Here is an oddity, but a fun one, open Spark & watch the messages very closely in the bottom center of the window as it logs-in to the server.
First, it authenticates, then it connects, then it logs-in & comes up with the roster, and all is well, as expected. Let me get this straight: it authenticates before it connects? Is that logically possible in this universe of ours? Well, why Dubya as the president, up is down & black is evil & bad is patriotic, so, maybe.