PingPlotter Standard Legacy Release Notes


PingPlotter Standard V3.42.3s - April 28th, 2014

Click here to visit the 3.42.3s download page now.

This point release is free to all licensed users of PingPlotter Standard version 3.x.

Upgrade instructions:

For best results, run this update without uninstalling any older versions you may have installed - this upgrade will migrate all existing settings.

Changes since 3.42.2s

Standard and Pro

  • Updated / freshened help file. Several new topics.
  • Fixed missing resize mouse cursor when floating over key resize areas.
  • Several other minor bug fixes.

PingPlotter Standard V3.42.2s - April 10th, 2014

Click here to visit the 3.42.2s download page now.

This point release is free to all licensed users of PingPlotter Standard version 3.x.

Upgrade instructions:

For best results, run this update without uninstalling any older versions you may have installed - this upgrade will migrate all existing settings.

Changes since 3.42.1s

Standard and Pro

  • No changes to PingPlotter Standard in this build.

Pro only

  • Fixed PingPlotter web server vulnerability that could expose file system information with certain "malformed" urls.

PingPlotter Standard V3.42.1s - March 31st, 2014

Click here to visit the 3.42.1s download page now.

This point release is free to all licensed users of PingPlotter Standard version 3.x.

Upgrade instructions:

For best results, run this update without uninstalling any older versions you may have installed - this upgrade will migrate all existing settings.

Changes since 3.42.0s

Standard and Pro

  • Fixed license key recognition problem on isolated license keys.
  • Fixed popup error message on shutdown that would sometimes bring up a Windows crash message.

Pro only

  • Fixed bug in web interface when running on IIS.

PingPlotter Standard V3.42.0s - March 18th, 2014

Click here to visit the 3.42.0s download page now.

This point release is free to all licensed users of PingPlotter Standard version 3.x.

Upgrade instructions:

For best results, run this update without uninstalling any older versions you may have installed - this upgrade will migrate all existing settings.

Changes since 3.41.0s

Standard and Pro

  • Packet loss % column is now red.
  • Packet loss % column will show up to 3 digits of decimal places if there is room for it.
  • Old style license keys (those created in 1998 and part of 1999) on PingPlotter Standard sometimes caused PingPlotter to crash after some number of initial pings.
  • Changed the way PingPlotter uses the system font - previously it would try and use the system Font type and size, which would sometimes cause the GUI to be unusable. This build now uses a set font and size, which should be more predictable. We're working on a better long-term method of handling arbitrary OS font sizes, but this release should make it usable in more situations.
  • Some tweaks to installer to auto-enter licensing. Contact us if you need to distribute an installer to your users that installs in licensed mode automatically.
  • Copy as Summary Text mode is now default at 10 sample (was higher before). Hold the SHIFT key when you click the Edit menu to switch between Summary and Detail mode.
  • Fixed GDI+ Error when starting PingPlotter after applying a Microsoft fix for a TIFF vulnerability (that disabled TIFF support).

Pro only

  • Minor tweaks to the Pro web interface - if you add a "&SettingsFilter=XXXX" parameter to a URL, only targets using that Setting's name will be shown. This is useful if you want to link to a subset of targets from an external site (like an internal support page).
  • When running as a service, minimizing and closing didn't always hide PingPlotter (Windows 7 and higher).
  • When running as a service on Windows 7 and higher, any input errors were silent and didn't show what happened.
  • Fixed access violation in the web server when port was already in use.

PingPlotter Standard V3.41.0s - November 14th, 2013

Click here to visit the 3.41.0s download page now.

This point release is free to all licensed users of PingPlotter Standard version 3.x.

Upgrade instructions:

For best results, run this update without uninstalling any older versions you may have installed - this upgrade will migrate all existing settings.

Changes since 3.40.2

Standard and Pro

  • Improved support for Windows 8.1
  • Added support for cloning/copying of alerts (right-click on the alert).
  • PingPlotter now pauses when Windows goes to sleep and resumes when it restarts (previously, this could show as packet loss during the "out" period). A comment is automatically added to the time graph showing when this happens.
  • Fixed problem where PingPlotter would occasionally freeze on close.
  • Fixed problem with float-over hints in the time graph causing an access violation in some cases
  • Fixed some user interface glitches in the edits on the main screen.
  • Misc other fixes / tweaks.

Pro only

  • Web interface now respects graph scaling settings.
  • Added PHP version of remote unix/Linux agent.
  • Summary graph Time Graphs didn't show settings name when GUI was set that way.
  • Fixed problem that caused high CPU use when tracing from remote agent with multiple targets.
  • Fixed web server high CPU issue with a specific invalid character in URL.

PingPlotter Standard V3.40.2s - June 5th, 2012

Click here to visit the 3.40.2s download page now.

This point release is free to all licensed users of PingPlotter Standard version 3.x.

Upgrade instructions:

For best results, run this update without uninstalling any older versions you may have installed - this upgrade will migrate all existing settings.

Changes since 3.40.1

  • In some isolated cases, upgrading from a prior version would cause loss of some settings.
  • Launching PingPlotter would take several seconds more than it should.
  • /debug command line switch on installer didn't work.
  • PRO ONLY - entering your license key after trial period expiration would not always reload the workspace until after a close/restart.
  • PRO ONLY - clearing workspace after some kinds of workspace corruption would not always restore the UI to an expected state.

PingPlotter Standard V3.40.1s - May 31st, 2012

Click here to visit the 3.40.1s download page now.

Changes since 3.40.0

  • Updated help files.
  • Fixed F1 help in the options screens.
  • Fixed a bug when floating your mouse over the time graph immediately after launching, an error could occur.
  • Fixed a STARTTLS bug that caused GMail SMTP emails sends to fail on some isolated systems (alert system).
  • PRO ONLY - on some systems, the web interface would become unresponsive (using a full CPU) after a period of use. Fixed.
  • PRO ONLY - when right clicking a tab and closing it, the wrong section could close/hide in some isolated situations.
  • Fixed several minor issues.

PingPlotter Standard V3.40.0s - April 23rd, 2012

This point release is free to all licensed users of PingPlotter Standard version 3.x.

Upgrade instructions:

If you're running a version prior to 3.40, you should upgrade without uninstalling the old version (uninstalling the old version can remove some of your settings). If you want to make especially sure you don't lose your current settings, you can back up your settings before the upgrade - see the instructions on how to move to a new machine for details on what to copy.

Changes since 3.30.4

  • New MSI-based installer.
  • SSL libraries are now included so email alerts can more easily use STARTTLS SMTP servers.
  • Overhaul of final destination ping method, which should make it more reliable when route changes frequently.
  • Added link to the knowledge base from the Help menu. If you've not checked out the knowledge base, you should!
  • /INIFILE setting would still use local profile settings if it existed, so running multiple instances with different settings would sometimes not work as expected.
  • Improved shutdown logic when multiple instances are shut down simultaneously, all trying to write to the same file.
  • "Attach Collected Data to Email" and "Include Text in Email" options not saving correctly in some cases.
  • Alert status for final destination now shows on final row of trace graph when unreachable.
  • Auto-Save now defaults to save to your "My Documents" folder instead of the PingPlotter install path. This can be overridden by specifying a full path.
  • Auto save now creates more than one level of directories, allowing $year\$month\$day\$dest style nesting.
  • Sending an alert test email would sometimes cause an error if done without first tracing to a target.
  • Auto-save image didn't always show the latest data if focus changes.
  • .pp2 file association is now done in the installer instead of application.
  • Updated grid drawing to show a ? for the last hop on unreachable targets.
  • Fixed a variety of other bugs and small improvements.

PingPlotter Standard V3.30.4s - July 27th, 2010

This point release is free to all licensed users of PingPlotter Standard version 3.x.

Changes since 3.30.2

  • Improved handling of read-only configuration files and user profile-stored configs.
  • Fixed problem with collected data sent in email alerts (the attachment was sometimes corrupted).
  • Fixed problem under some Windows 7 UI themes, the summary graph wouldn't resize correctly.
  • Fixed occasionaly error when floating the cursor over a time graph.

PingPlotter Standard V3.30.2s - June 1st, 2010

Changes since 3.30.1

  • Timeouts sort as high latency in the summary graph, instead of low latency (min/max/avg).
  • Floating your mouse over the time graph now shows statistics about that data point.
  • Time graphs now show grid lines.
  • Time graphs paint a bit faster with some video cards.
  • Faster startup/shutdown when there are lots of named configurations.
  • Removing an alert from a target wouldn't always be saved correctly.
  • Gmail's SMTP server now works again (a change in GMail's logic broke STARTTLS SMTP delivery).
  • Fixed problem where an alert email might contain a lot more history than you'd want/expect.
  • Testing alert emails could lock up PingPlotter in some scenarios.
  • File -> Export... command now always prompts for a filename on export, rather than using a default that's probably in the wrong place.
  • PRO ONLY - Fixed web interface on IE8 to paint latency/min/max lines.
  • PRO ONLY - Minor web GUI tweaks.

PingPlotter Standard V3.30.1s - January 19th, 2010

Changes since 3.30

  • Made some changes to be less likely to be falsely detected as a virus/trojan/"nefarious" by AVG/ClamAV/etc.
  • Can now graph minimim and maximum values on time graph, in addition to the average latency.
  • Fixed minor issue with running from a USB drive on some old OSes.
  • PRO ONLY - Fixed problem loading workspaces with undocked windows.
  • PRO ONLY - Fixed problem when right-clicking in summary graph and accessing alert capabilities.

PingPlotter Standard V3.30.0s - September 28th, 2008

Click here to visit the 3.30.0s download page now.

This point release is free to all licensed users of PingPlotter Standard version 3.x.

Changes since 3.20.1

  • Added a "Don't Fragment" flag to allow PingPlotter to help with MTU size troubleshooting.
  • TCP Traceroute is now more robust. Packet sequence numbers was also changed to make it better supported by servers.
  • "Launch an Executable" event now has separate parameter line, and is more flexible and reliable.
  • PRO ONLY - Saving a workspace can now include collected data. Reloading it will reload (and resume) tracing. Check the general settings (Edit -> Options, General) for some new options.
  • PRO ONLY - Workspaces are now "locked" for writing so that multiple instances of PingPlotter Pro don't accidentally overwrite settings.
  • PRO ONLY - Alerts can now be associated with a specific trace target only. This allows better monitoring of intermediate routers on one trace while not monitoring that same router on another trace. Also, the same target can have different alerts (say, for instance, if you're using a different trace engine and the expected latency / packet loss is different, even though the target is the same).
  • PingPlotter would sometimes freeze when a float-over tooltip was visible and a certain part of the PingPlotter user interface was clicked at just the right time.
  • Sending an email with data (File -> Send Email...) wouldn't work if there was an invalid character in the host name (like an *).
  • PingPlotter would sometimes crash when loaded (on just a few computers) due to problems with the integrity checking logic.
  • A screenshot can now be included in alert emails (by adding ##SCREENSHOT## to email body).
  • PRO ONLY - The configuration name can now be included in the alert email body (##CONFIG##), and in the subject line ($config).
  • On some computers, the 30 day trial would expire the second time PingPlotter was run.
  • /Regserver command line option didn't fail gracefully during install.
  • Some truncated / corrupt save files wouldn't show a proper error message when attempting to load.
  • Email PingPlotter Support... menu option (under Help menu) has been streamlined.
  • 10 character SMTP passwords weren't properly encrypted / decrypted, meaning you couldn't log in to your SMTP server if you're using a 10 character password with SMTP authentication.
  • Uninstaller now supports the /S command line for silent removal of PingPlotter.
  • PRO ONLY - The copy IP/Name right-click menu option wouldn't actually copy the information to the clipboard.
  • PRO ONLY - Remote trace wouldn't take advantage of Proxy server settings.
  • PRO ONLY - Closing the summary graph and then clicking the "File" menu could cause an access violation.
  • PRO ONLY - PingPlotter Pro would sometimes trace twice in the same target interval.
  • STANDARD ONLY - When the trial period expired with PingPlotter Standard, double-clicking on a .pp2 file would cause an error.
  • STANDARD ONLY - In PingPlotter Standard, maximizing the window, then closing and reopening would cause the window to come up the wrong size and position.
  • Several other bug fixes / tweaks.

PingPlotter Standard V3.20.1s - December 13th, 2007

This release fixes a few problems and adds several small features. This update is free to all licensed users of PingPlotter Standard version 2.x or 3.x.

Changes

  • Fixed non-working right-click menu on edit controls (for copy/paste with the mouse).
  • Added balloon callout instead of error message if no target name was entered, or if the entered name was invalid.
  • Enhanced scripting functionality slightly to give access to more internal variables.
  • Fixed problem "remembering" non-standard whois servers.
  • Invalid characters in target names would cause problems when trying to save data / images (for example, a colon or a slash). These characters are now stripped from the default filename before opening the save dialog.
  • DNS Name and Graph column widths are now correctly reloaded after close / restart.
  • Upgrading from 2.60s to 3.20s now properly migrates setting values that can be migrated (PingPlotter Standard only).
  • Sending data or an image in an email through Outlook Express (File -> Send Email...) would sometimes block PingPlotter from collecting data while the email was being authored. This is now launched in a non-blocking way.
  • Fixed a problem sending STARTTLS alert emails (i.e., gmail).
  • Misc other minor tweaks, fixes and adjustments.

To upgrade, download run the installation. There is no need to uninstall the old version first. Your settings should be kept / migrated as needed.


PingPlotter Standard V3.20s - November 16th, 2007

This release has a number of new features and bug fixes. This is a free upgrade for all licensed PingPlotter Standard users (yes, even those who bought in 1998).

New Features

  • PingPlotter can now be run from a USB drive and license information (and other data) is stored on the USB drive instead of the system registry. See the installed help file (Help -> Contents) section "Advanced Features", "Running from a USB drive" for more details.
  • Better support for Windows Vista. See below for a detailed list of improvements.
  • New UDP packet type can target a specific UDP port rather than using "unix-style" ports 33434 and up. This allows tracing directly to a UDP server (certain UDP servers only). For this release, we've included 3 types - Echo, UDP DNS, and IAX (Asterisk VoIP) ping.
  • Time graph enhancements:
    • Focus indicator is much better.
    • PL% and ms are displayed on graph scale (and descriptions expand for taller graphs).
    • Mouse scroll wheel scrolls forward / backwards in time.
    • Depressing the wheel and scrolling zooms in and out (with the "zoom" happening at the point of the mouse cursor).
  • New alert option to not show the alert indicator on the main graph (for logging alerts that always log).
  • EMail alerts can use SMTP STARTTLS secure connections - this allows use of GMail SMTP servers. See our knowledge base article on configuring this for instructions.
  • New help file format (now uses HTML help instead of WinHelp) - easier to read, plus lots of new and updated text.
  • PingPlotter can minimize when "X" is hit on the upper right (instead of closing / prompting for close).
  • PingPlotter can create an email (using MAPI) including a screenshot or data. Check the File->Send Email... menu.
  • ALT-Tab works better in non-standard task / windows managers, or in Windows Vista.
  • Cascade / Tile / Move / Size commands now work from the taskbar right-click menu.

Fixes, Tweaks, Etc.

  • Install is now code-signed, so running the installer correctly shows "Nessoft, LLC" instead of "Unknown Publisher".
  • Improvements in a number of areas when running large fonts.
  • If ICMP.DLL wasn't available on the system, PingPlotter would crash with a cryptic message on startup.
  • The "Maximum samples in memory" setting now defaults to 250,000 instead of unlimited (running for weeks won't run you out of memory now).
  • Improved Windows Vista compatibility:
    • With 64 bit Vista, you no longer need to disable DEP for PingPlotter.
    • Now tells Windows Vista that it knows about Vista, which makes directory handling better (especially of the \Program Files directory, which is read-only under Vista).
    • Uses new Windows Open / Save dialogs.
    • Help now works, including F1 tooltips.
    • Uses Vista font type / sizes.
    • Installer is now Vista-aware, making permission elevations better and upgrades smoother.
    • Note: The UDP packet type still does not work completely under Vista.
  • Fixed a good handful of bugs (how many bugs are in a handful?).
  • New error handling system makes it easier for us to help you if you get an error.
  • Lots of route changes takes less CPU to handle, and route changes are more stable to work with when collecting data from a route that is changing a lot.
  • Upgraded to latest component versions for a number of third party components, plus the latest compiler versions.
  • New install system. The default install path is now Program Files\PingPlotter Standard, although if you update an existing install, your old install path will be used (probably Program Files\Ping Plotter).

PingPlotter Standard V2.60s - February 14th, 2005

This release has a number of new features, and a few non-feature changes (ie: bug fixes).

New Features

  • PingPlotter now supports TCP traceroute, in addition to UDP and ICMP. This allows additional options in tracing to a site that's using a firewall blocking UDP and ICMP. For this release, TCP is supported under Windows 2000, XP and 2003 only. For users of Windows XP SP2 (which blocks the sending of TCP raw sockets), we support the use of WinPcap to create the TCP packets.
  • New "Getting started" screen with links to help content.
  • Significant improvements in ability to run as a non-administrative user. Admin user can set default setups and non-admin users "inherit" those settings, but then have their own setups (stored in their local profiles). You still need to be an administrator to install PingPlotter, though.
  • All new options dialog that includes new features for version 2.60, in addition to having a more intuitive layout and "look and feel".
  • When an alert is triggered on a specific hop, that hop shows an indicator, with a float-over hint of which alert is firing.
  • Selecting a hop in the upper graph highlights it in the time graph (if it's shown there).
  • Alert email body text can be customized (a huge benefit for alerting to a mobile phone / SMS / etc, where the current alert message is too long).
  • You can now enter a time as a "Samples to Include". PingPlotter will try and calculate how many samples will equal that time period. Example: enter "30" minutes. If you have a 2.5 second trace interval, PingPlotter will convert this to 720.
  • PingPlotter now tells you about new versions with a dialog with options to supress, rather than just showing that an update is available on the status bar.

Other changes

  • Changed the way packet queuing works on all packet types to reduce the number of "extra" packets that get sent out after the final destination is reached.
  • Interhop delay setting is now honored more rigorously (especially on UDP and TCP types).
  • When PingPlotter was running, rebooting was sometimes blocked until PingPlotter was closed.
  • Float-over hints sometimes got cut off - they now make themselves fit onto the screen
  • Right-clicking a time-graph in the label regions didn't pop up the menu. Fixed.
  • Testing an alert email now pulls in the current final destination to flush out email body
  • Changing "Max samples to hold in memory" from a non-zero to all (0) would delete all samples in memory.
  • On multi-monitor systems, if PingPlotter was closed while visible on a secondary monitor, and then restarted with that monitor disabled, it would be shown off-screen. This has been corrected.
  • Applying changes in the options dialog now saves the configuration immediately, rather than waiting till PingPlotter is closed next.
  • Misc tweaks / tidbits.

PingPlotter Standard V2.51.1s - June 16, 2004

This is primarily a bug fix.

Bug Fixes

  • When "# of times to trace" was set to 1, hitting the "Start" button wouldn't update the button with the proper status.
  • Users without administrative rights could have PingPlotter crash when launching.
  • Users without administrative rights would have problems with license key being recognized in some cases.
  • List index out of bounds error on some route changes - fixed.
  • Access violation when right-clicking the main window when no trace was running - fixed.

Other Changes

  • Route change mask can now be auto-applied by multiselecting several routes and right-clicking the appropriate hop. Only the selected routes will be used in the calculation.

PingPotter Standard V2.51s - May 25th, 2004

Version 2.51 has several new features and fixes some bugs that are potentially painful.

As always, this is a free update for all licensed users, and can be installed on top of your existing version without uninstalling.

Here's a list of changes since the 2.50 release:

New Features

  • Allow configuration of SMTP server port, in addition to validated username / password logins to the SMTP server for sending alert emails.
  • Targets that are associated with an alert are now listed on the alert configuration screen.
  • Multi-selecting routes in the route-change window now highlights the hops that have changed in the upper graph area. This makes it a lot easier to find which hops are oscillating so a route change mask can be added.
  • All errors now use an error dialog with a "Details" option, which shows more details (primarily, the stack trace) about an error that can be emailed to support. Additionally, the support email address and support page URL are listed.

Bug Fixes

  • Test sending an alert email would leave a thread attempting to redeliver that email if the initial test failed.
  • List Index Out of Bounds error could happen during "aggressive" route changes.
  • Access Violations could sometimes occur if right-clicking a hop just when a route change made that hop obsolete.
  • Route discovery logic was too aggressive when high packet loss was on the final destination. Route would lengthen on some occasions and show lower packet loss than it should.
  • Route wouldn't "shorten" once it was lengthened due to a poorly responding final destination. This could leave one or more blank hops before the final destination, and the final destination would never recover these hops.
  • Errors were not being logged to the PingPlotter.rip file correctly, making bugs much harder to track down.
  • Automatically generated filenames (alerts, auto-save names) didn't allow non US characters.
  • $host and $dest in alerts would always used the same name, even if the alert wasn't targeted at the final destination.
  • Some .pp2 save files would not be reloadable if the save file had more hops than the current configuration allowed.
  • Resuming PingPlotter when data was sent from MultiPing didn't always correctly trace the full route - very specific instances only (it's unlikely that anyone was significantly impacted by this).
  • Log to file alert always wrote the current time rather than the actual sample time.

Other Changes

  • Changed the way alerts are associated with targets when saved and reloaded. The 2.51 installer will automatically migrate your settings, but interoperability of alerts between 2.51 and prior versions is limited (in case you need both installed for some reason).
  • Some shared engine code changes made in MultiPing was merged back in to PingPlotter.
  • Minor "tweaks" to better accommodate users running large fonts (primarily in the options dialog).
  • A couple of minor broken links in the help file were corrected.

PingPlotter Standard V2.50s - March 13th, 2004

New Features

  • Now supports UDP (ie: Unix-Style) packets. This should allow PingPlotter to be useful in some network conditions where ICMP is being blocked. Under NT/2000/XP, you must have administrative rights to send UDP packets.
  • DSCP / TOS byte of packets can now be changed for better testing of VOIP (and other QoS enabled) networks.
  • Integration with MultiPing 1.01 and later - MultiPing can now send data to PingPlotter (for saving, image creation, etc). MultiPing can also launch PingPlotter and start tracing a target from the right-click menu.
  • Improved route change handling - especially when hop N-1 (where N = the final destination) times out 100% of the time.
  • Adding a route mask from the right-click window now merges the data for those hosts immediately so there is no need to reset that trace session.
  • New INI file setting to bind to a specific adapter (works with Raw Socket and UDP only). Let us know if you want to use this feature and we will send instructions.
  • New logo and application icons.
  • Internal engine errors now show error message in a panel above graph to help troubleshooting problems. This data is transient, and is not saved in the PingPlotter save file.

Bugs fixed since release 2.41

  • Fixed a floating point divided by zero error when sizing "just" right (and small).
  • Route change exclusions weren't being loaded correctly in the 2.40/2.41 releases.
  • Large fonts work much better - previous 2.4x releases had unusable Alert dialog with large fonts, and would cut off text on the graphs in the main window.
  • .pp2 (save) files would sometimes not reload correctly if route was only one hop long in save file.
  • Error would sometimes occur when "Samples to Include" was increased and focus was set on period slightly prior to current.
  • Additional "WhoIs" lookups listed on menu, but didn't do actual lookup.

Other changes

  • The packet sizes specified in 2.41 and earlier was used for the *cargo* size, which meant that the actual packet size was an additional 28 bytes. In this release, the specified packet size is the actual TCP/IP packet size (cargo + header).
  • The 2.41 and earlier default packet cargo (Packet Number + $AA) was recognized by Snort as an attack by a ICMP PING Cyberkit virus/worm. The default packet has been changed to Packet Number + "PingPlotter" + Version Number. In addition to not firing the Snort rule, this is more polite as network admins can tell what program is sending the packets, and act accordingly.
  • Allow file names in auto-save image and auto-save data to include seconds ($second).
  • Changing "Maximum samples in memory" immediately trims data if sample count exceeds setting (previously, you had to trace at least once to trim the data)

PingPlotter Standard V2.41s - June 30th, 2003

Version 2.41 is a relatively minor update and has the following new features and bug fixes (since 2.40):

New Features

  • Because of the recent expiration of the Unisys license that affected GIF files, we now support creation of GIF images, in addition to PNG and BMP.
  • PNG Images now default to 256 color, resulting in about a 25% size savings (previously, the only format was 24 bit color on PNGs). An INI switch allows setting back to 24 bit color instead of 8 bit. E-mail to support@pingplotter.com for details on how to use this.
  • The auto-save configuration dialog now has buttons for "Save Now", to allow for testing of switches, as well as being able to do an immediate save whenever needed. Note that doing a "Save Now" in no way affects the point at which the next auto-save happens.

Bugs Fixed

  • WHOIS Window has a popup error on Windows 95/98/ME. This error was non-critical (clicking it continues fine). FIXED.
  • No way to turn off the time graph for a destination that wasn't reachable. With 2.41, right-clicking on the time graph allows you to hide it.
  • Right-clicking on "Destination unreachable" line in upper graph now acts like it was the final destination - allowing WhoIs lookups, alert setup, and showing / hiding of timeline graphs.
  • Log to file alert writing all data instead of just data when alert conditions are matched. FIXED.
  • Ignore first hops settings worked, but wasn't saved between sessions. FIXED.
  • Some dual processor machines would go to our license server each time Ping Plotter is run. We don't want to know how often you run Ping Plotter, and this is a bug. FIXED.
  • Auto-save frequency wouldn't allow use of "Days" and converted that to seconds instead. Note that the maximum interval is roughly 35 days.
  • Certain command line switch combinations indicated that the Pro Version was necessary. FIXED.

PingPlotter Standard V2.4s - March 9th, 2003

Version 2.40 has the following new features and bug fixes (since 2.30.1):

  • Complete re-write of internal model. Allows some capabilities in this version and lots of cool stuff in the future.
  • Annotations can be tied to a point in the time graph to show notes. This gets saved in all images.
  • Save files format was changed and now takes up only 5-15% of what it used to (much of this is due to new internal compression).
  • Entering a full URL in the trace address box now interprets correctly and uses only the base address automatically.
  • Can now "Copy as summary text" - shows packet loss % / min/max, etc instead of only showing all the raw data.
  • Can do some annotation of IP address in the history window so you can recognize what an IP was for (ie: enter an address of "10.0.0.1 My_Router" will auto-resolve 10.0.0.1 to "My_Router" even if not in a hosts table).
  • Route change exclusion masks can be automatically calculated based on history. This makes it easy to exclude route changes for regularly oscillating routers at a hop (right-click on hop - does 255.255.XXX.XXX masking only).
  • Final destination time-graph is *always* shown (unless explicitly supressed) - even if it doesn't respond (or gets lost from the route for some reason).
  • Major re-write of alert system. Can now notify when a condition starts, when it ends, or as it is happening (as it is happening was only option before). Added the ability to launch an EXE when a condition occurs, and can also change the tray icon or show a message in the tray.
  • Now supports Windows XP display schemes.
  • DNS lookups use new Windows XP functionality when available to speed lookups (especially IPs with no names).
  • Enabled history scrollbar on the "Address to trace" history when tracing.
  • Added ability to multi-select and delete from "Address to trace" history (by multi-selecting and then right-clicking to pop up menu).
  • Low latency hops (ie: less than 5 ms) would only average to whole numbers on time-line graphs. Now averages to accuracy of pixel size.
  • Double-clicking on a hop number now shows/hides the time graph for that hop.
  • Now defaults to "Best Method" of pinging. Uses high performance timers on OSes that need it (ie: NT/2000), standard method on others (ie: 95/98/ME/XP).
  • Updated "WhoIs" parsing logic to redirect to the right registrar. Now defaults to whois.crsnic.net instead of whois.networksolutions.com for name lookups.
  • Changed "Add Monitor" and "Modify Monitor" options to single "Watch this host (Alerts)..." menu to reduce confusion on setting up alerts.

Misc. changed functionality / bug fixes

  • Fixed a bug in route change logic where data would sometimes get lost.
  • Whois window greys the "Query" button while query is in effect (previous versions didn't give positive indication of current status).
  • Route length oscillation no longer introduces incorrect packet loss in final destination.
  • Re-worked logic in the way the "Route Change" list is populated so that frequent changes take a LOT less CPU time (previously, CPU could be at 100% - now at < 1% for same situation).
  • Increased display speed on time graphs with big datasets (our test PC regularly runs at the 2 million sample mark - scrolling through old data is *WAY* faster (100X for some operations)).
  • Splitters sometimes got lost - this is fixed.
  • Clicking on a route now changes display immediately rather than having to triple or quadruple click sometimes (old bug).
  • Can do Raw Socket ping instead of going through ICMP.DLL. (Note that this capability has no advantages in *most* situations).
  • Moved all image logic internally and got rid of LPNG.DLL.
  • Time graphs don't flash nearly as much - lots of flashing used to happen on route changes or as you scroll.
  • Prompt for save on close now shows program name and destination (previously, lack of program name sometimes added confusion on shutdown of Windows).
  • Fixed access violation when invalid hex string entered in packet cargo type / data.
  • Disconnecting network card under Windows 98 sometimes didn't show timeouts. Fixed.
  • Time graph rounding and cutoff were improved for smoother operation.
  • Text Export shouldn't ever export a negative number now.
  • (blatant teaser) Added basic support for new functionality in upcoming "Pro" version.

August 18th, 2001 - Ping Plotter 2.30.1 released.

This is primarily a bug fix, including the following:

  • Slow load times when running Norton Antivirus Auto-Protect fixed.
  • Some routes (mostly when the next to the last hop wasn't responding, but the last hop was) would cause Ping Plotter to blue-screen under Windows 95/98/ME.
  • Alerts sometimes didn't fire correctly if the visible graph was selecting a route that wasn't the current route.
  • Alert e-mails had a date of 1899 instead of current date.
  • Alert e-mails were being introduced to the SMTP server without a from line, so a very select few SMTP servers would reject.
  • If the final destination wasn't in the route because of a route lengthening (and the final destination stopped responding at the same time), alerts on that hop wouldn't always fire.
  • /save command line option didn't work correctly.
  • The focus rectangle sometimes didn't draw on the lower graph when focused on a non-current period. This is now corrected.
  • List index out of bound error when doing a text export under certain conditions.

May 20th, 2001 - Ping Plotter 2.30 released!

Version 2.30 has the following new features and bug fixes (since 2.20):

  • The timeline graphs now show packet loss percentages. This adds information to time periods greater than a few hours (where it used to just show that there was at least one packet lost), and can help show trending quite a bit better. If you prefer the old style graphs, hold down the shift key while right clicking on a timeline graph and enable "Old style timeline graphs".
  • Packet loss percentages can now be shown on the upper graph.
  • Added ability to turn on/off min/max lines on the upper graph. This can help during long term monitoring where a single bad response could change the scale of the entire graph.
  • The lower timeline graphs can now be scrolled using ALT-LEFT, ALT-RIGHT, ALT-HOME, ALT-END, ALT-PGUP, ALT-PGDN. These keys work when the upper graph is selected (because the lower graphs don't actually accept focus). Clicking on the lower graph will focus the upper graph.
  • The lower timeline graphs now resize based on their current size when adding a new graph - rather than resizing to 65 pixels always.
  • Added an option to use high performance timers when tracing. This increases the accuracy when using Windows NT/2000 - where the best accuracy reported by ICMP.DLL is 10 ms.
  • Added ARIN Block IP lookups to see who owns an IP address. This works even if the IP doesn't resolve to a name.
  • All Open/Save dialogs have been updated to have the "Places" bar for Windows 2000/ME users.
  • Added automatic version checking. Ping Plotter will now check to see if there's an update available and let you know if there is.
  • Added support for multiple INI files. This is useful when you automatically start multiple instances of Ping Plotter and want the output to be different between instances.
  • Added "zooming" logic so when you decrease the time shown in the timeline graph it tries to keep your selected time period in focus. This can be useful to focus in on a period in the 48 hour graph, and then zoom down to the 30 minute (or similar) graph to see the period in more detail.
  • Changed the alert system to no longer use averages. Averages were hard to understand in the context of lost packets, and in all cases we reviewed, the alternate method was superior.
  • Added ability to change the Subject line in alert e-mail messages. $host can be included to show the final destination.
  • Exporting to text files was substantially improved.
  • Can ping only the final destination (rather than tracing all hops between you and the final destination). While this turns off some of the core functionality of Ping Plotter, it can be handy if you're using alerts, or only want to graph performance to the final destination and don't want to use the extra bandwidth required to trace the intermediate hops
  • Registration codes are now validate against a server database. Details are available at www.pingplotter.com.
  • Changing packet cargo options now take affect immediately.
  • Stability improvements (as always). Several access violations fixed; a problem with save files was fixed; Improved alert reliability; minor graph overdraw no longer happens; PNG files now come out with better color; WhoIs processing cleaned up a bit; Minimizing to the tray works more reliably (including improved tray "click" behavior).

July 23rd, 2000 - 2.20 released!

The following are changes between version 2.03 and 2.2

Version 2.2 has the following new features:

  • Route changes are now handled, and all history is stored with the route that it was recorded on. This means you can see that your ISP (or someone in the route) changed the route to correct a problem (or make things worse!). Ping Plotter keeps track of all the routes for as long as you like. Additionally, certain route changes can be excluded so normal changes aren't flagged or logged.
  • You're now able to specify the maximum number of samples you want to keep in memory. This will allow tracing sessions of unlimited length (you'll no longer run out of memory after 2 weeks of hard non-stop tracing).
  • You can now "Save as Image" (instead of having to copy it to the clipboard and use another application to make the image). Supported file formats are .PNG and .BMP. (Before you ask: JPG is way too lossy for concise text/line based graphics, and GIF is owned by Unisys and requires a license to deploy).
  • You can now schedule your data to be automatically saved (at interval). The file name can include any portion of the date/time plus the host name so you can keep nice history files (use this with the maximum in-memory sample count to keep data around forever)
  • You can now schedule an image to be automatically saved (at interval). You might use this to keep an intranet page current, just keep nice images of history. These can be saved in PNG or BMP format.
  • Double clicking an entry in the history list now automatically starts tracing to that address.
  • Trace name/address now shows on taskbar title to distinguish multiple running copies.
  • The .PPS file extension has been retired in favor of .PP2. Microsoft PowerPoint used the PPS extension, and in cases like this, they win. This extension can be overridden manually in your .INI file as well if you find that .PP2 interferes with some application you're using.
  • Re-associating with the .PP2 extension now prompts before happening if it's already associated with something else.
  • Changed WhoIS parsing to better parse new Internic output. Also updated to better work under Windows 2000.
  • Changed lower "time line graph" so that dropped packets don't automatically make the bar full height - if some good samples are included in that single-pixel time period, then the bar is the correct height for the good samples.
  • Entering an IP address (as opposed to a name) now starts tracing immediately (before the IP is resolved into a name). The name shows as (resolving) until the request is complete.
  • Misc. bug fixes including Alert system e-mail fix, high rate data loss, some settings not saving on exit, registration routines work better on NT if you don't have admin access, restoring from tray refreshes the timeline graph.
  • Free upgrade to all registered users.

11/15/98 - Version 2.03 released - bug fix

Changes between version 2.0 and 2.03

This version is *mostly* a bug fix version. It includes the following changes:

  • Fixed case sensitivity on registration code bug.
  • Fixed occasional access violation when tracing
  • Fixed occasional lockup under Win95
  • Fixed so DNS name doesn't ever return your own computer's name when a hop times out.
  • Fixed so DNS lookups always happens - even if the first hop times out.
  • Fixed the alert system so it works correctly now. Alert system is much more reliable.
  • Fixed the alert system so more than one alert can be tied to any IP address
  • Fixed problem where saving a sample set would sometimes not work (when there was no DNS name).
  • Minor changes to registration code system.
  • Fixed "Sample Index too High" error when exporting to text file.
  • Export to text file now allows exporting with the samples in rows rather than columns (to overcome Excel's 255 column limit).

7/3/98 - Version 2.0 released.

Changes between version 1.00.2 and 2.0

Version 2.0 of Ping Plotter introduces a bunch of great new features. Among them are:

  • Will graph single hops (from one to all) from your trace over time - and display them on a graph. This graph can be resized, rescaled, zoomed, dragged and manipulated to give you exactly the information you need to find the problem.
  • New "Alert" system. This will allow you to set parameters where you want to be notified of the condition. If the conditions fire an alert, you can log that data to a text file, play a wave file, or send yourself e-mail with the pertinent information included.
  • You can save and load sample sets - and then resume (right-click the trace button when you have existing data and you're not tracing) the trace. This way you can have multiple sessions of data in the same graph.
  • Exporting to comma delimited text file for use with external programs (Excel) is supported.
  • You can now "Fix" the graph scale to a specific size so that bad hops don't cause all valid points to be resized into a tiny graph.
  • The icon can be moved from the taskbar to the tool tray for long-term monitoring projects.
  • You can ignore 1-5 of the first hops in your trace (as opposed to the 1 that version 1.00.2 supported).
  • Round Trip time is now shown below the last hop. This time is exactly the same as the last hop, but many people me what the round trip time was, so I included it to make things easier for people to understand.
  • All columns of the graph are now resizable.
  • The numbers for min and max time are now displayable on the upper graph (right-click the graph).
  • An option has been added so that Ping Plotter works better under NT 3.51 (under Advanced options, "Use non-threaded name lookups"). This is automatically turned on when installed under NT 3.51.
  • Timeout time and "attack rates" (time Ping Plotter waits between sending out requests for each hop - this was 25ms in 1.00.2, but really bad connections might need to make this longer) can be customized.
  • Ping Plotter 2.0 uses significantly fewer resources while tracing.
  • Limited whois functionality is included. Right now, it only queries the Internic server - a future release may expand on this based on requests.
  • The "Copy as Image" feature includes more information and looks nicer.
  • This version will be shareware - and will cost $15.00 to register. The unregistered version will allow you to use all these features to evaluate, but will include "reminder" notices to encourage people to register. The current freeware version will remain freeware and will remain available to those that prefer it.
  • More (what feature list would be complete without the ubiquitous "More" feature?).