What does this mean?

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What does this mean?

Postby Innuendoes » Tue Jan 19, 2010 4:04 am

Hey guys,

Can someone tell me what this error message means? When I am on my website, I am not experiencing any problems, nor are my mods but I see one of them is getting this error message and I see I have a lot of them for myself. What does it mean; anyone know? When I am on the board, I am only using Firefox so I don't even know why AOL is being mentioned as I have a cable company to connect to the net with and AOL for email.

Session IP/browser/X_FORWARDED_FOR check failed
»User IP “xx.xx.xxx” checked against session IP “xx.xx.xxx”, user browser string “mozilla/4.0 (compatible; msie 6.0; aol 9.0; windows nt 5.1; sv1)” checked against session browser string “mozilla/4.0 (compatible; msie 6.0; aol 9.0; windows nt 5.1; sv1)” and user X_FORWARDED_FOR string “” checked against session X_FORWARDED_FOR string “”.
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Who is hating his brother,
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yes the blood inside of me is inside of you"
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Re: What does this mean?

Postby Ian-Highlander » Tue Jan 19, 2010 7:42 am

The X_FORWARDED_FOR check is querying to see if you're a proxy server and if so what the IP number of the original request was. Basically it's a security check a lot of sites and forums are putting in place these days to try and stop people hiding behind proxy servers and abusing people.

Older forum software only checked the connecting IP number which in most cases would of course be the users home IP number but in many cases was actually a proxy server, meaning that potentially thousands of people would have the same IP number.

There is a section in the proxy server RFC that says proxy servers should also report the IP number of who they forwarded the request for in order to make them identifiable. Thus the forum software sees two IP's one for the proxy and one for the IP that actually requested it (yours if you're using one). Not all proxies do follow this, in fact it's the primary way these anonymising proxies work, they don't forward any requesting IP numbers on, but all proxies are "supposed" to.

I can only assume this particular website or forum you're talking about has coded the check quite badly and not allowed for a silent failure response where people aren't actually using proxy servers. Basically it should check the X_FORWARDED_FOR header and if it's empty just carry on without causing any errors.

Hope this helps.
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Re: What does this mean?

Postby Innuendoes » Tue Jan 19, 2010 7:55 am

Hi Ian,

Thanks for the explaination. I have to admit I didn't understand most of what you said other than "proxy server" and there were actual IP addresses there but they were mine. Ha! I just x'd them out so as not to post my own IP address on here.

The board is a forumer board if that means anything as far as reliability. I'm not having any problems on there at all and that's why I was surprised to see these messages. I also haven't heard from any of my mods about having posting or navigation errors on the site, either, so I don't believe they have, either.

Anyway, I assure you I am not posting behind a proxy server, only my cable company's service with a dynamic IP. In fact, none of my posters or moderators are using proxy servers. LOL. Oh and this is forumer and the version is phpBB3. :-)
"Spread the word and try to teach the man
Who is hating his brother,
When hate won’t do,
‘cuz we’re all the same,
yes the blood inside of me is inside of you"
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Re: What does this mean?

Postby Ian-Highlander » Tue Jan 19, 2010 11:45 am

Innuendoes wrote:Anyway, I assure you I am not posting behind a proxy server, only my cable company's service with a dynamic IP. In fact, none of my posters or moderators are using proxy servers.


Which is why you're getting the error. Basically whoever coded that security check in, didn't do it very well. Because you're not using a proxy, it gets a null or zero response from that check when it runs it, which it sees as an error, what it should do is ignore the null/zero response and carry on as normal.

Should be noted though that many ISP's stick you through a proxy without you even realising it, it's called transparent proxying, a quick google should explain that one easily enough, but basically a lot of ISP's do it to save bandwidth costs. :)
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Re: What does this mean?

Postby Innuendoes » Tue Jan 19, 2010 4:02 pm

Ok, I'll check that out just to be sure. Thanks so much for your help. :-)
"Spread the word and try to teach the man
Who is hating his brother,
When hate won’t do,
‘cuz we’re all the same,
yes the blood inside of me is inside of you"
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Innuendoes
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Re: What does this mean?

Postby Innuendoes » Thu Jan 21, 2010 6:33 pm

Ian-Highlander wrote:
Innuendoes wrote:Anyway, I assure you I am not posting behind a proxy server, only my cable company's service with a dynamic IP. In fact, none of my posters or moderators are using proxy servers.


Which is why you're getting the error. Basically whoever coded that security check in, didn't do it very well. Because you're not using a proxy, it gets a null or zero response from that check when it runs it, which it sees as an error, what it should do is ignore the null/zero response and carry on as normal.

Should be noted though that many ISP's stick you through a proxy without you even realising it, it's called transparent proxying, a quick google should explain that one easily enough, but basically a lot of ISP's do it to save bandwidth costs. :)


I checked my ISP. I am not behind a proxy server but I have the option to do so if I want. I thought that was interesting. :-)
"Spread the word and try to teach the man
Who is hating his brother,
When hate won’t do,
‘cuz we’re all the same,
yes the blood inside of me is inside of you"
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Innuendoes
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