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Old Nov 1, 2007, 10:42 PM   #1
contender
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"Safari canít find the server" but Firefox works fine

Hi, I'm having a strange issue after upgrading to Leopard. When I try to open certain pages in Safari it instantly gives me the "Safari canít find the server" message. When I try to open the same page in Firefox at the same time it opens normally. For many pages (like this one) Safari is working fine. My connection seems good and this is happening on reliable sites (currently Safari won't open apple.com).

Any ideas?
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Old Nov 2, 2007, 03:13 AM   #2
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The cat's got fleas.

I'm getting that error occasionally. Worse, my Internet connection gets flaky at times.
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Old Nov 2, 2007, 06:25 AM   #3
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I started having this problem too. I thought my company server was offline, only to find out that it was Safari. Funny thing is, I usually only have this problem with SSL sites (https). Firefox shows them fine, but Safari is hit and miss.
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Old Nov 3, 2007, 07:47 PM   #4
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I am having similar problems as well. I'm running an AEBS albeit more stable since upgrading to Leopard, lately my internet connection seems to be flaky and I can't explain it. When trying to load pages I get the same can't connect to server messages, so I close Safari and then reopen it and it finally loads, sometimes slowly. Its not consistent and can't pinpoint any specific causes as everything seems to be ok on my end. Please for the love of god update...my MBP was running so perfecty under Tiger, don't make me revert back.
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Old Nov 3, 2007, 07:57 PM   #5
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Apple in top left->Location, change it

This was also a problem in Tiger, Apple even told me to Archive Install!!!

After a few hours of waiting and updating, I was irritated, then next time it happened, I messed around and found this...
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Old Dec 26, 2007, 02:26 PM   #6
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I know this thread is old but I am having the same problem. I don't understand the last post by psychofreak. What does "apple in top left->location, change it" mean? Hope you can help, thanks.
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Old Dec 27, 2007, 11:27 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by daddy View Post
I know this thread is old but I am having the same problem. I don't understand the last post by psychofreak. What does "apple in top left->location, change it" mean? Hope you can help, thanks.
He means click on your Apple logo in the top left corner of the screen, scroll down to LOCATION and change the option it is currently set to.
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Old Dec 27, 2007, 11:33 AM   #8
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Assuming you have another location set up.

The problem here is that something on your network (likely the DNS) is slow to respond. To make matters worse, Safari is exceedingly impatient and gives up before the DNS (?) responds. The reason FF works? It's much more forgiving.

The solution?

Well, you might want to look for an alternate DNS server, and/or make sure the DNS server(s) IP address is implicitly set up in your Mac's Networking.

And, wait for Apple to update Safari to be less grumpy.
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Old Jan 27, 2008, 03:39 PM   #9
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Safari Can't find the Server

Wow, this problem is very frustrating. 1st Time MAC owner here as of this last Friday. What is worse is I can do a google search to see that many others are having this problem, yet when I call MAC Support they don't seem to understand "why" and it must be something on my end and claim they haven't heard of the issue. That can't be true based upon on the dialog going on with this over the internet. Well, based upon what I'm seeing from everyone else it's not a new issue. Sometimes I hit CNN, sometimes I don't and get the "Can't fine the Server" message (all different websites do the same). I turn on my DELL with Windows XP and IE hits them every time like it has for years. I just can't figure out if it's something in the setting?? Any other suggestions.
I've got a macbook with leopard that is 2 days old. Love my MAC but this isn't what I was expecting........ and if I can't get it fixed, guess I'm back to supporting the non Apple products again. This is crazy.
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Old Jan 27, 2008, 05:56 PM   #10
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somebody explain to me why firefox works fine if this is indeed a DNS problem?
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Old Mar 6, 2008, 05:11 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clevin View Post
somebody explain to me why firefox works fine if this is indeed a DNS problem?
That's exactly my thought. I've been having this trouble on and off since I bought my iMac (mid January of this year). I'm really upset that I can't just use Safari because I like it a lot other than this issue which prevents me from using it.

If anyone can shed some light on the issue I'd be very grateful.
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Old Mar 6, 2008, 05:23 PM   #12
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It's a DNS problem in that likely your DNS server responds too slowly for Safari's tastes and it gives up. Whereas Firefox is nice and happy to wait. This is more of a Safari-not-being-patient problem.
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Old Mar 6, 2008, 05:27 PM   #13
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It's a DNS problem in that likely your DNS server responds too slowly for Safari's tastes and it gives up. Whereas Firefox is nice and happy to wait. This is more of a Safari-not-being-patient problem.
really? I just can't imaging that. elaborate?
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Old Mar 7, 2008, 10:09 AM   #14
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really? I just can't imaging that. elaborate?
How else would you explain it, assuming it's a DNS porblem?
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Old Mar 7, 2008, 10:25 AM   #15
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Not sure if this is related, or answers your question, but I will throw it out here anyway. When I upgraded to Leopard I had major problems with connection, as I am behind a proxy, Safari and anything requiring internet access, Adium, Max, etc etc would crash, but FireFox browsed very happily. This lasted for several months and was resolved with 10.5.2 .

It seems that FF deals with proxies in a different (better?) way and does not use the Mac Network setting options, IIRC.

So, are you using/behind a proxy?

Quote:
Originally Posted by yellow View Post
It's a DNS problem in that likely your DNS server responds too slowly for Safari's tastes and it gives up. Whereas Firefox is nice and happy to wait. This is more of a Safari-not-being-patient problem.
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Last edited by riscy; Mar 7, 2008 at 10:32 AM.
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Old Mar 7, 2008, 10:34 AM   #16
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since safari is more deeply bundled to the OSX core. chances are, it is using some OS level DNS resolving, which causes troubles in some cases. While firefox is probably using some separate stuff that is not OSX related. So its not affected.

Quite interestingly, leopard does have some internet connection problems, Im not sure if thats the cause for safari's misbehave. But a way to test is to first ask those who have this problem "are you using leopard?"

Last edited by yellow; Mar 7, 2008 at 01:26 PM. Reason: OT
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Old Mar 7, 2008, 10:40 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clevin View Post
really? I just can't imaging that. elaborate?
Quote:
Originally Posted by yellow View Post
How else would you explain it, assuming it's a DNS porblem?
I'll give it a try. This would appear to be a difference in timeout settings in each of the browsers. Safari is set to give up after a certain period of time has passed: 60 seconds, for what my research has gathered. So, if after 60 seconds no response has been received, Safari produces the dreaded "can't find server" message. Firefox, it appears, has a higher setting for timeout, say for example, 120 seconds. (I wasn't able to garner which setting we're interested in looking at the about:config) So it waits longer, in this example 60 more seconds, before giving up. Make sense?

There is a "hack" called SafariNoTimeout that supposedly lets you adjust this setting but doesn't yet work for Intel-based Macs.
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Old Mar 7, 2008, 10:47 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by clevin View Post
somebody explain to me why firefox works fine if this is indeed a DNS problem?
Firefox is a better browser. It may take time to start since it is java based, but once it is up and running, it is very good.
Also did you try "delete cache" yet?
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Old Mar 7, 2008, 10:50 AM   #19
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Personally, I have absolutely no issues described here with any version of OS X or Safari or Firefox. Why? Probably because I exist in an environment with enterprise level DNS servers.

Last edited by yellow; Mar 7, 2008 at 01:26 PM. Reason: OT
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Old Mar 7, 2008, 10:53 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dejo View Post
I'll give it a try. This would appear to be a difference in timeout settings in each of the browsers. Safari is set to give up after a certain period of time has passed: 60 seconds, for what my research has gathered. So, if after 60 seconds no response has been received, Safari produces the dreaded "can't find server" message. Firefox, it appears, has a higher setting for timeout, say for example, 120 seconds. (I wasn't able to garner which setting we're interested in looking at the about:config) So it waits longer, in this example 60 more seconds, before giving up. Make sense?
It makes absolutely NO sense. OP said its "instant 'can't find server' warning", not after 60 sec.

Last edited by yellow; Mar 7, 2008 at 01:23 PM. Reason: removed comment on since-deleted comment / OT
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Old Mar 7, 2008, 11:02 AM   #21
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It makes absolutely NO sense. OP said its "instant 'can't find server' warning", not after 60 sec.
Oops, sorry. I missed that detail. My apologies.
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Old Mar 7, 2008, 11:30 AM   #22
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The trigger for this problem is your DNS server, or a NAT router which manipulates your DNS requests before they go to the server and return to you. You can try changing your DNS server or updating/removing your cheapy router. If you find success, report the bug to Apple and your cheapy router maker, or your DNS server admin, as required.

The most likely parties to fix this problem are Apple and the cheapy router maker. In fact, since this problem was WORSE before 10.5.2 and/or Security Update 2007-X (i.e., it affected me too, and I don't have a cheapy router!), it is possible the fix was incomplete by Apple.

Re: Firefox. Firefox is a cross-platform app that uses BSD socket API and is going to do so in the most generic and compatible ways. Safari is a proprietary app that is going to use whatever fancy widgets, thingamajiggers, and gizmos that Apple has bolted on to their OS. It is very easy for one to work, and the other to fail at what appears to be the same function. Apple is notorious for having multiple APIs for doing the same thing.

Last edited by Amdahl; Mar 7, 2008 at 11:35 AM.
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Old Mar 7, 2008, 11:40 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by Amdahl View Post
Re: Firefox. Firefox is a cross-platform app that uses BSD socket API and is going to do so in the most generic and compatible ways. Safari is a proprietary app that is going to use whatever fancy widgets, thingamajiggers, and gizmos that Apple has bolted on to their OS. It is very easy for one to work, and the other to fail at what appears to be the same function. Apple is notorious for having multiple APIs for doing the same thing.
I thought safari/webkit is open source? or there is something I misunderstood?
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Old Mar 7, 2008, 01:15 PM   #24
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I still didn't get the answer to the original question: why is it a DNS problem when firefox works fine?

Safari is faster to reject the DNS resolving problem? fast enough to "instantly" reject users' request?

Last edited by yellow; Mar 7, 2008 at 01:22 PM. Reason: Off-topic
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Old Mar 7, 2008, 01:44 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by clevin View Post
I still didn't get the answer to the original question: why is it a DNS problem when firefox works fine?

Safari is faster to reject the DNS resolving problem? fast enough to "instantly" reject users' request?
I use Safari and Camino. When Safari has the "Safari canít find the server" message also Camino fails to show a web-site. Camino is a Mac only product, therefore I think it gets the DNS - which is set to an IP given by my provider - from the Network settings*, just like Safari. Firefox on the other hand might have there own settings/storage/handling for DNS IPs.

In the past I logged out and back in to solve it, next time I try to change location.

I am by no means a network expert, so maybe someone with more knowledge could verify.

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* There must be some load mechanism that reads the Network settings from harddrive to store it in memory. The DNS IP on the harddrive stays, but not in memory, where the applications Safari/Camino are looking. Therefore I will test next time to change the settings in System Preferences, which should force a re-load into memory.
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