Question Tracert request times out on some sites/services, unless I'm connected to a VPN

Apr 29, 2020
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Hello,
This is my first post here since I couldn't find a thread about this on the internet.

For about 2 weeks I had internet issues. When I try to access certain sites ie. 9gag or reserved, I get a request timed out on tracert. This happens also to some services like discord.

My first guess was that my ISP has a problem since it occured without any reason. After calling, they told me they don't have any problems, repairs and will send technicians to see if my router is working. They found nothing and the problem is still there. One way to solve the problem was connecting to a VPN. It's a temporary solution, but paying for a VPN if I don't have to AND for the internet doesn't sound too good. I talked with my friends, since we did some networking back in the day and maybe someone setup a blocking device or it's a partial DoS attack. This might also be coupled with the ongoing quarantine.
I tried everything and I'm at loss, did someone have the same issue?

Here are some example ones.



 
I would try a different DNS server like 8.8.8.8 or 1.1.1.1. This may or may not make any difference. It mostly depends if the ip address you see come back to a different IP.

These IP blocks are owned by cloudflare which is a hosting service. Your traffic actually is passing through a number of different ISP. In your case it is pretty easy to see the ISP and NTT is a huge ISP so they have tools that let you look in their network.

So if I run tracert from a NTT route in frankfurt I get this.
Tracing the route to 104.16.106.144

1 ae-10.r20.frnkge13.de.bb.gin.ntt.net (129.250.4.111) [MPLS: Label 446 Exp 0] 5 msec 2 msec 2 msec
2 ae-8.r01.frnkge07.de.bb.gin.ntt.net (129.250.4.79) 2 msec 2 msec 2 msec
3 213.198.81.142 7 msec 6 msec 16 msec
4 104.16.106.144 1 msec 2 msec 1 msec


You will notice that the ip in hop 2 is identical to the one in your trace but this trace completes.

This trace says the server is in frankfurt but it actually isn't. If you do the same trace from a router in USA you will get very low ping times which indicates there are servers using the same identical IP address. This makes it extremely messy to troubleshoot when they use the same IP in different parts of the world.

My guess is that cloudflair or maybe NTT has a issue returning traffic to your IP address. The path going to a server IP can be different than the path coming back.

This may or may not clear itself. It could be a connection failed and some ISP is on a backup connection. It appears they misconfigured the routing parameters. Still there is not much you can do about this. Cloudflare and/or NTT is not going to talk to a end user.
 
Reactions: SamirD
Apr 29, 2020
3
2
15
0
I would try a different DNS server like 8.8.8.8 or 1.1.1.1. This may or may not make any difference. It mostly depends if the ip address you see come back to a different IP.

These IP blocks are owned by cloudflare which is a hosting service. Your traffic actually is passing through a number of different ISP. In your case it is pretty easy to see the ISP and NTT is a huge ISP so they have tools that let you look in their network.

So if I run tracert from a NTT route in frankfurt I get this.
Tracing the route to 104.16.106.144

1 ae-10.r20.frnkge13.de.bb.gin.ntt.net (129.250.4.111) [MPLS: Label 446 Exp 0] 5 msec 2 msec 2 msec
2 ae-8.r01.frnkge07.de.bb.gin.ntt.net (129.250.4.79) 2 msec 2 msec 2 msec
3 213.198.81.142 7 msec 6 msec 16 msec
4 104.16.106.144 1 msec 2 msec 1 msec


You will notice that the ip in hop 2 is identical to the one in your trace but this trace completes.

This trace says the server is in frankfurt but it actually isn't. If you do the same trace from a router in USA you will get very low ping times which indicates there are servers using the same identical IP address. This makes it extremely messy to troubleshoot when they use the same IP in different parts of the world.

My guess is that cloudflair or maybe NTT has a issue returning traffic to your IP address. The path going to a server IP can be different than the path coming back.

This may or may not clear itself. It could be a connection failed and some ISP is on a backup connection. It appears they misconfigured the routing parameters. Still there is not much you can do about this. Cloudflare and/or NTT is not going to talk to a end user.
I do use 8.8.8.8 and 8.8.4.4.
It's really interesting what you wrote, just as I thought I can't do much about it, but I will try to speak to a technician from my ISP if maybe they rerouted something wrong. But besides that, thank you very much! :)
 
Reactions: SamirD
It is not your ISP it appears to be at least 1 if not 2 ISP away from you.

This is very hard to test because of cloudflare duplicating that IP address in multiple locations. It is hard to tell which actual server you are talking to. When I was checking this I found at least 3 I think.
 
Reactions: SamirD

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