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DNS problems at login - a request for information

Monty Linden

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  • Lindens

In my spare time, I'm trying to dig into the source of the viewer DNS lookup failures that continue to appear.  This problem is identified by the following popup on login:

Login failed.
DNS could not resolve the host name.
Please verify that you can connect to the www.secondlife.com
web site.  If you can, but continue to receive this error,
please go to the support section and report this problem.

and by error messages in the SecondLife.log file such as:

  2013-01-31T20:50:53Z WARNING: process: LLXMLRPCTransaction CURL error 6:
Could not resolve host: login.agni.lindenlab.com (Could not contact DNS servers)

If you experience this despite workarounds such as the Google DNS server configuration or because such workarounds aren't available to you, I would like to get some information from you.  If the Google DNS server workaround did work for you, you're invited to revert the workaround, gather the following information and restore the workaround.

The information I'm after and which can be reported here, in a private message, or via email to monty@{obvious company domain} should include:

  • Operating system
  • Number of active network interfaces
  • Full list of DNS servers known by your computer
  • Additional information about certain files on OS X machines

What follows are more detailed instructions for getting this information from various operating systems and what to report.  Other OS releases will vary from these descriptions.

Windows XP:

  • Start > Settings > Network Connections
  • Find all 'Connected' interfaces, report the count.
  • For each such interface:
    • Right Click 'Status'
    • Click the 'Support' tab
    • Click the 'Details...' button
    • Report all 'DNS Servers'

Windows 7:

  • Start > Control Panel > Network and Sharing Center
  • Find each network with 'Internet' Access Type; report the count.
  • For each such network:
    • Click the connection to bring up a Status window
    • Click the 'Details...' Button
    • Report all 'IPv4 DNS Servers'

Mac OS X 10.6.8:

  • Open 'System Preferences'
  • Click the 'Network' panel
  • Find all 'Connected' interfaces.  Report the count.
  • For each such interface:
    • Click the connected interface in the left column
    • Report all 'DNS Server' entries
  • Start a shell in Terminal.app
  • Execute and report output of:
    • ls -l /etc/resolv.conf
  • Execute:
    • cat /etc/resolv.conf
  • Report lines from the output with 'nameserver' in them.
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For those with Windows 8, here is one method to look DNS settings. I'm sure there is a shorter way, I'm just a noob with Windows 8 thus far.

Windows 8: 

  • From Start Screen>Move Mouse to Upper Right Corner>Click Search from toolbar 
  • Find Control Panel>Network and Internet>Change Adaptor Settings
  • For each network with Internet Access Type;report the count
  • For each Network:
  • Click the connection to bring up Status window
  • Click the Details button
  • Report all 'IPv4 DNS Servers"


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Going by my home network, the information you get by those methods may be less useful than you expect.

I use a modem/router with NAT between my computer and my ISP. The router provides the DNS for my LAN, so the methods you describe return an IP address of for the DNS server my computer uses.

My ISP uses DHCP to inform my router of the IPv4 addresses of its DNS servers, but I am manually set up to use the Google DNS servers. And I don't have the problems.


The country, and the name of the customer's ISP, could be a useful addition to the information requested. You can work back from the IP address of the DNS server to get that, but it is something that isn't such an intimidatingly techie thing to find out. Here in the UK, ISPs are supplying customers with modem/router hardware that is set up, with DHCP and NAT, to do all this as if by magic. Maybe things are done differently in the USA, but, viewed from here, I'm not sure you'll get enough useful data.

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  • Lindens

For the moment, I'm interested in the information exactly as stated:  the view of the network as seen from a machine experiencing problems (or one that can be returned to a configuration that has problems).  The hope is that this is entirely a local phenomenon (or phenomena - I think there are at least two distinct problems in play) and I'll start the attack from that point.

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Everyone having this problem should go here and test login.agni.lindenlab.com and www.secondlife.com at this website. http://dnsviz.net/ .  So it sounds like to me that some DNS servers are simply not configured right.  Maybe the Root zone file, or Root hints file found here http://www.iana.org/domains/root/files  are corrupt or non-existent because according to the last line from this Wiki  ""Once the address of a single functioning root server is known, all other DNS information can be discovered recursively, and the address of any domain name may be found."" if these where set correctly only 1 root server needs to be known in order to resolve the address.  So did you check powerdns0.lindenlab.com and powerdns1.lindenlab.com to see if it may be an issue here?  http://dnsviz.net/d/login.agni.lindenlab.com/servers/  .  Also the DNS Resolver is client side which contains the Root hints file.  I'm no DNS expert but would this be a file on powerdns0.lindenlab.com and powerdns1.lindenlab.com? Also maybe some of your residents were affected by this http://thehackernews.com/2013/02/dns-changer-malware-mastermind-pleaded.html is another possibility.

Anyway just trying to help and if I'm completely wrong then as least I tried.

DNS root zone quote:

"There are thirteen root server clusters that are authoritative for queries to the global DNS root zone. The root servers hold the lists of names and addresses for the authoritative servers for all top-level domains. Every name lookup must either start with a query to a root server or use information that was once obtained from a root server.

The root servers have the official names a.root-servers.net to m.root-servers.net. However, to look up the IP address of a root server from these names, a DNS resolver must first be able to look up a root server to find the address of an authoritative server for the .NET DNS zone. Clearly this creates a circular dependency, so the address of at least one root server must be known by a host in order to bootstrap access to the DNS. This is usually done by shipping the addresses of all known DNS root servers as a file with the computer operating system: the IP addresses of some root servers will change over the years, but only one correct address is needed for the resolver to obtain the current list of name servers. This file is called named.cache in the BIND nameserver reference implementation and a current version is officially distributed by ICANN's InterNIC.[2]

Once the address of a single functioning root server is known, all other DNS information can be discovered recursively, and the address of any domain name may be found."

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  • Lindens

Before the commentary buries the message:  all I want is the four simple items from the original posting:

  • Operating system
  • Number of active network interfaces
  • Full list of DNS servers known by your computer
  • Additional information about certain files on OS X machines

if and only if you have the DNS problem or can temporarily revert workarounds and make the DNS problem manifest ifself.

Current response level hasn't reached underwhelming so don't be afraid of contributing to a flood.  I'll post again when I have enough data.



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And this is what you get for helping Linden Lab. Cold as ice and not even a thanks for the info or help.  Ever notice you get nothing for IT consulting this company. Not even 1 Linden. Tons of residents try to help for nothing because of LL's layed back approach to tackling issues that go on for years and years. I'm done. Thanks for reading.

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Hi I am having a problem getting in to the Second life viewer for Windows 7 and The viewer keeps saying

"Login failed. Despite our best efforts, something unexpected has gone wrong.

[]Please check status.secondlifegrid.net to see if there is a known problem with the service.

           If you continue to experience problems, please check your network and firewall setup."


I have done all of that, I went to the website and didnt see anything wrong...I unplugged and truned off my computer and router...I cleaned DNS...I uninstalled and reinstalled every viewer there is and I keep getting that message please help :(

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 2 months later...
  • 4 months later...

I have been having the same issues  .. Despite above and beyond client side it work to try and help find out what this bug is and how to fix it. I have been a resident since 2004 I am in the hopes  as a premium account that  the last 8 months  will help yield some sort of fix for  those of us that with infinite patience are tested.

Please everyone speak up about your dns issues  so that it can be shown its not  an isolated event but rather for the bug that it is.

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Sloan, you were given a special test build of Firestorm by myself (on Aug 25th) and a special build of Viewer 3 by a Linden to test and asked to provide feedback.

You never replied to either with logs and the other results you were asked for over a month ago.

If you would still like help in resolving this issue then please update BUG-1872 with the information requested.

Complaining (again) without providing feedback when asked won't get you fixed. :smileymad:



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  • 4 weeks later...

Well I'll be dam*.  I just came across this today direct from Google's Dev. pages.  Almost the exact same thing I wrote here back in February but it seem to be to much for Monty to take in at the time I guess. 

Go to this link:


This is a portion of this KB if  you will.


Step 1: Check to see if the authoritative nameservers are correct

If Google Public DNS (or any open resolver) has trouble resolving a site, or returns inconsistent answers, sometimes it is because the authoritative nameservers are having trouble. There are various tools and sites to help you check this.

Some users (and Google Public DNS engineers) have found intoDNS very helpful. For example, if you have trouble visiting www.example.com, visit intodns.com and enter example.com (the domain for www.example.com), or visit http://intodns.com/example.com directly.

Additionally, DNSViz is useful for diagnosing DNSSEC related issues. For example, visit dnsviz.net and enter example.com (the domain for www.example.com), or visit http://dnsviz.net/d/example.com/dnssec/ directly.

If these tools identify a nameserver configuration issue, please contact the owner of the nameserver to fix it."


Residents--After 10 years how are your sim crossings doing? Not to good for the top dollar you pay are they.  Doesn't that tell you something.  LL is more interested in their other products more than the one your putting your money into.  They are probably going to sell it soon anyway.  Have you read the current TOS? Wow.

So many residents try to help in anyway they can only to be silenced by the LL regime for speaking the truth.  Can you imagine this as a public company watching their stock on CNBC fall like a rock.

Guess what LL. If you didn't make it the most expensive game ( virtual world whatever) ever made you would have even more people and more money. 

I hate IMVU but at least that company is engaged with residents and doesn't belittle them because the residents sometimes know more than they do.

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