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How to test speed over the network between two systems

Last Updated: Apr 27, 2016 03:23PM EDT

Using netcat (or nc) to listen on a particular network port on the first system running Linux. Enter the following command into a terminal:

nc -lk 12345 >/dev/null

This tells the system to listen for network traffic on port 12345 and to keep listening. Any output is sent to /dev/null.

Now that the first system is set up to listen, On the second system, run the command below, changing the IP address to that which is assigned to the first system.


dd if=/dev/zero bs=16000 count=625 | nc -v 192.168.123.123 12345

The first part of the command tells the machine to copy 10 megabytes of data from /dev/zero in 16 kilobyte blocks. The part after the pipe tells it to send that to the first system over port 12345. The results displayed will indicate the speed of the network, measured in megabytes per second.

Once you're done testing, go to the terminal on Desktop and use CTRL-C to stop netcat on the first system.

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