The Meaning of Ping: What It Is and How To Use It

Do you know the definition of ping? This article will provide you with all of the information you need on the word ping, including its definition, etymology, usage, example sentences, and more!

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What does the word ping mean?

According to Merriam-Webster and other sources like the American Heritage Unabridged Dictionary of the English Language and Collins English Dictionary, the word ping has a few different potential meanings as a noun or verb. This can be an onomatopoeic noun that refers to the sharp sound of the striking of a bullet or a knock, it can refer to the pulse of sound waves that are reflected or emitted by a submarine or other vessel that can communicate with ultrasonic sound. The resonant sound can be heard by a special apparatus like a sonar echo at the destination. Ping can also refer to a signal that is sent from one computer or server to another across a network for usually diagnostic purposes. 

This is usually used to determine network speed or status, or to troubleshoot something involving the host or IP address by sending bytes of information from one computer to another and back, calculating the round trip time. A technician might note the ping time via the command line and determine if there is a lag or delay or if the computers can communicate in real time. Internet systems use something called an Internet Control Message Protocol (ICMP) echo-request packet as a test message and use the echo reply to determine whether another computer on the network is operational. This also determines the speed at which the brief electronic message or payload is sent. This is performed by doing a ping command. If there is latency, bugs, or packet loss from the originating host, target host or remote host, the technician will be able to determine the cause of the odd ping. A high ping or low ping could result in lagging while online gaming and disrupt connection to the game’s server. The use of the ping utility is present in almost all operating systems.

As a verb, the word ping (also pinged, pinging, and pings made with suffixed ed, ing, and s to form tense) can be used in the same sense as the above nouns and to mean to send some brief message or reminder to someone usually via text message or notification. Ping can also be used as a proper noun and geographical name for the river that is 360 miles and 579 kilometers long that is located in western Thailand. This river flows south-southeast to join the Nan River forming the Chao Phraya River. The pronunciation of ping is pɪŋ.

According to The Free Dictionary, the term PING is also an acronym that has various different meanings. If you plan on using one of these acronyms, make sure that you provide the proper context necessary so that the reader or listener can infer the correct meaning. This should be standard practice whenever an acronym you’re using has more than one potential definition.

  •  Princeton Internet Group, Inc.
  •  Packet Internet Groper
  •  Process-Improvement Networking Group
  •  Parent Involvement Network Group
  •  Puck In Net: Goal!
  •  Partimage Is Not Ghost (Linux)
  •  Packet Internet Grouper

How can the word ping be used in a sentence?

The word ping can be used in many different sentences in the English language. Using words in a sentence is a great way to memorize their definition. You can also try making flashcards or quizzes for yourself to memorize the definition. Below are several examples of ping.

The man’s car engine was making an odd pinging noise. It went away after his last oil change, but he still decided to have his ignition checked out. 

When I had not heard back from my insurance company about my claim in over a week, I decided to ping them to check in about the status.

The battleship sent a ping to the submarine navigation captain to make sure that there were no nearby objects either of them would crash into.

What are synonyms of the word ping?

There are many different words that one can use in place of the verb ping. Learning synonyms, which are words and phrases that have the same meaning as another word or phrase, is a great way to expand your English language vocabulary. This list of synonyms is provided by Thesaurus.

  •  buzz
  •  visit
  •  speak to
  •  relate
  •  touch base
  •  interface
  •  get in touch with
  •  reach out
  •  telephone
  •  call
  •  reach
  •  interact
  •  connect
  •  talk
  •  get ahold of
  •  write to
  •  network
  •  be in touch with
  •  approach
  •  check with
  •  phone
  •  get
  •  contact

There are also many different words that have the opposite meaning of the word ping. These opposite words are called antonyms. Learning antonyms is another quick and easy way to expand your English vocabulary. Below are antonyms for the word being provided by Thesaurus

  •  abstain
  •  flee
  •  sidestep
  •  ward off
  •  hold off
  •  give the slip
  •  eschew
  •  steer clear of
  •  ditch
  •  fake out
  •  duck
  •  shirk
  •  keep clear
  •  fend off
  •  bypass
  •  desist
  •  shuffle off
  •  skip
  •  obviate
  •  shrink from
  •  recoil
  •  stay out
  •  deflect
  •  shy
  •  turn aside
  •  withdraw
  •  shun
  •  shake and bake
  •  jump
  •  stay away
  •  escape
  •  avert
  •  skirt
  •  step aside
  •  divert
  •  skip town
  •  hide
  •  dodge
  •  avoid
  •  circumvent
  •  shake
  •  weave
  •  elude
  •  skip out on
  •  circumlocute
  •  evade
  •  shake off
  •  lay low
  •  run for cover
  •  refrain

Overall, the word ping has many different meanings. This can refer to the onomatopoeic sound of a bullet or knock, ping packets that are used to troubleshoot computer and IT-related issues, or to contact or communicate with someone. Ping can be used as a noun or a verb in many tenses, including past participle, present, and future.

Sources:

  1. PING – What does PING stand for? | The Free Dictionary 
  2. Ping | Definition of Ping | Merriam-Webster 
  3. CONTACT Synonyms: 69 Synonyms & Antonyms for CONTACT | Thesaurus 
  4. AVOID Synonyms: 57 Synonyms & Antonyms for AVOID | Thesaurus