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What is ping?

During each frame, the game accepts user input and performs necessary calculations AI, graphics etc. The frequency at which frames are generated is often referred to as the frame rate. As the central game state is located on the server, the updated information must be sent from the client to the server in order to take effect. In addition, the client must receive the necessary information from the server in order to fully update the state.

Generating packets to send to the server and processing the received packets can only be done as often as the client is able to update its local state. Although packets could theoretically be generated and sent faster than this, it would only result in sending redundant data if the game state cannot be updated between each packet. A low frame rate would therefore make the game less responsive to updates and may force it to skip outdated data.

Conversely, the same holds true for the server. The frame rate or tick rate of the server determines how often it can process data from clients and send updates. This type of problem is difficult to predict and compensate for. Apart from enforcing minimum hardware requirements and attempting to optimize the game for better performance, there are no feasible ways to deal with it.

Perhaps the most common type of lag is caused by network performance problems. Losses , corruption or jitter an outdated packet is in effect a loss may all cause problems, but these problems are relatively rare in a network with sufficient bandwidth and no or little congestion. Instead, the latency involved in transmitting data between clients and server plays a significant role.

Latency varies depending on a number of factors, such as the physical distance between the end-systems, as a longer distance means additional transmission length and routing required and therefore higher latency.

Routing over the Internet may be extremely indirect, resulting in far more transmission length and consequent latency than a direct route, although the cloud gaming service OnLive has developed a solution to this issue by establishing peering relationships with multiple Tier 1 network Internet Service Providers and choosing an optimal route between server and user.

As with the hardware issues, packets that arrive slowly or not at all will make both the client and server unable to update the game state in a timely manner. Online game systems utilizing a wireless network may be subject to significant lag, depending on the architecture of the wireless network and local electromagnetic interference impacting that network.

Although radio propagation through air is faster than light through optical fiber, wireless systems are often shared among many users and may suffer from latency incurred due to network congestion , or due to network protocols that introduce latency.

The noticeable effects of lag vary not only depending on the exact cause, but also on any and all techniques for lag compensation that the game may implement described below. As all clients experience some delay, implementing these methods to minimize the effect on players is important for smooth gameplay.

Lag causes numerous problems for issues such as accurate rendering of the game state and hit detection. The severity of lag depends on the type of game and its inherent tolerance for lag. Some games with a slower pace can tolerate significant delays without any need to compensate at all, whereas others with a faster pace are considerably more sensitive and requires extensive use of compensation to be playable such as the first-person shooter genre.

Due to the various problems lag can cause, players that have an insufficiently fast Internet connection are sometimes not permitted, or discouraged from playing with other players or servers that have a distant server host or have high latency to one another. Extreme cases of lag may result in extensive desynchronization of the game state.

Lag due to an insufficient update rate between client and server can cause some problems, but these are generally limited to the client itself. Other players may notice jerky movement and similar problems with the player associated with the affected client, but the real problem lies with the client itself. If the client cannot update the game state at a quick enough pace, the player may be shown outdated renditions of the game, which in turn cause various problems with hit- and collision detection.

Both the display and controls will be sluggish and unresponsive. While this may increase the perceived lag, it is important to note that it is of a different kind than network-related delays. In comparison, the same problem on the server may cause significant problems for all clients involved.

If the server is unable or unwilling to accept packets from clients fast enough and process these in a timely manner, client actions may never be registered. Lag due to network delay is in contrast often less of a problem. Though more common, the actual effects are generally smaller, and it is possible to compensate for these types of delays. Without any form of lag compensation, the clients will notice that the game responds only a short time after an action is performed.

This is especially problematic in first-person shooters, where enemies are likely to move as a player attempts to shoot them and the margin for errors is often small. There are various methods for reducing or disguising delays, though many of these have their drawbacks and may not be applicable in all cases. If synchronization is not possible by the game itself, the clients may be able to choose to play on servers in geographical proximity to themselves in order to reduce latencies, or the servers may simply opt to drop clients with high latencies in order to avoid having to deal with the resulting problems.

However, these are hardly optimal solutions. Instead, games will often be designed with lag compensation in mind. Many problems can be solved simply by allowing the clients to keep track of their own state and send absolute states to the server or directly to other clients. This solution works and will all but eliminate most problems related to lag.

Unfortunately, it also relies on the assumption that the client is honest. There is nothing that prevents a player from modifying the data they send, directly at the client or indirectly via a proxy, in order to ensure they will always hit their targets. In online games, the risk of cheating may make this solution unfeasible, and clients will be limited to sending relative states i. As clients are normally not allowed to define the main game state, but rather receive it from the server, the main task of the client-side compensation is to render the virtual world as accurately as possible.

As updates come with a delay and may even be dropped, it is sometimes necessary for the client to predict the flow of the game. Since the state is updated in discrete steps, the client must be able to estimate a movement based on available samples. Two basic methods can be used to accomplish this; extrapolation and interpolation.

Extrapolation is an attempt to estimate a future game state. As soon as a packet from the server is received, the position of an object is updated to the new position. Awaiting the next update, the next position is extrapolated based on the current position and the movement at the time of the update. Essentially, the client will assume that a moving object will continue in the same direction.

When a new packet is received, the position may be corrected slightly. Interpolation works by essentially buffering a game state and rendering the game state to the player with a slight, constant delay.

When a packet from the server arrives, instead of updating the position of an object immediately, the client will start to interpolate the position, starting from the last known position. Over an interpolation interval, the object will be rendered moving smoothly between the two positions. Ideally this interval should exactly match the delay between packets, but due to loss and variable delay, this is rarely the case.

Often, in order to allow smooth gameplay, the client is allowed to do soft changes to the game state. While the server may ultimately keep track of ammunition, health, position etc. These changes will generally be accepted under normal conditions and make delay mostly transparent.

Problems will arise only in the case of high delays or losses, when the clients predictions are very noticeably undone by the server. Sometimes, in the case of minor differences, the server may even allow "incorrect" changes to the state based on updates from the client.

Unlike clients, the server knows the exact current game state, and as such prediction is unnecessary. The main purpose of server-side lag compensation is instead to provide accurate effects of client actions. This is important because by the time a player's command has arrived time will have moved on, and the world will no longer be in the state that the player saw when issuing their command. A very explicit example of this is hit detection for weapons fired in first-person shooters, where margins are small and can potentially cause significant problems if not properly handled.

Another way to address the issue is to store past game states for a certain length of time, then rewind player locations when processing a command. This will usually result in the server seeing the client firing at the target's old position and thus hitting. In the worst case, a player will be so far behind that the server runs out of historic data and they have to start leading their targets. But the price is an aggravation of the effects of latency when a player is under fire: This can lead more often to the false impression that they were shot through cover and the not entirely inaccurate impression of "laggy hitboxes ".

One design issue that arises from rewinding is whether to stop rewinding a dead player's lagged commands as soon as they die on the server, or to continue running them until they "catch up" to the time of death.

Cutting compensation off immediately prevents victims from posthumously attacking their killers, which meets expectations, but preserves the natural advantage of moving players who round a corner, acquire a target and kill them in less time than a round trip to the stationary victim's client.

Rewinding can be criticised for allowing the high latency of one player to negatively affect the experience of low-latency players. Servers with lag compensation will sometimes reduce the length of player history stored, or enforce ping limits, to reduce this problem.

It is possible for clients to tell the server what they are doing and for the server to trust the data it receives. This method is avoided if at all possible due to its susceptibility to cheating: However, the sheer scale of some games makes computationally expensive solutions like rewinding impossible.

In Battlefield 3 , for example, a "hybrid hit detection" system is used where clients tell the server that they hit and the server performs only a vague test of plausibility before accepting the claim. Trusting a client's results otherwise has the same advantages and disadvantages as rewinding. The outer loop iterates through the hosts and the inner loop parses the ping output.

The first two if statements handle the two possible cases of IP address resolution:. It is much easier to test the result the returned error code of each PING command directly instead of redirecting to a file. It is also more efficient to enclose the entire construct in parens and redirect the final output just once. Found the results in earlier code weren't always giving correct values as well so i've improved it.

This worked great I just add the -a option to ping to resolve the hostname. Thank you for your interest in this question. Because it has attracted low-quality or spam answers that had to be removed, posting an answer now requires 10 reputation on this site the association bonus does not count.

Would you like to answer one of these unanswered questions instead? How to ping multiple servers and return IP address and Hostnames using batch script? Help will be appreciated. Gutsygibbon 3 5 Anyway, here's my own solution to this: The first two if statements handle the two possible cases of IP address resolution: The host name is the host IP address. The host IP address can be resolved from its name. The code is language dependent. It will have to change for languages other than English.

This thread has sample output for German, Portuguese, French? Sorry I couldn't have posted my code as it had some stuff that belongs to the company. Can't go around posting it. EitanT , does it handle Reply from Neat, but this doesn't extract the IP address, which requires parsing the ping instead of redirecting it to nul.

What is Lag and will this help to reduce it [don’t skip]:

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