[Standards] Whitespace "ping"

Florian Schmaus flo at geekplace.eu
Tue Jun 11 13:43:30 UTC 2019

On 11.06.19 11:49, Mickaël Rémond wrote:
> Hello,
> The RFC 6120 mentions whitespace ping to keep the connection alive and
> help the server detects that the client is gone.
> I also see that there was some attempt to bring consistency in the way
> server handles this in XEP-0304: https://xmpp.org/extensions/xep-0304.html
> It is rather old and today has also probably a bit of overlap with
> XEP-0198 Stream Management, and possibly also with XEP-0199 XMPP ping.
> I guess many client use the XEP-0198 acks, but still, XEP-0198
> recommends the use of TCP level whitespace keepalive.
> Having a way to check connection from client without generating load on
> parsers and limiting bandwidth used is important, so whitespace
> keepalive are goods.
> What do you think of pushing forward a way to make whitespace ping
> behaviour more standard?
> What we need basically is a way to negotiate the interval with server,
> so that client can be considered disconnected when that whitespace
> trafic is not receive in time.
> I am not really fond of making this a new stream feature, like XEP-0304
> suggest, as maybe what would make more sense is to define that feature
> in Stream management XEP itself (and thus could be part of the stream
> management negotiation)

I think it is unrelated to stream management and thus does not belong in
the stream management XEP.

FWIW I've been working on a XEP for this, called "Client Side Ping
Control (or "Don't Ping Me, I'll Ping You")". It provides similar
functionality, but the goal is slightly different: Minimizing the times
a server will unnecessarily wakeup a (mobile) battery-powered device.

The basic idea is that the client notifies the server about the maximum
connection-idle period after which it will send a ping of any kind
(whitespace, SM </r>, xep199, …). The server then acknowledges to the
client that it will not send any kind of ping unless the maximum idle
period is exceeded.

I am not sure what else can be done to "make whitespace ping behaviour
more standard" besides what we already have.

- Florian

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