Zandronum 2.1

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Torr Samaho
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RE: Zandronum 2.1

#21

Post by Torr Samaho » Thu Jun 25, 2015 6:35 pm

I thought about how to prevent such glaring bugs in the future. By now, it's completely obvious that asking people to test simply doesn't work. Also forcing everybody at once to test by releasing something flagged as stable that didn't receive sufficient testing is not really an option.

What I could imagine to work is the following: As before, we release an official beta build before the stable version. But we do not release the stable version until the corresponding beta has received at least "insert reasonable amount here" hours of real playtime with at least "insert reasonable amount here" players on servers hosted by the big clusters. Gametime could be confirmed for instance by having the players / testers submit demos of them playing on a beta server. We could have a counter that shows how many playtime hours are still missing before the stable will be released. Hopefully, this creates sufficient incentive for players to test the beta.

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RE: Zandronum 2.1

#22

Post by Dusk » Thu Jun 25, 2015 7:20 pm

Then people simply don't play and the release never happens, or takes months to happen.

While testing of course is good in helping make things more stable, we really need to stop thinking that just because a release failed, it's because of not enough testing. You can lower the probability of releases breaking but not eliminate it. 2.0 was pretty well tested yet a pretty bad crash bug waded in and one of the major codepointers (A_LookEx) broke completely.

I think we instead need better damage control mechanisms. While the discussion about auto-upgrading didn't really go anywhere because it would not cater for the 1% of users who do not use a server browser on Windows, it could probably still help things considerably. If servers upgrade to a patched binary fast enough (best-ever doesn't take long and most of the gameplay happens there) and most of the users would use a hypothetical auto-upgrade system in Doomseeker (ideally also in Doom Explorer for maximum coverage), having things break like this wouldn't be so catastrophic and we could even patch security issues without it taking 6 months.

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RE: Zandronum 2.1

#23

Post by Ru5tK1ng » Thu Jun 25, 2015 11:03 pm

One of the things that seems to be overlooked is the fact that as Zandronum goes along the road of catching up to ZDoom, the project inherently gets larger and more complex. As a result of this growth, there are more chances for things to go wrong and they do go wrong. A release and the testing phase isn't a total failure if some bugs creep through. After all, how often do PC games need patching?

As for the testing itself, people testing things locally, in small groups or bursts isn't going to cut it anymore. As mentioned above, the best way to evolve the testing phase is to put out a beta on some of the popular server clusters and allow the players to stress test the builds. The only way this method can succeed is by coordination between the Dev team and the main server hosts of the community followed by people actually playing the builds.
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RE: Zandronum 2.1

#24

Post by AlexMax » Thu Jun 25, 2015 11:14 pm

I am of the same mind as Rust. Broken stuff on release is never fun, but it's not that big of a deal as long as point releases can be done in a timely fashion. If there are big obvious problems with a release, or if there are big obvious problems found with a release (such as security vulnerabilities), the turnaround on new a point release should be a day or two, tops.

In the future, I will host any posted test builds on FUNCRUSHER with DUEL32 and IDL CTF, which ought to cover the competitive community's concerns.
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RE: Zandronum 2.1

#25

Post by Zalewa » Thu Jun 25, 2015 11:27 pm

Doomseeker will already prompt players to install beta versions. I don't see why this can't be extended to installation of stable versions too. However, in such case, Zandronum directory structure would have to be under complete control of Doomseeker, so that Doomseeker can decide where to install game executables of given version.

We can maintain current directory structure and still provide users the option to point to the default "Zandronum.exe" but there must be a way to obtain version from this .exe. Having zandronum print its version to stdout and close itself when being run with --version argument would be sufficient. That way whenever user joins a server with mismatching "version" string he would get a prompt asking to install the new version.

Another problem is that many hosts use their own, customized builds of Zandronum where the version string can be anything and it will throw off the version checking system and screw it up, unless we want to maintain a compatibility list of which custom server accepts which official client and this is ridiculous and fucked up beyond belief...


All in all, custom server builds can even ruin the current beta build installation system that is already in place in Doomseeker. Doomseeker can still provide auto-updates for the main version but --version for zandronum.exe must work first.
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RE: Zandronum 2.1

#26

Post by TerminusEst13 » Thu Jun 25, 2015 11:34 pm

AlexMax wrote:the turnaround on new a point release should be a day or two, tops.
I don't think I understand the need for this time limit, considering bugs are not always so polite as to be easily identifiable and fixed, and usually rushing such fixes tends to create more problems.
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RE: Zandronum 2.1

#27

Post by Larz1695 » Fri Jun 26, 2015 12:03 am

I like the idea. 2.0 was solid imo since I personally didn't receive any game breaking bugs. It sucks that there were so many problems with that build. I'd try out a beta. The alphas? Not so much.

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RE: Zandronum 2.1

#28

Post by Catastrophe » Fri Jun 26, 2015 1:40 am

Maybe an auto-update feature is needed in Zandronum itself instead of server browsers. Of course something like this doesn't happen over night, but that's probably the best way to get builds out faster, and get more reliable testing done.
Last edited by Catastrophe on Fri Jun 26, 2015 1:40 am, edited 1 time in total.
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RE: Zandronum 2.1

#29

Post by Dusk » Fri Jun 26, 2015 11:38 am

Zalewa wrote: Doomseeker will already prompt players to install beta versions. I don't see why this can't be extended to installation of stable versions too. However, in such case, Zandronum directory structure would have to be under complete control of Doomseeker, so that Doomseeker can decide where to install game executables of given version.
This could have the added benefit that ZCinema could also work more or less out of the box without the user having to give the exe paths or install old versions manually.

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RE: Zandronum 2.1

#30

Post by Frits » Fri Jun 26, 2015 12:09 pm

Make a new regular event for testing sessions like FNF or SNS. These always attract folks.
Thursday night testing?

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RE: Zandronum 2.1

#31

Post by Watermelon » Fri Jun 26, 2015 2:11 pm

As brought up in multiple posts before this, maybe it's time for an auto-updater? I know I threw the idea around a while ago, the issue would be getting all the different browsers to stay up to date. Wouldn't be a problem with Doomseeker but I have no idea what Doom Explorer would do.

ZDaemon does it and it's nice when they break the entire game (usually theirs is much worse than stuff like this), but then have a hotfix in usually 30-60 minutes. It's not uncommon to see them roll out 3-4 hotfixes within 24 hours of a version upgrade.

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RE: Zandronum 2.1

#32

Post by thehighesttree » Fri Jun 26, 2015 2:39 pm

I don't know how bad other peoples' versions are acting, but after many install attempts the 2.1 Mac build of Zandronum won't even finish booting up under my computer with OS X 10.6.8. I've only started playing online Doom within the last 2 months and version 2.0 worked like a charm, aside from missing audio channels which wasn't a major issue. I'm basically choosing between being blocked from most servers (2.0) or a dead duck (2.1).

Zandronum didn't generate the crash report file in its directory, but if let me know if I can help with some more info. Really hope this gets fixed up!
Last edited by thehighesttree on Fri Jun 26, 2015 2:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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RE: Zandronum 2.1

#33

Post by Scott_Minikhiem » Fri Jun 26, 2015 9:17 pm

I noticed that INBAR items, if they stack in the inventory the amount automatically drops to 1 when the map is changed. I tried using every flag to allow the items to carry over and this still happens. I have to make a strange workaround to fix it.

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RE: Zandronum 2.1

#34

Post by Empyre » Fri Jun 26, 2015 10:05 pm

Scott_Minikhiem wrote: I noticed that INBAR items, if they stack in the inventory the amount automatically drops to 1 when the map is changed. I tried using every flag to allow the items to carry over and this still happens. I have to make a strange workaround to fix it.
AFAIK, it has always been that way.
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RE: Zandronum 2.1

#35

Post by AlexMax » Sat Jun 27, 2015 1:59 am

Zalewa wrote: Version insanity
There are a couple of separate problems that need to be solved here:

1. Forcing the client and server version to match exactly by default is, frankly, obnoxious in some cases. I tried to use edward-san's version of Zandronum, which had the desync problems fixed, and players couldn't connect to my server. I had to apply the fixes as a patch against a stock 2.1 checkout.
2. On the other hand, if there is a new version of the Zandronum client that is released, you want to have players on that new version as soon as possible. For this, having the server inform the client that they are out of date is a good thing. But do demos have to break too?
3. And on the third hand, if you're running testing sessions, sometimes you want the freedom to be able to make updates to the server without the player having to download a new client, and sometimes it's important that the client isn't using an older testing client that will exhibit bugs that have already been fixed in a newer version.

A thorny situation, which requires a thorny and nuanced approach. I've collected my suggestions in this ticket:

http://zandronum.com/tracker/view.php?id=2331
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RE: Zandronum 2.1

#36

Post by Quaker540 » Sat Jun 27, 2015 2:49 am

Great update! I love what you guys come up with :)

I have 2 questions.

1. I recently heard that Zandronum 3.0 is under development already (But still in a beta) and I was crazily excited and tried to download it from the website, but it says there are no development builds. So I went to compile it and see it, but I don't which source code I should compile. I mean, the one you are currently working is for the 2.0 branch, right? Or is it for 3.0? I'm completely lost.

2. In the first post you said; "Fixed: Too high volume parameters to A_PlaySound and friends caused the volume to overflow online. [Dusk]"

But wait, you can't amplify sounds over 1.0. You can make them less loud only.

I mean, this line in the source code clearly says that. Is this just for G/ZDoom?
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RE: Zandronum 2.1

#37

Post by Dusk » Sat Jun 27, 2015 1:05 pm

1.) The zandronum repository has the 3.0 development branch while zandronum-stable has 2.x. So if you want to build 2.x you need to clone zandronum-stable instead.

2.) If SNDINFO has used $volume to reduce the volume of the sound effect, then values greater than 1.0 amplify the sound. So such values have to be supported, though volumes greater than 2.0 still overflow so we have to draw the line there.

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RE: Zandronum 2.1

#38

Post by Quaker540 » Sat Jun 27, 2015 6:24 pm

Dusk wrote: 1.) The zandronum repository has the 3.0 development branch while zandronum-stable has 2.x. So if you want to build 2.x you need to clone zandronum-stable instead.
Thank you!
Dusk wrote:2.) If SNDINFO has used $volume to reduce the volume of the sound effect, then values greater than 1.0 amplify the sound. So such values have to be supported, though volumes greater than 2.0 still overflow so we have to draw the line there.
Um, no. The line clearly says that sounds can't get over 1.0, you can make them less loud only.
Catastrophe wrote: Maybe an auto-update feature is needed in Zandronum itself instead of server browsers. Of course something like this doesn't happen over night, but that's probably the best way to get builds out faster, and get more reliable testing done.
THIS. Since the people working on the project are working fast as fuck, and people always want to have the latest bleeding-edge features and stuff, you have my vote. Not sure how such thing could be done, though other source ports already did that and it's fantastic.
Last edited by Quaker540 on Sat Jun 27, 2015 6:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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RE: Zandronum 2.1

#39

Post by Arctangent » Sat Jun 27, 2015 8:21 pm

Quaker540 wrote: Um, no. The line clearly says that sounds can't get over 1.0, you can make them less loud only.
It's to explain that you can't actually amplify a sound using the function. You can, however, dequiet a sound you're already making quieter by other means.

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RE: Zandronum 2.1

#40

Post by ibm5155 » Sun Jun 28, 2015 4:44 pm

Code: Select all

Note: You need a copy of Doom (or Heretic, Hexen, or Strife) to play Zandronum. If you don't have the game, Steam sells it for about $5 - $15. Once you install it, Zandronum will find it automatically. Zandronum requires the latest version of the supported games. If you have an older version you can patch to the latest version.
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