Technology Insights

How to Use MTR (Traceroute and Ping Combined)

One of the not so well know networking tools available on Linux is MTR.  MTR combines the functionality of the traceroute and ping programs in a single net-work diagnostic tool.  As mtr starts, it investigates the network connection between the host mtr runs on and a user-specified destination host. After it determines the address of each network hop between the machines, it sends a sequence ICMP ECHO requests to each one to determine the quality of the link to each machine. As it does this, it prints running statistics about each machine.   A sudden increase in packet-loss or response time is often an indication of a bad (or simply overloaded) link.  mtr is fairly easy to use once you have a look at the different options possible: