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Chapter 13. Troubleshooting Your Interne... > Third-Party Utilities - Pg. 389

Troubleshooting Your Internet Connection 389 Third-Party Utilities Besides the utilities provided with Windows XP, there are some third-party tools that you can use to help diagnose your connection and gather Internet information. I'll describe three Web-based utilities and one commercial software package. Speed Check Ever wondered how to find the real-world transfer rate of your Internet connection? Intel Corporation has a nifty Web-based program to measure transfer speeds using a Java applet. Check out www.in- tel.com/personal/do_more/broadband/speedtest.htm. (Every time I put this URL into print, Intel seems to feel the need to change it. If you get a page not found error, search the Intel site for "broadband speed test.") Whois Database Anyone registering an Internet domain name is required to file contact information with a domain registry. This is public information, and you can use it to find out how to contact the owners of a domain whose customers have sent spam mail or with whom you have other concerns. Finding the registrar for a given domain name can be a bit difficult. You can find the registrar infor- mation for any .aero, .arpa, .biz, .com, .coop, .edu, .info, .int, .museum, .net, or .org domain via the following Web page: www.internic.net/whois.html The search results from this page indicate the URL of the whois lookup page for the associated domain registrar. Enter the domain name again on that page and you should see the contact infor- mation. It's a bit harder to find the registrar associated with two-letter country code domains ending in, for example, .au, .de, .it, and so on. The InterNIC site recommends searching through www.uwhois.com. You can find the owner of an IP address through a similar lookup at www.arin.net/whois. Enter an IP address to find the owner of the block of IP addresses from which the specific address was allocated. This is usually an ISP or, in some cases, an organization that has had IP addresses assigned to it directly. Reverse Tracert As I discussed earlier, the tracert program investigates the path that data you send through the Internet takes to read another location. Interestingly, data coming back to you can take a different path. Users of older satellite Internet service know this already as their outbound data goes through a modem, while incoming data arrives by satellite. It turns out that this can happen even with stand- ard Internet service, depending on the way your ISP has set up their own internal network. It's handy to know how the path data takes coming to you. If you record this information while your Internet connection is working, if you run into trouble you can have a friend perform a tracert to you (you'll need to give him or her your IP address, which you can find using the ipconfig command). If the results differ you may be able to tell if the problem is with your computer, your ISP or the Internet. You can visit http://www.traceroute.org for a list of hundreds of web servers that can perform a traceroute test from their site to you. Don't be surprised if the test results take a while to appear as these tests typically take a minute or more.