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Intermittent lag issue in all games?

Last response: in Video Games
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July 15, 2005 12:04:06 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.games.action (More info?)

Hi,

I suspect that some sort of network or XP related forum might be the ideal
place for this post, but I will also bet that there are peeps in here that
know more than most network experts when it comes to lag etc...

Anyway, I am experiencing intermittent lag/network freezes in the games I
play online - BF2, HL2, BF and mods.

At first I thought it was just BF2 as I used to get silky smooth play before
installing this, but I also reinstalled WinXP Pro before installing BF2 to
make sure it went as smoothly as possible (!)

My setup is: WinXP Pro (SP2 and patched up), Athlon 2.2, 1GB ram, GeForce
FX5900xt 128MB, SB Audigy, Maxtor 7200rpm 200GB drive, Hitachi 120GB drive.
Ralink 804.11g wireless network card, Belkin 804.11g wireless network
adapter/adsl modem. Internet is 1MB ADSL.

I have tried optimising the MTU, which is about the limit of my networking
knowledge. The figures I came up with suggested that 1500 would be ok, so I
changed both PC and router to reflect this. This seemed to make things
worse - certainly no better - so I took it back to 1400. Also tried
disabling ZoneAlarm Pro.

There seems no pattern to the lag/freezes except that they will happen at
some point - more often than not around the time I am killed (probably
occurs as a kill results from my lag, not the other way around?).

Any suggestions as to what else I might look at?
Anonymous
July 15, 2005 12:04:07 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.games.action (More info?)

See that it's not your internet connection first -
Go to www.broadbandreports.com and do a line packet loss test against
your public IP address (you'll have to register for free for this). I
think the site will show this, or you can go to www.showmyip.com to see
that as well.
This will reall just go as far as your router's public IP address.
Have you tried a continuous (ping -t) ping to an external host? Do you
get intermittent timeouts or spikes in ping time?

HTH,
Kendt
July 15, 2005 2:13:40 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.games.action (More info?)

"Schrodinger" <no@way.com> wrote in message
news:42d6b728$0$18638$14726298@news.sunsite.dk...
> Hi,

I doubt this is the problem but on MTU some info for you I found some time
ago on the netgear site

Setting MTU size is a process of trial-and-error: start with the maximum
value of 1500, then reduce the size until the problem goes away. Using one
of these values is likely to solve problems caused by MTU size:

a.. 1500. The largest Ethernet packet size; it is also the default value.
This is the typical setting for non-PPPoE, non-VPN connections. The default
value for NETGEAR routers, adapters and switches.
b.. 1492. The size PPPoE prefers.
c.. 1472. Maximum size to use for pinging. (Bigger packets are
fragmented.)
d.. 1468. The size DHCP prefers.
e.. 1460. Usable by AOL if you don't have large email attachments, etc.
f.. 1430. The size VPN and PPTP prefer.
g.. 1400. Maximum size for AOL DSL.
h.. 576. Typical value to connect to dial-up ISPs.
I'm guessing your problem is more likely to be your new XP settings for your
network. Others will have to tell you how to optimise that - sorry.
Related resources
July 15, 2005 3:08:02 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.games.action (More info?)

"Shawk" <shawk@clara.co.uk.3guesses> wrote in message
news:1121375328.25036.0@nnrp-t71-02.news.clara.net...
>
> "Schrodinger" <no@way.com> wrote in message
> news:42d6b728$0$18638$14726298@news.sunsite.dk...
>> Hi,
>
> I doubt this is the problem but on MTU some info for you I found some time
> ago on the netgear site
>
> Setting MTU size is a process of trial-and-error: start with the maximum
> value of 1500, then reduce the size until the problem goes away. Using one
> of these values is likely to solve problems caused by MTU size:
>
> a.. 1500. The largest Ethernet packet size; it is also the default value.
> This is the typical setting for non-PPPoE, non-VPN connections. The
> default value for NETGEAR routers, adapters and switches.
> b.. 1492. The size PPPoE prefers.
> c.. 1472. Maximum size to use for pinging. (Bigger packets are
> fragmented.)
> d.. 1468. The size DHCP prefers.
> e.. 1460. Usable by AOL if you don't have large email attachments, etc.
> f.. 1430. The size VPN and PPTP prefer.
> g.. 1400. Maximum size for AOL DSL.
> h.. 576. Typical value to connect to dial-up ISPs.
> I'm guessing your problem is more likely to be your new XP settings for
> your network. Others will have to tell you how to optimise that - sorry.
>

Thanks - I'll try this and let you know...
July 15, 2005 3:10:00 AM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.games.action (More info?)

"eventerke@nspm.h0tmail.com" <eventerke@hotmail.com> wrote in message
news:1121376463.788798.140800@o13g2000cwo.googlegroups.com...
> See that it's not your internet connection first -
> Go to www.broadbandreports.com and do a line packet loss test against
> your public IP address (you'll have to register for free for this). I
> think the site will show this, or you can go to www.showmyip.com to see
> that as well.
> This will reall just go as far as your router's public IP address.
> Have you tried a continuous (ping -t) ping to an external host? Do you
> get intermittent timeouts or spikes in ping time?
>
> HTH,
> Kendt
>

Erk.. Thanks for this - only problem is, I have my router set up not to
respond to pings (I think) as the test was cancelled.

I would guess that this is something to do with ICMP pings? I thought I had
these enabled, but looks like I have more to learn before I can begin to get
to the bottom of this!

Regards
Anonymous
July 15, 2005 7:48:17 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.games.action (More info?)

Hi Schrodinger,

Here's some things to try:

1. I understand that BF2 comes with its own Beta nVidia driver. If you
installed this, it would be my #1 suspect. (Even though it seems to
be a network problem).

2. If you've installed Ethernet drivers off of Microsoft Update,
uninstall them and get the latest from the manufacturer's site.

3. I usually find MTU causes problems when it is too big, so try making
it smaller.

4. I had a 3-way conflict between an Audigy 2, Punk Buster and
audio/video that had to be seen to be believed. Basically I got an sound
and video update twice per second and the rest of the time it was
frozen. (Stuttering). Simultaneously I got LOTS of "Network Interrupted"
messages from the game. Try yanking the Audigy and just running in
stereo mode.

5. If you have an Audigy as opposed to an Audigy 2, be aware it takes up
more CPU cycles.

6. I'm not familiar with your adsl modem, and you didn't list your
motherboard, but whatever it is, it probably has an on-board Fast
Ethernet port. Can you try swtiching to cabled Fast Ethernet? It might
give you some hint as to what driver or component has gone wrong.

7. 2.2GHz is an awfully high overclock for an old, non-XP Athlon. Do you
have watercooling? Maybe you should crank it down a bit. Which model is
it, anyway? You should consider upgrading to an Athlon XP.

8. It could be your ISP. Try to find some kind of throughput or
download tester that identifies pauses.

9. Your ADSL modem might have a web interface with statistics. Check
it out.

Hope that helps. If you come have more questions, please tell us what
Motherboard you have.

ken.
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Anonymous
July 18, 2005 4:27:58 PM

Archived from groups: comp.sys.ibm.pc.games.action (More info?)

Unfortunately, the problems you describe may, or may not, be lag. When
people say lag, they usually mean latency and/or packetloss. Out of
the box, most home and SOHO equipment comes with networking
preconfigured to meet the demands of most people. Sure, you can tweak
things, but depending on your software, hardware, router, ISP, it may,
or may not, make a difference. This is vastly different from the old
days of dialup modems, where tweaking made a BIG difference.

I state all this because your problem is most likely NOT on your end.
XP Pro networking is pretty solid, and the stock configuration is fine
for broadband. Again, you can munge MTU and stuff, but for 99% of the
people this will make little or no difference.

With your router, changing the MTU may make a difference, but then
again, it may not. I have found that most networking issues are not
user issues; they are ISP issues.

So, go ahead and mess with MTU just to make sure, but if that does not
work, realize that one of two things is probably the real cause:

1. It is not lag, per se. You have some other bottleneck that is
causing slowdowns, and results in laglike symptoms. Flakey or old
drivers, a slow system, too much sound detail that chokes the CPU, too
much video detail that chokes the CPU, etc.

2. It is lag, and the problem is your ISP or an upstream provider. You
will need to use tracert and ping to help determine if this is the
case. If you run a tracert to your target game server and see 3
initial hops with low pings and 0% loss, then one server with high
ping and 5% loss, the problem is an upstream provider. If you see high
pings and packetloss to your first hop (your gateway) it is your ISP
or local cabling.

#2 is hard to get any action on because most ISPs assume the problem
is user related to begin with, and because most ISPs do not escalate
issues with upstream providers very well.

Good luck.


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