[Project_owners] Online/Offline

Tracy Norris tnorris at nc.rr.com
Fri Apr 14 14:14:00 EDT 2006

I was writing something several years ago where I wanted to know the 
same thing, and in the end I gave up on the idea of offline/online 
because there is no clear definition. Does it mean an active ethernet 
connection? or a valid functioning TCP/IP stack? or can I get to a 
particular IP address? or a successful DNS lookup? And then, even if all 
those are true at this moment, what about on the next TCP/IP request or 
the one after that? After alot of research and discussion with 
colleagues, I discarded the idea and just used the built in timeouts in 
all socket calls. In a way it kind of sucks because your code appears to 
"lock up" if they have no connection whatsoever but I didn't see any 
better option. One thing you'll note is that on Windows, there doesn't 
seem to be a better way either because how many systems have you seen 
popup the RAS connection stuff when a particular TCP/IP request fails 
even though the machine does have a functioning connection.

So, my round about answer is, I don't think there is a way.

Adam Judson wrote:
> Why do you want to test for this?
> Do you really want to know if they can see site X?  I can have a live
> connection but if my proxy fails etc. I effectively don't...
> I wonder if you are trying to solve the right problem.
> Adam
> On 14/04/06, Brian King <brian at mozdev.org> wrote:
>> What is the best way for an extension to detect if a user is
>> online/offline? I'm not talking about, for example, the Work Offline
>> feature in Firefox, but rather about whether they have an internet
>> connection at the time a particular piece of code is executing.
>> Thanks,
>> --
>> Brian King
>> www.mozdev.org - free project hosting for the Mozilla community
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