We periodically deploy an application to a computer located in China (from Canada). We deploy the changes using Subversion - we're talking a ~100Mb diff. We've noticed that the speeds are good until they suddenly grind to a halt and eventually time out. Retrying immediately afterwards shows the same timeout. Waiting a few hours and trying again will allow the download to progress, but it will eventually time out as it did the first time.

If we transfer files with FTP, everything goes fine. If we transfer via rsync we usually get the same problem. Seems like anything that transfers a diff of information instead of a full transfer will cause the issue to happen.

I don't know if this is China's great firewall kicking in or some other intermediate network's that is throttling the connection to the point of killing it.

  1. Can you recommend any tools that will help me detect if this is really the case.
  2. Are there any tools out that that would make the svn update less chatty to avoid being flagged as suspicious traffic? (pre-negotiate what needs to be sent and have it done in one big chunk)?
  • 3
    Are SVN and rsync using SSH? Large amounts of encrypted traffic could be getting blocked.
    – Neil
    Apr 15, 2011 at 19:31
  • They aren't using SSH. SVN using svnserve. Both client & server on Windows boxes. Apr 15, 2011 at 19:34
  • Is it http or https? FTP by default tends to be unencrypted Apr 19, 2011 at 13:20
  • You're probably hitting some weird incoming rate limiting on their end. Try slowing down your connection and see if you get different results.
    – LawrenceC
    Apr 27, 2011 at 18:19
  • I don't know of any ways to limit the rate at which SVN updates. Are there any? Apr 27, 2011 at 19:03

2 Answers 2


Best (free) tool I know of for troubleshooting network issue is http://www.wireshark.org/.


This really looks like an issue with a "network filter". The way I have overcomed this issue in the past was by using ssh-http tunneling.

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