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Thread: Reliability of ShowEQ vs MySEQ

  1. #1
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    Reliability of ShowEQ vs MySEQ

    Hey everyone,
    First off thanks to everyone who puts effort into maintain ShowEQ and MySEQ as well. Nothing here is meant to be negative in anyway toward either program. I'm just looking to improve my experience in using the tools.

    I've used MySEQ in the past but stopped using it cause I didn't really like having to have a process running on my EQ computer that could potentially be detected. Recently I looked into and set up a ubuntu 16.04 box for using ShowEQ instead. But it seems like the ShowEQ client is less reliable than the MySEQ client and was wondering if there was anything I could do to correct the problems.

    1. Sometimes ShowEQ just seems to disconnect from the EQ session. It happens randomly and says it's waiting for the next zone event to reconnect. This is annoying when in groups and such and you can't just camp or zone every time the thing disconnects lol. Is there anything I can do to keep this from happening? MySEQ was a bit more convenient in that you don't have to zone / camp to get it to start monitoring.

    2. It occasionally crashes with buffer overrun errors or such. Which leads back to problem 1 of having to zone / camp to get it to reconnect. Is there anything I can do to prevent these crashes from happening?

    3. This isn't really an issue, just a mild annoyance. I have a problem with the combat and experience windows opening when starting the application. There are no exits on these windows so I have to go through the menu twice for each window to turn them on and then back off to get them to actually hide. Anything I can do to keep these from opening when starting the program?

    4. This is more of a convenience thing, but it doesn't seem like ShowEQ supports mouse zooming directly on the map or dragging the map around. I can kind of get mouse zooming to work but only if I click into the zoom text field first so that the mouse scrolls through the zoom levels. In MySEQ all I have to do is have my mouse over the map window and it picks up the scroll events for zoom level changes. Are these just unsupported features, or did I configure something wrong preventing this from working?

    If I get enough free time I might try to look into the source myself to see if I can fix / update anything. But that is a pretty big if lol, I'm pretty busy these days and don't know if I'd have time for another side project.

    So mainly I'm just seeing if there is anything I can do to improve the reliability without requiring updates. Maybe some configuration settings that I have wrong or something.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Did you SEQ today? BlueAdept's Avatar
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    Re: Reliability of ShowEQ vs MySEQ

    I really haven't played too much in the last 15 years or so. Running on Centos6.9 I really have not seen a crashing issue. I have not tried to run it on Ubuntu.
    In the past, I have seen it occasionally crash while zoning, but not frequently.
    I do use session tracking. Ocassionally it switches toons and depends on which toon zones first (even though it is doing session tracking)
    Only on my raspberry pi, even though I have it set by ip, do I have to have it "monitor next session" even though I have an IP set. Once it latches on, I dont have any issues.
    My toons are all around lvl85 so my zones are mainly older zones so I cant say if it crashes with newer zones.

    ShowEQ is a packet sniffer that has to decrypt the packet before it can be displayed. If there is a network issue and the packet is malformed, it can cause data to not be correct which would cause a crash. There are also many other reasons for crashes. Invalid packet sizes, data corruption in the packet, unexpected values in data, structs that dont line up correctly, mismatched variables, etc. If they would publish the data they send the client, it would make life a whole lot easier, but they dont. Without active developers, we are all lucky that it still works!

    The code base hasn't been actively worked on in probably 10 years. A lot of things need updating/realigning/fixing. I havent done programming since the 80s so I am out of touch and this has developed far beyond anything I could handle. But again, at least it still works.

    The advantage of ShowEQ is that it NOT detectable if it is run on a separate machine (they do scan for VMware and Virtualbox). They know if you use MySEQ (they also know if you use MQ2). They currently are not actively banning people for MySEQ, MQ2 or Virtual Machines, but they could in the future. It is mainly just a personal choice of which you use and what what risk you choose.

    As for the zooming, I dont know. As I said, I havent actively played in 15 years. Maybe someone else can help.
    Filters for ShowEQ can now be found here. filters-5xx-06-20-05.tar.gz

    ShowEQ file section is here. https://sourceforge.net/project/show...roup_id=10131#

    Famous Quotes:

    Ratt: WTF you talkin' about BA? (Ok.. that sounds like a bad combo of Diffrent Strokes and A-Team)

    Razzle: I showeq my wife

  3. #3
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    Re: Reliability of ShowEQ vs MySEQ

    I've recently started looking/working at the code some, but I'm still pretty new to the codebase, so unfortunately I don't have definitive answers for you.

    Quote Originally Posted by Devestator View Post
    Hey everyone,
    1. Sometimes ShowEQ just seems to disconnect from the EQ session. It happens randomly and says it's waiting for the next zone event to reconnect. This is annoying when in groups and such and you can't just camp or zone every time the thing disconnects lol. Is there anything I can do to keep this from happening? MySEQ was a bit more convenient in that you don't have to zone / camp to get it to start monitoring.
    I don't that play much anymore, but I don't remember this ever being an issue for me. Based on my current understanding, I think the best way to troubleshoot this would be to get a packet log with details (and maybe timestamp) of when it disconnected. I think tracing the packet flow would give a chance at figuring out what happened and whether it's a bug, or an oddity that could be compensated for (or possibly neither). Caution: I expect that the log would contain sensitive info, so you shouldn't post it publicly.

    Quote Originally Posted by Devestator View Post
    2. It occasionally crashes with buffer overrun errors or such. Which leads back to problem 1 of having to zone / camp to get it to reconnect. Is there anything I can do to prevent these crashes from happening?
    As BA said, if it's a malformed packet, there may not be anything that can be done. To troubleshoot, it would help to have a core file (which contains a copy of the process memory at the time of the crash). To get this on many systems, you can just set the core file size to nonzero (in practice, I usually set it to unlimited via "ulimit -c unlimited") in the shell just prior to running SEQ (it's a shell specific setting, so closing that shell will undo it, and other shell instances will still have the default value unless you change them). Then when it crashes, it will write the memory to the file. However, I think Ubuntu hijacks the cores to automatically send crash info via apport, so I think to get a core on ubuntu there are extra steps that need to be done (not sure what those are, but I remember being frustrated by it the last time I used an Ubuntu system). caution: again, this core file would likely contain sensitive info, so you shouldn't post it publicly.


    Quote Originally Posted by Devestator View Post
    3. This isn't really an issue, just a mild annoyance. I have a problem with the combat and experience windows opening when starting the application. There are no exits on these windows so I have to go through the menu twice for each window to turn them on and then back off to get them to actually hide. Anything I can do to keep these from opening when starting the program?
    There's a bit to unpack here.

    - On both of the systems I just tried, both of these windows have X's to close them. So maybe a system-specific issue? What desktop environment and/or window manager are you using?

    - "To turn them on and back off to get them to actually hide" sounds like it thinks they're hidden, but they're not (hence the extra toggle). I can't reproduce this here, so I'm not sure what's going on, but it definitely sounds like a bug based on my recent experiences with the menu code.

    - If I close them and then "save preferences" from the file menu (while they're closed), then when I reopen SEQ they don't open. Have you tried that and it's not working?

    Quote Originally Posted by Devestator View Post
    4. This is more of a convenience thing, but it doesn't seem like ShowEQ supports mouse zooming directly on the map or dragging the map around. I can kind of get mouse zooming to work but only if I click into the zoom text field first so that the mouse scrolls through the zoom levels. In MySEQ all I have to do is have my mouse over the map window and it picks up the scroll events for zoom level changes. Are these just unsupported features, or did I configure something wrong preventing this from working?
    Not supported as far as I know. Though I've found myself trying to mouse zoom/drag the map out of habit, so maybe it would be a good thing to add. I'll look into it.

  4. #4
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    Re: Reliability of ShowEQ vs MySEQ

    Just a quick followup - it looks like you can drag the map around using the middle mouse button. There doesn't appear to be mouse-scroll zoom (yet), but +/- are shortcuts.

  5. #5
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    Re: Reliability of ShowEQ vs MySEQ

    Thanks, I'll look into getting some of the packet / core information to see if it helps show anything when it happens.

    I can say since I turned on session tracking I haven't experienced either the crash or disconnect issue in the past day. Could just be coincidence, will wait and see.

    For the combat / experience window, yeah I tried saving preferences, they still open upon starting. Right now I'm just using the default stuff with ubuntu 16.04. Have not customized anything with it. I think 16.04 was still using Unity? I'm not at home right now to look at the machine itself and confirm hehe. I might try throwing another distro on there at some point. I don't personally like ubuntu's default distro, I was just going with it cause of the old qt3 library requirements.

    I'd love to get this thing running on my rpi4, but I haven't found any easy way to get that old of a version of qt on the distros available for the pi4.

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    Re: Reliability of ShowEQ vs MySEQ

    I think there are some cases where the menu state can get out-of-sync with the internal state, which leads to your needing to double-toggle to close the windows. But I'm not sure it would affect saving the preferences, even though this seems like an issue with exactly that.

    Could you try hand-editing your preferences file (showeq.xml)? I suspect that both "ShowExpWindow" and "ShowCombatWindow" are set to "true" and for whatever reason, aren't getting updated properly. If you hand-edit them to be "false" and save it, it may at least work around your issue. If it works, then I'd be curious to know if it continues to work across multiple sessions, or if it reverts to the old behavior. If it's going to revert, then I'd expect it to happen either after closing/reopening SEQ the next time (without changing/saving any preferences), or after manually doing "Save Preferences" (with or without changes) and then closing/reopening SEQ the next time.

  7. #7
    Did you SEQ today? BlueAdept's Avatar
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    Re: Reliability of ShowEQ vs MySEQ

    I havent had any issues of saving the preferences. It saves it in the .showeq folder in the home directory of the user. I know showeq requires elevated privileges which might be the issue. I am not sure if sudo is sufficient enough for it.
    Filters for ShowEQ can now be found here. filters-5xx-06-20-05.tar.gz

    ShowEQ file section is here. https://sourceforge.net/project/show...roup_id=10131#

    Famous Quotes:

    Ratt: WTF you talkin' about BA? (Ok.. that sounds like a bad combo of Diffrent Strokes and A-Team)

    Razzle: I showeq my wife

  8. #8
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    Re: Reliability of ShowEQ vs MySEQ

    Quote Originally Posted by cn187 View Post
    I think there are some cases where the menu state can get out-of-sync with the internal state, which leads to your needing to double-toggle to close the windows. But I'm not sure it would affect saving the preferences, even though this seems like an issue with exactly that.

    Could you try hand-editing your preferences file (showeq.xml)? I suspect that both "ShowExpWindow" and "ShowCombatWindow" are set to "true" and for whatever reason, aren't getting updated properly. If you hand-edit them to be "false" and save it, it may at least work around your issue. If it works, then I'd be curious to know if it continues to work across multiple sessions, or if it reverts to the old behavior. If it's going to revert, then I'd expect it to happen either after closing/reopening SEQ the next time (without changing/saving any preferences), or after manually doing "Save Preferences" (with or without changes) and then closing/reopening SEQ the next time.
    So, I looked in showeq.xml and those two settings were set to false. Oddly though, I figured I'll try setting them to true, maybe that will sync things up and saving preferences will remember the setting. Umm, nope, the windows no longer open now with those settings to true. So... seems like the logic in the xml for those two settings is getting reversed for some reason? lol I dunno but at least the windows aren't popping up on start for me anymore now

    And I still have not had any more crashes or disconnects since I enabled session tracking. I am running EQ on two different PCs simultaneously so I don't know if that might have something to do with it or not.

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    Re: Reliability of ShowEQ vs MySEQ

    Glad the windows aren't popping up for you anymore, but that is absolutely bizarre. I guess I'll spin up a 16.04 VM and see if I can reproduce it there, because the XML logic seems to work fine in the other distros I've tried it with. I can't imagine it would be distro specific, though, unless it's some Unity weirdness or something. Regardless, thanks for testing that. At least that gives me some more info.

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