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Accepting and Initiating Network Connections

When the server first accepts a new, incoming network connection, it is given the low-level network address of computer on the other end. It immediately attempts to convert this address into the human-readable host name that will be entered in the server log and returned by the connection_name() function. This conversion can, for the TCP/IP networking configurations, involve a certain amount of communication with remote name servers, which can take quite a long time and/or fail entirely. While the server is doing this conversion, it is not doing anything else at all; in particular, it it not responding to user commands or executing MOO tasks.

By default, the server will wait no more than 5 seconds for such a name lookup to succeed; after that, it behaves as if the conversion had failed, using instead a printable representation of the low-level address. If the property name_lookup_timeout exists on $server_options and has an integer as its value, that integer is used instead as the timeout interval.

When the open_network_connection() function is used, the server must again do a conversion, this time from the host name given as an argument into the low-level address necessary for actually opening the connection. This conversion is subject to the same timeout as in the in-bound case; if the conversion does not succeed before the timeout expires, the connection attempt is aborted and open_network_connection() raises E_QUOTA.

After a successful conversion, though, the server must still wait for the actual connection to be accepted by the remote computer. As before, this can take a long time during which the server is again doing nothing else. Also as before, the server will by default wait no more than 5 seconds for the connection attempt to succeed; if the timeout expires, open_network_connection() again raises E_QUOTA. This default timeout interval can also be overridden from within the database, by defining the property outbound_connect_timeout on $server_options with an integer as its value.

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