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I want to know is there anyway to explicitly control the packet routing. I try to connect my computer in HK from San Francisco. It is extremely slow and I use tracert to see what is going on. It seems the packet get routed from HK to Europe and then to New York and then to San Francisco. In US, I am using Astound Cable. Is there any suggestion I can force the packet to not go around the world before it reach my computer? Or it is all ISP dependent?

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It is all ISP dependent. Someone has to pay to carry a packet over a link. – David Schwartz Apr 4 '12 at 22:08
So, it means that when I choose ISP, not only I care the bandwidth but should also care how they route packet? I mean will there be a chance that if I am using another ISP with less bandwidth but can get a better connection performance because of the route? – NachoChip Apr 4 '12 at 22:14
how many total hops? There were times when from california, my connection would route through Canada , and back down again, to go SE . (it was claimed that canadian routing was cheaper at the time) I just checked getting to some of the big servers only 60 miles from here, and it can hop through 4 towns W S N S ,about 200 extra miles plus 3 more hops at the local destination. Here to HK, it hops around 4 local towns jumps off to Illinois , takes 2skips and across the water slow leap, then 8 hops to its destination in HK. <--like it shows there. – Psycogeek Apr 4 '12 at 23:16
Yes, that's exactly right. – David Schwartz Apr 4 '12 at 23:16
Then it would be interesting to ask the ISP provider their routing route rather than the bandwidth before purchase on any service. I doubt a normal sale person know how to answer that. And properly there is no way to find it out before trying it then? – NachoChip Apr 4 '12 at 23:49
up vote 2 down vote accepted

Unless your a valued business customer ISP's generally aren't going to be making any core routing changes for you.

Basically it's out of your control, your ISP will be routing the packets to who they see as their "best" peer with a route to that destination network.

That next network (ISP) will route it to their "best" peer, and so on until you eventually get to the destination network.

Finally don't forget the route you take there will also be different from the one coming back (most of the time), trace-route is only showing your outbound route to that network.

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