What is ping and how do I troubleshoot it?

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What is ping and how do I troubleshoot it?

So, you’ve probably heard about ‘ping’ when it comes to your internet performance, especially if you’re an online gamer. You may have also heard of latency, which is often an interchangeable term with ping, although they are technically not the same thing.

 

How does it work?

A ping test, like a speed test, is a tool that checks your internet connection and can give you an insight on how it’s performing.

When a ping command is run, a single packet of data is sent to the designated server (the host) with an ‘echo’ request. If available, the host will respond and send the packet back. The time it takes for the packet to be sent and returned is measured in milliseconds. This is often referred to as the ‘round trip time’ (RTT).

The lower the time, the better your online performance will be. This is most noticeable when using the internet for gaming, as you rely on instant and real-time responses for the best experience possible.

 

What is good ping?

  • Less than 20ms is considered exceptional ping. This is ideal for online gaming.
  • 20ms-50ms is considered to be ‘good’ ping. This should allow you to game happily, with fast and responsive gameplay.
  • 50ms-100ms is considered to be ‘fair’ ping. Gaming with this ping is possible, but you may notice occasional lag when gaming.
  • 100ms-300ms is considered to be ‘poor’ ping. You probably won’t have a good time when gaming with this ping.

 

My ping is high. What should I do?

Your ping can be high for a whole variety of reasons. If you’re getting a high ping reading within a game you’re playing, there can be many factors at play.

The main cause of poor ping is geographical distance to the server you are connecting to. If you were playing on an Australian based server, your ping will most likely be much lower than if you were playing on an American server, for example.

A good way to test your overall ping is to run a simple speed test. When using an external speed test application, it is important to use a Perth based server if you can (Pentanet’s server is a good option). If you’re using a speed test site/application different from our own, we recommend using Speedtest.net by Ookla.

For general information on investigating speed issues on your connection, check out our handy guide on My internet is slow. Who do I ask for help?

If you have any further questions about your ping, please get in touch with our support team, who are more than happy to help.

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