I work with embedded Ethernet devices a lot and I need to monitor them to know exactly when they restart or if they go down during testing. I used to do it with ping sitting on an external monitor and just glance up at it every few minutes to see what’s happening. This is a less than optimal solution since it requires me to constantly be distracted by a stream of information, it eats up screen real estate, and it forces me to keep an electron inhaling LCD panel running.
I just discovered that the standard ping utility in Linux and Mac OS has a neat feature to alleviate this pain. It will output an audible bell on every packet either received (showing a device is online) or missed (showing a device is offline). It’s your choice which one you use, of course. Personally, I have only needed the offline alert since I just need to be able to get into devices to see what they’re doing immediately after a planned restart.
To get audible notification for every packet missed do this:
ping -A hostname
To get audible notification for every packet received do this:
ping -a hostname
Now you can work without distraction until you hear those BELs.