A WebSocket connection is a type of communication protocol that allows for real-time, two-way communication between a client and a server. It provides a persistent connection that remains open as long as the client and server communicate.
WebSockets are considered fragile because they are sensitive to network disruptions and other issues that can cause the connection to drop. Unlike traditional HTTP requests, WebSocket connections require a constant stream of data, which can be interrupted by network glitches, server errors, or other problems.
Furthermore, WebSocket connections rely on a handshake process to establish and maintain the connection. The connection may be terminated if there is any issue with this process, such as an invalid handshake response or a timeout.
There are several reasons why a WebSocket connection may drop:
- Sync failure: if the node you're connected to falls behind the tip and gets automatically removed from the cluster;
- Overload: if a node crashes or is low on resources, it may stop responding to requests, causing the connection to drop;
- Middleware restart: when we do updates and patches to the system that require a restart. The connection may drop in the process;
- Use Heartbeat Mechanism: Implementing a heartbeat mechanism is the best way to deal with WebSocket disconnections. This involves sending a ping request to the server at regular intervals to check if it's healthy. If the server doesn't respond within a certain time frame, the client should assume that the connection has dropped and attempt to reconnect.
Implement Auto-Reconnect: implement an auto-reconnect mechanism that attempts to reconnect to the WebSocket server if the connection drops. This can be implemented using a timer that waits for a certain amount of time before attempting to reconnect. The Web3 JS library has this feature build-in -- Link
- Error Handling: implement an error handler that checks for connection drops and attempt to reconnect.