Pages: [1]
Fardringle
BAM!ID: 45986
Joined: 2008-02-15
Posts: 12
Credits: 322,127,218
World-rank: 3,622

2010-09-29 08:19:23

I just noticed that the majority of my computers have been unable to contact the BAM Account Manager for more than a month. My stats have been increasing normally so I didn't notice a problem until I tried to use BAM to switch my machines to a different project and only my home computers made the change. All of the systems in my business office last updated their status on with BAM on August 23rd or 24th. Now when they try to connect they get an error message that says:

Contacting account manager at http://bam.boincstats.com/
Account manager error: system connect
Project communication failed: attempting access to reference site
Access to reference site succeeded - project servers may be temporarily down



The office did get a new Internet connection not long before this problem started, but I know for certain that all computers in the office were able to connect for at least a week after the new connection was installed since their "last updated" dates on my Boincstats host list are more than 7 days after the connection was changed.

My home computers are still able to talk to BAM normally so my account on the site is still active and working. All computers in the office are able to obtain work and upload results to the projects that they are attached to (and can manually attach to new projects) but the office machines can't get to BAM. I detached one computer from BAM then got an error that "The account manager is temporarily unavailable" when I tried to attach the computer again.

Computers in the office are able to browse and log in to the http://boincstats.com/bam site in web browsers so the site itself is not blocked on the office or ISP routers.


I'm sure I'm missing something stupid and/or simple, but I can't figure out why all of the computers would suddenly not be able to update their status with BAM when all other network connectivity seems to be functioning normally. It's possible that the new ISP is blocking the outgoing requests for some reason, but that would only make sense if the BOINC client uses an odd port or protocol to connect to BAM and the ISP's filters don't like the connections. I checked on the boincstats and BOINC sites (as well as a Google search) but wasn't able to find any information about the protocol or port that is used for the client updates.
(Ryle)
    Donator
BAM!ID: 23282
Joined: 2007-04-15
Posts: 112
Credits: 1,747,466,690
World-rank: 1,050

2010-09-29 19:00:38

Just a question: Are these machines all linux based?

There seems to be a problem with BAM and linux hosts, that started around that time that you mention. I gave up trying to figure it out, so I now administrate them "manually" with Boincmanager.
Fardringle
BAM!ID: 45986
Joined: 2008-02-15
Posts: 12
Credits: 322,127,218
World-rank: 3,622

2010-09-29 19:37:54

They are all Windows machines. Mostly XP Professional, a few Vista Business, and an SBS 2003 server.
TeeVeeEss
  Donator
Tester - Translator - BOINCstats SOFA member
BAM!ID: 2648
Joined: 2006-06-27
Posts: 781
Credits: 12,386,179,917
World-rank: 266

2010-09-29 21:33:54

Could be a firewall problem. Have you checked the firewall-settings on the hosts and in your router?
Fardringle
BAM!ID: 45986
Joined: 2008-02-15
Posts: 12
Credits: 322,127,218
World-rank: 3,622

2010-09-29 21:45:39
last modified: 2010-09-29 21:47:12

There definitely isn't anything blocking outgoing connections on the computers themselves as there is no firewall software installed other than the generic XP firewall which doesn't monitor outgoing communication. Nothing has changed on the main router/firewall in a very long time other than the new IP/DNS/Gateway addresses for the new Internet connection, and the clients were all able to connect just fine before and after the new connection was installed up until this problem appeared more than a week after the ISP change. It's possible that the firewall or the ISP is blocking the outgoing connection but without knowing what port the BOINC client uses to communicate with BAM, I can't really check the logs and it's highly unlikely that the firewall is doing it since nothing else has been changed on the firewall recently. I checked the logs and don't see anything being blocked but a specific port number would let me search the logs more easily.

I noticed today that the new T1 connection does not have a reverse DNS entry associated with its IP address, so that could possibly be an issue if BAM requires that information to allow a connection but I can't imagine why that would be needed unless it's associated with the anti-scraping script that is in place on this site.
[BOINCstats] Willy
 
Forum moderator - Administrator - Developer - Tester - Translator
BAM!ID: 1
Joined: 2006-01-09
Posts: 9220
Credits: 349,822,518
World-rank: 3,416

2010-09-30 04:53:44

BAM! communicates over port 80 (http) and doesn't need reverse DNS.
Please do not PM, IM or email me for support (they will go unread/ignored). Use the forum for support.
AKTigger99645
 
BAM!ID: 23215
Joined: 2007-04-14
Posts: 21
Credits: 27,836,941
World-rank: 20,748

2010-09-30 04:53:56

My guess is a DNS issue. You have a couple options. As administrator, at a command prompt type "ipconfig /flushdns" to clear your cache. Or you can change your DNS service to 8.8.8.8 and 8.8.4.4
Alaskan looking for life on other planets. Born in 1971.
Fardringle
BAM!ID: 45986
Joined: 2008-02-15
Posts: 12
Credits: 322,127,218
World-rank: 3,622

2010-09-30 05:00:49

I thought that BOINC used the standard HTTP port 80 to communicate, Willy, but I couldn't think of any other reason why this one connection type would be failing when everything else works. Thank you for confirming that for me.

It's possible that the new ISP's DNS server is causing the problem, but I'd expect that to prevent the office machines from browsing to http://bam.boincstats.com as well, and they are able to log in to the site through a browser, just not from within the BOINC client. I'll try the Google public DNS servers tomorrow and see if that makes a difference.
Fardringle
BAM!ID: 45986
Joined: 2008-02-15
Posts: 12
Credits: 322,127,218
World-rank: 3,622

2010-09-30 20:55:17

I did some more testing and found something that probably explains why I am seeing this problem.

My home computers can successfully PING www.boincstats.com (217.67.244.100) and bam.boincstats.com (217.67.244.101). The office computers are able to PING www.boincstats.com but can NOT PING the bam.boincstats.com IP address. They do resolve the address correctly but cannot PING the address by name or by the actual IP. I get the same results with the ISP's DNS servers and with the Google public DNS servers.

I talked with the ISP and they said that they are not blocking my outgoing requests to the BAM IP address (217.67.244.101), so I have to wonder if the IP address on the new Internet connection has been blacklisted by BAM for some reason. I don't know of any reason why this would have happened since the computers there are set to only update their status every 24 hours and none of my employees even know that I run BOINC on my computers so they wouldn't have any reason to check stats on the site (whether through scraping or normal web browsing). I'll send a PM to Willy with the office IP address to see if the address is on the "naughty list".
[BOINCstats] Willy
 
Forum moderator - Administrator - Developer - Tester - Translator
BAM!ID: 1
Joined: 2006-01-09
Posts: 9220
Credits: 349,822,518
World-rank: 3,416

2010-09-30 21:03:50

BAM! uses the same IP blocklist as BOINCstats. Since you're able to post and PM here, that's not the direction you need to be looking in.
Please do not PM, IM or email me for support (they will go unread/ignored). Use the forum for support.
Fardringle
BAM!ID: 45986
Joined: 2008-02-15
Posts: 12
Credits: 322,127,218
World-rank: 3,622

2010-09-30 21:10:41

I'm actually posting from my home computer which has not had any trouble connecting with the site.


However, right after I posted that last message, I found the cause of the problem. The BAM IP address was not in my firewall's blocked list, but since computers in the office could not connect to the address, I decided to manually add the IP to the block list and then remove it again just to see if it was being blocked even though it should not be. As soon as I did this, my computers were able to connect normally. I don't know why the router would have been blocking the IP in the first place, particularly since it wasn't on the blocked list, but it seems to be working now. Thank you for the helpful suggestions and information. I'll know where to look first if this happens again.
Pages: [1]

Index :: BAM! General :: Clients at one location cannot contact bam.boincstats.com
Reason: