PSO Homebrewed Server?

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Would ya want to use a fan-made PSO server?

 
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dkoikadabra
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PSO Homebrewed Server?

Post by dkoikadabra » Sat Feb 02, 2002 12:46 am

Gaah, don't even know if 'homebrewed' is a friggin' word =-)
Anyway, has anyone worked out something in the direction of a homebrew PSO server? I mean, Sega ain't gonna keep theirs up forever, and I dunno, the idea of a PSO 'LAN' party makes me think it's an idea that's way up there on the 'Coolness' scale.
As I can presume, you wouldn't nessesarily need a BBA for each DC (if PSO even works with it... could never get it to jive with the damn thing), There's directions floating around for modem-to-PC server. It would be difficult in that you'd have to get the third-party server to catch calls to the IP address and re-route it (or something to that effect).
And, if no one has been working on this, does anyone know what kind of info you'd need to get together to even have the vaguest sense in hell how to do it?
On a similar note, has anyone worked on any kind of apps for PSO? Seeing how popular it is, I'm surprised there isn't a fan-made Quest maker floating around.
Sorry if I posted in the wrong forum, I'm kind of new to posting stuff on this site, seemed that this forum was the best choice. And please, I burn easy, no flames. =-)
Adios! (Gahh)
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Post by pkScary » Sat Feb 02, 2002 5:08 pm

u could prolly make a server clone of the regular pso ones.......as in a mirror
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Post by dkoikadabra » Sun Feb 03, 2002 1:04 am

The Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything being: How would one do that? (I already checked, it isn't forty-two) =-)
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Post by Lilmuckers » Sun Feb 03, 2002 3:16 am

er, i e-mailed sega a while back about this and apperently the server's they use fill a warehouse and run on a type of windows that was written exclusively for them

would i use it if it waws done? sure, why not

can it be done? hell no
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Post by WeAreVigilant » Sun Feb 03, 2002 9:20 am

lilmuckers
ebays servers fill a warehouse and use special software that was written specificly for them
does that mean no one else can make an auction website?
NO
http://auctions.yahoo.com
well looky there evidently size doesnt matter.
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Post by MrBob » Sun Feb 03, 2002 10:44 am

Yo. Sounds like a cool idea. The first thing I'd do is set up a DC-PPP server, so your dreamcast goes onto the internet through your computer. Check out http://home.elp.rr.com/terlouw/DCWinMEServer.htm . The page also has info on how to set up PSO to play through your computer.
Then get a program to watch the information going from Dreamcast to PSO server and see if you can crack the way they send information back and forth (what the Dreamcast sends, what the server replies, what does the dreamcast send if you do a specific thing in the game (ex. more right), what does the server reply to your moving, what is sent to your dreamcast if another player moves). I think the Connections Watcher on the link above will do the trick.
Finally write a program to answer to the dreamcast the way the real PSO server does. If you manage to crack the protocol that PSO uses in the step above, I'm sure you could get someone to write the program. One person would run the server on his computer and the rest would route to it. Routing would be done simply the way it is on the link above, but instead of routing to the PSO server youd route to your freinds computer, and the person running the server would route to himself (127.0.0.1).
I think this is definately possible but may take some work in cracking the protocol. The reason Sega houses its servers in warehouses is that their servers have to handle thousands of people loggin on, moving around, doing stuff, and has to manage that. I'm sure that a server could be made that allows 8 people on and could run on a standard home computer.
Anyhow, good luck

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Post by miah » Sun Feb 03, 2002 12:25 pm

I'm willing to bet it can be done. I mean there are free UltimaOnline servers out there, and UO is 100x more complex than PSO. PSO with its *huge* 4 levels *LAUGH* and no interaction with the environment aside from boxes and monsters.. I'm really sure this could be done, but it would take somebody that could reverse engineer the protocol used (assuming its not encrypted, which im sure its not because i've seen people cheat in PSO). Somebody would also have to figure out how to make PSO connect to their server. I think the list is hardcoded into the game, if not its stored in a file on the VMU, either way that is a hurdle too. The thing I could see being hard is the translation stuff, but if that was left out I'm sure somebody could do this. Obviously somebodies homeserver isn't going to beable to handle 1000 players, but if you had somthing like this you could totally invite your friends over for a night of PSO.

-miah
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That would be one rockin' motha

Post by Rahonavis » Sun Feb 03, 2002 12:58 pm

I have a friend who refuses viddy G parties and ONLY goes to LANs I bet if this did come out. He would be willing to play at a "viddie G party" Oh and if this was created someone could come a round and make a DM program where they can change the online quests around (Put more or less monster, change drops etc..) I don't really know if that would be good or bad, but......I'll shut up now
I know people trying to emulate Everquest's servers have been having problems. THere's one where all you do is run really fast then hit walls, and another where everything except for NPC's works.
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Post by MrBob » Sun Feb 03, 2002 1:34 pm

miah wrote: Somebody would also have to figure out how to make PSO connect to their server.
I think you can use Winroute Lite (the program used for the PPP server) to route any data coming from to the Dreamcast to a certain address (aka a friends computer).

I'm gonna check out how these Everquest fans are cracking the Everquest server. Could be useful techniques there. I found one page at http://sourceforge.net/projects/eqemu

This PSO server thing seems like it could turn into an interesting project.
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Post by miah » Sun Feb 03, 2002 2:32 pm

Its most likely easier than that. If they stored the domain names of the servers in the game, all you'd have to do is setup your tcp/ip settings and use a dns server that hands out answers that are proper for your setup. Chances. example. Say the game connects to "psoserver.sega.com". You setup your tcp/ip settings in your dreamcast, tell it to use your local dns server (you could put this server anywhere as long as the dreamcast could connect to it and perform lookups.) Now on the internet psoserver.sega.com resolves to say 123.45.123.45. You simply setup your dns server to hand out an answer fro psoserver.sega.com to wherever your server is, say 192.168.1.10.

If however they stored the servers address as the ip address (which would be stupid, if the server went down it'd be much harder to reroute the traffic than if it was a dns entry.) then you could do that routing hack. But it would have to be done on whatever server connects your network to the internet. Hopefully if you're using a dslrouter you can do forwarding. If you're using win9x, I dunno what you'd do. WinNT/2k I'm sure there is a solution, same for UNIX/Linux.

-miah
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thanks so far!

Post by dkoikadabra » Sun Feb 03, 2002 2:55 pm

Thanks to MrBob with at least an idea on how to get the info! Once I get my Hunter's Licence renewed, I'm gonna start 'mapping' what's sent to/from the server. Gonna have to brush up on those coding skills too =-)
Thanks for the help so far, ya'll.... hopefully this isn't another castle built on clouds. =-)
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Post by miah » Sun Feb 03, 2002 3:10 pm

If youre really serious about reverse engineering the protocol, tcpdump/snort will help a lot.


-miah
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Gargle goop

Post by dkoikadabra » Sun Feb 03, 2002 10:48 pm

Alright, I went to the DC-PC Server page (specifically, through the link that MrBob gave earlier), and, whilst surfing through it, found a page that gave me a bit more info about PSO (assuming that it is true... follow the link and look in the page that is called 'Other Games' or something like that). According to that, PSO goes through a DNS server to figure out what 'ship selection' server to go to (neato!). Now, with my (somewhat limited) knowlege at hand, that would make it a bit easier to 're-route' the calls to a homebrew server.... just catch the calls to that specific DNS (I doubt that too many programs make calls to the PSO DNS), redirect it to your own, and bam! Instant PSO LAN goodness. At least the list of IPs ain't hardcoded into the damn game. =-)
Do I got it on the dime so far, or what?
BTW, by next weekend (hopefully), I can start 'cracking' the protocol. However, anyone else is free to do this too (I'd hate to have a monopoly on such info.... diversity brings greatness).
As the mice say.... sqeek sqeek nibble nibble! (Translation: See ya)
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Post by JustinVisible » Sun Feb 03, 2002 11:47 pm

:?Hey if you could get this to work I would definitly want to play on it, it's a very cool idea but you couldn't use the modem that came with the dreamcast to get it to work as no one has figured out how it works yet:cry:

Oh by the way I think this thread should belong in the Programming forum probably, but i'll let the mod's deal with that
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Post by miah » Mon Feb 04, 2002 2:34 am

After I finish with my move I can figure some of this out if people are really interested. I think that for any of this to be useful for a majority of people the modem needs to work. So a *good* working document on setting up SLIP between your dreamcast and a windows box is needed. If no such thing exists I can look into this, it really shouldn't be that difficult. As for "redirecting dns" just make sure in your ISP settings on the dreamcast you use your own dns server (one *YOU* setup) and just specify the ip for your PSO server in the zone entry, this also isn't hard. It would just require a dns server on a windows or unix box. I'm interested in this project, but the server portion will require somebody that knows a lot about TCP/IP as well as handling the server portion.


-miah
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Post by MrBob » Mon Feb 04, 2002 11:00 pm

Using the DC Modem is no problem, because your using it throught the PSO software. Your just dialing into your computer instead of an ISP. No need to program for the modem. Check out http://www.dcvision.com/Mterlouw (updated version of above PPP server link) to see how to set up a connection between your dc and computer using the modem. (Don't think SLIP connection is possible, just PPP)
I might be able to help with making the server, as I have fair knowledge of TCP/IP and have experience programming software that uses it. I might try to crack the protocol, but I don't have PSO yet (planning on getting it).
Also , I agree with you miah that it would be easier to write a simple DNS server that would run on each client computer and send the dreamcast your friends (the one running the homebrew server) IP address.
However, first someone must crack the protocol. I'll try when I get my hands on PSO. Also, are you using PSO V1 or PSO V2? I'd start with V1, because its probably the same as V2, but with fewer and less comlicated message being sent.
Good luck

MrBob
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Post by MrBob » Mon Feb 04, 2002 11:18 pm

Well I have one bit of info I just found out. The PSO gateway server (one of at least) resides at game01.st-pso.games.sega.net . The game01 an be replaced with a different number.

MrBob
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Post by miah » Tue Feb 05, 2002 11:38 am

Yea, I have PSO v1. Chances are with PSO v2, they fixed a lot of the bugs that v1 had with people cheating and other things, so PSO v1 is prolly where you should start to atleast get an idea how how things work, then make it compatible with v2.

-miah
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Post by JustinVisible » Tue Feb 05, 2002 8:37 pm

:D Wow this is beginning to sound really cool hope you figure it all out I do have one question though to play on this new server would you need to be running PSO through your computer or could you just run it on you normal dreamcast modem connection :?:
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Me again

Post by dkoikadabra » Tue Feb 05, 2002 8:55 pm

I agree with the idea that we should start with version 1. However, I only got version 2, and I can't pick up a new copy of ver 1 to 'crack' the protocol with. So, someone else is gonna have to 'crack' ver 1's protocol so we can compare notes and see if anything worthwhile is different. I imagine that ver 2 can't be much more complicated, however; all the security changes are probably on the server side, and beyond that, PSO ver 2 has just about no new features (A new online mini-game and I think a level or so, along with the fact that you can hit lvl 200 instead of just 100).
I'm definitely getting on by Saturday, so hopefully, I'll actually *have* something worthwhile to post about it in a week or so. Of course, I'm doing it with the modem linking to the comp (installed a new modem about 15 mins ago just for this purpose).
Well, see ya'll, I'm going to sleep. Hope I can keep my attention span long enough to see this through =-)
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