EZ Pinger
Network Monitoring & Management Tool
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EZ Pinger Usage Tips

SHIFT Key

There are a few locations where holding the SHIFT key while clicking modifies the behavior of EZ Pinger:

Window Close ("X") button: Holding SHIFT while clicking the Close button will close the EZ Pinger application instead of minimizing it to the system notification area.

Column Sizing: If you resize a column on the Monitored Hosts page while holding SHIFT, other columns of the same type are sized as well. This does not apply to all columns.

Mini Mode button: Holding SHIFT while clicking the Mini Mode button (>> button on Monitored Hosts page) sizes the window width to fit the host list.

Reset Host (Either the toolbar button or the host right-click context menu): Clears the last error, IP address, and other internal statistics in addition to the host status information. Hold the CONTROL key instead of SHIFT to reset all statistics for a host.

Sending Email Alerts

The options to configure email recipients for host online/offline events are not available until at least one email server and corresponding return address are defined, as well as text for the Host Offline and Host Online messages. If these options are grayed out, make sure you have valid server, address, and email content setup on the Email Configuration tab of the Configuration window. We recommend utilizing the variables available by right-clicking within the Subject and Body fields.

We recommend turning on the feature to send email through maxoutput.com servers whenever possible. It is much faster than sending through SMTP, and much easier to configure. To preserve your privacy, email content is not recorded by our servers any longer than is necessary to relay the email. You should also setup SMTP server options as well if you can in case EZ Pinger is not able to connect to maxoutput.com to send messages. When both types of servers are setup, EZ Pinger first tries to send through maxoutput.com, and then if that fails it attempts to use the first then second SMTP servers.

Alternate Host Views

In addition to the standard view, you can right-click the Monitored Hosts list and choose View As and choose one of four alternate presentation of the host list.

Re-ordering Hosts

To change the order in which hosts appear, drag and drop them in the list of hosts on the Configuration screen.

Simulate a Host Failure

To simulate what would happen when a host goes down, right click the host from the Monitored Hosts screen and choose "Simulate Failure." The failure will be simulated for 5 minutes or until you right-click the host and uncheck the option.

Host Dependencies

Hosts can be set to be dependent upon other hosts. This is useful if you have several hosts that rely upon a router or other device for connectivity. If a parent host (one that another depends upon) is offline, its dependent hosts are not tested, preventing meaningless errors and alerts. You can define dependency on the 'Dependencies' tab of the hosts configuration screen.

Running from a USB Flash Drive

The Deluxe edition of EZ Pinger can be run from a USB Flash drive. To install it to a drive, go to the About EZ Pinger page of the Configuration screen and click the "Install..." button.

When run from USB, EZ Pinger does not make changes in the system registry, or changes in any files on the host PC. This makes it a great diagnostic cool that you can run anywhere.

As mentioned above, EZ Pinger looks for a host configuration file corresponding to the name of the host PC (ComputerName.ezph). If it finds one of these as it loads, it uses it instead of the default Hosts.ezph file. If you find yourself running EZ Pinger from a flash drive often, make and rename a copy of your Hosts.ezph file for each computer you visit.

Web Server

The Deluxe edition of EZ Pinger includes a built-in web server (which is turned off by default, turn it on under Configuration / Preferences). This allows the status of EZ Pinger hosts to be checked and managed via a web browser. Additionally, EZ Pinger is able to detect common mobile device browsers (such as cellular phones and PDAs) and serve a reduced interface to those devices.

To prevent prying eyes from viewing your host list, we recommend enabling at a minimum a View password. Without a View password set, all clients are able to see the host list. We also recommend setting a Manage password so only selected users can issue host commands. If a view password is set but no manage password is set, all users who have authenticated using the View password are also able to manage hosts. If a manage password is set but a view password is not, EZ Pinger will not ask for a password until the "Management login" link is clicked on one of the host status pages. We also recommend using a non-standard port for the web server, such as 7464 (which, incidentally, spells PING on a telephone keypad).

If you are logged in to the web interface with Manage privileges, right-click on a host for a popup menu of host options. Or to manage multiple hosts, turn on the checkmark in the rightmost column and scroll to the bottom of the list to choose an action to perform.

The username to log in to the web server is important. If a user logs in with a username that matches the name of one of the host groups, only that group will be visible to that user. In addition, if a group name is included in the path of the URL used to access the site (such as www.sitename.com/host_groupname/) only that group will be displayed. This is useful, for example, if you are monitoring hosts for several clients and want your clients to be able to view the status of their hosts; just have them login using a username that matches a host group name.

Files used by EZ Pinger

Files are located in either the global application data folder (C:\Documents and Settings\Application Data\Maximum Output Software\EZ Pinger) or in the EZ Pinger program folder (C:\Program Files\EZ Pinger).

EZ Pinger Hosts File (*.ezph) [Application Data folder]:

These files contain the definition of your hosts and their alert settings. File format is actually Comma-Separated-Value, though we do not recommend trying to modify them manually.

When launching EZ Pinger, if a .ezph file using the name of the computer is available (ComputerName.ezph) it will be used instead of the default Hosts.ezph. This is useful if you want to run multiple copies of Pinger from the same location (such as a USB Flash drive).

EZ Pinger Preferences File (*.ezpp) [Application Data folder]:

Each Host file (*.ezph) now has an accompanying preferences file (*.ezpp). This contains the settings from the configuration window's "Preferences" page.

Actions.ezp [EZ Pinger program folder]:

This file contains the actions available when you right-click on a host from the main screen. It is an ASCII text file. each line representing one of four possible entries: A line with no = sign represents a parent menu that can have one or more sub-entries. A line with an = sign contains a command name, an =, and the command line to launch to execute that action. Placing a \ at the front of a line puts that entry in the last parent menu defined. A line with a single dash ("-") is interpreted as a separator bar for the menu. You may modify this file at will, but EZ Pinger does not contain any error handling if the file is not formatted correctly and may cause a crash of the application if there is a problem. On a command line a %1 represents the address of the selected host, and a %2 represents the current computer name. An asterisk at the beginning of a command line indicates that Windows authentication is required and EZ Pinger will prompt for username and password information if it has not been stored in the host data.

EmailConfig.ezp [Application Data folder]:

This file contains the email server configuration information. It should not be edited directly, but it is created automatically the first time you click the OK button on the configuration screen.

EZPinger.log [Application Data folder]:

Contains the activity log for EZ Pinger. It is formatted in tab-delimited ASCII. There are 4 columns: Date, Host, Message, Type. It is updated on disk periodically.

Waves (*.wav) [EZ Pinger program folder]:

These are the sound files used by EZ Pinger. EZ Pinger scans its program folder for all .wav files and makes them available in the host configuration screens.

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