Here are some hints to help diagnose TCP/IP interface problems.
- You have your interface setup as a client, and it gets a connection refused error when you try and start it
This can occur when the server it is trying to connect to cannot be reached for some reason, or is not waiting.
There may be a network issue preventing it from finding the server, or the server itself (the remote system's interface) may not be running.
Ask the remote system to check that there interface is running and waiting.
If it is, and you still can't connect, try pinging the IP address of the server.
If there is a network issue then unsuccessful pings will confirm this.
You can also check if the server is indeed waiting using telnet.
Open a dos command window, and type in:
telnet xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx yyyyy (where xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx is the IP address of the server, and yyyyy is the port it is waiting on)
If telnet connects successfully, then you will see a flashing underscore in the top left corner of the dos window.
If telnet can't connect, then you will get a connection error given. This confirms either a network issue, or that the remote system is not waiting.
- You have your interface connected as a server, it is started but it shows up as "Not connected"
This often means that the client (the remote system) has not initiated the connection - it may not have been started or simply can't connect to the incoming HL7Connect interface.
Investigate with the remote system and check that their interface is started.
If it is started, try restarting.
If still not connected, this could indicate that there is a network issue.
Try pinging the remote system from the HL7Connect server - did it find it?
If not, there is most likely a network issue that needs to be resolved.
- Your interface is setup as a server, it says "Connected" but the interface isn't receiving any messages (and they are queuing up at the remote system)
Sometimes the network infrastructure may have firewalls in place.
A firewall can sometimes terminate TCP/IP connections if they haven't been used for a while.
This abrupt termination doesn't close the TCP/IP connection cleanly and HL7Connect doesn't receive the packet indicating that the connection has been closed.
Thus it appears as open, and won't accept any further connections (unless you have specified to allow more than one connection when configuring the TCP/IP incoming interface).
In this case, try restarting the HL7Connect interface.
The remote system should now be allowed to connect as the port has been cleared and messages should start to flow.
Investigate if there is indeed a firewall between the systems and if it is causing the connection to be abruptly terminated.
- The remote system says they are receiving application acks late (or not at all)
When HL7Connect receives a message, it will ALWAYS send an HL7 acknowledgement back to the original sending system.
You can log these acknowledgements so you can see what has gone out, and when.
Set the logs by editing the interface, and filling out the logging options under the logging tab.
These logs can be used to prove that the ack was indeed created and when it was sent out. Sometimes if there is a network issue that can delay the delivery of the acks to the sending system (regardless of if HL7Connect immediately sent the ack on receipt of the message) - logging the acks can help show this.
© Kestral Computing P/L 2000-2015. HL7Connect v2.00-063 generated on 30-Nov 2015
Keywords: Troubleshooting, TCP/IP, TCP/IP Interfaces / Troubleshooting