SSH tunnel with Windows client and UNIX server

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I am currently a computer science major at a state university.  All
compsci majors get a free account with the department's UNIX server.

My computer runs WinXP Home (yeah, I know, but it's all I have) and
I'm in a dorm on campus.  Bandwidth is horribly restricted in the
dorms, but everywhere else on campus, connections are fine.  Needless
to say, you can't exactly take a laptop and play Final Fantasy XI in
the library without getting yelled at...

Recently I've been using an SSH tunnel to connect to the UNIX server
and get around the school's firewall/throttler (the UNIX server is
outside this restriction for some reason or another).  I use PuTTY set
up dynamic port forwarding on Port 8080, then change the connection
settings in my programs to point to on a SOCKS5 proxy
(or I use SocksCap32 if the program doesn't otherwise support it).  It
works great.  It's useful for when I need to download or surf at peak

If you're a visual person, this is what I mean:

My comp                     CompSci box        
(WinXP)  <==(SSH tunnel)==>   (UNIX)    <=========>  Internet

But occasionally, my PuTTY client will just close itself.  Then when I
reopen the connection to the UNIX server, the tunnel no longer seems
to work; for example, clicking on web pages will give me a "Document
contains no data" error.  It seems to start working again after I wait
a couple hours, though.  So my first question is:

1) Any idea why PuTTY will simply close itself, followed by the SSH
tunnel simply not functioning for a length of time?

I taught myself SSH tunneling so I could also play Final Fantasy XI
on-campus.  The admin that is normally cool about opening ports and
such seemed rather reluctant to open any ports for FFXI (UDP requires
50000-65535), nor did he feel like creating a special hardware
exception for the game.  Plus he hasn't responded to any e-mails or
phone calls for the past three weeks.

Running FFXI with SocksCap32 works fine with the TCP portion of the
game; the speed couldn't be better.  But since UDP can't be tunneled
over SSH, it still makes a direct connection with the game servers,
which unfortunately makes the UDP-controlled parts of the game slow
down to an unplayable crawl.  I've been going nuts trying to find some
way to either tunnel my UDP ports over TCP and send them through the
SSH tunnel, or find an alternative to SSH tunneling that can make this

So my next two questions:

2) Is there a way to simply tunnel my computer's UDP connections over
TCP and send them over the SSH tunnel?  I don't care about losing
speed or 100% reliability or anything; I know UDP over TCP is "a bad
idea", but this game was designed to be played on a 56k modem and I'm
on a T1.

3) Is there any other solution for "bouncing" my connections off the
UNIX server?  I've read into things like PPP, VPN, and the like, but I
can't find any specific documentation on establishing something like
this specifically with a Windows client and a UNIX server.  I guess
this topic doesn't come up often.

Any and all help is extremely appreciated.

Re: SSH tunnel with Windows client and UNIX server

Quoted text here. Click to load it

Not exactly, but it's common (at least in my experience) for ssh connections
to go down spontaneously after a while and have to be restarted.  When that
happens, it's also common for the tunneled ports on the server end to still
be marked as in use for a while.  Until the server catches up and marks
them as free again, you won't be able to set up tunnels that use them.

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