Confluence pages do not render when accessed from corporate intranet

(This has been solved. The problem was caused by a Microsoft ISA server on the corporate network. Switching to https solved this.)

Confluence pages do no render properly when connecting to a server I set up at home from my work computer. The Confluence server is clean install of version 5.4.2 64 bit and is running on an Ubuntu 12.04 64bit server hosted on my home internet connection. I access Confluence using a domain name through ChangeIP that I map to my current IP address for the server. I am running Confluence behind Apache using mod_proxy. I can access it with no problem from my home network and from the internet, but connecting to it from my work network causes the pages to be rendered incorrectly. Here is what the login screen looks like: http://i.imgur.com/2l4CrSw.png, and here is what Confluence Admin looks like: http://i.imgur.com/ylZMFSH.png. The problem seems to have something to do with our proxy server at work: if I run the same Confluence server on my work network, I can access it correctly from other computers on the work network as long at the proxy is bypassed. The proxy on our intranet is a Microsoft server. I have had this problem both with and without using Apache and mod_proxy on the Ubuntu server, and on Win32 & 64bit Confluence as well. The only thing I have been able to find in a Google search suggested turning off “Compress HTTP Responses” in Confluence when using mod_proxy, but that did not help. I did a search for publicly accessible Confluence servers and I do not get this error from most of them when I try to connect. The only server I found that had the same issue seemed to work correctly when the page was reloaded.

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Enabling SSL on Apache and using https to connect to Confluence has solved this problem for me. It also solved a problem with the ISA server caching session info for a Confluence server located within the intranet, which resulted in people seeing the dashboard of the last person to acces their dashboard on the server via the ISA server until the page was refreshed. Once the page was refreshed, the person would see their own dashboard, but the next person to access the server via the ISA server would then see that desktop until they refreshed the page.

Do you access with InternetExplorer? Then you have to switch off compatiblitymode using http headers.

Add a header with name="X-UA-Compatible" and value="IE=edge" in your apache config.

Take a look on this http://stackoverflow.com/questions/6156639/x-ua-compatible-is-set-to-ie-edge-but-it-still-doesnt-stop-compatibility-mode

Hope, this guess helps...

Regards

Steve

This issue is occuring with all browsers when the computer is connected to my work network with a M$ proxy, and the issue does not occur when the same computer is on a commercial internet connection. I am fairly certian that the issue also occurs when I install Confluence without Apache, but I am going to test that real quick.

-Edit: Just tested with Confluence 5.4.1 64bit configured for port 80 on Win8 64bit, without Apache. Same problem: computer on work network not rendering pages correctly from server on public internet address.

I had it once, that a proxy tried to insert some of his own code in the files from my server.

Did you get all your files in your browser or are there some problems in delivery?

Can you access your confluence with a local browser or via ssh tunnel and is it working correctly via this way? If this works, you have to do a diff to all files, mainly css but eventually js too to find the problem.

The ssh-tunnel is only an option. But you can forward your apache port to your local pc bypassing your proxy. Alternativly you can just use a browser on the server. Is there a graphical session or only a console? If you have no graphical environment there, I would recommend the ssh-tunnel.

This one should help:

http://howto.ccs.neu.edu/howto/windows/ssh-port-tunneling-with-putty/

Your suggestion sounds the most promising so far. The only time I have the issue is if my work proxy touches the page request. I have not ever needed to use ssh and am unfamilliar with it, but I have used diff before (mostly to cheat on Ultima 7 when I was a kid), so I will try that tomorrow when I get to work. What I really don't understand is why this only happens to my servers. I can get to other Confluence installs just fine. The only thing I can think of is they may all run something other than the standard Tomcat that comes with the standalone installer. Maybe my work ISA server dosn't like Tomcat 6 for some reason. I'm also going to try a test Jira site to see if the same thing happens to it.

It looks to me like the stylesheets are not getting loaded. Can you use a tool like Fiddler to see if they are crossing the wire when you request through the intranet?

Is there a reason this would seem to only affect the Confluence servers I install and not other Confluence servers I can see on the web? I will look into Fiddler to see if I can figure it out, but that starts getting into stuff I haven't had to learn yet.

So far, everything seems to point to the M$ ISA proxy my office runs as the cause of the issue. One solution may be to have our IT staff configure the ISA so the domain name I'm using for the server is on the direct access list.

I just tried viewing the Dashboard page source, then loading one of the css files by either clicking on the link in the source (Firefox, Chrome) or cutting and pasting to the address bar (IE 8 & 10). I get the same result on all computers both inside and outside the work network, so the css files seem to be accessible. Once I access the css file manually, when I reload the page, the Dashboard shows up correctly. If I then press Ctrl-F5 while viewing the Dashboard, the page again fails to load the css files.

I may have figured out the solution. I finally realized that all the Confluence servers I have tried to access from behind the ISA server were using SSL. I now have apache configured to use SSL and Confluence configured for https. When I get to work in the morning, I'll find out if this fixes it.

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