Client abort detection w/ upstream broken on anything but kqueue ()?

Marcello Barnaba marcello.barnaba at
Wed Nov 3 14:21:47 MSK 2010


On Nov 3, 2010, at 1:11 AM, Maxim Dounin wrote:
> Looking into errno without getting error from function is 
> meaningless[1].
> [1]


>>  I've tried to change the condition at line 1016 from n > 0 to
>> (n > 0 && err != NGX_EAGAIN && err != NGX_EWOULDBLOCK) but I'm
>> sure it doesn't make much sense.

>>  Is this a known issue? From where should I start to solve it?
> As long as recv() returned 1 - it means that you have outstanding 
> data in connection (e.g. some pipelined request) and it's 
> impossible to detect if connection was closed or not without 
> reading this data or writing something to connection (or some 
> out-of-band hint from OS as kqueue provides).

I've tried reading the whole data while in GDB, and this is the
result (Darwin/poll()):

(gdb) l
990	#endif
992	    ngx_debug_point();
994	    n = recv(c->fd, buf, 1, MSG_PEEK);
996	    err = ngx_socket_errno;
998	    ngx_log_debug1(NGX_LOG_DEBUG_HTTP, ev->log, err,

(gdb) p buf = malloc(10000)
$2 = ""

(gdb) p (int)recv(c->fd, buf, 10000, 0)
$3 = 37

(gdb) x/37b buf
0x7fff5fbff06f:	0x15 0x03 0x01 0x00 0x20 0x5f 0x01 0x61
0x7fff5fbff077:	0x9d 0x83 0xa8 0x74 0xaa 0xcc 0xf6 0x78
0x7fff5fbff07f:	0x81 0x42 0x98 0x20 0x08 0xe3 0x66 0x21
0x7fff5fbff087:	0x52 0x3a 0xca 0xe2 0x08 0xac 0x98 0xcf
0x7fff5fbff08f:	0x74 0x5c 0xa4 0x06 0xd5

do this binary data make any sense?

> At the point in question it's not possible to read all data or 
> write something, so basically premature connection close by client 
> with outstanding data is undetectable with classic socket 
> interface.
> This shouldn't be a major issue though:
> a) normally connections doesn't have outstanding data when user 
> cancels request (closes browser window, hits "stop" and so on) and 
> the detection works well even without kqueue;

> b) this is only optimization anyway.

In my case, the client connection is initiated by XHR and it's a
long-polling request towards an Erlang server that implements a
web-based chat system: the recv () return value is very strange,
because there's really no outstanding data to receive from the
client. From the nginx logs I see that the only data sent by the
browser is forwarded to the upstream.

Moreover, I'm using proxy_read_timeout 300, to reduce the number
of long-polling requests, and I need to know when a connection
is closed to kick off users from chat rooms after a timeout has
passed. But:

 * nginx maintains duplicate open connections to the server even
   when the client has closed the browser window or navigated to
   a page without the client javascript;

 * my 'client disconnection code' in the server doesn't work at all
   until the nginx read timeout expires;

 * javascript-initiated "logoff" commands on e.g. window.onUnload
   aren't portable and reliable as (I thought) socket events :-)

Thank you for your answer,

~ marcello.barnaba at

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