Online games are ‘live’. Games like TF2, Fortnight, PUBG, Apex Legends, and so on, players play simultaneously. These games are played in real time with only millisecond differences.
To reduce the time difference between when a player performs an action and other players see it, multiple servers are set up for online games. Players are encouraged to use servers that are closest to them (geographically) and with the smallest ping.
While server ping is a good measure of how much delay you will experience in a game, you should also look into packet loss. Packet loss is something that happens in your own network, and no matter how low the ping on a server is, packet loss will be destroyed if it is high.
What is packet loss?
When we have access to something online, data is exchanged between online servers / computers and our own system. This data is sent in small chunks called ‘packets’.
Information is broken down into smaller packets as it leaves a system. These packets are then sent to an online server or computer where they again take the form of information. Think of sending someone one page at a time where one page is one package.
If there is a significant packet loss, your information will be lost during shipping. No matter how low ping is in a game, packet loss will cause it to lag behind.
Find packet loss in games
Packet loss occurs on a system within a network. This means that finding packet loss means that you need to analyze data transfer on your network, and not with the game.
To find packet loss, you need to ping information or send it to an online website. You can ping any website, but it’s a good idea to ping the game server you are playing on. Find the IP address.
- Open up Assignment prompt.
- Perform the following command. Replace ‘ip address’ with the IP address of the server you want to ping.
ping ip-address -n 25
ping 220.127.116.11 -n 25
- Look at the value given for ‘Lost’ and it will tell you the percentage packet loss.
Recovering packet loss on the network
If you are experiencing packet loss in your network, and it is persistent throughout the day, it is a good idea to contact your ISP. They might change your network configurations or provide insight into how to fix them.
The packet loss may also be due to the reduction in bandwidth for certain websites by your ISP. Connect a VPN and then execute the ping command to see if packet loss improves.
Try reducing the number of devices on the network. A network that is very busy can cause packet loss for some or all devices.
If you are connected to a network via Ehternet, make sure that the wire is not damaged and that all points are securely connected. If you are connected to a wireless network, make sure you can get a strong signal from your router.
If you suspect that the server you are playing on is slow, try pinging another server to see if the packet loss is reduced or if it disappears.
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