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Improved Query Processing

Archived This content has been archived and is no longer actively maintained.

Whois query processing for the RIPE Database Server has been revised to be more consistent and helpful to users.  If you have questions about these, please e-mail
<ripe-dbm _at_ ripe _dot_ net>.

New errors:

  • An input too long results in "ERROR:107" rather than silent truncation. This error can be produced in UNIX with the following command:
         $ whois `perl -e 'print "x" x 10000'`
.
.
.
%ERROR:107: input line too long
%
% Input exceeds the maximum line length.
  • A bogus character in the query results in "ERROR:108" rather than silently removing the bad character.
         $ whois ^
.
.
.
%ERROR:108: bad character in input
%
% An invalid character was passed in the query. Allowed
% characters are letters, numbers, and these: -_:+=.,@/?'.
  • Multiple proxy query flags result in "ERROR:205" rather than silently using the last IP address.

$ whois -Vone,1.0.0.1 -Vtwo,2.0.0.1
.
.
.
%ERROR:205: multiple addresses passed by proxy
%
% More than one -V flag passed the address of a client.
% This is an error in the proxy server. Please contact
% the administrator of the server and report this error.

Fixed behaviour:

  • Passing a key to a template query or meta-query is an error, e.g. "-t person shane kerr". This will return the allowed syntax.

New query:

  • There is a new meta-query, "-q types", to list classes.

$ whois -Tasn AS123
.
.
.
%ERROR:103: unknown object type
%
% "asn" is not a known object type.
% Use "-q types" to list known object types.
         $ whois -q types
.
.
.
as-block
as-set
aut-num
domain
inet-rtr
inet6num
inetnum
key-cert
limerick
mntner
person
role
route
route-set
filter-set
peering-set
rtr-set
irt

Warnings:

  • Previously, a query would return any number of objects (0 or more), and possibly a single error. Now it is also possible to get any number of warnings (0 or more).

  • A query with multiple IP flags gives "WARNING:901" and reports which flag was used, rather than using an arbritrary flag.

$ whois -r -M -x 10.0.0.0 - 10.255.255.255
.
.
.
%WARNING:901: duplicate IP flags passed
%
% More than one IP flag (-l, -L, -m, -M, -x, or -c) passed to the
% server.
% Only "-x" will be used for this query.
  • Non-IP query using an IP flag results in "WARNING:902".
         $ whois -r -M Shane kerr
.
.
.
%WARNING:902: useless IP flag passed
%
% An IP flag (-l, -L, -m, -M, -x, or -c) used without an IP key.
  • Non-domain query using "-R" flag results in "WARNING:904".
        $ whois -R 10.0.0.0
.
.
.
%WARNING:904: useless no-referral flag passed
%
% The -R flag used for a non-domain key.
  • Lookups where a key is fixed, e.g. 192.168.1.0/16, results in "WARNING:905" and reports what key is used, e.g. 192.168.0.0/16.

$ whois 193.0.1.17/23
.
.
.
%WARNING:905: fixed lookup key
%
% The key "193.0.1.17/23" has been changed to "193.0.0.0/23" for
% lookup.

Concurrency Limits:

Previously, there were no limits on the number of simultaneous connections that a user could make.  With the new server, the following restrictions apply:

  • Users connecting more than 4 times simultaneously from a single IP address will receive "ERROR:208" and be disconnected:
         %ERROR:208: connection refused
%
% Sorry, your connection is refused.
% Too many simultaneous connections from your host.
  • Users connecting more than 6 times simultaneously from a single IP address will be disconnected without any notice from the server.