TNS-1153 Failed to Process String / NL-00303 syntax error in NV string Reported in Listener Log for JDBC Connections (Doc ID 982687.1)

Last updated on SEPTEMBER 07, 2017

Applies to:

Oracle Net Services - Version: 10.2.0.1 and later   [Release: 10.2 and later ]
Information in this document applies to any platform.
Connection from version 10.2.0.1 and newer.

Symptoms

JDBC OCI connections report NL-00303: syntax error in NV string and TNS-01153: Failed to process string in the listener log file.
Strange characters can be seen in the listener log entries for the connection.
Example here shows I^A^
NL-00303: syntax error in NV string
TNS-01153: Failed to process string: (DESCRIPTION=(ADDRESS=(PROTOCOL=TCP)(HOST=host2-vip)(PORT=1521))(CONNECT_DATA=(SERVER=DEDICATED)(SERVICE_NAME=rac10g)(CID=(PROGRAM=c:\oracle_SR\java\Jdk1.6.0_14\bin\java.exe)(HOST=sflood-lap)(USER=sflood))))I^A^[17-JUL-2009 10:35:50 * (CONNECT_DATA=(SERVER=DEDICATED)(SERVICE_NAME=rac10g)(CID=(PROGRAM=c:\oracle_SR\java\Jdk1.6.0_14\bin\java.exe)(HOST=client-pc)(USER=orcl))) * (ADDRESS=(PROTOCOL=tcp)(HOST=10.111.222.333)(PORT=3008)) * establish * rac10g * 0
However, the characters can be anything. Other examples:
NL-00303: syntax error in NV string
TNS-01153: Failed to process string: (DESCRIPTION=(LOAD_BALANCE=on)(FAILOVER=on)(ADDRESS=(PROTOCOL=TCP)(HOST=host02-vip)(PORT=1521))(CONNECT_DATA=(SERVICE_NAME=oracle)(SERVER=DEDICATED)(CID=(PROGRAM=javaprog1)(HOST=oracle)(USER=orcl))))abQ
NL-00303: syntax error in NV string
TNS-01153: Failed to process string: (DESCRIPTION=(ADDRESS=(PROTO =TCP)(HOST=host51-vip.service)(PORT=1550))(LOAD_BALANCE=yes)(CONNECT_DAT
A=(SERVER=DEDICATED)(SERVICE_NAME=ETRAV)(CID=(PROGRAM=httpd)(HOST=host-001lx.service)(USER=apache))))I�AFe<9C>^R�^Nl�<8F>a01-OCT-2009 13:00:35
* (CONNECT_DATA=(SERVER=DEDICATED)(SERVICE_NAME=ETRAV)(CID=(PROGRAM=httpd)(HOST=host001lx.service)(USER=apache))) * (ADDRESS=(PROTOCOL=tcp)(HOST
=10.111.22.33)(PORT=44702)) * establish * ORCL *


This issue does not reproduce in SQL*Plus.

The problem has only so far reproduced for the dedicated server model. i.e. May not reproduce using shared server.
TNS address string must have second address for connections to fail.

(ADDRESS_LIST=(LOAD_BALANCE=yes)
    (ADDRESS=(PROTOCOL=TCP)(HOST=host1-vip)(PORT=1521))
    (ADDRESS=(PROTOCOL=TCP)(HOST=host2-cip)(PORT=1521)))

That is a single address string does not produce an error in the listener.log
Sometimes when Oracle Net client tracing is enabled to support level (16),the problem will not reproduce.
Oracle Net Client trace shows the problem reported after re-direction
o Connection attempted to node "host2-vip"

nttbnd2addr: looking up IP addr for host: host2-vip

Redirect packet to another node (server side load balancing)

nscon: got NSPTRD packet

o Attempts connection to node "host1-vip"

nttbnd2addr: looking up IP addr for host: host1-vip

o Receives refuse packet

nsprecv: 00 36 00 00 04 04 00 00 |.6......|
nsprecv: 22 00 00 2A 28 44 45 53 |"..*(DES|
nsprecv: 43 52 49 50 54 49 4F 4E |CRIPTION|
nsprecv: 3D 28 45 52 52 3D 31 31 |=(ERR=11|
nsprecv: 35 33 29 28 56 53 4E 4E |53)(VSNN|
nsprecv: 55 4D 3D 31 36 39 38 37 |UM=16987|
nsprecv: 30 33 33 36 29 29       |0336))  |

Cause

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