For starters, welcome to the wonderful world of Linux and Smokeping! Lesson 1: You normally don't start services with a command line command like that. In Debian/Ubuntu (siblings in terms of Linux distributions), you normally start a service with i.e. /etc/init.d/smokeping start. You can check a service with i.e. /etc/init.d/smokeping status to see if it's running or not. There are otherw ways of doing this (part of the buty with Linux), but this is the basic and most universal way and the one I use. Others may pitch in with their favourite method ;)

Another handy command is "ps ax | grep smokeping". This will show you any processes that are named smokeping (in this case).

Since you installed Smokeping, it shoud start with the system, so try a reboot if it isn't already started. It should start as a part of the installation.

Checking your ISP is the next task. Edit /etc/smokeping/config.d/Targets and add the hosts you want to check. I usually take a traceroute to the ISP's own web site and monitor all (or the first) in the traceroute list. This way you can see if the ISP has a routing issue inside their network (at least in some cases), and not only if your access is dropped.

Some examples:

++ PingBahnhofSe
menu = ping.bahnhof.se
title = ping.bahnhof.se
host = ping.bahnhof.se

++ PingLuSe
menu = ping.lu.se
title = ping.lu.se
host = ping.lu.se

++ PingSunetSe
menu = ping.sunet.se
title = ping.sunet.se
host = ping.sunet.se

If your traceroute looks like this:

~$  traceroute www.eniig.dk
traceroute to www.eniig.dk (, 30 hops max, 60 byte packets
 1 (  0.380 ms  0.352 ms  0.338 ms
 2 (  3.670 ms  3.665 ms  3.654 ms
 3 (  3.900 ms  4.389 ms  4.365 ms
 4  dix.ip.nianet.net (  7.940 ms  5.856 ms  5.838 ms
 5 (  8.282 ms  8.241 ms  8.230 ms
 6 (  8.190 ms  8.152 ms  8.159 ms

... you might want to include hops 1-4 or so to the list of targets. Also include my examples or other known targets on the Internet for reference ( (Cloudflare DNS),, (Google DNS) might be good ones).

Oh, by the way, Emacs is a far more superior editor than Vi, just in case no one told you this yet. For beginners, pico or nano are good, and even mcedit, included in the mc package, is a good option with less functions than Emacs of course. mc is short for Midnight Commander, a clone of Norton Commander if you're old enough to have run NC in DOS ;)


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