The Multi-User Chat (XEP-0045)  protocol was not designed to handle s2s interruptions or message loss well. Rather often, the restart of a server or a component causes a client to believe that it is still joined to a given chatroom, while the chatroom service does not know of this participant.
Existing approaches for re-synchronization are either inefficient (presence updates and "silent" messages are reflected to all participants, totalling to O(N²) stanzas per time unit), or mask message / presence losses (the implicit join performed via the deprecated GC1.0 protocol).
This specification aims to provide the most efficient, albeit not the most elegant, way for clients to periodically check whether they are still joined to a chatroom.
This specification only makes sense in the context of Multi-User Chat (XEP-0045)  chatrooms. It makes use of XMPP Ping (XEP-0199)  to perform periodic self-pings.
Server support for this extension is optional, but will significantly improve the reliability with Multi-Session Nicks and mobile clients.
A typical connection between a client and a Multi-User-Chatroom (MUC) goes through the client-to-server link, possibly a server-to-server link and a typically local server-to-component link. If one of the involved servers or the MUC component is restarted, or one of the links is disturbed for some time, this can lead to the removal of some or all participants from the affected MUCs, without the clients being informed.
To a participant, this looks like the MUC is silent (there is no chat activity and no presence changes), making it hard to realize that the connection was interrupted.
To prevent the bad usability effect (message loss, lack of reaction from people in a chatroom), a client needs to actively check whether it is still joined to a MUC.
There are multiple alternative approaches for a client to test whether it is still joined to a MUC:
After an adequate amount of silence from a given MUC (e.g. 15 minutes), or from all MUCs from a given service domain, a client should initiate a self-ping. If Juliet is joined as JuliC in the firstname.lastname@example.org MUC, her client will send the following ping IQ:
If Juliet's client is not joined, the MUC service will respond with a <not-acceptable> error. Thus, her client can automatically attempt a rejoin.
If her client is joined, the IQ request will be forwarded to any one of Juliet's joined clients.
Depending on the other client implementation and its connection status,
the IQ will be responded to eventually, in one of these ways, as
delivered to the "
The normal routing rules of the self-ping impose two round-trips: first the initial ping from the client to the MUC, then the reflection of the ping and its response (possibly to another client), and finally the response to the initial IQ. If the other client is experiencing network connectivity issues, which is often the case with mobile devices, the ping request might never be responded to.
Therefore, a MUC service supporting this protocol may directly respond to a participant's Ping request to the participant's own nickname, as opposed to routing it to any of the participant's clients.
In Multi-Session-Nick scenarios, where multiple clients of the same user are joined as the same participant, it is possible that another client initiates a nickname change while a ping request is pending. In that case, the ping might be responded to with <item-not-found>.
A client should not perform a self-ping after initiating a nickname change, and before receiving the response to the nickname change from the service, as it is not yet clear whether the new nickname will be accepted.
A MUC service implementation should not allow a non-participant to obtain information about participants. This is however true irregardless of implementing this specification.
REQUIRED for protocol specifications.
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Add handling for another corner case, change title to Council’s liking