One of the most useful tools in cPanel that is often overlooked is the Network Tools function. Often times, when your site is not working properly, HostGator agents use networking tools, similar to this feature in cPanel, to help diagnose common issues that prevent your site from functioning. Such tools include a domain lookup, commonly referred to as a WHOIS lookup, which contains information about the owner of the domain name, which registrar the domain name is registered with (the company you purchased your domain from) as well as your current DNS settings. Another test performed is a traceroute, which allows us to determine a connection pattern from your computer to the server, which often times may have connection issues.
Network Tools allow you to find out information about any domain, or to trace the route from the server your site is on to the computer you are accessing cPanel from. Finding out information about a domain can be useful in making sure your DNS is set up properly as you will find out information about your IP address as well as your DNS. Additionally, any network connection issues will be shown in a trace route.
To do a domain lookup or a trace route:
- Log in to your cPanel account.
- Scroll down to the bottom under “Advanced” and select the “Network Tools” icon.
- Once you have selected Network Tools, you will see two options: Domain Lookup and Trace Route.
- To look up information on any domain, enter the domain (e.g. hostgator.com) into the text box under “Domain Lookup” and press the “Look up” button. This will display information regarding the domain registrar and current DNS settings. This can be a very useful tool right after your site is set up or after DNS changes have been made to make sure your DNS is setup properly. To perform a Trace Route to your specific server from your location, click the “Trace” button at the bottom of the Network Tools page under “Trace Route”. This function allows you to trace the route from the computer you are accessing cPanel from to the server your site is on (i.e. the number of servers and what servers your data must pass through to get to your site). This is helpful to determine any network connection issues from your location to your server.