Besides Ipconfig and Ping, there's a graphical tool that lets you examine and troubleshoot your network connections.
The Status dialog box shows, well, the status of a given connection. To access this diagnostic tool, right-click on the connection in the Network Connections dialog box and choose Status. You get the interface shown in Figure 9-7.
Figure 9-7. The status of a connection.
You can also use the Support tab to display the connection's Big Three: IP address, subnet mask, and default gateway. It will also identify how the IP address was assigned.
If you're looking at the Status because the connection's not working, you'll be much more interested in the Repair button, which is also found on the Support tab. You can use this Repair button to initiate an automated repair. When you do, XP runs several commands in the background to try and get the connection up and running again. The commands include:
Of course, there's nothing that says you can't try these commands and actions yourself. With Repair, though, XP performs all the heavy lifting with a single mouse click. It's a real timesaver.