How to fix Portainer Edge Agent [message: an error occured during short poll] [error: short poll request failed]

Problem:

You are trying to run a Portainer Edge Agent, but can’t connect to the endpoint in the Portainer UI, but you see an error message like this in the logs:

2020/10/24 13:58:23 [ERROR] [internal,edge,poll] [message: an error occured during short poll] [error: short poll request failed]

Solution:

First, check your EDGE_ID and your EDGE_KEY. In most cases, these are incorrectly set and prevent proper communication between the Edge Agent and the Portainer instance.

If that doesn’t help, check your firewall. Both port 8000 of the portainer instance . When creating a new Endpoint, Portainer will show you a message like

The agent will communicate with Portainer via https://portainer.mydomain.com and tcp://portainer.mydomain.com:8000

Depending on your system configuration, you need enable port 8000 on your firewall, e.g. using

sudo ufw enable 8000/tcp

In order to test the connectivity, you can useĀ nc:

echo -e "\n" |  nc portainer.techoverflow.net 8000

This is how it looks on a working Portainer instance:

$ echo -e "\n" |  nc portainer.mydomain.com 8000
HTTP/1.1 400 Bad Request
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=utf-8
Connection: close

400 Bad Request

In case you don’t see any response, check your firewall and check if you’ve exposed port 8000 on the Portainer container.

Also, you can decode your EDGE_KEY (use the one that is actually used in the Portainer Edge Agent instance) in any online base64 decoder like base64code.com: Decoding

aHR0cHM6Ly9wb3J0YWluZXIubXlkb21haW4uY29tfHBvcnRhaW5lci5teWRvbWFpbi5jb206ODAwMHw3MTphNTpiYTpkMjo4MToxOToxMTo4NzplYTowZjo0NDo0YTpmYTo0Mjo4YTphNnwz

will result in this string:

https://portainer.mydomain.com|portainer.mydomain.com:8000|71:a5:ba:d2:81:19:11:87:ea:0f:44:4a:fa:42:8a:a6|3

in which you can check the URLs. For example, check if the protocol (http or https) mismatches what you used to configure your main Portainer instance.

Finally, on the host that is running the Portainer Edge Agent, check if the hostname resolves correctly:

host portainer.mydomain.com

This should show you at least the IPv4 address of the Portainer instance. If that is not correct, these are most likely culprits:

  • Your configured DNS server doesn’t work correctly. Use another DNS server, like 1.1.1.1 (echo nameserver 1.1.1.1 > /etc/resolv.conf will typically fix that temporarily).
  • Your DNS records are not set correctly for the domain name you use
  • If you use Dynamic DNS, your DDNS client might not have updated the record correctly

Always check if you get the same results from your local computer as you get from the host that is running the Portainer Edge Agent.