Steady lag interval in multiplayer games
Posted on 2003-02-28
I have a problem that has me totally baffled.
(my computer spec AMD Athlon XP 2400+, Gigabyte 7VAXP Ultra using the VIA KT400 chipset, 2 IDE100 MAxtor disks.
1x512Mb 400DDR memory, ATI Radeon 9500, ThermaltakeX case and a 480Watt power supply, 2 netcards, one CNET200 connected to the ADSL modem with netbios disabled and does the VPN connection and sharing, 2nd is the internal RealTek NIC for the Intranet, Netbios enabled.)
The thing is that after upgrading my PC to WinXP Pro I started to get weird problems during non-DirectX (that is not using directnet) multiplayer games. (QuakeX, Half-Life, etc.. )
The behavior is like this. With no changes the game simply times out. I recieve information from the server, I get key authenticated and the server acknowledges me and sends me info (such as MOTD). But nothing more. As if he is getting no packets from me (these are UDP packets), in Quake2 this exhibits itself as being stuck (unable to move) but I am getting tital coverage of what is happening around (I get the udp packets from the server)
After disabling services, upgrading drivers, disabling the built in firewall, editing the registry to make sure that the outgoing adapters where using the correct MTU (ping -f -l XXX mygateway.com) found 1370 to be optimal) it was still behaving like that.
Then I found out something that fixed it somewhat. Changing the priority settings from "Background services" to "Foreground programs" allowed me to connect and get a lag-full game.
with this setting I was getting latency drops in regular intervals. going steady from 100 to 4096)
After messing even more with everything I found out that by lowering the priority of the game process it would dramatically improve. (which is weird, since lowering the game process AND having priority boost set to background will still behave like before and I will time out connecting.)
So by having priority boost set to "foreground programs" and setting the priority of the game to Low or BelowNormal gives me the best of all options.
But the spike is still there, connecting to a server that I know is like 4 hops away I will se my latency as 15ms and then I will see it rise up to 100ms and back again. making my netgraph look like a side picture of ocean waves on a stormy night.
The funny thing is that a computer on the intranet, with much lesser hardware, running WinXP, will get a completly smooth game with no lag spikes. And its going out on the connection on this machine.
Does anyone know why this is happening and what I can do to fix this and get a steady smooth connection while playing,