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Frequently Asked Question #27. Why am I receiving a "Cannot contact server" error when I try to use my client?

When your client locks up or produces a Cannot contact server error when you try to log in, the most common reasons are problems with firewalls, proxies, and the LiveJournal web site.
  • LiveJournal Problems: First, you should check to see if LiveJournal.com is actually down. Try going to http://www.livejournal.com/ in your web browser, or see http://status.livejournal.org/. At peak load times you may receive the "Cannot contact server" error because high number of users are attempting to contact the servers.

  • Proxies: A proxy means you don't have a direct connection to the Internet so the client doesn't know how to contact a LiveJournal server; they are commonly used by businesses or on other networks. If you've successfully connected from your current computer before, your Internet Service Provider (ISP) may have changed its proxy settings recently. You will need to contact your ISP for more information.

  • Firewalls: If you know you aren't accessing the Internet through a proxy, you may be experiencing problems with a firewall. For instance, some operating systems come with a pre-installed firewall or you could've installed one yourself. Alternatively, your ISP, particularly a business or school, may have changed its settings to include a firewall. If you or your ISP uses a firewall, make sure that your client is one of the programs allowed to access the Internet through the firewall. You may have to read your firewall's documentation or contact your ISP to learn how to do this.

Since the Visions and Semagic clients for Windows most commonly experience a Cannot contact server error with a proxy or firewall, LiveJournal Support Volunteers have created a howto tutorial with information about editing your proxy or firewall settings for those clients.

If you still have problems after trying the above solutions, please file a Support Request.

Last Updated: March 13th, 2007

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