Proposed Change to Fairplay for Gamers

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Proposed Change to Fairplay for Gamers

Post by NetworkAdmin » Wed Oct 10, 2007 8:54 am

I would like to invite comments on the following proposal to change the way we identify traffic for customers who have opted in to the fairplay pool.

At the moment, bandwidth can be reserved within the Exetel network for IP addresses in the pool, but because the IP address could be any random address, our ability to control traffic to and from the rest of the world is limited.

With the proposed change, a block of IP addresses will be allocated for the fairplay pool. When someone opts in, their IP address will be changed automatically to one of the fairplay pool addresses.

The advantages of this are:

- Exetel has full control of ingress and egress routing paths for the fairplay address block, so if one bandwidth supplier has a problem with a particular game site (like WOW for example), we can divert the ingress and egress for all gamers to an alternate supplier

- We will be able to have independent routing polices for the fairplay pool and general traffic. I can't think of a situation where that might be needed, but there probably is one.

- We can fully differentiate gamer traffic from any other traffic, at the IP level to better segregate and protect in-game latencies from heavy download users. Apart from making it much easier to identify gamer traffic, it reduces the router CPU load otherwise needed.

The disadvantages are:

- There will be a change of IP address when you opt into fairplay, and another one if you opt out.

- There will be a forced circuit drop and reconnection (2-4 seconds)

- If you exceed the fairplay download limit, you will be ejected from the pool with the above noted changes

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Post by thomashouseman » Wed Oct 10, 2007 10:50 am

I don't like it.

I opt in ocassionally if pings seem excessive for that week, but normally stay out of it.

My home pc is also my mail server for my domain. I'd have to alter my domain records every time I opt in and back out.

Can we be issued a 2nd IP address instead? :D (No idea if this is possible - never looked into having more than one) or even better, just make the fairplay pool users bypass your allot system altogether!

I think a static IP is one of the great features of an exetel connection.


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Post by CordlezToaster » Wed Oct 10, 2007 11:45 am

I think its a great idea having a gamer group to opt into /out of! It would attract alot of gamers.

How about having one for P2P to?

But When you go into this "group" will your ip be statically assigned? its important for me to have my static ip at all times, i dont mind using dyndns, but would be easier if i had two static ip`s one for in one for out!.

Also what would the exceeded download limit be? and will this fix the WoW issue?

And why cant you use our static ip`s that we have now?
Also how long will it take to implement this idea?


Post by thewowlagger » Wed Oct 10, 2007 12:22 pm

Personally I don't like it, but I do offer an alternative - read the end of my post.

So this is Exetel's politically correct way of saying their NetEnforcer is crap and can't do it's job properly?

If I understand what your saying then the following must be true:

1. The only way for Exetel to ensure certain users experience low-latency is to provide them with an IP address from a certain pool. This way those all traffic from those IP addresses can be given highest priority on Exetel's network (either by bypassing the NE completely or by having the NE prioritize the Gamers IP block so that the NE does not need to use it's Layer 7 DPI which obviously adds too much latency or is completely useless at identifying set signatures which is it's primary function at the moment.)

2. Exetel would prefer to segment their customers into groups, gamers and normal/p2p users. No offense guys, but with the way the network is at the moment (latency and even yesterday with the DNS issues) I don't have that much faith that you would be better managing 2 smaller clusters of customers then the 1 big cluster you have at the moment.

3. 600mb/night is easy to blow, hell, if you've got 2 PCs running Office then SP3 would of done that come 3am a couple of weeks ago when it was rolled out through Windows Update and you would be kicked without the ability to rejoin (current system rules).

4. Gamer's loose their static IP. Don't say that we don't, the fact is we do, because since there is the possibility that our IP could change then by definition it is no longer static.

5. Gamer's would experience D/Cs, no offense, but it's part of the problem at the moment? I can tell you that if come midnight I D/C I'm going to have my entire guild screaming at my for causing a wipe in whatever raid we're doing at the time.

6. Please fix your entire network, not just provide "band-aid" solutions.

Now, my proposal is this:

Introduce new plans aimed at gamers. 600MB/night is 18.25GB/month. So increase the current quota of the plans an amount similar to this.

For example, I'm currently on TELK, which is 24 GB peak per month. Increase this quota up to 42GB and get rid of the peak/off peak system. We're gamers right? So staying up so 2 am playing is more then likely common for a lot of us. Not to mention day breaking it on the weekends. We want to be able to game whenever we feel like it. Now, seeing as we've got rid of the off peak quota, charge us if we go over the new combined quota amount but since we're gamers and want low latency, make it more expensive then your normal users, say $4/gb.

The plan would look like this,

Cost: $65/mth (you could probably even justify a $5/$10 price hike like you are doing to the P2Pers)
Speed: 1536/256
Quota: 42 GB to be used anytime of the day or night
Excess: $4/GB

Now, anyone on this new range of plans is assigned a static IP in a certain block, now that static IP only changes if you move between the Gamer plans, P2P plans or Normal plans via a plan change.

Exetel would have 3 IP blocks, one for gamers, one for normal users, one for P2P users.

Now you can have the gamer block given highest priority as filtered by the IP, with normal users next highest and P2P users the lowest. Set your NE to not even attempt to look into gamer packets, if we're paying a premium for low latency who the hell cares what traffic we're using. You would also be able to link your P2P IP block to your P2P cache this way to make sure only those paying the extra for the P2P plans were able use the cache.

This to me would be similar to the way Telstra/Bigpond sells their ADSL network.

Clients wanting low latency and the best possible speeds use Telstra Internet Direct. (Exetel would do the same thing on the Gamer plans but just without the SLA to bring down the price a little.)

Everyday clients use Bigpond as an extra 100ms latency isn't going to worry them that much. (Similar to your current plans.)

P2Pers user another ISP that doesn't count uploads (Like Exetel's new P2P plans for the best transfer speed but higher lag on external links.)

Let me know what you think Exetel and other users.

I'll post you my bill, what's the going rate for network consultants these days? lol

Edit: I forgot to mention that by introducing the seperate IP blocks in this way you've got the ability to change routing for each block specifically. Which I believe you listed as an advantage in your original post.

Edit 2: Spelling and one final comment: I assume the benefit your talking about in the ability to route separate IP blocks would mainly be one of financial benefit to Exetel, ie. the ability to route regular users over cheaper links while reserving bandwidth on your more expensive links (which I assume are less congested) for those with a fair play pool static IP?
Last edited by thewowlagger on Wed Oct 10, 2007 2:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by CordlezToaster » Wed Oct 10, 2007 12:35 pm

i like the idea, makes more sense!.
But its not something i would pay more money for!.

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Post by thomashouseman » Wed Oct 10, 2007 1:56 pm


An adjusted download limit and doing away with peak/offpeak is very appealing. Also not having to go via Allot-NetEnforcer is a big plus and keeping the same IP address is a pre-requisite.


Edit: PS: And yes $5 more a month for this "privilege" would probably be do-able, but of course $0 is better!

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Post by gong_guy » Wed Oct 10, 2007 3:39 pm

I think it is a great idea.

But only because you can select it one night, cancel it the next and you get a free IP address change, sweet.........

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Post by thomashouseman » Wed Oct 10, 2007 4:08 pm

gong_guy wrote:I think it is a great idea.

But only because you can select it one night, cancel it the next and you get a free IP address change, sweet.........

LOL :lol:

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