Can't Ping the Server

by Mitch Tulloch [Published on 7 Sept. 2006 / Last Updated on 7 Sept. 2006]

Why you can't ping some Windows servers and how to fix it.

If you are used to using the ping command to test networks for connectivity and the presence of hosts, you be surprised to find that pinging a Windows Server 2003 Service Pack 1 computer sometimes won't work. That's because if Windows Firewall is running on the server, by default the firewall is configured to block ICMP Echo Request packets and other incoming ICMP traffic as well. You can allow the server to respond to ping requests by doing the following:

1. Open Windows Firewall in Control Panel

2. Click the Advanced tab

3. Under ICMP, click Settings

4. Select the Allow Incoming Echo Request checkbox

Note that this problem doesn't occur with Windows XP Service Pack 2, which enables this exception by default.

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Mitch Tulloch is President of MTIT Enterprises, an IT content development company based in Winnipeg, Canada. Prior to starting his own company in 1998, Mitch worked as a Microsoft Certified Trainer (MCT) for Productivity Point International. Mitch is a widely recognized expert on Windows administration, networking and security and has written 14 books and over a hundred articles on various topics. He has been repeatedly awarded Most Valuable Professional (MVP) status by Microsoft for his outstanding contributions in supporting users who deploy Microsoft platforms, products and solutions. Mitch is also a professor at Jones International University (JIU) where he teaches graduate-level courses in Information Security Management (ISM) for their Masters of Business Administration (MBA) program. For more information see http://www.mtit.com.

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