Frequent Yahoo Messenger disconnects for Windows clients

  • Have some developers who use Yahoo Messenger to chat with clients in China.  They had no issues previously with Yahoo messenger on the old slow (15Mb/s) NAT router.  Now that we've upgraded to Fiber using pfSense as a proxy they get intermittent disconnects.  The disconnects cannot be linked to any events on the server. They happen whether they use transparent proxy, which is preferred, or plain NAT.

    We're only seeing this issue on Windows clients. It happens whether they are using the official Yahoo Messenger client, or Pidgin for Windows.  Linux and OSX users have no problem staying connected.

    Anyone seen this before that can point me in the right direction?

    pfSense 2.2.4
    Core i3, 4GB RAM (processor never over 5%, memory never over 10%)
    Intel CT Nics, configured as 1Gb/s Full Duplex (same on telecom equipment)

  • Any other software installed on the windows pc's that common?

    For example, just the other day I found out that Apples Bonjour service hooks into Firefox, which can be used as an in plain sight MITM hacking tool, yet theres no mention of those capabilities documented online from my searches.

  • No, I actually had a tech bring me a couple of fresh systems.  Generic clean installs of Windows 7 and 8.1.  Yahoo on the 7, Pidgin on the 8 and same problem. After further investigation I found some SSH sessions they were connecting to via Putty, on a subnet routed through the pfSense box, had the same issue. Opened an SSH session from Linux and sat watching it, system I can normally connect to without timeout, and it froze after about 8 minutes with htop running.

    In the middle of checking everything the Internet goes down. Awesome! I found the problem, something is obviously wrong with this box.  Have tech throw together a new box, install new NICs, install pfSense. Still no Internet.  Hunt for the problem for about an hour. Tech says, "Hey did you know people on Reddit are reporting the Internet is down"?

    So long story but we replaced the equipment, for reasons, and the problem didn't go away.  Problem is more apparent to Windows clients but not exclusive.  Going to try playing with the Firewall states tomorrow to see if I can resolve it.

    Thanks for your help.

  • Have you tried a different firewall? Maybe an earlier/later version of pfsense or something else as the only common element if you have tried a new box for pfsense is either pfsense itself or your internet provider.

    pfsense 2.1 uses FreeBSD 8, pfsense 2.2 use FreeBSD 10 which might be a factor.

  • Just noticed that the NIC is not coming up as 100Mb/Full Duplex on our switch.  It is coming up as 100Mb/Half Duplex.  Both card and switch port are set to 100Mb/s.  When I moved it to a different port as a test and forgot to change the setting on the switch, when the port came up it showed 100MB/Half Duplex.  Messed around a little with the card settings, changed switches, same problem.  Swapped cards with the same model card and same problem.  So, I think I have identified the culprit.

    Card is an Intel Gigabit CT, which shows to be compatible with FreeBSD.  Intel has some info on their site regarding the card and FreeBSD.  If I find a solution with this card I will post the info here.