If you find that your installation isn't working, then please see if the problem you are having is listed below, hopefully this information will resolve the problem, if you still have problems please email us.

"Connection broken or server unavailable" message

Check that the buddyxml servlet runs in a directory under tomcat called ‘buddyxml’ - rather than ‘BuddyXML’ or similar.

Chat messages not being sent or received

If you find that you cannot access some the web pages, or that the chat simply isn't working (chat messages not being sent or received) you may want to check your firewall port configuration, which should be set up to allow the following:

  • 9090 TCP Open for incoming connection from your network (http wildire console)
  • 8080 TCP Open for incoming connection from anywhere (http tomcat)
  • 80 TCP Open for incoming connection from anywhere (http apache)
  • 5222 TCP Open for incoming connection from anywhere (openfire XMPP)
  • 5225 TCP Open for incoming connection from anywhere (MSG Alert)
  • 5269 TCP Open for incoming connection from anywhere (jabber server to server)
  • 5269 TCP Open for outgoing connection to anywhere (jabber server to server)

For SSL you will additionally need to check the following:

  • 9091 TCP Open for incoming connection from your network (https wildire console)
  • 443 TCP Open for incoming connection from anywhere (https apache)
  • 5223 TCP Open for incoming connection from anywhere (openfire XMPP SSL)

"TransformerFactoryConfigurationError" error on starting Tomcat

If you receive the above error when trying to start Tomcat, then your JDK may not have the correct xalan libraries. Details of how to fix this can be found in this forum posting.

Can't log in to MSG

If you get an access denied/authorisation failed message when you try to log in to MSG, apart from the obvious of checking your username/password have be correctly set up in Openfire, you can also test out whether the BuddyXML services are running correctly. To do this, visit:
You'll need to update the domain to match your server and enter the relevant username, password and host. You should see an xml file in your browser with 'login succeeded'

The reason for checking this is that BuddyXML provides the serivces necessary for MSG client to run, if BuddyXML services are running fine, but you can't log in to MSG then something must be wrong with MSG, but if BuddyXML isn't working then this needs to be fixed before trying to log in to MSG.

"MSGAlert Notification Server failed to start" error on starting Tomcat

The full error message is likely to be :

"WARNING: Failed to register in JMX: javax.naming.NamingException: Could
not create resource factory instance
Attempting to start MSGAlert Notification Server on port 5225
MSGAlert Notification Server failed to start"

There are two possible reasons for this, firstly (the least likely) is that another service is already using this port, to test if this is the case identify which service is using the port then stop this service and see if toimcat will restart without the error occuring.
The second possible cause (and most likely) is that you’re using a Unix based system and the user which Tomcat logs in as does not have access to listen on port 5225. To solve this you will need to give the user access to listen on port 5225.

SQL error messages when trying to display the presence icon.

Depends on the exact error message, but it’s possible that you don’t have the user_metadata table in your Moodle database (since this is a custom OU table for the OpenLearn project). To fix this problem you’ll need to create a table with the following definition (MySQL syntax):

CREATE TABLE mdl_user_metadata
id serial NOT NULL,
userid int4 NOT NULL DEFAULT 0,
propertyname varchar(50),
value varchar(100),

The table doesn’t have to contain any records, though you could use it if you wanted to allow users to opt in/out of using MSG. By default users are opted in to using MSG (hence why no records are required) and to opt out a specific users, you would need to enter a record with propertyname ‘nomsg’ (or whatever you entered as the MSG-Moodle block setting for ‘opt in/out property name’) and value set to be ‘1”².

Presence icon doesn’t appear in the Moodle header, but no error message

The presence icon in the header will only appear if the current user is enrolled on a course which has the MSG-Moodle block attached, and they must be enrolled with the role specified in the ‘Group Role ID’ MSG-Moodle block settings page. This is fairly likely to happen if you are logged in as a Moodle admin, as you’ll have access to all the courses, but you’re not actually enrolled on courses.

Presence icon appears but doesn’t log the user in (i.e. presence icon doesn’t go green)

First need to check the data that is received back from the MSG server, this is where a packet sniffer or the Firebug tool comes in handy. If the request to login (the GET url will be something like: buddyxml?command=connect&…) has an error code 2002 (login failure) returned, then you’ll need to check the configuration of the MSG server, checking that it is pointing to the correct Moodle server for cookie validation. You should also check that the MSG-Moodle block setting ‘Allowed IP addresses’ has the correct IP address for the MSG server.