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X session timeouts due to Firewall

Posted on 2002-07-19
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Last Modified: 2013-12-27
Hi,

I'm using Exceed version 6.1.  Currently our firewall times out inactive sessions after 20 minutes.  I can't get this changed.  So the result is, windows are going away after this time out, unless they are being used.  Is there any other X-server implementation that allows a keep alive to be configured?

I use Putty telnet, and it has one and it works great.

With the Win32 Exceed, I thought I was on to something... I took the latest fvwm2 code, built it, and cloned the console module, called it FvwmIdle.  I then changed it to sleep 10 minutes then do a 'refresh' all in a loop.  I thought this might cause enough traffic to keep the sessions alive, but it did not seem to work.

Any pointers or ideas would be really appreciated.

Thanks

Chris
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Question by:sads
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by:ahoffmann
ID: 7166424
> Is there any other X-server implementation that allows a keep alive ..
as you described yourself, the firewall is the culprit, so another X-Server won't help much.

To get around the timeout problem you might try on of following:

     ping -c 100 -w 900 remote-host
     xclock&
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by:jlevie
ID: 7167193
A very simple solution that will keep the session from timing out is to start any of the clock display appication on the remote. Personally I use 'xclock -digital' to keep X sessions open through a firewall that times out idle sessions.
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Author Comment

by:sads
ID: 7168434
Hy guys.  I have tried the xclock thing.  Actually, that was my first attempt.  The second was the modification to FVWM, and I thought that had it for sure, since it forced a refresh to all the windows.

I just got an email from  WinaXe X server product. They sent me the following, and it looks promissing:

"Beginning from WinaXe 6.3 our products provides a keep alive possibility. If you are using this version (or WinaXe+ 7.0),you can add manually into the section [NETWORK] (if this section is absentplease create it)
of the "xwp.ini" file the line:

KeepAlive=1

After this all package's facilities will send KeepAlive TCP/IP messages."

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by:jlevie
ID: 7168584
If an Xclock didn't keep the connection it would sound like the firewall isn't doing a simple idle timer. When you have a gui app like xclock running there is traffic in both directions at least every minute, so an idle timer would be reset every minute. Perhaps the newer version of the app sending KeepAlive's will prevent the timeout.
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ahoffmann earned 600 total points
ID: 7168953
hat's the purpose of WinaXe's KeepAlive: to send keep-alive packets, or to check if the X-connection is still alive (means that there are packets transfered)?
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Author Comment

by:sads
ID: 7169276
I'm testing the new X-server this morning to see how it works.  When I did use X-clock, the X-Clock window was still active, but any xterm or other window that was idle, was dead, even the window manager.  When I made the FVWM change, then the window manager stayed around as well.

I let you know how the test goes with the winaXe.
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by:ahoffmann
ID: 7169857
> .. X-Clock window was still active, but any xterm or other window that was idle,

hmm, this is probably due to a TCP/IP timeout on the remote system, not for the X-connection, but the telnet/rlogin/ssh session.
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Author Comment

by:sads
ID: 7174253
So far so good with the new xserver and the ini set as indicated above.  This seems to have fixed the problem.

Chris
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