traceroute is a network diagnostic tool used to check the network between two locations. For example, to determine the cause of slowness or timeouts a traceroute must run from the starting point of a network connection to your DreamHost server.

When should I use Traceroute?

Below are some examples of when a traceroute might be needed to troubleshoot an issue that you are experiencing.

Website slowness

If you notice your site running slow, run a traceroute from your computer to your website to see if there are networking issues between your location and the DreamHost server.

Email client timeouts

If you are experiencing issues related to your mail connection, run a traceroute to determine the quality of the connection to the mail server.

View the Email client configuration page to find your mail server name. It is either or depending on your connection preference. Then, run a traceroute.

The following example shows a traceroute running in Windows:
C:\Users\DreamHost> tracert
Tracing route to []
over a maximum of 30 hops:

  1    <1 ms    <1 ms    <1 ms
  2     1 ms    <1 ms    <1 ms []
  3    29 ms    28 ms    28 ms []
  4    11 ms    11 ms    11 ms []
  5    25 ms    25 ms    25 ms []
  6    30 ms    30 ms    30 ms
  7    30 ms    30 ms    30 ms []
  8    45 ms    42 ms    43 ms []
  9    30 ms    30 ms    30 ms []

Trace complete.

The above example shows the network hops to the server and lists no timeouts on the network connection. If timeouts are listed, there may be a network related issue occurring.

How to run a traceroute

Using Windows

  1. Open the Command Prompt.
  2. Type in the word tracert followed by a space, and then followed by the name of the site/server to which you’d like to connect. For example, if you wish to connect to you’d run this:
    C:\Users\DreamHost> tracert
  3. Click the Enter key to run the tool.
    • You can also test your DreamHost mail server by running a traceroute to the mail subdomain. For example:
    C:\Users\DreamHost> tracert

Using Linux

For most Linux distributions, you’ll need to first install the traceroute package.

To install:

  1. Open your terminal.
  2. Run the following to install in Ubuntu:
    [server]$ sudo apt-get install traceroute
  3. Run the following command once it is installed:
    [server]$ traceroute
    • Some Linux variants require you to also specify the protocol after -I. For example:
    [server]$ traceroute -I ICMP

Mac OS X

Run the following command to run traceroute.

[server]$ traceroute

View the SSH for Mac OS X article for instructions on how to open your terminal.

Copying and pasting the results

If you’d like to share your results with a support representative, you’ll need to paste them into your ticket.


  1. In the Windows command prompt, right-click and choose ‘Mark’.
  2. Drag your mouse over the entire area you wish to copy.
  3. Right-click again.

You can then paste into any text editor or your support ticket.

Another option is to have traceroute results written directly to a text file.

To create a text file of your traceroute results, run the following command:

C:\Users\DreamHost> tracert > C:\tracert.txt

This creates a file named tracert.txt within your C:\ folder. You can select any folder in which you wish to save the file.

Mac & Linux

You can run the following command to write the results of traceroute to a file, and you can specify any location you wish.

In the following example, the results are written to a file named trace.txt under the user's home directory. Change username to your Shell user and to your website.

[server]$ traceroute -I > /home/username/trace.txt

See also


Did this article answer your questions?

Article last updated PST.

Still not finding what you're looking for?