any attempt at exploration of your pc from that screen could prove to be a bad decision!!

    Once you've finished 'pinging' all the sites you want to ping, type in 'exit' and press enter. This will close the 'cmd' window and return you to Windows.

    Hope this helps someone!

  19. Crazysop

    Crazysop Member

    Wow didn't no pinging was so simple. Thought is was like major hacking or something!
  20. johnmartin

    johnmartin Active Member

    Pinging is just the tip of the iceberg you want to learn about ...... no better not go down that route. :)