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Two months of AGONY and "The operation has timed out" in Alveo

 

Two months of AGONY and "The operation has timed out" in Alveo

Dear fellow traders, Apiary and COLTON,


I would like to post an issue that caused me a lot of GRIEVE and PAIN. It concerns Alveo and its problems with connectivity.

After an update roughly two months ago I stopped being able to connect using Alveo. While most of us are intimately familiar with the above timed-out error message this was a sort of dead end. Alveo has never been able to connect again. It was not a temporary problem anymore. Not for me. The strange thing, however, was that I was able to connect when abroad.

As I use to trade during work hours - sometimes putting a trade or two in the morning or during a lunch break. At work I could not connect through Alveo anyway even prior to that because I sit behind a firewall and a web proxy. For this reason I set up a tiny VPS (Private Virtual Server) with a public IP on the internet and used to tunnel Alveo traffic via SSH tunnel to bypass both the firewall and the proxy. The tunnel went to my VPS which finally forwarded Alveo requests to the quote server.

I need to add I sit at a customer's site. SSH tunnelling is great but my VPS was just a domain-less IP in another country and I didn't want to attract any attention in case the local network admins wanted to have a closer look at outbound connections. I took the pain of learning Amazon Web Services and deployed my own little instance in the Amazon Cloud. I used Windows Server 2008 R2 with Terminal Services configured and on top of that 2X HTML5 RDP proxy which made it possible to trade from any computer or smartphone with an HTML5-compatible browser. ALL OF THIS BECAUSE ALVEO DOES NOT HAVE SUPPORT FOR WEB PROXIES.

The problem is that I work from Italy - a country better known for pizza and sole-ed-amore than fast internet or technology in general for that matter. So if SSH tunnelling slowed Alveo down a bit on the already slow enough connection then the overhead of RDP-via-HTTPS was making me go nuts completely and see everything in red - especially when I had a couple of trades on and the market was volatile. Each click took a couple of seconds for Alveo to act upon, needless to say that closing out several trades on time ad hoc meant a difference between having +30 pips or -30 pips (if TP not hit / before SL gets hit). Actually it is a wonder that I have not burnt my Apiary live account yet...

On Friday, however, I came very close to that hitting the 5% loss risk metric and wiping out this months profits :-( Life isn't perfect... I immediately change my mobile ISP so that I can connect with Alveo locally using own personal connection when needed - which used to be possible in the past. I changed the mobile ISP twice before. The third time it is still not much better and Alveo still does not connect.

So I dedicated this whole Saturday to find the root cause. I WAS SUCCESSFUL. In the end I did a bit of packet sniffing with MS Network Monitor and compared the network traffic from  my laptop with that taking place on my Amazon AWS instance which is always able to connect. From this moment on I started to have doubts whether Apiary is doing the best on its side and truly hope that COLTON is reading.

I attach a packet capture file from my laptop. It shows that Alveo first connects to the Modulus web site then to the LicencePing.com and in the end it connects to the Apiary Web server (NOT the quote server). It exchanges a couple of messages with the Apiary Web server (e.g.198.91.55.90, 198.91.55.91...), attempts an SSL/TLS handshake which does not get completed and continues to message the web / application server that, however, stops responding after a while. Alveo does not even attempt at connecting to its quote server (e.g.104.239.136.164:4504).

I had many doubts. Why does it happen? Why the handshake does not take place? I remember I could connect from Italy two months ago using Alveo and can still connect from another countries with the very same laptop. As a final proof of my theory I signed up for a VPN and used a Canadian exit point and VOILA without any other change Alveo connects!

This leads me to the FINAL QUESTION:

1) DID ITALIAN PUBLIC INTERNET INFRASTRUCTURE UNDERGO A SIGNIFICANT CHANGE SOME TWO MONTHS AGO

OR

2) DID THE CONFIGURATION OF THE APIARY WEB SERVER CHANGE SOME TWO MONTHS AGO?

The odds seem poised towards 2)

Dear, COLTON, pls would you check the attached network capture file (my Italian WAN IP during the testing was 217.200.203.233) and see if there are any configuration inconsistencies concerning the Apiary Web server? Would you let me know if you could detect any problem and a remedy of the situation is possible?

I am really exhausted. This is just way too much pain and way too much wasted time. Apart from working full-time as a consultant, trading for Apiary I am also about to finish my university studies and need to focus on writing a graduation thesis. My today's post may be a bit less friendly that usual but I really can't spend days inventing workarounds and investigating application problems.

Thank you in advance

Best regards

jaroslav

PS let me know if any other data dump might be useful I will gladly provide that.

AttachmentSize
Alveo_BAD.zip3.32 KB
Sat, 04/11/2015 - 6:46pm
 
JF

Hello Yaro,

I feel your pain; and i have a couple of possible suggestions for you as well.

Above you mention you can always connect to your AWS instances, correct? if so - create a free for 1 year EC2 windows server instance (follow this = http://www.tradingheroes.com/get-free-mt4-vps-hosting-amazon-ec2/ ) and run Alveo there, you can connect to your new VPS using an array of tools such as Microsoft RDP or a VPN Tunnel etc...I have both a VPS with OVH.com (in Montreal) and one with Amazon AWS ( running in Oregon) - and both work like a charm.

i take it you have tested to make sure port 4504 is properly open in your firewall and forwarded through your router if one is used - using a port testing tool? ( http://www.whatsmyip.org/port-scanner/ ) without port #4504 theres no Alveo like wise for the more common port 443.

or http://www.stevehopwoodforex.com/phpBB3/viewtopic.php?p=111101 or http://www.onestepremoved.com/free-metatrader-vps/

 
JF

https://www.proxifier.com/documentation/v3/default.htm (might help)

I meant to add this to my original post above so long ago...i apologize.

 
aheinrich

Amen, I have the same problem connecting to Alveo. However I am not as computer suave as you. I do hope Apiary can correct these problems as soon as possible. It has been very frustrating and a waste of time.