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Network problem with Tracert/ping and also DNS

Posted on 2003-03-03
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Last Modified: 2013-12-07
The local phone company which also provides DSL has some serious problems and support sucks. Is there someone besides them the issue can be escalated to?
Example
We have two IP addresses at two businesses two blocks apart. At the business where the assigned IP is 64.91.60.xxx we can ping and do a tracert to the other IP which is 209.206.247.xxx. At the 209... IP we can neither ping nor do a tracert to the 64.... IP. Following is the tracert that fails
"Tracing route to pppoe1290.ka.centurytel.net [64.91.60.xxx]
over a maximum of 30 hops:

  1   <10 ms   <10 ms   <10 ms  192.168.2.253
  2    10 ms    10 ms    10 ms  static-rb.ka.centurytel.net [209.206.247.254]
  3    10 ms    10 ms    20 ms  rb2.ka.centurytel.net [209.206.184.23]
  4     *        *        *     Request timed out. "

From the 64... IP we get get a valid tracert in the other direction
"Tracing route to adsl0001-rb.ka.centurytel.net [209.206.247.xxx]
over a maximum of 30 hops:

  1    14 ms    13 ms    14 ms  p1-rb2.ka.centurytel.net [64.91.60.1]
  2    14 ms    14 ms    14 ms  rb.ka.centurytel.net [209.206.184.2]
  3    30 ms    27 ms    28 ms  adsl0001-rb.ka.centurytel.net [209.206.247.xxx]

Trace complete."

What this says is we can ping or traceroute in only one direction between the two networks. The ISP is unwilling to do anything.

The other interesting thing is using the DNS servers they assigned (209.206.160.253 and .254) returns an invalid IP address when we do `ping www.compconn.com'
Using other DNS servers returns a valid IP for that domain. The address changes were made a week ago.

any suggestions how to get this resolved.
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Question by:emery_k
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14 Comments
 
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Accepted Solution

by:
mcrowley earned 400 total points
ID: 8059870
For the tracert/ping problems - I'm getting a routing loop between rb.ka.centurytel.net and rt.ka.centurytel.net.  

With the DNS information - that DNS server seems to have some issues.  I tried doing some NSLOOKUPs on it, and didn't get anything back.

I'd say your ISP has some stuff screwed up (technical term).
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Expert Comment

by:SysExpert
ID: 8060089
If that is the kind of support you are getting, it is time to look for any alternative who has a better proven track record.

See

dslreports.com

I hope this helps !
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Author Comment

by:emery_k
ID: 8060359
Small Town and they are the only phone company. The alternatives have to run over the same lines and don't appear much better.

Isn't there someone that regulates who hooks to the internet and that they meet certain standards?
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Expert Comment

by:mcrowley
ID: 8060437
Not really.... a few years back, most ISPs were some guy with a PC and a few modem lines.  0 regulation back then, and not much better now.  Problem is, this issue resides squarely on their network - namely, their routers and their DNS servers.  Until they get their act together, you're stuck.

Now, I have, in the past, provided them with some "help" in getting their act together.  Sometimes just adequate, correct information is all that's required.
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Author Comment

by:emery_k
ID: 8060552
Small Town and they are the only phone company. The alternatives have to run over the same lines and don't appear much better.

Isn't there someone that regulates who hooks to the internet and that they meet certain standards?
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Expert Comment

by:KA9FOX
ID: 8060753
I work for the apparently crappy ISP.  You are connected with the IP in question, 64.91.60.xx, and you've told me you can surf.  We do not block pings or traceroutes, and even from the DSLAM, your IP is not pingable.  It would appear that your router is not set up to allow ICMP (pings, traceroutes).   Since we do not block ICMP, there would appear to be no other explanation other than an issue with your router and/or firewall.  You might consider trading login IDs, so that each location uses the other location's Login ID (and therefore IP address) to see if the problem stays with the IP address or with the equipment.  I'm betting it follows the equipment.

Regarding the problem with www.compconn.com, as we discussed over the phone, your W2K computer was caching the old IP address.  As you found out, by issuing the command IPCONFIG /FLUSHDNS, this solved your problem.

You have my e-mail address, so let me know if I can assist further.  

- Scott
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by:emery_k
ID: 8065006
Small Town and they are the only phone company. The alternatives have to run over the same lines and don't appear much better.

Isn't there someone that regulates who hooks to the internet and that they meet certain standards?
0
 
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Expert Comment

by:Baddog
ID: 8066966
I agree with KA9FOX, Firewall or router may not be allowing incoming ICMP to the 64.91.60.xx.  Check router or firewall settings.  
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Author Comment

by:emery_k
ID: 8116524
There is no problem with the router. Definition of locations (1=customer where the problem is, 2=my store 2 blocks from customer, 3=DSL connection 20 miles away that I have access to) The way this was tested is to take  the router from location 1 to location 3 and just plug it in. I was able to immediately connect using PcAnywhere.
 I also took the router from the location 3 (after set port forwarding and testing) to location 1 and COULD NOT CONNECT. No settings were changed in the routers (it was interesting to see that the username/passwords worked both places)
If KA9FOX will concede that I am competent enough to set both workstation IP addresses to xxx.xxx.xxx.211 which is what both routers were set to forward ports 5631-5632 to then the issue is clearly something at the customers location. IT IS NOT A ROUTER ISSUE
This ISP is noted for misleading answers. One carpet store was set up on DSL which stopped working and after almost 2 weeks of bitching someone figured out that they had given the same username/password to a chiropractor in another town (who changed the password later which stopped the carpet store being able to logon) and finally issued new username/password to the carpet store.
Another customer had problems and their repair tech came out and left saying `it was a patch cord'. Only because I knew someone inside the ISP was I able to get the info that the patch cord problem was inside their facility.
It is common to have email accounts stop working. They only straighten out after the customer bitches enough to have them delete and recreate the acccount.
I tried to talk to the local managment when a local hospital and all its employees were dropping them as an ISP because of these kinds of problems but nobody at the ISP was even interested in listening. I had set up the managers DSL a couple of weeks earlier and he wasn't interested. We are in Montana. They are headquartered in Louisiana.
Wait time on a call, if their lines are not all busy,  is typically 45 minutes. If a tech needs to check with someone else it is at least 20 minutes hold before they get back. It appears their techs are rated on how quickly they can get off the line as their answer is usually `try xyz and call back' and a quick hang up
I've probably got close to 20 hours and 100 miles of driving which can't be billed to the customer. Probably 25% of that is on hold waiting for their tech support to answer.
ARROGANCE IN ABUNDANCE

Routers are linksys BEFSR41 and BEFSR11
tried multiple versions of firmware before going to location 3 to test with absolutely no problem.
also tried two different Netgear routers at location 1 earlier.
Netgear Tech support told me what wait time to expect, answered in about 5 minutes, got me good answers and wanted the problem solved not just the call ended. That was a real eyeopener right after blowing better than an hour for less than 5 minutes of conversatio with the ISP.

I also have to clarify that ping and traceroute also do not work to location 3 but the PcAnywhere works GREAT.



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Expert Comment

by:KA9FOX
ID: 8116692
Emery k, your original problem was that you could ping one location but not the other, and could traceroute to one location but not the other.  At that time, the one location that you could not ping was using a Linux firewall router of some sort.  Since we do not block ICMP, it was deemed likely that your Linux box was not allowing ICMP.

Now that you have switched to using LinkSys routers at both ends and performed a good test by swapping the routers & Login IDs, I'm curious if you also swapped the modems or not?  In theory, the modems are dumb bridge devices and should not be interfering with ICMP, but it would be interesting to try.  

I believe you have my direct e-mail... it is difficult to troubleshoot any of this further without your specific IP addresses & login IDs, which obviously you shouldn't share publically here.  Drop me a note and let's get this figured out.
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Author Comment

by:emery_k
ID: 8167010
I was trying to use Ping and Tracert to troubleshoot and help clarify what was going on. The linux Router is still on the sytem at my store. That is where I have initiated the call as a remote when the other end was in host mode.

I swapped Routers (on the customers system and a friend who also had DSL that allowed me to use their setup for troubleshooting) at which point it became apparent that the customers LOCATION appeared to be the problem.

i.e. when a linksys router was moved from a location where PcAnywhere worked to the customer in town it would not work. When the linksys router was moved from the customerr in town to 20 miles away it worked. User IDs etc were NOT changed on either router.

I will now swap westell 516 DSL modems to test that.
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Author Comment

by:emery_k
ID: 8225646
swapping the Westell 516 modems makes absolutely no difference.
Since everything hardware wise has been swapped and the problem persists at the customers location it appears to be location related which says it is an ISP issue.
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Author Comment

by:emery_k
ID: 8354166
Thanks all for help. We finally went to another provider. Everything immediately worked. The DSL provider that was the problem emailed to say they would work on it finally. I never did get a notice that they had changed anything and testing showed no change.
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Author Comment

by:emery_k
ID: 8513459
KA9FOX
Centurytel continues to be a problem. The latest one we ran into was setting up PcAnywhere (again) we can call from one customer's work to his home but not vice versa.
The interesting thing is that setting up his PcAnywhere to check other networks it sees a list of other users. It will see hosts that are active on the 209.206.247.xxx network. It will see hosts on the 64.91.60.xxx network, it will see hosts on the 209.206.231.xxx network.
It will not see hosts on the 64.91.115.xxx network.
Clearly a provider issue. In the last two weeks I have moved 4 customers to other providers because of this kind of problem. Add to that my own account which is due to be moved next week (if they can get their act together as the change was asked for approx 10 days ago and your company held it up after changing my static IP to dynamic without my knowledge, consent, or a workorder in your system)
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