Getting Gameranger to work behind stubborn routers

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dragons310
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Getting Gameranger to work behind stubborn routers

Post by dragons310 »

Ok, I'm sure many of you have heard my discussions about how difficult it can be to get gameranger to work around certain routers, and many of you may be experiencing the same troubles. I've found a work-around that, while perhaps not an ideal solution, may help alleviate the suffering of some.

First things first, take the router, unplug everything from it and throw it in a box under the bed, in the bottom of the closet, or anywhere else where it can sit as the useless electronic gadget that it is. :wink: Then, connect your computer and modem together via ethernet or usb, depending on what works best for you (btw, ethernet is generally more stable). Oh yea, don't trash the router just yet, hang on to it for a little while just in case.

At this point, you need to verify that your internet is working normally, and it might even be a good idea to go ahead and try a gameranger connection. If everything is connected as such, it should work just fine.

Now, for the tricky part. Wireless internet adapters with vista (and xp too, I believe) are equipped with a capability called an 'ad-hoc' connection. The exact setup varies with the OS, but a google search for ad-hoc internet connection sharing will return many useful links.
so for your primary PC, set up this ad-hoc connection, and use one of the security options so your neighbors don't suddenly get free internet access at your expense. Pay close attention to the passphrase requirements, as this can be tricky to get right (it took me 5 separate tries).

Now you need to go to your LAN connection, go to properties, click the 'sharing' tab, and enable internet connection sharing (ICS). It doesnt' need to have the option to allow other computers to enable/disable the internet connection however. Go to each of the other computers you need networked, and connect to the ad-hoc network you just created. Voila! Now you have a computer that will play SR2020 online with gameranger, and you still have your other computers with internet capability. Just a note, there will be a slight additional load to the primary computer when there is internet traffic, but with a fairly recent computer this shouldn't be too much of a problem (especially if your computer has dual core technology or better).

I hope this helps some people with connectivity. I know it isn't the most desireable route, but for some of us it's simply the only thing that is going to work. If you're not sure on something, or would like help in setting this up, feel free to hunt me down, and I'll do what I can. Good luck, hope to see you in a game soon!!!

Dragon, the router aggressor.
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Re: Getting Gameranger to work behind stubborn routers

Post by Balthagor »

Could you describe your final layout?

For example, I have;

* Cable modem w/phoneline
* Linksys Router
* Wireless connection to my PC
* Wired to other PCs in the house.
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dragons310
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Re: Getting Gameranger to work behind stubborn routers

Post by dragons310 »

Here's the current layout -


Cable modem -> Netgear wireless router -> xbox 360

wireless connections -> Vista PC running sr2020
-> winXP PC - capable of networking SR2020, but not my computer
-> yet another winXP computer...not accessible


To network sr2020, the layout is...

Cable Modem -> Vista PC running sr2020
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Re: Getting Gameranger to work behind stubborn routers

Post by dragons310 »

Ok, so with everything I've tested, I decided to try one more operating system...Windows 7. All the reviews seem to praise how well the networking capabilities were configured, so i thought, why not? However, I decided to opt for a desktop version instead of a laptop. This was to allow backward compatability with an xp installation just in case. For clarification, the system is running windows 7 home premium 64-bit, build 7600, with directx 11. The network pathing is modem -> router -> pc.

First things first, I removed norton completely using their handy removal tool, and installed avast AV. Then began testing connections with Fistalis. I found I can connect just fine when he hosts...but when I host, no joining is allowed. I got the usual windows firewall blocking messages, and checked to unblock both gameranger and the directplay server. I ran the incoming connections diagnostics, no problems found when tested on dpnsvr (directplay), gameranger, and sr2020.

At this point, it was decided to see if xp would run on this system, so hunted driver packages and began the reinstall. Once all that was installed, Fistalis and I ran another test, and voila! I have connectivity. Not only that, we also observed that Fistalis is no longer the first one to be joined in the game (before he would beat me to the punch even hosting on my own computer connected directly!). So take it for what you will, but I strongly suggest anyone who has connection issues try running xp to see if that fixes the problem. I was also able to test this theory with Mission Space, as he found an older xp laptop around his home. He was also able to connect just fine with the xp laptop, unfortunately he found the older system struggling to handle the demands of the game. So in conclusion, vista and windows 7 just plain don't like network gaming, so avoid those operating systems for your gaming needs. I hope this will help everyone, although I do understand it is not an option for everyone.
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Re: Getting Gameranger to work behind stubborn routers

Post by Fistalis »

dragons310 wrote:Ok, so with everything I've tested, I decided to try one more operating system...Windows 7. All the reviews seem to praise how well the networking capabilities were configured, so i thought, why not? However, I decided to opt for a desktop version instead of a laptop. This was to allow backward compatability with an xp installation just in case. For clarification, the system is running windows 7 home premium 64-bit, build 7600, with directx 11. The network pathing is modem -> router -> pc.

First things first, I removed norton completely using their handy removal tool, and installed avast AV. Then began testing connections with Fistalis. I found I can connect just fine when he hosts...but when I host, no joining is allowed. I got the usual windows firewall blocking messages, and checked to unblock both gameranger and the directplay server. I ran the incoming connections diagnostics, no problems found when tested on dpnsvr (directplay), gameranger, and sr2020.

At this point, it was decided to see if xp would run on this system, so hunted driver packages and began the reinstall. Once all that was installed, Fistalis and I ran another test, and voila! I have connectivity. Not only that, we also observed that Fistalis is no longer the first one to be joined in the game (before he would beat me to the punch even hosting on my own computer connected directly!). So take it for what you will, but I strongly suggest anyone who has connection issues try running xp to see if that fixes the problem. I was also able to test this theory with Mission Space, as he found an older xp laptop around his home. He was also able to connect just fine with the xp laptop, unfortunately he found the older system struggling to handle the demands of the game. So in conclusion, vista and windows 7 just plain don't like network gaming, so avoid those operating systems for your gaming needs. I hope this will help everyone, although I do understand it is not an option for everyone.
Dragon.. i just noticed something while helping people with a reg tweak for resolution. in the picture below you see the resolution stuff circled in red.. but more importantly.. there is a prefered provider registry entry(circled in blue).. which for me on XP is set to direct play 8... what is your entry here?? Does this have any bearing in th e probs with gameranger? Its worth you taking a look, Balth may know what bearing if any it has.. it may have no effect.. but if you can find it in vista/7 and see what you got its something else for us to look at.

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Re: Getting Gameranger to work behind stubborn routers

Post by k4l4sh »

GameRanger works on port 16000 according to netstat -a:
Proto Local Address Foreign Address State
TCP op97hfsg4z4fym2:2328 connect.gameranger.com:16000 ESTABLISHED

I've disconnected and reconnected a few times and each time the same port is used so I do not think they are using a range of ports. Well anyway, this should be added into your NAT settings. It differs from router to router, but for your Netgear issue it might be that you need to use NAT Strict if you have that setting and then define a rule manually with port 16000 as private and public port. Most routers have config pages , check out http://portforward.com/ to find your specific model and guide.

I hope this helps :)
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Re: Getting Gameranger to work behind stubborn routers

Post by GIJoe597 »

The last MP I played via Gameranger requied no fiddling with router. Up till that point I had always had to disconnect my router and connect PC>Modem>internet. This time I connected PC>Router>Modem>Internet. Game ran fine. Not sure what changed.
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Re: Getting Gameranger to work behind stubborn routers

Post by Hullu Hevonen »

Why do you guys have a modem and a router??? :o a router is like a better upgraded version of the modulator/demodulator. I only use a router(who has the newest firmware), if you want to disable your router firewall, google eg. how to disable >manufacturer< firewall, and updating it to the newest firmware could also help. I disabled my HW firewall, but i did not get my Gameranger working, but after a firmware update, it started working, even with the HW firewall on. If you cant access you HW Firewall, and you don't get Game ranger working because of the port thing, use Hamachi, I did so, until the Firmware was udated.
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Re: Getting Gameranger to work behind stubborn routers

Post by Balthagor »

Most often it is to connect multiple machines to the internet, often with a wireless broadcast point.
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Re: Getting Gameranger to work behind stubborn routers

Post by Hullu Hevonen »

Balthagor wrote:Most often it is to connect multiple machines to the internet, often with a wireless broadcast point.
Wouldn't it be smarter to use a switch & router(if needed one with integrated WLAN) combination? a modem would be waste of your payed internet bill, since it can only handle 0,5kbps(0,05mbps) giving you the minimum of narrowband speed.
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Re: Getting Gameranger to work behind stubborn routers

Post by GIJoe597 »

I use it to connect 5 computers to the net. works for me, always has for nigh on 20 years, only issue I ever had is with GR and SR.. :(
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