mac-to-pc chats

Tres Finocchiaro tres.finocchiaro at
Tue Jun 25 13:14:38 EDT 2013


My environment has both PCs running Pidgin as well as Macs running Chat.
 I'll try to reproduce this and get back to you.


On Tue, Jun 25, 2013 at 12:51 PM, Kevin Justie <kjustie at> wrote:

> > Is there a chance you have connectivity issues that are only surfacing
> with UDP traffic?
> I supposed that's possible, though not sure how I would go about
> determining that or not.
> But, I had to deploy the two desktops this morning.  They are now using
> different cables, different network jacks, and different ports on our main
> (only) wiring closet switch; previously, both were connected to the main
> switch through a secondary switch in my office.  When I booted them up in
> their new locations, I tested chats from a different Mac, so different
> cable/jack/port on the Mac side, too:  I was unable to initiate a chat from
> the Mac to one of them -- the usual situation -- but as had happened three
> times in all my previous testing, and as I described yesterday, I was able
> to initiate  a chat to the other one -- but only once; after quitting and
> reopening Pidgin on that PC, the Mac was once again unable to initiate a
> chat to it.
> kevin
> >  If you are dropping packets on your network, it is likely it could go
> unnoticed with TCP -- since TCP will resend --, however when trying to use
> a UDP service, it would be very evident.
> >
> > I had an issue plague me with streaming video that was causes by a bad
> network cable, and then again with a failing router.  It wasn't until I
> introduced a UDP service that I noticed issues.
> >
> > -Tres
> >
> > On Jun 24, 2013 3:28 PM, "Kevin Justie" <kjustie at> wrote:
> > Answer to your questions are below, but some additional interesting
> results from today's teasting:
> >
> > --  Changing all  three users to be local admins on their machines
> (previously only one was) had no effect on those situations where one user
> could not initiate chats with another.  This was done Friday, and even
> though local admins were turned back off Friday, all three PCs are now
> (Monday) able to initiate chats with each other (previously, the laptop
> could not initiate with the desktops).  Gone through multiple restarts of
> the PCs and it still works; no idea what happened between Friday and this
> morning that made it work.  Macs are still unable to initiate with
> desktops, however.
> >
> > --  Turning the Windows firewall off did not help with the Mac issue.
> >
> > --  I ignored this the one time it happened last week, thinking that I
> just mis-remembered the sequence of events leading up to it so it wasn't
> actually an accurate test of a Mac-initiated chat, but now it's happened
> twice today, too:  I've been able to initiate a chat -- once, and only once
> -- with each of the desktops from a 10.8 Mac -- one of the scenarios that
> was not working last week.  It works once, but then I'm unable to make it
> work again, despite trying after logouts, restarts, Pidgin/iChat restarts,
> or any other conceivable sequence of events.  The times it worked were
> outside of any other external changes (local admin, firewall, etc.), but it
> definitely happened.
> >
> > --  I am occasionally seeing messages on the PCs about user names
> changing:  when user A has a chat window sitting open with user B, after
> several minutes of inactivity user A gets a message that user B is "now
> know as…"   Can't say this has always been the case, but on the ones I've
> noticed today the name is changing from the user's first name to their
> first and last name:  "Blanche at admin-1 is now known as Blanche Miyamoto @
> admin1."  This didn't appear to have any impact on whether either PC could
> chat with the other (it was working both ways by the time I noticed the
> names changing), but….
> >
> > --   …I saw something similar to this name changing on the Mac side, and
>  there it did affect ability to initiate a chat.  On two occasions earlier
> this morning -- and again, I'm unable to duplicate it now, but I monitored
> it closely enough the second time to know it happened -- when I first
> opened Pidgin on one of the desktops while logged in as a (real) local
> admin (i.e. not the regular user set to local admin), it showed up as
> "administrator" in iChat on my Mac -- and I *was* able to initiate a chat
> from my Mac; this particular scenario had never worked previously.  But if
> I closed and re-opened Pidgin, the name on the Mac changed to "admin
> person" and I was then *unable* to initiate from my Mac -- an no matter
> what I tried, the name never changed back to "administrator," and I was
> again unable to initiate a chat from the Mac.
> >
> > --  On my Mac, when I try to initiate a chat with one of the desktop
> users, I get the message "The instant messaging connection failed. The
> other person's computer may be unreachable," as soon as I type the first
> character of the message;  it then appears again after I have finished the
> message and press Return to send.  This is despite the fact that the user
> is in my buddy list with an "available" status, and that the status changes
> when I change it on the PC, and that if I quit Pidgin, iChat tells me the
> user is "now offline" (in the message window, where the "…connection
> failed…" messages appear, not in my buddy list).  Similarly, Pidgin
> accurately and immediately reflects changes in my iChat status on my Mac.
>  So, there's definitely a "live" connection between Mac and desktop, at
> some level.  But it does seem peculiar that it somehow knows, as soon as I
> start typing, that there's a problem; I don't understand that.
> >
> > --  Not sure if I've mentioned this before or not, but I am unable to
> initiate chats from Mac to desktops regardless of whether the desktops are
> logged into a regular AD user account, or to the local admin account.
> >
> > I mention all of these only in the hopes that one may be an obvious
> signal of the root cause of the one remaining problem, initiating chats
> from Mac to Pidgin on the two desktops.
> >
> > kevin
> >
> >
> > On Jun 23, 2013, at 12:17 AM, David Balažic <david.balazic at>
> wrote:
> >
> > > Have you tried to turn off the firewall on the desktop PCs that are
> having problems?
> > > Or even on the laptop?
> >
> > no change
> >
> > > What firewall are you using? Note that some 3rd party firewalls block
> some network traffic even when "turned off".
> >
> > If you mean on the PCs, just the regular Windows firewall.  On the
> network it's Forefront TMG, but again, all PCs are inside the firewall, so
> that shouldn't be an issue.
> >
> >
> > > It might also help to know which ports are used by each PC.
> > > the netstat command gives that information.
> >
> > I assume the ports are the numbers displayed after the IPs in netstat?
>  They change (PC and Mac) each time Pidgin is started, so nothing could be
> done to open firewall for them (and turning firewall off didn't help
> anyway).
> >
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- Tres.Finocchiaro at
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