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Site not working a few houses from where I live, different traceroute.

Posted on 2008-06-17
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Well this is going to be a bit tricky to ask. So please feel free to ask questions.

A few weeks ago we migrated out site to rackspace. The migration went well except a few minor hiccups, one being the mail DNS propagation. I have never had an issue with changing the DNS and having the site switch over but not the mail. (The mail was still going to the old site hosted on midphase.com) After reading some answers on here and speaking with tech support I was told to contact midphase and have them remove the DNS pointers in their system. Within a matter of moments the mail was working correctly (going to the rackspace server).

I thought all was well until a few days later my business partner (who happens to live 2 blocks away from me) reported the add to cart button was taking nearly 10 minutes to add a product to the cart. Of course my  PC and MAC on all browsers did not report this problem. I called a contact in Michigan, I reside in upstate NY, and she indicated the site worked as expected. I called a contact who lives between my business partner and I and she said it worked fine.

I had my biz partner run a traceroute and his report was different then mine and took a bit longer. His also hung when running it on the https.

I went to his house to replicate the problem on my computer. Now here's the crazy part. On Safari (we are predominantly MAC users) it worked fine... BUT on Firefox it took nearly 10 minutes to add the product to the cart.

So the question is this... Why?

For just a moment let's assume it didn't work for me on Safari...
Is it possible the DNS is still pointed to the wrong place on a few nodes on the internet. So when routing through that node it tries the first (non-existing) server and then after a length of time it goes to the second location?

But by going back to the fact that it works for me on Safari from his location the real monkey wrench is thrown. Has anybody ever heard of this happening?

This was never an issue until we migrated. One has to assume that others on the net are experiencing this issue and ultimately leaving the site because of it.

Any help would be appreciated.


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Question by:tdillon80
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Steve Bink earned 1500 total points
ID: 21810490
I have no clue, but I am intrigued.

1) Do you and your neighbor use the same ISP?
2) Can you consistently duplicate the Firefox vs Safari results?  Is there a difference between Mac and Win?
2a) What about IE and Opera, Mac vs. Win?
3) Have you used any tools to examine the header exchange?  
4) Have you used timestamp-based debugging on the server during one of these sessions?
5) What did the traceroute results look like?

I very much doubt DNS is the issue.  IME, DNS either works or it doesn't, and it depends almost exclusively on how you have configured it.  If your domain registration is pointing to the correct nameservers, and those nameservers have the correct IPs for www and mail, AND you're past the propagation delay (normally 24-48 hours, max), it should work.  You can test your partner's resolution using nslookup.  Set recursion off to trace it back step by step.
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