How to carry out a Trace Route using cPanel's Track DNS

By Jonathan Griffin. Editor, SEO Consultant, & Developer.

· 3 min read

The Track DNS feature in cPanel allows you to carry out a Trace Route. As the name suggests, a Trace Route traces the route data travels over the network from your computer to your web server.

The Trace Route displays the following information:

  • The number of servers your data passes through before it reaches your server.
  • The hostname, IP address, and time taken to reach each server.

A Trace Route can help diagnose any network issues relating to your hosting account. It can be helpful if your site does not load to enclose a copy when submitting support tickets.

Notice

Some web hosts do not grant access to this feature.

How to carry out a Trace Route using cPanel

The Trace Route functionality is contained within the Track DNS feature. The tutorial below takes you through the process of using this feature to carry out the traceroute.

Frequently Asked Questions

What to the three asterix mean in the trace route?

A traceroute uses ICMP messages to obtain details about the route being used for each hop. Each device responds to the ICMP request and displays details such as the hostname, IP, and response time.

If a router doesn’t generate a Time-to-live exceeded response, the traceroute will not know anything about that hop. A hop that outputs * * * means that the router is not responding to the type of packet you were using.

While this is not very helpful, it is quite normal.

Why does the trace route make a maximum of 30 hops?

This is the default setting for the cPanel traceroute client.

If you wish to increase the number of hops, you will need to use a command-line tool. For example, using the cPanel Terminal, you can set the maximum number of hops to 255 with the following command:

traceroute -m 255 xx.xx.xxx.xxx
Notice

Replace xx.xx.xxx.xxx with your server’s IP.

See the General Information Panel in cPanel for the IP.

Can I do a Trace Route without cPanel's Track DNS feature?

Yes, you can carry out a trace route via the command line, both on the cPanel terminal, and on your own computer.

The following examples show how to carry out a traceroute, along with the command flag for increasing the number of hops:

cPanel Terminal

traceroute -m 255 xx.xx.xxx.xxx

MacOS

traceroute -m 255 xx.xx.xxx.xxx

Windows

tracert -h 255 xx.xx.xxx.xxx
Notice

Replace xx.xx.xxx.xxx with your server’s IP.

See the General Information Panel in cPanel for the IP.