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Lolabelle

Suggestion about Client Updates

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A good point was brought up by a friend. Seems when the Steam client updates Wurm Unlimited client, if the server is not updated also you can't log in.  With Minecraft there was a way to downgrade client to be able to play until the server was updated. Would be an awesome implementation. 

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I'm thinking about adding a previous version branch for the client, would help a little. 

We are also looking into adding some more version data sent from steam to the client so that it can verify before connection and either filter out or just gray out servers that are not the same version as the client. 

I'm guessing it would be preferable to see a server as unavailable due to version mismatch then connect to instant crash.

 

Generally it is only a problem when we change the message protocols, been lots of those recently so I understand the frustration. 

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+1

 

I like this idea, no more waiting for host to update the server. :)

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Or even just having the version number listed with the servers, which other games can do so it should be possible.

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Thank you for looking into this. It really could help I think and would save so much drama in forums when the client or server versions update independently.  Another interesting option, though I don't know if possible could be for the running sever to be notified in game from Steam that it needs to be updated, or auto-updated. 

Just my 2 irons

Edited by Lolabelle

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Would be nice even the slightest update would be pushed to steam updates so we know why there is an update

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It would be nice if there was the slightest notification so that hosts might be prepared to update...

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Would it be possible to spread your patches out a bit more instead of this willy nilly version?  Yall did go two months without patching WU to patch it twice in the matter of 4 days?

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I think auto-updating servers would likely upset Admins, with fair reasons.  I do like Lolabelle's idea of being able to downgrade a client to keep playing until the server is upgraded but, on the other hand, a system allowing all kinds of different server versions up and running (like arma 2 dayz mod servers) can be really messy for the end-user.  Gets frustrating upgrading, downgrading, etc every time you want to try a different server.  Eventually get a sense there's just too many cooks in the kitchen and nobody knows what's doing what anymore.

I'd rather see the baseline server be common to all, with settings and mods determining individual flavor.  Ago's modloader goes a very long way to making that the reality, which is awesome.

 

Having a pre-determined patch day might be a good idea, sort of like Microsoft's patch Tuesday.  It would leave enough time to work out the kinks and get things running before the week-end.  Admins would know to look and be prepared if there is one.

Hotfixes should of course not be limited by that schedule, no need for Ellison-style "no security update for youuu, cuz it's not patch day!"  Waiting a few days to get content that is ready, though, wouldn't be the end of the world for users, imho. 

 

Edit: regarding what Lolabelle suggested, I never played minecraft so if they managed a system that didn't create a frustrating mess, sweet.

Edited by Reylaark
lack of knowledge on minecraft system

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I personally prefer updating on either Wednesdays or Thursdays, and weekly, due to the time it takes to gather up info for patch notes, there are a lot of things to sift through in terms of changes, not all of which will go live. 
 

We have also been going through a migration of version control systems, from SVN to git, so things have been slightly more cumbersome to do recently then they had to be.

That migration is now complete, so now the work has begun to improve the patching and hotfixing workflow, it might have to go through a few iterations before we find the flow that works the best for us and our needs. 
Just as I think we need to find the best updating schedule for WU, perhaps weekly is too often, twice a month might be enough and give modders and server admins the time they need to adapt to changes.

When it all comes down to it we need to find a way that is good for both us and you the players, just having a schedule that is "painless" for me don't work, I don't exactly enjoy seeing the stream of posts about not being able to connect like it is now. 

I think for the next update we will have to update both beta and live with the same version, including the version stuff in both and add a branch to the previous live version. 

Perhaps even hotfix the current live with the version stuff, albeit a slightly modified version that allows connections to servers not running it so that you may still try and connect to servers that are not updated.
It wont remove all the version clashes this time around, I can't really think of any way to completely avoid it this time, having both beta and live running the same version should in theory allow us to reduce the version fragmentation before the next update.

 

Perhaps a weekly updating schedule works better if it's not for both live and beta at the same time but rather opt for just updating one of them each week, resulting in live updating twice a month and beta twice a month.

 

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I prefer what Minecraft does and lets players choose what "game" version the server and client run. I'm still using MC version 1.7.10 (release June 26, 2014) and the official game version is at 1.8.7. This scheme is what's best for modders and mod compatibility.

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I really hate what Minecraft allows.  It promotes lazy modders.

 

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Quote

I really hate what Minecraft allows.  It promotes lazy modders.

 

weekly releases is a strong timeline to fix stuff. Sometimes life and work kicks in and makes it hard to find the spare time to fix the mods.

Edited by ago
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A change to the client only should be a unversioned change since it really should have no effect on the link to the server. Admins should not have to take servers down to update them unless changes have been made to the server code as well.

 

The hardest hit are often modded servers because some may have to wait for an update of the mod as well to be compatible with the new server code in order to get up and running again. I'm hoping that beta is open so modders can test their mods on the beta version and make them compatible in order to release the updated mod at the same time as the patch goes live. This would vastly reduce downtime for private servers. It would also increase the number of players testing the beta and allow more chance to catch bugs at the beta stage.

 

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Good idea there. It is a tad frustrating. But given that there are so many variables on those servers now it could be a bit frustrating to fix itself. 

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