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 Mysteriously Dropping Sessions
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Starting Member

9 Posts

Posted - September 20 2009 :  11:22:54  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I was wondering if any had run into the problem described below:

An implementation of VPASP for one of my clients seems to be plagued by constantly dropping sessions. How this manifests itself is you will be on the store, going from page to page, adding items as normal. Then, very suddenly, your entire session will be lost and your cart will be empty. Another method of evidence is suddenly being kicked out of the admin session.

Now, to be clear, we're not talking the normal 20 minute by default ASP session timeout. This happens during normal, regular browsing.

She was on a shared hosting solution and I had thought that they had something boneheaded going like a constantly recycling apppools, so I ended up moving the site to one of my own servers where I KNOW the apppool and session length are stable and normal: the problem remains.

VPASP support threw a few obvious canned solutions at me that I had already checked and were of no use and pretty much absolved themselves of further involvement, so it looks like I'm on my own from that standpoint.

Was wondering if anyway else had similar problem before I went to the trouble of finding another cart solution.


4286 Posts

Posted - September 20 2009 :  21:12:39  Show Profile  Visit support's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Hi there

Sorry to hear you are having issues.

I have checked the helpdesk ticket and cannot really disagree with what our support team member has said. Nor were they canned answers.

If you wish for us to keep looking for you we are more than happy to however it is very difficult to debug an issue when you cannot replicate it.

Our support member went through your site and could not replicate the dropped session issue unfortunately.

If you can give us a step by step walk through of how we can replicate the problem we will have more chance of fixing for you.

He also asked for site details so we can check for any custom code issues.

I will keep an eye out for your update and send you a session testing module as well if you like.

BYZ have a domain tool which may help out here as well possibly?


VPASP Support
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Starting Member

5 Posts

Posted - March 29 2010 :  14:47:10  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
This seems to be the same or similar problem I keep griping about with VPASP. My one customer has the same constant problems with his shopping cart, even after moving it to VPASP's host.

Anyone know of a resolution for dropped sessions. It is not idle time causing it!

Here is what my client found from one of his customers:
He said whenever he would click on the “pay with credit card” button, he would get a blank page that would say something to the effect “page expired”. I asked if he clicked that button and not another? He said he clicked the “pay with credit card” button. He also said he was not on the website for a long period of time either which would rule out a time expiration thing suggested by VPASP. In fact, he said when he re-attempted checkout, he was like “boom boom boom”, not wasting any time, to the same area where he would get that damn message again. I took his order over the phone, only after I contacted him.
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Senior Member

United Kingdom
1898 Posts

Posted - March 29 2010 :  19:32:55  Show Profile  Visit devshb's Homepage  Reply with Quote
check the url through the process; it's possible that he's moving from "www" to non-www during the checkout process.
ie moving from something like:

the gateway could be doing that (you'll get the same problem with shared ssl)

If it only happens on the payment aspects and not on the cart generally then chances are that the user is moving from www to non-www (or vice-versa) via the checkout process/links, or to shared ssl, and thereby losing the session.

Try manually going to www or non-www on your browser, adding to the cart, checking out, and keep an eye on your browser address line to see if it switches domain/subdomain while it's still on your own site.

Also, check that your xmysite value in shop$config.asp matches precisely what's in your xmysite value in admin's config (as it's stored twice; once in shop$config.asp and once in the site-setup tab). Do the same for the ssl config option if you're using that too.

It's also worth testing it on different browsers; firefox and internet explorer have completely different default options/logic when it comes to things like ssl processing etc.

This is the domain tool which cam was talking about before:
BYZ044 - Domain Tools for VP-ASP

(avoid shared ssl at all costs; it just won't work properly; if you need ssl then get a dedicated certificate and force people onto the right domain)

Sessions being dropped at a specific point during the ordering process is almost always down to the domain/subdomain being changed. Whereas the initial problem mentioned by the first poster is usually down to memory leaks in the code or the host not giving enough resources to the site (or another site taking away all the resources from your site).

Also, try to avoid using the same browser when logging in as a customer compared to logging in as admin as the 2 logins can conflict even when you've logged out (I try to use firefox for admin login, and ie for customer logins if I need to do both).

Regarding being kicked out of admin, I have in the past found a handful of places where that happens on a regular basis (instances where the admin check is done *before* the includes) but I'm assuming that that's been patched on v7 (I think the only place I found it before on 6.5 and prior was the thanks2 stuff in admin)

If your host starts moaning about memory usage, take a look at:
Memory Overusage on the server, who's fault is it and what do I do about it?:

We also created this if your sessions are getting dropped all over the place:
BYZ136 - Session Tester for ASP/VPASP

Simon Barnaby
[email protected]
Follow us on Twitter: http://twitter.com/bigyellowzone
Web Design, Online Marketing and VPASP addons

Edited by - devshb on March 29 2010 20:14:30
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