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  • Crashing Multiplayer? - Info on Firewalls, Routers and Proxies

    This info has been updated to be compatible with patch 1.14f

    Anyone who experiences total inability to connect to Multiplayer games (or at least a lot of problems) is most likely behind a Software Firewall, Hardware Firewall, NAT Router or a Proxy.

    My intention with this thread is to provide help in figuring out whether or not your (MP PtW) problem is firewall related, and what to do in case it is.
    I have divided this first post into four parts.
    • Part 1: Guide to finding out if you are behind a firewall.
    • Part 2: What to do if you are behind a firewall.
    • Part 3: General Troubleshooting guide.
    • Part 4: Tips and Links

    Part 1: If you don't know whether you are behind a firewall or not, here are some ways to check:
    • To check whether you're behind a Hardware Firewall/Router,
      - open up an MSDos Prompt (Click Start, Run, type Command and press enter - or select MSDos Prompt from the list of Programs manually)
      - in the DOS prompt, type IPCONFIG and note the IP adress your computer currently has. If it starts with 192 or 10, you're behind a Router.
    • To check whether a Proxy or Software Firewall is installed (and active) on your computer:
      1. Check the Taskbar (usually located next to the system clock). If a Firewall is currently installed and running, there'll (most likely) be an Icon for it in your taskbar, next to the clock.
      2. Press CTRL+ALT and click DEL (once) to get the list of active tasks, and see if you can find a Firewall application there.
      3. Check the list of installed programs in the Add/Remove Programs section of your Control Panel.
    • Call your Internet Service Provider.
      They should be able to tell you if they supplied you with the router
      - Some Internet Service Providers block traffic on certain ports. Be sure to ask them if that is the case.(thanks to Kring for the tip)
    • Try a quick test to find out whether some ports are open, closed or totally filtered out. This gives a good indication of whether or not your computer is protected by some kind of firewall.
      - One such test is located at DSLReports - find it by clicking Our Tools in the menu and selecting Port Scan. If ports are reported as being filtered out (i.e. the scan is unable to tell whether ports are open or closed) you're behind a firewall. (Thanks to Swissy @Apolyton for the link)
      Please note that this test does not scan all ports, only ports that are commonly used, so it can't really be used to determine whether you have opened all the correct ports.
    • Even if none of the above seem to indicate it, you may still be behind a Firewall or Router (even your ISP don't always know what equipment or software you have).
      Start checking the cable from your network adapter and find out which 'boxes' it goes through. One of them might be a Router.
      In general:
      - If you're using a Dial-Up connection, your most likely not behind a hardware firewall, so you only need to check for Software Firewalls. The exception to this rule is (as far as I know) some ISDN routers that are used with dial-up connections.
      - On a Cable or DSL connection, some ISP's provide router's as standard equipment or optionals. Your ISP should know this.
      - If you're trying to play from work, using connections from college, university, or similar, it is very likely that you are behind a firewall of some sort. [thanks Venger]

    Part 2: If you are behind a firewall:

    First off, read the official Gamespy Firewall support page. It explains the basics better than I can.

    Hardware Firewalls/Routers
    Most Hardware Firewalls give you several ways to allow PtW to use the internet.

    DMZ - De-militarized zone: This is (often) the quickest way to setup the firewall to allow the game total access to the internet. Note that not all firewalls have this feature. It is also a great security hazard, as placing a computer in DMZ essentially places one computer outside the firewall, i.e. unprotected by it. Check your Firewall Manual to find out if your Firewall supports it and how to activate this, or find the manufacturers homepage.

    Opening Ports/Port-Forwarding:
    If you have a Hardware Firewall/Router, go to the manufacturers website for support on how to open/forward the required ports.
    Ports Needed: Some debate exists over which ports are really needed - the list below includes those that Gamespy and Firaxis/Infogrames list, and will only include other ports if I have solid confirmation that these are needed.

    Playing through GamespyArcade or In-game menu

    To Join a game: According to the Gamespy FAQ (and the PTW readme - thanks Shou), the following ports must be opened.
    • 6667 (IRC)
    • 3783 (Voice Chat Port)
    • 27900 (Master Server UDP Heartbeat)
    • 28900 (Master Server List Request)
    • 29900 (GP Connection Manager)
    • 29901 (GP Search Manager)
    • 13139 (Custom UDP Pings)
    • 6500 (Query Port)
    • 2302 (DirectPlay)
    To Host a game: Your ISP (and your firewall) must allow you to act as server on the following ports:
    • 13139 (Custom UDP Pings)
    • 6500 (Query Port)
    • 2302 (DirectPlay)
    Playing a Direct IP game
    To Join a game: You must know the IP adress of the host, and the following port must be opened
    • 2302 (DirectPlay)
    To Host a game: The following ports must be opened and your ISP and Firewall must allow you to act as server on these ports.
    • 13139 (Custom UDP Pings)
    • 6500 (Query Port)
    • 2302 (DirectPlay)
    Port 80 has been removed from the lists, as it seems it is unecessary after all. It has also been removed from the PtW readme.
    Port 6515 has also been removed, as 2302 is now being used for DirectPlay.

    Software Firewalls:

    If you're behind a software firewall you need to make sure that the firewall allows all relevant programs (EXE's) access to the internet, and also that it allows them to act as servers.
    The programs that need access are:
    • Civilization3x.exe
    • DirectPlay
    • GamespyArcade (only if you are running the game through GamespyArcade)

    Part 3: Basic Troubleshooting Guide:
    • Find a person who has made it work using his/her current setup. Preferrably someone who is not behind a firewall or router, but the key point is that they have been able to Host and Join with few problems. They may still have experienced crashes or OOS errors once they were in the game, but that is beside the point right now. All you need is someone you can connect with (no pun intended).
    • Test if you can join a game and successfully make it into the game itself (past all the setup screens), with this person as host, and any routers or firewalls configured properly.
      Only allow 2 player games to start with, just to reduce the sources of errors as much as possible.
    • If you can't make it into the game (and you're still sure the problem is not on the other person's end), deactivate everything you possibly can, even disconnecting your router
      (WARNING: Make sure your ISP allows you to connect to the internet without it, and make sure you know how to reconnect it) - basically, just deactivate anything that could be a possible source of errors, no matter how unlikely it is. Your aim is just to get into the game for now, not to actually play it. Just keep on tweaking and testing with the same person.
    • If you still don't make it, you should start thinking about whether your ISP is blocking any ports, or has you behind a proxy.
      You may also want to reinstall network protocols, DirectX 8, Civ3/PtW. Some people on the Gamespy forums even claim that doing a Custom uninstall, followed by a reinstall of Gamespy Arcade, solves the weirdest problems.

      Or post here with info on what you tried and where it fails, what OS you're running etc..
    • If you make it into the game, start re-adding stuff - antivirus, chat programs, your router (configured to have the correct ports open or using DMZ, Port Forwarding or similar) etc. - with a bit of luck you'll find out what was keeping you from connecting in the first place.

    Part 4: General Tips and links:

    Hardware Firewalls/NAT Router tips and linksSoftware Firewall tips and Links
    • If you have a Software Firewall or Proxy, go to the developer's support page for help on how to allow Gamespy Arcade/PtW/DirectPlay to access the internet. Note: Disabling a Software Firewall will not help if it has already closed the port!
    • To deactivate the 'built-in' firewall in WindowsXP check out this Microsoft Support guide

    If you have any problems with any of the steps above post about it here and hopefully we'll be able to help each other figure it out.

    Big thanks go out to Shou (@CivFanatics), Plux (@CivFanatics), Venger (@CivFanatics), Chieftess (@CivFanatics), Swissy, Acererak and everyone else who have posted on this thread.

    Finally: Please note that even though you have a lot of problems, you're not necessarily behind a firewall or proxy - a lot of things can go wrong on a PC - it's a sad thing, but a small price to pay for a tool with a high level of configurability and customizability, IMHO :smoke:
    Last edited by isak; December 25, 2002, 08:47.
    Double Your Pleasure mod | DYP Forums | DYP Mod thread

  • #2
    My problem appears to be, according to Firaxis, that my ISP has blocked off a needed port (80; this from the PtW readme) and has no plans to unblock it. I use a Cable Modem.

    Any alternatives would be appreciated; I have no plans to switch away from my current ISP at the moment, though.

    I do have a HP 512n, Windows XP, 384 MB RAM; 60 GB, 1.4 MHz system if that helps. No separate firewall.

    I have heard something that may help others. People have reported that disabling their AV has helped some people play. It didn't help in my case, and I was not wanting to leave it turned off for too long.

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    • #3
      I'm not crashing, but I can't seem to host. I am behind a router firewall, and think I have configured the router to open the porst identified in the readme. Is there any way to verify the ports are open? Kind of new at firewalls.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by kring
        My problem appears to be, according to Firaxis, that my ISP has blocked off a needed port (80; this from the PtW readme) and has no plans to unblock it. I use a Cable Modem.
        Port 80 is one of the worse ports they could have used. Webservers operate on port 80. So many broadband ISPs block inbound port 80 to insure nobody runs a webserver on an account that doesn't allow webservers (like most residential accounts). So you SOL until they release the patch for direct ip connection, which they can configure to another port.
        Last edited by Swissy; November 3, 2002, 03:33.
        "The greatest happiness of life is the conviction that we are loved - loved for ourselves, or rather, loved in spite of ourselves."--Victor Hugo

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Clegg
          I'm not crashing, but I can't seem to host. I am behind a router firewall, and think I have configured the router to open the porst identified in the readme. Is there any way to verify the ports are open? Kind of new at firewalls.
          Go to DSL Reports

          In the "Our Tools" section they have a quickie port scan test which will tell you which ports you have open.
          "The greatest happiness of life is the conviction that we are loved - loved for ourselves, or rather, loved in spite of ourselves."--Victor Hugo

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          • #6
            @Kring

            Thanks - forgot all about ISP blocks. Those things are the real pain, cause there's nothing to do about it, and it can be hard as.. um.. heck, to get information on whether or not your ISP blocks any ports. Looks like Swissys link might provide some help on that though.

            @Swissy

            Thanks for that link
            Double Your Pleasure mod | DYP Forums | DYP Mod thread

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            • #7
              I found out when I was talking to my ISP about another matter so I asked them which ports were blocked; someone else had pointed out that it could be that problem; and that block it for just that reason: the webserver issue.

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              • #8
                Nice effort Isak. I just wanted to point out that not all routers have hardware firewalls. Of course if they check as per your instructions they'll find out.
                We need seperate human-only games for MP/PBEM that dont include the over-simplifications required to have a good AI
                If any man be thirsty, let him come unto me and drink. Vampire 7:37
                Just one old soldiers opinion. E Tenebris Lux. Pax quaeritur bello.

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                • #9
                  If I turn off my firewall I have TCP139 and UDP68, 137, and 138 (if its on there are no open ports, DUH). So I guess I'm screwed too?
                  We need seperate human-only games for MP/PBEM that dont include the over-simplifications required to have a good AI
                  If any man be thirsty, let him come unto me and drink. Vampire 7:37
                  Just one old soldiers opinion. E Tenebris Lux. Pax quaeritur bello.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by SpencerH
                    Nice effort Isak. I just wanted to point out that not all routers have hardware firewalls.
                    Thanks. You're right, and on that note, it would also be ok to say that a proxy is just another type of firewall, I guess. I may be over-simplifying things a bit, on the above, trying to weed out the tech-talk, and I definitely need some help to keep this in line - I'm not a Networking Whiz-kid, so keep the comments coming

                    About the dslreports test, It seems to me that it doesn't scan a whole lot of ports, only the 'regularly' used ones, so I'm not entirely sure that you can count on it's list of open ports. But it's still reliable to use if you don't know whether or not you have an active firewall - the fact that no ports answer, is a dead giveaway.

                    You should be able to configure your router to allow the necessary ports open - if it's your own router, of course, so I wouldn't say that you're doomed - hopefully you're just in for a bit of 'tweaking'
                    Double Your Pleasure mod | DYP Forums | DYP Mod thread

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                    • #11
                      Thanks Isak,

                      I use a d-link DI-704 (firewill included). Followed your instructions (took about 45 minutes for me) and now all works well...

                      I sucessfully played my first game last night with one other human and one comp player on a large(?) map.

                      I forget what year we finished, but no problems whatsoever - we quit after about 4 hours of play - a tiny bit laggy - but worked just fine...

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                      • #12
                        http://apolyton.net/forums/showthrea...threadid=66350

                        see this thread about why you can only play 1v1 games... and how to fix it.
                        Pentagenesis for Civ III
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                        • #13
                          You've added a link to this thread?
                          We need seperate human-only games for MP/PBEM that dont include the over-simplifications required to have a good AI
                          If any man be thirsty, let him come unto me and drink. Vampire 7:37
                          Just one old soldiers opinion. E Tenebris Lux. Pax quaeritur bello.

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                          • #14
                            I think Neo wanted to share the link to this thread about unistalling Gamespy to fix many problems but got a bit too ecstatic
                            Double Your Pleasure mod | DYP Forums | DYP Mod thread

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by SpencerH
                              You've added a link to this thread?
                              oops
                              Pentagenesis for Civ III
                              Pentagenesis for Civ IV in progress
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