XCLN: Troubleshooting Client Connectivity Issues Using Command Line Utilities

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SUMMARY

This article is a reference for troubleshooting client-to-server communication by using common command line utilities. Command line utilities are useful because of their reporting capabilities. You can redirect the output of any of the commands shown here by appending an ">" (without the quotation marks) to the command line, followed by a path and file name.

MORE INFORMATION

Troubleshooting Basic TCP/IP Connectivity and NetBios Name Resolution

Syntax

ping NetBios_name_of_Exchange_Server_computer

Results

A line similar to the following should be displayed
Pinging DNS_name [192.168.###.###] with 32 bytes of data:
where DNS_name is the Domain Name System (DNS) name of the Exchange Server computer.

The Internet Protocol (IP) address that is listed must match the IP address of your Exchange Server computer. If the IP address is wrong, or if a line that reads "Unknown host ..." is displayed, name resolution is not working properly. In such a case, see the "Viewing the Contents of a Hosts File" section of this article and also click the article numbers below to view the articles in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
139270 How to Change Name Resolution Order on Windows 95 and Windows NT
189906 XCLN: How to Ensure Proper Name Resolution
The next four lines that are displayed should be similar to the following:
Reply from 192.168.###.###: bytes=32 time<10ms TTL=62
These lines indicate that you have Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) connectivity. If all four lines read "Request timed out," you have no TCP/IP connectivity.

Troubleshooting Intermittent TCP/IP Connectivity Issues

Syntax

ping -t NetBios_name_of_Exchange_Server_computer

Results

The -t switch causes pinging to continue until stopped or interrupted. After you type this command you can interrupt the pings to check statistics by pressing CTRL-BREAK, and you can stop the process by pressing CTRL-C. A report similar to the following should be displayed:
Ping statistics for 192.168.###.###:
     Packets: Sent = 4, Received = 4, Lost = 0 (0% loss),
     Approximate round trip times in milli-seconds:
     Minimum = 0ms, Maximum =  0ms, Average =  0ms
					
The Packets Lost value is important because packets that are dropped is a sign of a poor physical connection.

NOTE: If you redirect the output of this command to a file, the size of that file will grow by approximately 29,000 bytes every 10 minutes.

Identifying Routers in a Path Between a Client and a Server

Syntax

tracert NetBios_name/DNS_name/IP_address_of_Exchange_Server_computer

Results

The output should look similar to the following:
Tracing route to <DNS_name_of_Exchange_Server_computer> [192.168.101.1] over a maximum of 30 hops:
   1   <10 ms   <10 ms   <10 ms  <DNS_name_of_first_router> [192.168.103.1]
   2   <10 ms   <10 ms   <10 ms  <DNS_name_of_second_router> [192.168.102.1]
   3   <10 ms   <10 ms   <10 ms  <DNS_name_of_Exchange_Server_computer> [192.168.101.1]
					
You can use this output to determine which routers or firewalls may be blocking the ports that are necessary for remote procedure call (RPC) communication.

If you do not want to know the DNS names of the hosts in the route to the target, you can add the -d switch to the tracert NetBios_name/DNS_name/IP_address_of_Exchange_Server_computer command. This switch tells the Tracert utility not to resolve the IP addresses that are encountered in the route to host names.

Viewing the TCP/IP Configuration of a Computer

On a computer that is running Microsoft Windows 95 or Microsoft Windows 98, click Start, click Run, and then type winipcfg.exe. When an IP Configuration dialog box is displayed, click More Info. More detailed information is displayed.

The following command is for computers running Microsoft Windows NT:

Syntax

ipconfig /all

Results

A list of TCP/IP configuration parameters is displayed. The following is a sample of some of the information that is displayed:
Connection-specific DNS Suffix  . : <DNS_domain_name>
Description . . . . . . . . . . . : 3Com 3C918 Integrated Fast Ethernet Controller (3C905B-TX Compatible)
Physical Address. . . . . . . . . : 00-C0-4F-xx-xx-xx
DHCP Enabled. . . . . . . . . . . : Yes
Autoconfiguration Enabled . . . . : Yes
IP Address. . . . . . . . . . . . : 192.168.25.###
Subnet Mask . . . . . . . . . . . : 255.255.255.0
Default Gateway . . . . . . . . . : 192.168.25.1
DHCP Server . . . . . . . . . . . : 192.168.25.50
DNS Servers . . . . . . . . . . . : 192.168.30.100
                                    192.168.30.101
Primary WINS Server . . . . . . . : 192.168.25.60
Secondary WINS Server . . . . . . : 192.168.25.61
Lease Obtained. . . . . . . . . . : Monday, March 27, 2000 9:01:03 AM 	Lease Expires . . . . . . . . . . : Friday, March 31, 2000 9:01:03 AM
					
Determine if Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) is enabled. If it is enabled, make any necessary changes on the DHCP server instead of on the local computer; otherwise any modification to the TCP/IP parameters must be made to the local computer. Also make sure that the IP address and the default gateway (if one is specified) are on the same subnet. This is necessary to communicate with computers in other subnets. To determine whether the IP address and the default gateway are on the same subnet, apply the subnet mask to both the IP address and the default gateway. For additional information, click the article numbers below to view the articles in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
164015 Understanding TCP/IP Addressing and Subnetting Basics
185753 No Network Connectivity on TCP/IP-Based Network

Viewing the Contents of a Hosts File

Syntax

For Windows NT:
TYPE %windir%\system32\drivers\etc\hosts
For Windows 95 and Windows 98:
TYPE %windir%\hosts

Results

The contents of the Hosts file are displayed (by default) or output to a file (if redirection is used). During name resolution, the Hosts file is the first item that is checked, so any entries in this file are used for name resolution. Any lines that are preceded by a number sign (#) are ignored. The following is the proper format for a Windows Hosts file:
IP_address  NetBios_name
If your Exchange Server computer is listed, make sure that the IP address that precedes it is still valid. This is a static file, so if you make changes to your network or IP addressing scheme, you need to update this file. Also, both Windows NT and Windows 98 read this file dynamically, so if you make any changes to the Hosts file, you do not need to restart the computer for the changed mappings to take effect.

Properties

Article ID: 258495 - Last Review: May 24, 2007 - Revision: 3.7
APPLIES TO
  • Microsoft Exchange Client 5.5
  • Microsoft Exchange Client 5.0
  • Microsoft Exchange Client 4.0
  • Microsoft Exchange Client 5.0
  • Microsoft Outlook 97 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Outlook 98 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Outlook 2000 Standard Edition
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