Client can't see site but everyone else can


Not sure if this is the right forum to post this but hopefully it is.

We’ve just put up a holding page for a new client on a domain she registered a month or so ago, and set up some email accounts. All was fine midday yesterday; she could view the site, had set up her mail software and downloaded some messages. Then, later in the afternoon (after the computer had gone to sleep and woken up again - may or may not be relevant) she couldn’t connect to the mail server any more.

She then stopped being able to see the website either. I can see it fine here and at home, and I can connect to the mail server too. I can also see it from my phone and the client asked a friend and they could see it, so it seems it’s just her. A quick check on came back with all positive results.

I suggested clearing the DNS cache but that didn’t help. I also had a look at her hosts file but there’s nothing in it. She can connect to the site using the IP address but that’s not much help.

Anyone have any ideas? There’s one more (possibly vital) piece of information: her ISP is AOL :frowning:



Simply ask your client to provide you traceroute result from his local machine to your server ip or domain name which he is not able to access. In traceroute result you can see where connection are dropped.

Open Start >> Run >> Enter ‘cmd’ in the field and hit enter.

You will get a black screen there you enter


Note : Use your actual domain name instead of

Thanks for the tip Linux7802; I’ll make a note of that for future diagnostics. The client’s gone quiet so I guess everything’s working OK now.

Thanks for the advice everyone!

I think it’s an issue with her provider. Ask her to contact them regarding the issue.

The first time it happened, rebooting the router fixed it and it was fine for a few days then happened again. I’ve told her to contact her ISP but if that goes nowhere I’ll suggest using a different DNS provider. I didn’t know Google had one so thanks for the tip Alex.

Anyone have any ideas? There’s one more (possibly vital) piece of information: her ISP is AOL

Ask her to browse web site using proxy. I believe she will see the difference and get what the problem was :wink:

May be IP blocked or ask her to delete browser’s cookies and temp files.
Good luck.

In the meantime, the client has come back and said that she can access it on her phone when connecting by 3G but NOT when connecting to her wireless network, which points the finger even more firmly at AOL.

Has anyone ever come across something like this before? She can access other websites fine and it seems strange that it was working then suddenly stopped for no apparent reason.

I’ll investigate the IP block though; it’s definitely an option.

Let your client contact her provider and ask for an explanation.

I do not think that is the problem on the side of web host. If your ISP can’t help you may need use proxy to access the site.

Be blocked by the firewall,that would result to cannot access the host.

Whenever someone says “their ISP is AOL”, that brings up enough red flags for me to know that the fault may well be right there. Seriously though, if everyone else can see it except her (and her phone - on a different network can see it), it’s her ISP’s DNS records that are messed up. Clearing the thing won’t help if the source isn’t updated frequently or properly. You’re best bet would be to encourage her to change her DNS provider to one of the many free open ones (I recommend Google).

That is the problem with your client’s ISP. That is for sure.

1 Like

It is likely that this is a local DNS routing issue. The client’s local network will probably use [domainname] to route mail using SMTP. Web traffic is routed using HTTP. Both of these are controlled by your local DNS.
If you do not have your local DNS set to forward HTTP traffic externally to your live website then this could just be pointed to your mail server (or local DNS server).
I have had this happen a number of times with various clients.

1 Like