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    Dynamic Netspeed???

    I have read the popular and informative although dated clan Viking article and Garfields netcode article, but I still am left with more questions than answers...

    I'll start with my machine.

    P4 1.3
    384mb PC800RDram
    GF4 4600ti 128mb
    All latest drivers

    With this rig and UT2004 in game settings at all on or normal at 1024X768 16bit I can average 40-50 FPS in most maps. This is with dynamic lighting and trilinear filtering off, precaching player skins off aswell. My Drivers D3D settings are set to mipmap blend, no AA, no AS, and texture sharpening off, and image settings are set to high performance. Digital color vibrance set to high.

    Monitors refresh rate set at Optimal, ingame Vsync set to off.

    The visual quality of the game is still fantastic considering my rig. The textures may not be sharp and I don't see dynamic lighting but it definatley has eye candy and great performance off and online.

    OK with that being said so you understand my systems limitations and that I can average 40-50 FPS in most maps in an average battle I tell you what my net settings are.

    I have a broadband cable connection. For some reason I can not explain me and my nieghbor both get something like 2-5Mbs downstream and 270Kbs upstream. Needless to say its enough bandwidth for gaming and the latencies are 20-50ms for all servers on the East Coast.

    Now my ingame settings are:
    Code:
    [IpDrv.TcpNetDriver]
    AllowDownloads=True
    ConnectionTimeout=20.0
    InitialConnectTimeout=200.0
    AckTimeout=1.0
    KeepAliveTime=0.2
    MaxClientRate=15000
    MaxInternetClientRate=10000
    SimLatency=0
    RelevantTimeout=5.0
    SpawnPrioritySeconds=1.0
    ServerTravelPause=4.0
    NetServerMaxTickRate=30
    LanServerMaxTickRate=35
    DownloadManagers=IpDrv.HTTPDownload
    DownloadManagers=Engine.ChannelDownload
    AllowPlayerPortUnreach=False
    LogPortUnreach=False
    MaxConnPerIPPerMinute=5
    LogMaxConnPerIPPerMin=False
    Now with a tickrate of 30 and a netspeed of 10000 I have decent ping times with no packetloss. Performance seems alright online 90% of the time with the occasional warp or lag caused by the server which all players feel and report over voicecomm ingame. As far as my client side ingame settings I am wondering if This is the best I can do or are their better settings to use.

    After reading Clan Vikings article I think that my biggest problem is CPU limitations on the client side. With inceased net traffic to my client I think my CPU may be limiting my FPS which in turn degrades netcode performance. Now I know that CPU has less to do with FPS than video card and drivers, but the Pentium4 didn't get powerful untill it was over 2ghz. I think I might be pushing my 1.3ghz already.

    So this brings me to my real questions... With this rig, settings, and connection how high should I set my tickrate for CTF and ONS servers and should I enable Dynamic Netspeed? I am assuming Dynamic Netspeed adjusts the netspeed value based on client FPS and server netspeed settings. (although to be honest I don't know all of the server netcode settings I am assuming from the articles that servers use tickrates from 30-100 and is the base that all clients gather data or kind of a server FPS, and netspeeds are restricted based on how many clients are connected and the servers tickrate, but for all I know the server may have some kind of dynamic netspeed setting ability based on clients connected and CPU loads)

    My thoughts are that I may be able to keep FPS up by keeping my CPU load less with Dynamic Netspeed enabled, but my fear is that Dynamic Netspeed isn't very efficient and may cause more CPU load than its worth while at the same time possibly cause packet loss and unstable latencies.

    I am thinking that Dynamic Netspeed was Epics solution to the "creeping ping" problem from UT2003, and I have only noticed a ping of 999 once in UT2004, but it seemed to have no effect on the game play performance so I just assumed it was reporting incorrectly.

    So with all that being said do you guys think I should increase my tickrate and should I enable Dynamic Netspeed or should I lock it at a fixed value? If I should leave it locked do you think 10000 is efficient for my setup?

    I've done alot of tweaking and reading but like I said I just have more questions than answers at this point. Halflifes netcode was so much easier to understand and tweak on the fly ingame and I used to customize my settings to each server I joined.

    Any information you can share is greatly appreciated. Smiley, Littleflower, anyone else have any thoughts?

    #2
    Thanks for mentioning my name. I hardly visit this forum anymore, as I don't play UT200[34].

    Tickrate is a server-side setting. The setting in your UT.ini is totally irrelevant for you when you are only playing and not running a (listen) server.

    I can't say much about dynamic netspeed, as I had stopped playing UT2003 by the time it was introduced (in some patch, iirc),

    Netspeed has 2 sides. Upstream and downstream. Too bad there is only one number you can configure for both directions. I've made the suggestion to do asymmetrical netspeed, but Epic is not interested. In any case, if your netspeed is higher than your connection can transport, you will notice a quickly increasing ping, and then packetloss. I guess dynamic netspeed is just a trick where the netspeed is lowered as soon as the game notices packetloss.

    In UT99, for downstream traffic, the most important thing was the tickrate of the server. For higher tickrates on the server, you needed higher netspeed on the client. As crazy admins can set the tickrate to 50, or even 100+, you never know if you have enough bandwidth. However, netspeed 20000 seems to be good enough to deal with 99.9% of the servers. Netspeed 10000 was good enough for probably 90% of the servers.

    Now for the most important part. Upstream netspeed. It seemed UT99 sent a 64 byte packet every frame. As you probably know, your online framerate was always capped to 80 or 90 or so, even with vsync disabled. So to be able to get this high framerate of 90, you need a netspeed of close to 6000 or so. If your netspeed was lower, the game would not allow you to display more frames, because then it couldn't send one packet per frame.

    So basically you need a netspeed of 6000 for a good game in UT99. In UT2004, the netcode is rumoured to be optimized. I suspect outgoing packets are 40% smaller. So now you need something like 90 * 40 bytes = 3600 to get good upstream performance. Note, downstream is bound to be more than 3600, esp on ONS servers. So with UT2004, you probably need to worry about downstream just as much as upstream. Also note that netspeed is *NOT* the same thing as raw bandwidth. E.g. if you had set your netspeed to 5000 in UT99, and you were running over ADSL, you actually needed at least 5000 * 8 * 250% = 100 Kbps (and not the 40 Kbps that you would expect).

    You seem to have enough bandwidth. Your CPU should have no problems at all dealing with the packets in and out. If you don't have a smooth game, it is probably because of low (and fluctuating) framerate because of your slow CPU.

    Comment


      #3
      Thanks for the great response, and I'm glad you found the thread. I was really hoping for your info. I'm kinda surprised so many read the thread and didn't respond. It could be that nobody is quite sure what dynamic netspeed actually does. The name seems self explanatory, but I'd like to know how it exactly behaves and what its effects are.

      Well I did find a brief explanation of dynamic netspeed at this great site. You guys should put this in your favorites folder.

      http://www.tweakguides.com/
      http://www.tweakguides.com/UT2004_1.html

      In the UT2004 guide Koroush Ghazi says:
      Dynamic Netspeed: This is a new option which if selected allows UT2004 to dynamically alter your Netspeed setting (see Advanced Tweaking and Console Commands sections below) to maintain optimal ping. However I have found that if enabled this can cause variations in your ping which can be difficult to adjust to during a game. I highly recommend unticking this option as it can lead to more lag and ping variability.
      Well now I'm really confused because I personally found that my ping seemed more stable if set to netspeed 8000 and then kept Dynamic Netspeed checked. I'm not sure if it actually affects frame rates, but it seemed to me that my FPS average stayed more constant aswell. I think people with older systems, but good connection bandwidth may want to experiment with this setting on and off to see how it effects them before just turning it off.

      Does anyone know if its possible that Dynamic Netspeed is detecting CPU bottlenecks or frame rate drops and compensating with decreased netspeed to reduced lag, CPU load, and keep frame rates more constant? I think this may be the case for me atleast. I did notice that my ping stayed at a constant 44 almost the entire match with 0 packet loss, but with it off on the same server it was slightly higher and varied about 10-15 fps.

      Anyone notice any differences with it on or off. I'm not sure if players with highend systems and good connections would even notice, but I do think that players with older systems and good connections might notice an improvement with it on because even though their connection can handle the bandwidth of high netspeeds, their systems can never fill the increased frame rates higher netspeeds allow and infact may add higher CPU loads due to increased net traffic and as a result negatively effect framerates.

      Anyone have any ideas here? I'd like to thank Koroush Ghazi for his great site and guides, but I think the jury still might be out on Dynamic Netspeed.

      Comment


        #4
        From an idiot's perspective, I don't see much of a difference with dynamic netspeed on and off. I still get the same server-side-based lag problems; the jumpy play, the erratic and jerky updates, all that junk. You can get this behavior even if your ping is stellar...I once got the "jumps" with a solid 65 ping.

        I fail to understand how your CPU speed is dependent on your network card's ability to transfer packets. Your PC is essentially a client, and betwork apps aren't known to put a whole lot of stress on a client. In fact, UT2K4 probably doesn't take up nearly enough system resources to affect TCP/IP protocol stack operation. The stress of packet transfer on processors rests solely on routers, which are often overequipped for the job to begin with.

        Bottom line is find a server you get a good ping on, and few server-side problems, and stick with it. Gametype also seems to effect this, with Assault being the worst. Admins, I recommend you don't run Onslaught and Assault servers unless you have a behemoth of a machine with plenty of RAM, fast HD access time, and a top processor with relatively high FSB on a good motherboard.

        Comment


          #5
          Sup DJ_Virulent, that was some fun earlier. Hope to see you ingame more often. That server can be fun and usually has good performance and good gameplay.

          I agree with you about the server lag. I don't think anything clients can tweak will prevent that and I think you are also right that different gametypes have more or less server lag on average because of the different player loads and server tickrates.

          What I was trying to convey was how Dynamic Netspeed may or may not affect players with older systems but have good connections. The default netspeed is 10000 and I think Epic made it default assuming that through the lifespan of the game the average computer would eventually be able to run at the framerates that high netspeeds provide. But currently the average computers cannot run UT2004 at high frame rates with high graphical settings. I think that Epic made both netspeed 10000 and Dynamic Netspeed on by default to provide smoother gameplay over the life of the game so average players who don't tweak don't have to mess with the settings. I do think that turning Dynamic Netspeed off may negatively effect players with older systems that experience bottlenecks with normal graphical settings because increased net traffic may just make things worse for the load on the system. I think Dynamic Netspeed may decrease netspeed and net traffic to reduce the system bottlenecks and keep everything smoother as a result. I doubt though that players with highend systems will notice any difference at all.

          I wonder if servers have something simular to this that behaves dynamically to player load and net traffic? It could decreased the server lag we can do nothing about. Atleast the brightside is that all players feel it so everybodies even. Nothing though is better than a server admin that knows how to properly configure a server for the gametype they are hosting. Just some thoughts....

          Comment


            #6
            I have dynamic netspeed off and kick the netspeed up to 20000 when I hop on a server
            Old habit from 2k3

            Comment


              #7
              What netspeed should I use with my 8092/1024 ADSL connection?

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by ImJacksAmygdala
                Sup DJ_Virulent, that was some fun earlier. Hope to see you ingame more often. That server can be fun and usually has good performance and good gameplay.
                Definitely. I've been playing quite a bit of NW CTF lately, it's quite a rush. I've added you to my buddy list. :up:

                Comment


                  #9
                  I was told to use netspeed 10 000 in UT99 in my 56k days, it asctually helped my ping a lot then!
                  not sure if changes anything now though

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by KriLL3
                    What netspeed should I use with my 8092/1024 ADSL connection?
                    That is so much bandwidth, that it doesn't matter anymore. I downgraded my ADSL from 2048/320 to 1024/320, because the extra money isn't worth the performance increase in online games. If I were you, I'd set my netspeed to 20000, dynamic netspeed off, and never look back. Should work like a charm.

                    Your theoretical max netspeed for upstream is probably 50000. Theoretical max netspeed for downstream depends on the tickrate of the server. But I don't think it'll ever approach your 8 Mbps.

                    Are you sure this was a question ? Or did you just want to show off ?

                    Comment


                      #11
                      what best netspeed for 30 KB/s up 340 KB/s down

                      Comment


                        #12
                        hi

                        what netspeed should i use for 1500kbit/s / 192 kbit/s adsl con please

                        Comment


                          #13
                          err... 2k4 only use about ~6 kb/s of upload and even less than that download... but that depends on the tickrate value being used in the server.

                          a 128/128 connection is more than enough for this game

                          20000 netspeed = 20 kbs up/down

                          Comment


                            #14
                            From my experience, Dynamic Netspeed is evil. It might be good with a single PC, but I found it causes semi-random lag when using a shared connection. Also, there's a good chance your netspeed gets detected all wrong or starts fluctuating, which is also a bad thing.
                            And there's probably many other reasons why it's bad that I forgot.

                            Originally posted by Chain-Lei
                            err... 2k4 only use about ~6 kb/s of upload and even less than that download... but that depends on the tickrate value being used in the server.
                            Those values might depend on the gametype.
                            I hear ONS is heavier on your connection than any of the classic gametypes.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              oh, almost forgot , I think that applies to 2k4 too

                              Comment

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