finger

Definition of finger in The Network Encyclopedia.

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What is Finger (in computer networking)?

A TCP/IP utility for viewing information about a user on a system running the finger service. If you “finger” a user’s e-mail address, the result returned to you includes the user’s username, full name, whether and how long the user has been logged on, and other information depending on the configuration of the finger service you are querying.

NOTE

Microsoft’s implementation of TCP/IP on Windows NT has finger client software but no finger service. In other words, you can run the finger client on a machine running Windows NT that is connected to the Internet in order to obtain results from a UNIX server at an Internet service provider (ISP) running the finger daemon. In this situation, if the ISP makes its finger daemon publicly available on the Internet, it is commonly referred to as a finger gateway.

Example

Typing the command finger jsmith@s12.microsoft.com displays information about user Jeff Smith on a server called s12.microsoft.com.