How to run an MTR

MTR (My traceroute) allows you to constantly poll a remote server. This diagnostic tool combines the ‘traceroute’ and ‘ping’ function. It represents an evolution of the traceroute command by providing a greater data sample as if augmenting traceroute with ping output and is useful for seeing how a server’s latency and performance changes over time.

Running a traceroute is different for each Operating System. Here are the steps for Windows, Mac OS, and Linux:

To install MTR on Windows:

  • Download the latest version of WinMTR
  • You will have a .zip file containing two folders: WinMTR-32 and WinMTR-64
  • Each folder contains two files: WinMTR.exe and README.txt
  • Extract the WinMTR.exe that corresponds to your platform (32 or 64 bit) and run the file.

To run WinMTR on Windows:

  • Start WinMTR.
  • Write the name or IP of the host (e.g. Xneelo.co.za or 197.189.196.146)
  • Press the Options button to configure ping size, maximum hops and ping interval (the defaults are OK).
  • Push the Start button and wait.
  • Copy or export the results in text or HTML format. The results should look similar to this:capture
  • Click on Clear History in the drop-down menu to remove the hosts you have previously traced.

To run WinMTR from Windows command:

  • Copy the WinMTR.exe file in Windows/System32 so that it’s accessible via the command line – cmd.
  • Run winmtr -help to see the options available.
  • Run winmtr hostname (e.g. Xneelo.co.za).

To install MTR on Debian and Ubuntu:

Issue the following commands to ensure that your system’s package repository is up to date, that all installed packages are up to date, and finally to install MTR itself:

apt-get update
apt-get upgrade
apt-get install mtr-tiny

CentOS and Fedora:

Issue the following commands to update repositories, upgrade installed packages, and install the MTR program:

yum update
yum install mtr

Arch Linux systems:

Issue the following commands to update the package database and install MTR:

pacman -Sy pacman -S mtr

To run an MTR on Linux:

Once installed, call it in the shell using your terminal emulator by typing ‘mtr’ followed by the name of the host.

mtr xneelo.co.za

The result will look similar to this:

capture

It’s also possible to run MTR with the –report option. 10 packets are sent to each hop and the results are generated.

--report xneelo.co.za

The result will look like this:
capture1

Mac OSX:

  • Press Command+Space and type Terminal and press enter/return key.
  • Type in Terminal app:
/bin/bash -c "$(curl -fsSL https://raw.githubusercontent.com/Homebrew/install/master/install.sh)"
  • Press enter/return key. Wait for the command to finish.
  • Run:
brew install mtr
  • You can now run MTR
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