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Thread: TCP connections stalling / Gmail, Gtalk, WhatsApp issues [fix in place - testing]

  1. #61
    Super Grandmaster ginggs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ancalagon View Post
    Huh? So if more people complain about something, you work slower? Let me know how that works out for you.
    I understood Pitbull's post as follows:
    Quote Originally Posted by Pitbull View Post
    If I was the person dealing with this and all these complaints from the same person com strolling in while I'm busy trying to find the cause. I will make damn sure it takes allot longer to be fixed than it normally would have.

  2. #62

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    Quote Originally Posted by ginggs View Post
    I understood Pitbull's post as follows:
    And that is exactly the way I meant it
    I have signed up with Bitco and it's by far the best internet I have ever had. Get a quote

  3. #63
    Resident Lead Bender Ockie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ginggs View Post
    I understood Pitbull's post as follows:
    I just checked and I hardly bombarded this thread. I commented on some comments made by others and then I posted that I am going to post this on Hello Peter also. Lots of people follow that route also. That is what it is there for not so?

    Cell_C has not yet acknowledged this thread at all so either he is doing what Pittbull said and is now ignoring this thread on purpose (which I doubt as I refuse to believe that Armando would be so spiteful for absolutely no reason) or something else is going on. I honestly cant say. I will wait and see what kind of resolution we come to on here.

    In the meantime I hope others thats having the same issue will report it here to give Armando a better idea of the scope of this problem. I did not create this thread to have a bitch fit as Pitbull put it. I simply want to get this resolved for ALL of us so that we can enjoy our Android phones (and others I assume that support push) as it was designed to be enjoyed.
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  4. #64

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    Same issue here with my defy on rbm.

    Sent from my MB525 using MyBroadband Android App

  5. #65
    Super Grandmaster ginggs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sgs View Post
    My money is on a firewalling issue on cell-c's side, or similar.

    Almost sounds like they block incoming connections so push never works, only pull. Maybe blocking some ports they shouldn't be?
    I had a quick read here:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Push_technology
    It appears like push technology doesn't use incoming connections (you'd need port forwarding on your router and it wouldn't work for corporates) the client establishes a connection to the server and keeps it open. When the server wants to push, it send data to client over the already open connection.

    I see people have also been having Whatsapp issues on Vodacom.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ginggs View Post
    I see people have also been having Whatsapp issues on Vodacom.
    Indeed...at that time I thought it was a issue with WhatsApp...and many times it is (if you check their twitter account there are many posts where they inform people about downtime). But since I tested push with my Gmail on Vodacom and it worked great but never with Cell C tells me there is indeed a issue on the Cell C network that needs investigating. If my Gmail push never works...then so will my WhatsApp...even when the WhatsApp server is working fine. That is my conclusion from my test. What do you think ginggs? You agree?
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    Hope this does not get too technical or long winded....
    It is important to understand the underlying mechanism of how both gmail and whatsapp work.

    Both rely on the fact that your phone will make a data connection or session with a server on the internet, either via your mobile data or WiFi connection.

    While this server connection is active or "established", data can be sent between your phone and the server.
    Barring other network connectivity, or performance issues, for gmail or whatsapp to appear "instant" both you and I (our phones) have to have an active connection to the server at the same time. If we send each other emails or whatsapp messages, the response should be within a few seconds.

    If however, one of us does not have an active connection at that moment, the system becomes "store and forward", where if I send a message to you now, it will be held on the server until it sees you make a connection. It can then "push" the message to you or respond to your request (poll) for new messages.

    Neither gmail or whatsapp make persistent connections to their respective servers.
    This can be observed using Android OS Monitor 1.1.8 for example, or any app that can show you active data connections from your phone to the internet.

    The connection is considered active if showing a status of "ESTABLISHED".
    If you look at the connections for gmail and whatsapp, you will see they remain active for a period of time before changing to "CLOSE_WAIT" and finally disappearing. The connections will reappear when gmail or whatsapp try and "sync" with their servers once again, or you actually try and send a whatsapp message or gmail email. The user does not appear to be able to set this sync interval period for some reason. (maybe to stop all users setting sync = 1 second and bombarding the servers with requests)
    Too frequent sync attempts would probably have a negative impact on battery life and escalate data costs.

    Without these connections being active or established, there can be no "push" operation from the server to your phone, for either whatsapp or gmail.
    As ginggs indicated, a true "push" would require your phone to either have an established server connection, or to actively be "listening" to a specific TCP port on your IP data connection.

    Considering neither Cell C or Vodacom (except by application only) allow inbound connections from the internet to your phone IP address by default, (See the Unrestricted APN thread) there is no way your phone will respond to any "push" type connection from an internet server. Not sure if the same applies to mtn or 8ta.

    Whatsapp and gmail would have to have a small active "listener" permanently running on your phone to achieve true "push" notification.
    I have not observed such active "listeners" at all and even if there were, as I have said the standard "internet" APN blocks such traffic anyway.

    I think the use of the word "instant" in Instant Messaging (IM) is a bit of a misnomer as the only way that can be achieved is for both parties or clients to have an active or established phone to server connection at the same time. "Push" is also be used a bit too liberally as it creates expectation of "instant" response, when that is in fact not the case.

    So, in summary I think you can only expect to see responses within the seconds time frame, if both you and the other party have active and established connections at the same time to the respective server (or array of servers) providing gmail or whatsapp services.

    Assuming you have mobile data on and background sync enabled, with no strange battery saver apps disabling these for you, sometimes you get lucky and your emails and messages between yourself and friends seem "instant" and other times it seems things are broken, but it's all just a case of simultaneous server data connections or not.

    I have checked and noted this on both the Cell C and Vodacom networks.
    I don't believe this to be related to a network problem as such, but rather by design of the gmail and whatsapp underlying connectivity and functionality.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Base122 View Post
    Oi! You in the back there...wake up!
    huh sorry what?! :-)

    Interesting read thank you. I kinda understand what you are saying. But I am not all that clued up with these techno stuff....so all I can go on is the fact that I tested it with a Vodacom sim and even after a hour of inactivity on my phone my gmail got pushed to my phone instantly..well, within 3 seconds about anyway. With Cell C it takes 40 minutes or more and that is after my phone has been inactive for just about 15 minutes or so.

    I will be doing the same test again tomorrow to see if it still applies and I will post here the outcome to make sure it still holds true. Tnx again for your post...was a interesting read.
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    Sorry...one more thing that I forgot to mention. I just thought of it while having a smoke. When I did the test with my Vodacom sim in my Defy...I realized that my phone's connection is active cause my phone always lies next to me on the bed while I listen to music or watch movies with my headphones on. You know that bzzzz bzzzz sound the phone makes when the radio is doing something. When my Vodacom sim was in my phone and I left it lying there waiting for the hour of inactivity to arrive so I can test my gmail push....it would every now and again make that bzzz bzzz noise. With my Cell C sim in it tonight...I noticed nothing....dead radio silence...dood soos 'n mossie. This then also tells me that my Vodacom sim every now and again "refreshes" the connection or does something to keep it going. With Cell C sim it just goes dead and therefore it would be impossible for the C2DM push server to send notifications to my apps.

    Sorry I know that sounds dof....but that is how I think of it. And the bzzz bzzz is the only way I know how to describe that sound a phone makes through sound speakers. Sure you guys know what I am talking about :-)
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  10. #70
    Super Grandmaster ginggs's Avatar
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    There's definitely something up, oc and I did some testing. He on Gtalk on Moto Defy, me on Gtalk on Nokia N900.
    We chatted for a bit then I told oc to leave his phone alone for 15 minutes, I then sent him another message and he never received it, although he still showed up as being online and available.

    @Base22: The Gtalk client on my N900 permanently shows an ESTABLISHED connection to ww-in-f125.1e100.net port 5222.

    1e100 = 1*10^100 = 1 googol

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    Quote Originally Posted by ocleroux View Post
    tested it with a Vodacom sim and even after a hour of inactivity on my phone my gmail got pushed to my phone instantly..well, within 3 seconds about anyway. With Cell C it takes 40 minutes or more and that is after my phone has been inactive for just about 15 minutes or so.
    Could just be a case of your gmail connection from your phone to the server being active or not at the time.
    Not sure what the poll interval for gmail is, but I also waited quite a long time in some cases.

    What you can try on Cell C specifically, is open your gmail on your phone and force a manual refresh.
    This will establish a server connection, which should last for a couple of minutes.

    If you then quickly send an email from your PC for example to your gmail account either from another email account or the same one, the response should be within seconds. If you wait too long, your phone server connection will have terminated and you may have to wait quite some time for it to sync again and show the new email.

  12. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by Base122 View Post
    Could just be a case of your gmail connection from your phone to the server being active or not at the time.
    Not sure what the poll interval for gmail is, but I also waited quite a long time in some cases.

    What you can try on Cell C specifically, is open your gmail on your phone and force a manual refresh.
    This will establish a server connection, which should last for a couple of minutes.

    If you then quickly send an email from your PC for example to your gmail account either from another email account or the same one, the response should be within seconds. If you wait too long, your phone server connection will have terminated and you may have to wait quite some time for it to sync again and show the new email.
    I am sorry to sound like a broken record...but why does it work with Vodacom then...even after a hour of inactivity but with Cell C just after 15 minutes it bombs out...perhaps even less then that? Well, like I said...gonna do the same test again tomorrow to check if it still works as it should on Vodacom and then will report back here. In my head the google server has not changed...my phone has not changed...only thing that changed was the network I was using to connect. That leaves Cell C as the weak link?

    Anyways...me off to bed now...can hardly think.....I am starting to hear voices in my head whispering "push push push push". I need a break lol.
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  13. #73
    Super Grandmaster ginggs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ocleroux View Post
    Anyways...me off to bed now...can hardly think.....I am starting to hear voices in my head whispering "push push push push". I need a break lol.
    Push it real good!

  14. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by ginggs View Post
    Push it real good!
    Ag damn I cant watch youtube on work pc :-(
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    Ocleroux; I am so glad that someone else has noticed this issue. I thought I was losing my mind and behaving like a n00b with my phones. As it stands I have had this issue with three phones out of four.

    1. IPhone 3GS
    2. IPhone 4
    3. HTC Wildfire


    The only phone that works with push-kind messages on CellC has been my Blackberry. Now this raises an interesting point: why were the other phones push messages broken, but the BB not? Simple, BIS was connected and working as it should... As you describe after a couple of minutes of inactivity there is no data activity on the other phones; until you unlock the screen and then mysteriously everything snaps into action.

    I've tested it in various locations: Grahamstown, PE, George and Southbroom. The first three exhibited the same behavior of no push after inactivity; but in Southbroom, where I was connected via Vodacom the push worked fine!

    I really hope CellC start engaging this issue with customers. I mean, we have phones that should work (and do on other networks)... why does CellC close the connections after a time? Huh?! Why?
    No one gives an [expletive]... unless you can describe your problem effectively.

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