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Running a trace route


  • Open an MS-DOS prompt (command prompt).
  • Type tracert YOURDOMAIN.COM and hit the Enter key. If you want to check the email server, use tracert mail.YOURDOMAIN.COM instead.


  • In Debian based Linux (such as Debian or Ubuntu) you will usually need to install the traceroute package using something like sudo apt-get install traceroute
  • You can then perform a traceroute from the terminal by typing traceroute -I YOURDOMAIN.COM
  • Note that some Linux variants require you to specify the protocol after -I. i.e., traceroute -I ICMP YOURDOMAIN.COM

Mac OS 9

Mac OS X

  • Use the command line Terminal (usually found in the Utilities folder inside of Applications)
    • Type traceroute -I YOURDOMAIN.COM
  • Use the Network Utility graphical program (usually found in the Utilities folder inside of Applications)
    • Click the Traceroute button in the top bar, type in the server name and click the Trace button. To copy and paste the results, just copy and paste all the text from the results area.

Copying and pasting results

For some users (especially those with PCs) copying and pasting the results of the traceroute output can be confusing. There's a couple of ways to accomplish this, however.

  1. From a Windows PC, you can copy the results of the traceroute output by right-clicking inside the 'cmd' window and selecting 'Mark'.
  2. From there, click and drag a box around the lines that you would like to copy.
  3. Then, right click inside the 'cmd' window again or press 'Enter' to copy the selected error.
  4. Paste the results into your email to support.

If you'd rather skip the extra clicking, you can have the traceroute command output the results to a text file automatically. Here's how:

  • Issue a command similar to the following:   tracert YOURDOMAIN.COM > c:\tracert.txt

This also applies to Mac and Linux users:

  • You would issue a line similar to the following:   traceroute -I YOURDOMAIN.COM > /home/username/trace.txt


When requested to send a traceroute by DreamHost support staff, please do not attach the results as an image in the email. Support staff can not receive attachments. Instead, please upload the image to your webspace and provide a link to it or, even better, copy and paste the text results of the traceroute into an email reply to your support ticket.