Posted by & filed under Security, Windows / Server.

A few people have emailed asking why Windows Server 2008 does not reply to pings (and how to enable it).

It doesn’t by default. No official reason why, but it probably has something to do with POD (Ping of Death) and Ping Flooding. Commonly used in Denial of Service attacks, POD is when a target server is sent an unusually large ICMP packet. For Ping flooding, if the target server is set to respond to pings, it may become bogged down and unable to effectively respond to other requests such as HTTP and FTP. Denial of Service attacks usually require a coordinated effort among multiple computers to halt a server - but it happens, and often!

To enable pings on the public profile (ie. over the Internet), go to Administrative Tools -> Firewall with Advanced Security -> Inbound Rules and find “File and Printer Sharing (Echo Request – ICMPv4-In)” -> Right-click and select “Enable.”


Enable Ping Requests Windows 2008


You can also open up the command prompt and type:

netsh firewall set icmpsetting 8

or type the following to disable the setting:

netsh firewall set icmpsetting 8 disable

For Windows Server 2008 R2, type:

netsh advfirewall firewall add rule name=”ICMP Allow incoming V4 echo request” protocol=icmpv4:8,any dir=in action=allow

One Response to “Enabling Ping Replies in Windows Server 2008 and R2”

  1. Brian Dao

    Very good post especially on the NetSH command. I’d just like to add that by enabling ping reply on your servers, your servers could be subjected to DoS (deny of service) attack since flooding a server with a large number of ping requests is very easy to do. You should take additional steps to further lock down the scope by right click on the File and Printer Sharing (Echo Request – ICMPv4 In) rule and if possible, specify which servers/computers and/or IP range can ping your servers.


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