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How many times does tcp_dissect_pdus get called?

asked 2019-09-25 13:58:58 +0000

Kim gravatar image

updated 2019-09-25 17:35:53 +0000

Jaap gravatar image

Raw data consists of 1 message which gets split into 2 packets (i.e. 10 and 8). Each PDU is 8 bytes. How many times does tcp_dissect_pdus get called in this case?


/* This method dissects fully reassembled messages */
static int
dissect_foo_message(tvbuff_t *tvb, packet_info *pinfo _U_, proto_tree *tree _U_, void *data _U_)
    /* TODO: implement your dissecting code */
    return tvb_captured_length(tvb);

/* determine PDU length of protocol foo */
static guint
get_foo_message_len(packet_info *pinfo _U_, tvbuff_t *tvb, int offset, void *data _U_)

/* The main dissecting routine */
static int
dissect_foo(tvbuff_t *tvb, packet_info *pinfo, proto_tree *tree, void *data)
    tcp_dissect_pdus(tvb, pinfo, tree, TRUE, FRAME_HEADER_LEN,
                     get_foo_message_len, dissect_foo_message, data);
    return tvb_captured_length(tvb);

Wireshark - Import raw data

raw data file: 000000 0a 01 00 00 00 00 00 10 03 0a 02 00 00 00 00 00 11 03

TCP splits it into 2 packets (i.e. 10 and 8 bytes).

Debug trace is as follows:

    calls  tcp_dissect_pdus()

    calls get_foo_message_len()

     returns PDU size 8
     There is 2 remaining bytes from 1st packet

The program executes dissect_foo_message. I would have expected dissect_foo() to call tcp_dissect_pdus() to reassemble the next packet. Building a 16 byte message.

The documentation for TCP reassembly is difficult to follow and it is not clear.

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answered 2019-09-25 17:39:53 +0000

Guy Harris gravatar image

How many times does tcp_dissect_pdus get called in this case?

As many times as is necessary.

Your get_message_len routine should be prepared to be called an arbitrary number of times during the process of reassembling a packet, with arbitrary tvbuff and offset arguments. It must not maintain any state.

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Asked: 2019-09-25 13:58:58 +0000

Seen: 143 times

Last updated: Sep 25 '19