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Q. Can I use SmartWhois if I'm behind a firewall or a proxy server?
A. Yes, SmartWhois supports SOCKS firewalls and HTTP/HTTPS proxy servers (they must support the CONNECT method). If your firewall is not SOCKS-compliant, you'll have to configure it to allow network traffic on TCP ports 43 and 80. Please refer to your proxy server's documentation or contact your network administrator for information on configuring (mapping) proxy ports.

Q. I made a query using wildcard, but the program's status bar displays "Connection timed out" before I get any results. How can I make it work?
A. Using wildcard queries usually takes longer to retrieve data than using normal queries. To handle this problem, you should set a longer timeout period (Settings => Options => Network => Query). For example, you can change the timeout period from 20 seconds to 100 seconds.

Q. Why do I get the "Connection timed out" or "Connection failed" errors?
A. There are several possible reasons:

  • Your connection to the Internet is too slow or "fuzzy," which usually happens when you have a low quality telephone line. Try to reconnect to your ISP.
  • The Whois server the program is connecting to is down. SmartWhois obtains infromation from official whois databases, and these databases are not in our control. So you'll have to wait until the server is up and running again, which normally doesn't take long.
  • If you enabled IP address/hostname caching in the Options, the program might fail to connect to a Whois server if its IP address has recently changed. Click Clear Cache in Settings => Options => Cache => DNS.
  • Your network environment does not permit outbound TCP connections on ports 43 and 80. This is often the case when you don't have direct Internet access, e.g. you are behind a corporate firewall, or if you installed a personal firewall with incorrectly configured packet-blocking rules.

Q. When running a batch query, I only get certain percentage of the domains / IP addresses processed. Why some of the records are unavailable?
A. Many whois databases temporarily or permanently ban an IP address after receiving a certain number of queries over a fixed period of time. To avoid being banned, you may try to increase the query delay for the batch mode (Settings => Options => Network => Query, increase the number in "Delay queries in batch mode by" box). You may change this number a few times to find the optimal value to avoid being banned and yet run batch jobs quickly.

Q. Can I call SmartWhois directly from my application?
A. Yes, you can. If you want to use SmartWhois in your application, you can use a small "launcher" utility. If you pass an IP address or domain name as an argument, it will launch SmartWhois (if it's not running yet) and make it query this address, i.e.:



swlauncher.exe d ("d" makes it perfrom a domain query)

If SmartWhois is not installed on your computer, the launcher will prompt you to download it. You can find swlauncher.exe in the SmartWhois application folder. You can freely distribute this file with your application -- just let us know if you do. Alternatively, you can launch the actual program file, SW3.EXE, and pass an IP address or domain as a command-line argument. This functionality is available starting with version 3.2. The disadvantage of using this method is that your application must know the exact location of the SmartWhois program file, while swlauncher.exe will automatically do it for you.

Q. My firewall software warns me that SmartWhois is "attempting to access the Internet." I am aware that some sites are able to track users by collecting the information sent by their programs via Internet. Why does SmartWhois "attempt to access the Internet"?
A. What alerts your firewall are the attempts to connect to Whois databases to fetch the requested records, and the attempts to connect to DNS serves to resolve IP addresses to hostnames. The primary function of the program is to obtain the most current records available from whois databases; therefore SmartWhois makes outbound connections on TCP ports 43 and 80 and UDP port 53. Additionally, the program may check for updates by contacting (this functionality can be disabled). There are no other hidden activities. We don't sell spyware.

Q. When I click on the SmartWhois icon in the Microsoft Internet Explorer toolbar, the program box flashes up briefly and then vanishes. Why this feature isn't working?
A. The SmartWhois plug-in window is displayed only when it is active, and it is automatically closed when the focus is moved to another window. Most likely you have a software running that is changing the focus and activates other windows, or always moves its window on top. We would suggest to close all other running applications one by one to see which one is affecting SmartWhois.

Another reason for this behavior could be the mouse cursor settings on your computer. Certain mouse driver utilities allow you to configure the cursor to activate the window under the cursor, or even bring it to the foreground. When these features are enabled, they will prevent SmartWhois window from staying open.

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