Releasing bound ports on process exit
How do I make sure that a socket bound to a port is properly released on process exit such that the port can be reused without bind() failing with EADDRINUSE? I've written a tiny program which just creates a socket, binds it to a fixed port, waits for a connection and then immediately terminates. When I rerun the program, the bind() call fails with EADDRINUSE, but if I wait a few minutes, it succeeds.
Is there a way I can explicitly "unbind" the socket, thereby freeing the port number?
Using SO_REUSEADDR socket option will allow you to re-start the program without delay.
int iSetOption = 1; ... sockfd = socket(AF_INET, SOCK_STREAM, IPPROTO_TCP); setsockopt(_sockfd, SOL_SOCKET, SO_REUSEADDR, (char*)&iSetOption, sizeof(iSetOption)) ...
TCP/IP stack keeps port busy for sometime even after close() - socket will stay in TIME_WAIT and TIME_WAIT2 state.
If I'm not mistaken, usually it takes 2 minutes so if you need to use the same port immediately set SO_REUSEADDR option on your socket before binding, just like Ivo Bosticky suggested.
Not exactly an answer to your question, but for completeness:
On Windows you can set the TcpTimedWaitDelay registry value to set the timeout for releasing closed TCP connections to as low as 30 seconds.