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xymonping - Xymon ping tool


xymonping [--retries=N] [--timeout=N] [IP-addresses]


xymonping(1) is used for ping testing of the hosts monitored by the xymon(7) monitoring
system. It reads a list of IP addresses from stdin, and performs a "ping" check to see if
these hosts are alive. It is normally invoked by the xymonnet(1) utility, which performs
all of the Xymon network tests.

Optionally, if a list of IP-addresses is passed as command-line arguments, it will ping
those IP's instead of reading them from stdin.

xymonping only handles IP-addresses, not hostnames.

xymonping was inspired by the fping(1) tool, but has been written from scratch to
implement a fast ping tester without much of the overhead found in other such utilities.
The output from xymonping is similar to that of "fping -Ae".

xymonping probes multiple systems in parallel, and the runtime is therefore mostly
dependent on the timeout-setting and the number of retries. With the default options,
xymonping takes approximately 18 seconds to ping all hosts (tested with an input set of
1500 IP addresses).


xymonping needs to be installed with suid-root privileges, since it requires a "raw
socket" to send and receive ICMP Echo (ping) packets.

xymonping is implemented such that it immediately drops the root privileges, and only
regains them to perform two operations: Obtaining the raw socket, and optionally binding
it to a specific source address. These operations are performed as root, the rest of the
time xymonping runs with normal user privileges. Specifically, no user-supplied data or
network data is used while running with root privileges. Therefore it should be safe to
provide xymonping with the necessary suid-root privileges.


Sets the number of retries for hosts that fail to respond to the initial ping, i.e.
the number of ping probes sent in addition to the initial probe. The default is
--retries=2, to ping a host 3 times before concluding that it is not responding.

Determines the timeout (in seconds) for ping probes. If a host does not respond
within N seconds, it is regarded as unavailable, unless it responds to one of the
retries. The default is --timeout=5.

xymonping normally stops pinging a host after receiving a single response, and uses
that to determine the round-trip time. If the first response takes longer to arrive
- e.g. because of additional network overhead when first determining the route to
the target host - it may skew the round-trip-time reports. You can then use this
option to require N responses, and xymonping will calculate the round-trip time as
the average of all of responsetimes.

Maximum number of packets per second. This limits the number of ICMP packets
xymonping will send per second, by enforcing a brief delay after each packet is
sent. The default setting is to send a maximum of 50 packets per second. Note that
increasing this may cause flooding of the network, and since ICMP packets can be
discarded by routers and other network equipment, this can cause erratic behaviour
with hosts recorded as not responding when they are in fact OK.

Use ADDRESS as the source IP address of the ping packets sent. On multi-homed
systems, allows you to select the source IP of the hosts going out, which might be
necessary for ping to work.

Enable debug output. This prints out all packets sent and received.

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