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Our office network is split into 2 internet service providers so that we have failsafe connections to the internet. These 2 gateways occasionally go down on certain computers, and this causes those users to no longer access certain websites (eg our corporate website which is served overseas).

Interestingly this issue can be resolved for each individual user by typeing in the following command in XP Command prompt:

tracert <the.website.that.doesnt.work>

The tracert then returns a timesout when it nears the corperate website, but seems to then work when the user browses to the site in any browser again.

How can I avoid having to get users to perform this task? Why is performing a tracert fixing the problem?

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migrated from superuser.com Feb 10 '10 at 12:52

This question came from our site for computer enthusiasts and power users.

    
More like a Server Fault question –  ChrisF Feb 10 '10 at 11:32
    
Maybe they need to see if there's heavy traffic on a site first. youtube.com/watch?v=SXmv8quf_xM –  random Feb 10 '10 at 12:22

3 Answers 3

Hmm...you don't mention how the connection between the two providers works. Are you using a protocol to failover the two together so they're invisible to the end users, something like zeroshell linux?

Or are you using something that is hardware based and just dials into a second provider when it's needed?

When there's connection issues, are all the machines having the problem, or just one or two? If it's just a few workstations, I'd not be surprised if it is caching a route or DNS entry and the traceroute is refreshing something or rediscovering the route to take to the proper gateway.

You might want to reexamine your gateway and find a way to make the one gateway authoritative for everyone and have the gateway device (or server) act as a connection balancer and have that handle the dirty work of deciding which way packets should go from the internal network out, if that isn't what you have already.

Perhaps more information on how the network is configured could help narrow down the issue?

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Is there some sort of a "dial on demand" (RAS networking) bridge between you and the site? Maybe the first packet from the tracert triggers the RAS connection (which might take a few seconds, so the traert doesn't get a reply but subsequent packets get through)?

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Are you saying that each computer has more than one gateway configured? If so, see this article on why that is a bad idea.

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/159168

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