From: Smylers Date: 21:45 on 08 Sep 2005 Subject: Windows VPN A VPN connection is down on a Windows server. I look for where the thingy is to reconnect it. It isn't in 'My Computer'. It isn't in 'My Network Places'. It isn't in 'Routing & Remote Access'. It isn't in 'Services'. Feeling too much like I'm in a picture book for toddlers, I give up looking everywhere I can think of and ask a colleague, who points out 'Settings' > 'Network Connections'. I marvel at how many different places Microsoft manage to put network-related config. I choose 'Connect', and then the subsequent thing, which is also labelled 'Connect'. After a few seconds the connection fails. The resultant dialogue box has the offer: If you continue to receive error messages, you can enable logging for analysis. Sounds like a good idea. I check the 'Enable logging' box. Underneath is the advice: For logging options, see _diagnostics_. That last word is a hyperlink (in a dialogue box? hmmm), so I click it. Another dialogue box appears, but the one I already saw conveniently jumps on top of it less than a second later, obscuring whatever the new one is asking. I bring it back into focus. It's asking for 'Location Information': Before you can make any phone or modem connections, Windows needs the following information about your current location. It wants my country, area code, access number, and whether I use tone or pulse dialing. This for options about logging for a VPN connection? What? The server doesn't have a modem in it, so I feel justified in clicking 'Cancel'. Windows then pops up a message: Windows needs telephone information about the location from which you will be dialing. If you cancel without providing this information, this program may not function correctly when dialing. In addition, some applications respond to your canceling this dialog box by immediately re-posting it. Are you sure you want to cancel? But I won't be dialing! What on earth is it on about? And nice of it to tip me off about the potential infinite loop -- I'm sure offering a 'cancel' option but warning me about the loop is the right way of dealing with his. I proceed anyway, after double-checking which of 'Yes' or 'No' means 'Cancel' in this situation. Another window appears, 'Remote Access Preferences' (though seemingly no relation to the 'Routing & Remote Access' I found earlier). It has 3 tabs. The 3rd tab, 'Diagnostics' is currently selected. Absolutely everything in the tab is greyed out, which isn't much help. The greyed-out text says: If you are disconnected from a network, autodial attempts to connect to a network whenever you try to access remote information. Then there's a big greyed-out box and some greyed-out checkboxes. This isn't much use. I wonder why Windows has brought me here. I have a quick look at the other tabs to see if they do anything. The 1st is 'Autodial'. Everything there is greyed out too. In fact, it's identical to the tab I've just left, with the same greyed-out text and controls. Why have 2 tabs that contain the same stuff? The middle tab is 'Callback'. Still everything is greyed out, but at least this is different stuff. I absent-mindedly click on the 3rd tab again. It's changed! This time it contains completely different content, and none of it is greyed out! An interface which changes when you go away and come back to it -- how exciting! Now there's checkbox labelled 'Enable logging'. This is already checked, presumably because it's actually the same checkbox as on the first dialogue box. There's also the text: To view or save log files as one report or send them in one e-mail message, click Generate Report. So I do. Many options appear. I choose to view the report, rather than having it mailed to me, then: This process can take several minutes. Do you want to continue? I do -- I've waited this long, what's a few more minutes? A progress bar appears. It takes less than 2 seconds to get to 78% complete; that's a good sign. A few seconds later it's at 90%, but it seems to have stuck there. Did somebody make percentages logarithmic while I wasn't looking? At some point later I notice the progress bar has disappeared. I can't spot the report anywhere. I give up. Even later I stumble across the report -- it's in HTML and had opened in a new tab of the 'Firefox' I already had running. It had never occurred to me that a VPN log might come in HTML. The report is thousands of lines long. It contains many things I wouldn't expect to find in a log (the contents of this server's 'phonebook', for instance). It is far from apparent when giving a list including many items such as 'IASACCT.LOG' and 'IASNAP.LOG' which of them might pertain to the failed VPN connection which directed me here. I search for the VPN's connection by name. Other than the phonebook entry the only occurrence is in NETSHELL.LOG, which seems to be logging whenever something in the system tray pops up some balloon help. It complains that the icon for this VPN connection is missing but that it should be there. So I still don't have a VPN connection, and now I'm lost in a twisty maze of log files, all alike. I think I'm now beyond hate. Smylers
From: peter (Peter da Silva) Date: 00:11 on 09 Sep 2005 Subject: Re: Windows VPN > So I still don't have a VPN connection, and now I'm lost in a twisty > maze of log files, all alike. I think I'm now beyond hate. The clue here is that Windows thinks that a VPN connection is a kind of special modem connection where you dial an IP address instead of a phone number. It's something I've only seen once before, in some software for Solaris that implemented DHCP by building it on top of bits of UUCP. THAT software thankfully seems to have died a well deserved and insufficiently horrible death, but Windows just keeps on coming back for more...
From: Luke Kanies Date: 05:28 on 09 Sep 2005 Subject: Re: Windows VPN On Thu, 8 Sep 2005, Peter da Silva wrote: > ... where you dial an IP address ... /me whimpers
From: Peter Pentchev Date: 11:29 on 09 Sep 2005 Subject: Re: Windows VPN --sm4nu43k4a2Rpi4c Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii Content-Disposition: inline Content-Transfer-Encoding: quoted-printable On Thu, Sep 08, 2005 at 11:28:54PM -0500, Luke Kanies wrote: > On Thu, 8 Sep 2005, Peter da Silva wrote: >=20 > > ... where you dial an IP address ... >=20 > /me whimpers Would this be like the whimper that a cow-orker suddenly shared with me? He comes to me with a pained look on his face and says "Peter, I need a vacation!" I'm not his boss or anything, so I assume he is here in search of condolences, so I ask him to explain. Apparently, he had just picked up the phone to call another cow-orker, dialed '1', '9', '2', and caught himself wondering whether the dot should be dialed as '*' or '#'. G'luck, Peter --=20 Peter Pentchev firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org PGP key: http://people.FreeBSD.org/~roam/roam.key.asc Key fingerprint FDBA FD79 C26F 3C51 C95E DF9E ED18 B68D 1619 4553 When you are not looking at it, this sentence is in Spanish. --sm4nu43k4a2Rpi4c Content-Type: application/pgp-signature Content-Disposition: inline -----BEGIN PGP SIGNATURE----- Version: GnuPG v1.4.1 (FreeBSD) iD8DBQFDIWQK7Ri2jRYZRVMRArwQAJ40uRPPMjKLNafgb9miCWvv2eDZwQCfaj8x XGB7vJcTXueg16d6D+oxiks= =kmBi -----END PGP SIGNATURE----- --sm4nu43k4a2Rpi4c--
From: John Sinteur Date: 15:23 on 09 Sep 2005 Subject: Re: Windows VPN On Sep 9, 2005, at 12:29, Peter Pentchev wrote: > Apparently, > he had just picked up the phone to call another cow-orker, dialed > '1', '9', '2', and caught himself wondering whether the dot should > be dialed as '*' or '#'. > "Thank you for dialing the Microsoft IP address. If you want to download a file, press 21. If you want to leave a message, press 25. If you want to view a web page, press 80. If you..." *BEEP* *BOP* "You want to view a web page. All our server pages are active. Please hold...." -John
From: Luke Kanies Date: 16:29 on 09 Sep 2005 Subject: Re: Windows VPN On Fri, 9 Sep 2005, John Sinteur wrote: > > "Thank you for dialing the Microsoft IP address. If you want to > download a file, press 21. If you want to leave a message, press 25. > If you want to view a web page, press 80. If you..." > > *BEEP* *BOP* > > "You want to view a web page. All our server pages are active. Please > hold...." See, now that's just wrong. And you forgot all about the popups, or the fact that you'd have to be using a Microsoft telephone in order to get the web page...
From: Abigail Date: 21:33 on 16 Sep 2005 Subject: Re: Windows VPN --KsGdsel6WgEHnImy Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii Content-Disposition: inline Content-Transfer-Encoding: quoted-printable On Fri, Sep 09, 2005 at 01:29:31PM +0300, Peter Pentchev wrote: > On Thu, Sep 08, 2005 at 11:28:54PM -0500, Luke Kanies wrote: > > On Thu, 8 Sep 2005, Peter da Silva wrote: > >=20 > > > ... where you dial an IP address ... > >=20 > > /me whimpers >=20 > Would this be like the whimper that a cow-orker suddenly shared with > me? He comes to me with a pained look on his face and says "Peter, > I need a vacation!" I'm not his boss or anything, so I assume he is > here in search of condolences, so I ask him to explain. Apparently, > he had just picked up the phone to call another cow-orker, dialed > '1', '9', '2', and caught himself wondering whether the dot should > be dialed as '*' or '#'. In a previous company I worked for, we often made office-wide announcements over the phone ("I'll be shutting down the main data base server in one minute") - everyone had a speaker phone. I've argued that the number one should dial to be able to make such an announcement should have been 192168255255... And dialling 255255255255 should ring all the phones in the world. Abigail --KsGdsel6WgEHnImy Content-Type: application/pgp-signature Content-Disposition: inline -----BEGIN PGP SIGNATURE----- Version: GnuPG v1.4.0 (GNU/Linux) iD8DBQFDKywtBOh7Ggo6rasRAlLuAJ9Ghv6kwlsjKPpdJyCR7JPCVOjCcQCfR99C 766BGFmPNW0ybA2c9hYdfP8= =LoLY -----END PGP SIGNATURE----- --KsGdsel6WgEHnImy--
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