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PC Connection Issues

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Known issues

Gamespy

  • Cannot host public games
  • Cannot join public games
  • Cannot host private games
  • Cannot join or invite from friends menu
  • Cannot connect at all

LAN

  • Cannot see LAN servers
  • If you have an old computer, you wil be dropped from the server due to loading time, when changing areas.

Solutions

  • If you cannot host public games, but do want to use gamespy to do it, first configure your router.
  • If you cannot join public games, make sure the host has configured their router. using SkUT.
  • If you want to join public games, but do not want to use gamespy, use GameRanger
  • If you just want to play with your friends, consider either using GameRanger, Hamachi, or Tunngle.

(You can also try; leaf networks, remobo and teamviewer vpn.)

  • If you are trying to play on LAN (Either real or virtual), but cannot see games you know are there, try directly connecting. Otherwise, try forcing the correct interface to be used.

Router configuration

To host (and sometimes join) online/games, ports must be opened. Ports are numbers that represent entry points to your computer from the internet. Your house has an address (Just like your IP Address), but you can't just walk through the wall. Ports would be doors, in this comparison. When you have a router sharing your internet connection between multiple computers, the router holds the single address that the outside internet can see, so you must tell it which ports should go to which computers. Otherwise, it simply ignores all incoming requests (like people trying to join your game).

Borderlands uses only UDP connections for hosting and running games, TCP/IP connections are used only to connect to the GameSpy servers. To be able to host and play games, the following ports need to be forwarded to your computer (See wikihow or portforward.com for help):

  • 7777 TCP/UDP (in/out) - actual game data port

In addition the game opens the following connections to the internet. In most cases it is not necessary to specifically open these ports, as this is an outgoing connection that routers usually detect and open properly. However some firewall/router configurations might be more restrictive, so if you still have troubles to connect and/or host, you have to manually open the ports above and the following additional ones as well:

  • 29900 TCP (out) - Gamespy persistent connection
  • 27900 UDP (out) - Gamespy info broadcast, used for public hosts
  • 9989 UDP (in/out) - game broadcast port for LAN play only

Please note that there has been a lot of frustration about how to properly setup this game to allow for online connections, resulting in many rumors and false information (even from the readme file itself: some ports listed there are actually never used). The above data has been collected through port and firewall monitoring and has been confirmed to be correct.

Automatic port forwarding

An alternative to manually forwarding ports on your router is using UPnPto request forwarded ports on your router. In order to do this you must:

  • Have a router that supports UPnP
  • Have UPnP enabled on your router
  • Know your own internal IP

Further instructions located in the forum thread and the steam forums thread.


Another way to automatically forward your ports is to use an automatic port forwarding program like This One.

This program allows you to select your program from a drop down list, only in the paid premium version, in this case Borderlands, and it will automatically forward the ports.

Further instructions are located in This Thread.

Firewall configuration for hosting

An extensive guide to configuring the windows firewall has been posted on the steam forums

Alternate server browsers

GameRanger

Originally announced on the forums, GameRanger added support for Borderlands quickly. It provides a server list, a friends list, and the ability to host your own games with your friends. Support is available either in the forums thread or on GameRanger's own support section.

When you host a game with GameRanger, it will start Borderlands for you. Once it creates the game, other people will join automatically.


SkUT

SkUT is a UT3 (The same engine that Borderlands uses) game browser for the mIRC IRC client.

There is a forum thread detailing how to get it and a tutorial on how to get it working here.


Virtual LANs (VPN)

There are several applications that allow you to join virtual private networks with your friends. These then play over them like you were all on the same LAN. This is sometimes easier than attempting to get a gamespy game working. Some of these even provide advanced server browsers.


Hamachi

This is the veteran of the bunch. Hamachi has been facilitating LAN games for quite a while.

  • Once it is installed, if you do not want to make a direct shortcut, make sure to set hamachi as the first connection as shown on the forums.
  • Disable your firewall on the Hamachi connection. Make sure pinging
  • Join or create a group/network (There is a button on the bottom in the 1.0 client, Hamachi2 has it under Network at the top)
  • Make sure everyone can ping the host (Double click them in hamachi's list, make sure it returnTimed out")
  • If no one can, the host needs to disable their computer's firewall.
  • If only one can't, they need to check their firewall settings.
  • This may not always have any effect. Being able to join the game is the only true indicator.
  • Make a LAN game, have your friends join it. (Or vice-versa). If there are any problems seeing the game, take a look at the Direct Connect section or how to force Borderlands to use the Hamachi interface here (both are found further down the page).

Tunngle

NOTE: Tunngle is still in beta, and therefore has limited support.

Tunngle Create Account

Creating an account in Tunngle

  • Download here
  • Install
  • Restart computer
  • Run Tunngle
  • Create account (Click the link at the bottom, check the picture to the right)
  • Check email, activate account with given link
  • Log in

You're now at the general interface. To join a network room (Chat and game room), start the network browser from the menu bar. "Community" - "Netzwerke" - "Browser"

From this point, you can pick any room. Get your friends to join the same room, and then you can start and play a LAN game together.

You can also search through the rooms using "Community" - "Netzwerke" - "Suchen". Try typing "Borderlands" to find the main Borderlands VLAN room. Double click it to join. There is a forum thread dedicated to Tunngle here


Garena

According to a forum thread, success has also been had with this.

Once installed and started, you must first join a room (EG: Europe 1). Once in the room, click settings at the bottom, Borderlands in the game settings, and finally browse to find your Borderlands.exe or shortcut.


Direct Connect

  • You want to join a LAN game, but it won't find the game
  • You want to use Hamachi, but again, it won't find the game
  • You're trying to join an online game, have your ports open, and don't feel like using SkUT or GameRanger.. But know the person you want to connect to
  • Your Lan/Hamachi/Tunngle/Gamespy games work fine for you, but a friend on the LAN/online with a static IP always hosts, and you just want to connect to them quickly

Create a shortcut to borderlands\borderlands.exe. Put this shortcut wherever you want, it doesn't matter. (Create a shortcut from inside steam and modify that one instead, if you are using steam)

Open the properties of the shortcut.

In the "Target" field, add this AFTER "....borderlands.exe", with a space in between:

x.x.x.x -login=yyyyy -password=zzzzz

Where...

  • x.x.x.x is your friend's ip (Shown in hamachi, shown via whatsmyip.org, whatever)
  • yyyyy is your gamespy login name
  • zzzzz is your gamespy password

(You can leave out -login and -password for lan/hamachi/tunngle games)

Here is a example, this will not work for *you* but shows how it should end up.

"C:\Games\Borderlands\Binaries\Borderlands.exe" 5.171.18.89 -login=foo -password=bar

You will need to figure out how to properly configure Tunngle/Hamachi to host games - e.g. disable firewall on those connections, perhaps move them up in the adapter list - but after that, this lets you connect without any fuss.

Force Borderlands to use the correct interface

Changing the priority of the network connections doesn't always work and you might still not see LAN games where there should be one or more. It's possible, with a tiny application, to force Borderlands to use the network connection of your choice. This works in combination with Hamachi (confirmed) but should work with all other VPN as well as long as those programs install a network on your PC


ForceBindIP is a tiny application (80 kB) which can be downloaded here. The instructions are not directly clear so here is how to get it to work.


Once installed you have three options. Either you type in a command line in command prompt for a one time only run, or you create a batch file which can be run, or you edit the/create a Borderlands shortcut to execute the command line.


For the one time only run, simply go to start -> run -> 'cmd' and hit enter. You are now in command promt. Type:

c:\windows\system32\forcebindip x.x.x.x "d:\games\2k games\gearbox software\borderlands\binaries\borderlands.exe"

x.x.x.x is the IP address which the computer has now on the network you want to be (for hamachi it will look like 5.x.x.x)

This is an example, though ForceBindIP is always in c:\windows\system32, Borderlands may be installed in a different location. Do note that if there's a space in the full path of your borderlands i.e. '2k games' or 'gearbox software' you are required to use the " to open and close the full path of borderlands.exe


If you choose to create or edit the shortcut, simply make the 'target' as shown above in the command line example and change 'start in' to:

c:\windows\system32

This will produce a shortcut with no icon or break the icon of the original shortcut, the icon can be found in:

d:\games\2k games\gearbox software\borderlands\binaries\borderlands.ico


Finally you can create a batch file, simply open notepad and type the command line as shown in the command line example, then save the file using 'save as', make sure to select 'All files (*.*)' in the 'Save as type' and give it a name that ends in '.bat'. You can save the file anywhere you want. Example:

Borderlands.bat


Slow loading players timing out

Sometimes people with bad computers take long enough to join the server or load new areas that the host's server will disconnect them. These defaults can be changed to get around this problem. (Thread here)

Open this ini file with notepad or another text editor:

Documents\My Games\Borderlands\WillowGame\Config\WillowEngine.ini

Find these lines:

ConnectionTimeout=#
InitialConnectTimeout=#
AckTimeout=#

Change the # values to match these:

ConnectionTimeout=300.0
InitialConnectTimeout=300.0
AckTimeout=300.0

This will cause the game to wait five minutes before disconnecting anyone.


Host-Leave-Host trick

Common wisdom holds that, somehow: if you start a private match, leave it, then make another, you can invite friends successfully afterwards.

If your ports are correctly forwarded but you cannot host a private match, log into Gamespy in-game, enter and exit the lobby, start the game in single player mode and invite friends by pressing "O" (default).

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