Re: Should I use a VPN to improve connection

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mip
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Re: Should I use a VPN to improve connection

Post by mip »

Hi, adminless.

I just have short question in connection with this Blaze's post.
viewtopic.php?f=26&p=6031#p6031

I understand that you are superb network and server administrator. You say, you don't play unfreeze yourselves (I guess you should. Just to have better insight into game/server performance - but I also understand your reasons why you don't).

But still, could it be, that this server 'random lag' maybe caused by something out of ioq3ded (or whatever server binary that you're using) ?
I mean, server itself may run some network/per socket based balancing mechanisms. Or hypervisor software may have tendency to 'balance'.
Then, there is VPS provider, which must keep customers at some limits. Maybe even more actors can influence this, I don't know.

Btw. I'm using ioquake3 binary, with your pk files, except the pk0, and still am experiencing lags.

Thanks

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Re: Re: Should I use a VPN to improve connection

Post by adminless »

the fact that under no circumstance a admin should ever be granted any player rights whatsoever doesn't mean that I don't connect to the server from time to time precisely for that, testing/control, and/or that I have no clue what's going on with it. other than that. the servers run on dedicated hardware not on any kind of shared hosting/cloud or just anything else besides premium 2020 brand new dedicated hardware so that's not the case.

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Re: Re: Should I use a VPN to improve connection

Post by adminless »

also for the record this is what I get from a 100 secs 100 hz stream from the server:

Code: Select all

PING a.b.c.d (a.b.c.d) 56(84) bytes of data.

--- a.b.c.d ping statistics ---
10000 packets transmitted, 10000 received, 0% packet loss, time 106660ms
rtt min/avg/max/mdev = 21.564/21.601/24.252/0.071 ms, pipe 3
0.071 ms median deviation 0% packet loss 21.6 msecs. bottom line, that's as good as it gets you can not realisticaly expect anything better than that by 2021 humankind planet earth connectivity standards.

mip
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Re: Should I use a VPN to improve connection

Post by mip »

I understand that your hardware and software is top, and you know like 10000x times more about networking than me.
But I also know that there are things which are extremely hard to profile/debug - since many options come into play. And what's worse, from outside profiling everything seems right. I don't know how ping works - but if it creates 1 connection which it keeps alive, then this will not reveal the problem.

So you play with some lag (0, or even negative - you see how other players reactions are slow, or positive - you get shot before you see opponent, your shots go thru opponent without effect) - and this situation persists as long as nobody connects or disconnects. But, when some connection change happens (new player comes into existing gameplay or someone disconnects), then your lag situation changes - suddenly you become game king or underdog. :)
And I'm sure your network tools will tell you, that overall network connectivity is still superb - but that's summary statistics, not per connection/socket one.
Also this feels like input vs. output streams are shifted sometimes. I'd attribute this to default_qdisc, buffer sizes (too big) or some network balancing software.

So I really feel miserable to "advise" you, since its like kid telling dad - "do this or that". And on top of that, you're doing excellent work in your spare time for free, and people like me may seem unthankful. Sorry for that. I'm justing telling how I see it.

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Re: Re: Should I use a VPN to improve connection

Post by adminless »

the qdisc at the servers is noqueue whenever possible if not just regular pfifo and buffer sizes are stock whenever possible also (i.e. unless issues are observed) so once again, there's no any kind of sort of traffic shaping/balancing/buffering or anything else and the servers are segmented/isolated and pinned for a reason too. all packets are delivered on any direction as soon as they reach the wire and no packet loss/drop is observed either. I believe probably you'll do better reviewing all that stuff on your end if you feel like it or probably just leaving all that alone as it clear that that stuff (nor the wire) is going to break depending on what's going on at the game. besides your in-game ping/connectivity is also as good as the terminal value.

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Re: Should I use a VPN to improve connection

Post by mip »

Ok. Thanks for info.

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Re: Should I use a VPN to improve connection

Post by mip »

Nevertheless, now I have stock OS. And I remember I used to have shrunk buffers from stock 208kB downto 32kB (or even 16) if I remember correctly, so I'm going to experiment a little bit. So that app simply have to wait till network card does its job and not do fast caching and pretend that packet was sent.
Hopefully this may help my connection.

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Re: Re: Should I use a VPN to improve connection

Post by adminless »

try but in my experience it won't change anything other than potentially trigger kernel/driver/socket errors in case for a reason (i.e. congestion, collisions, errors just anything) the packets can't be delivered in real-time and need to be queued and you ran out of buffer. unless you have very specific requirements like a 10gbe file/streaming freak server or something like that in general terms for general use (and gaming is as well as a regular server is) the default kernel net buffers values are what work best in most situations and probably you're only going to waste your time on that at best if not ruin your pretty much perfect connectivity by 2021 humankind planet earth standards. I mean those values are default for a reason, probably rather by a standard, by people that know lot more about all this than we do, trust me. as I wrote on the blaze answer what you're describing has nothing to do with your connection but with the game itself, that's the way the game, specifically the unlagged mod, works. on unlagged insta weapons are compensated in time which means that you get hit on a different time frame as when you see the other player shot as well as you also hit others right on the frame you press the fire button despite the fact the rail trails stays for a little longer which is likely what is triggering the inconsistency on your human brain cortex and most likely than not it has nothing to do with the connection. trust me when I tell you that people don't need to deal with any kind of freak network settings to play a normal game and not even to host it either btw.

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Re: Should I use a VPN to improve connection

Post by Guest »

Ok, I believe you, no doubt about it. I had no idea about existence of unlagged mod and how it works. My intuition told me that servers back in 1999-2005 were slower, had less memory and did not have these new operating systems as we have now with fq_codel and things like that. My idea was that function send_packet (or whatever may the function name be) works in similar manner as e.g. disk buffering.

So you start copying file to your usb key and if the file is small enough then copying looks instant, but you only need to ensue sync command to find out, that usb key is stil slowly picking data from buffer and data are in reality still not written. So if you shrink buffers, you get more 'real' picture, though in standard situation (except gaming) big caches really mean better solution. And I expected that if buffer runs out, the writing command simply block further execution till OS flushes buffer (via network card/disk), but maybe I am wrong and you get buffer overflow errors.

So if app sends packet and OS tells "ok, sent" then q3 server thread may tend to send more packets from same player (actually just filling network buffer) and if you have players 1,2,3 then buffer/data look like 1,1,1,1,2,2,2,2 .... not 1,2,3,1,2,3 (btw. this order of packets for players should be somehow sniffable on server to check it - but I don't know how)

Nevertheless, I keep fq_codel + shrunk buffers wmem_default, rmem_default, wmem_max, rmem_max to 16kB and I subjectively feel smoother experience - yea, only 2 games yet and no hard data, but ... let me dream my dream. :)

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Re: Re: Should I use a VPN to improve connection

Post by adminless »

you're just probably overcomplicating things for no reason. yes in 1999 servers had 64 mb of ram, almost no buffers, crappy connections with bottlenecks everywhere and linux was just a baby running on sluggish hardware. all that stuff mattered back then, now, +20 years in the future and even way before is not the case anymore. all that stuff is pretty much robust/handled enough already on the standard package/installation for a normal use like this. that you could still optimize it and chug a 0.1% or some other irrelevant improvement like that by customizing it further, I don't deny that but at what cost? at risking totally ruining the whole server out of nowhere? it doesn't look like a wise decision to me, we talking about serious production busy servers here, not about experimental servers "to just try some random stuff to see what happens". I'd deal with all that stuff if there was a issue and I'd had a real reason to (as I've done other times already btw), not just out of nowhere for the sake of it. the actual behavior depends on the particular computer/system but typically you just get that, kernel/driver/socket errors and packet loss/a broken connection (udp network sockets are typically open in no blocking mode), which means that in-game, connection interrupted/ping 999 for everybody not that you shot a rail and it looks off while strafing perfectly at +650 ups. and yes I can also tell you/assure you if necessary the packets go interleaved (1,2,3,4,5 ...) not packed.

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Re: Should I use a VPN to improve connection

Post by mip »

Ok, thanks very much for explanation. As I said, this is only naive view from me, not taking into account robustness and complexity of new linuxes. And I completely understand you simply can not afford experimenting on production servers. Maybe on some testing server? :)
Ok, enough teasing and have a nice day.