why when ping an IP address we get 4 replies ?



Ping is just a small program which sends ICMP Echo Requests, and receives the ICMP Echo Replies. Actually, many different implementations of ping exist...

On Windows, the default ping utility sends 4 echo request by default. So, when everything is working fine, you will see 4 echo replies. You can send more (or less) requests by passing the -n option to the ping executable.

On Unix systems, the default implementation will keep sending echo requests until interrupted by the user (with Ctrl-C), and the option to send a specific number of requests is -c.


I will assume you're using a Windows PC.

When you "ping," your computer sends (by default) four ICMP echo requests. Each request will get a reply (if everything is working properly). So you see each of the four replies. You can change the number of echo requests with the "-n" switch.

  • Why it sends 4 requests ? – Nina May 2 '17 at 18:17
  • 2
    That's just the way the program works. I assume it's so you will see several values of response time, rather than a single data point. – Ron Trunk May 2 '17 at 18:18

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