Peculiar Connection Timeout Issue

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oakland94602

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I'm looking for suggestions on why my IBM ThinkPad with Windows XP Pro SP3 presents a web site connection-timeout failure. The web site is not a high-traffic site -- it's the University of Akron at www.uakron.edu (IP=130.101.217.69). Here are my diagnostic deductions so far.

* The failure is not a router or modem problem, since I can reach the web site when I use either of two different computers (one with XP Pro SP3, the other with XP Pro SP2) through the same router-modem hookup. Also, therefore, it is not a site-blocking problem or a DNS server problem.
* It is not a network-connection problem, since that different computer can reach the web site through both a wired connection and a wireless connection.
* It is not a browser-specific problem, since the failure occurs whether I use IE or Firefox.
* It is not a browser cache issue, since the failure occurs after clearing the browser's cache.
* It is not a system DNS cache issue, since the failure occurs after flushing the cache, and in any case the failure occurs even using the IP address in lieu of the domain name.
* It is not (apparently) related to miscellaneous browser settings, since the problem occurs when running Firefox in safe mode. (This was not tested with IE, which I never actually use.)

I suspect that the culprit is something arcane in the operating system as installed on my computer. Any ideas? Thanks for giving this some attention.
 

oakland94602

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Jan 10, 2011
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Thanks, Phantom010.

Yes, using a proxy site works.

The connection-timeout failure occurs whether the Firefox connection setting for a proxy is "No proxy" or "Auto-detect ..." or "Use system proxy settings." (Firefox is version 3.6.13, the most-recent version.) I haven't tried the "Manual" or "Automatic" option, since I don't think there's anything to gain by using a proxy generally. The problem occurs with only two or three web sites.
 

Phantom010

Retired Trusted Advisor
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Mar 9, 2009
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34,796
Try using Google Public DNS.

Or, OpenDNS.

If no luck,

Please click HERE to download and install HijackThis.

Run it and select Do a system scan and save a logfile from the Main Menu.

The log will be saved in Notepad. Copy and paste the log in your next post.

IMPORTANT: Do not fix anything
 

oakland94602

Thread Starter
Joined
Jan 10, 2011
Messages
3
Mea cupla. How embarrassing . . . .

I had carelessly overlooked the source of the problem (because I've grown accustomed to not thinking about it at all). The WiTopia.net version of OpenVPN is installed on my computer, and that's the culprit. It runs automatically. When it is manually disabled, I have no difficulty reaching the web site in question.

Thanks for your tolerant help, Phantom010. Now I'll take up the matter with WiTopia.net.
 
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