[Possible solution] Getting kicked to log-in screen in PvP after everyone freezes but you

Icy
Icy
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You're in some massive battle, saliently spamming AoE because your lag is so bad you can't target anything anyway, when suddenly everyone stops moving but you. Chat still works and your voice comms are fine, but the world around you is frozen, and then BAM, you're back to the log-in screen.

If you're lucky, you can get straight back into Cyrodiil (after making a cup of tea while the loading screen takes it's sweet time). If you're unlucky, you're back to a Craglorn loading screen (with time to drink the tea too) and back in the Cyrodiil queue (with time to make a three course dinner).

So, if you're like me and you're SICK of it, you go looking for a solution as to WHY it's so CRAP.

Conclusion: My sh*t ADSL2+ (which is slower than ADSL1 and flaky as well) combined with incorrect MTU sizes and the "Large Send Offload" tuned on.
***FIX (TL:DR)***:Specify smaller MTU packets that don't fragment in order to get a more reliable connection and turning "Large Send Offload" off again (because my sh*t Australian ADSL will always be sh*t until the NBNever arrives, so I have to look for other solutions). Video below.

Background
MTU is the Maximum Transmission Unit, or size of each packet that you send over your network card (wifi or ethernet). If your packet is bigger that what your network card can handle (or any of the connections along the hops to the ESO servers) the packet is fragmented and then reassembled at the other end. If this fails, the packet is dropped and you computer resends the packet again when it doesn't recieve a response (NOTE: I'm a server admin, not a network admin, so some of this may not be completely accurate. Happy to edit if required.)

Large Send Offload (or Large Segment Offload) is the mechanism by which your network card attempts to send these too large packets. Here's a great explanation: http://www.peerwisdom.org/2013/04/03/large-send-offload-and-network-performance/.

In summary, if everything is working well, a larger MTU and LSO on will give you faster throughput. If it's not working, it will make a bad situation worse.

What to do?
1. Turn off your LSO. DO THIS FIRST. To do this, you need to look at the properties of your network card and set any Large Send Offload options to off. See http://www.peerwisdom.org/2013/04/25/disabling-large-send-offload-windows/ for instructions.
2. Set your MTU to a specific size that allows the packets to go through without being fragmented. Here's a great tutorial of how to do this: http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/94721-mtu-limit-test-change-your-connections-mtu-limit.html. Make sure you DO NOT GO BELOW 500. Also, if you're going that low, you may have other issues. Also, make sure you do this for all interfaces, or at least the one you use for gaming (wi-fi or ethernet).
3. EDIT: If you're using IPv6, you won't get a "packet too big to be sent" error; it will just be dropped. Instead, just do the pinging steps, starting with a high MTU and working down until you find a value where the ping is successful. Thanks to @Ignotus below for this additional step!

Did this work?
For me, yes. After spending about 10 min playing time to an hour of gameplay over the last 2 weeks in Cyrodiil, today, I got a good 2 hours with no crashes and 100+ players on screen at that same time (still using FTC Addon). My MTU is currently at 1272, down from a standard of about
1493.
Previously, I'd tried setting up Port Triggering to the ESO servers (NOT PORT FORWARDING) and even setting up specific Quality of Service for the ESO traffic. These didn't work and I still got repeated crashes. Also tried turning off most addons (except FTC) and that didn't work either.

This DOESN'T fix everything
This HASN'T helped with the long loading screens btw and it doesn't help with the LAG, but it does seem to help the PR (ping response) unsurprisingly (down from the 280s to the 270s, not in combat, 350s in PvP). Yes, these numbers are normal from Australia. We learn to live with it.

Does this work for you?
Let me know below if this helps you at all!

Update: Now with VIDEO!
Edited by Icy on December 6, 2015 8:42PM
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Kittehs are the new META :P
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Greetings, Outlanders from -Icy (@IcyIC) - CP1000+
Twitter: @individualchic Twitch: https://twitch.tv/IcyIC YT: https://youtube.com/individualchic
Zone: Sydney AU UTC+10. Mon-Sun 19:30-21:00, M/T 10:00-15:00, S/S 13:00-15:00
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  • Vilestride
    Vilestride
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    I will give this a go for sure, but I am not exactly computer savy and TBH to me this seems complicated. Before I go breaking my PC by changing everything can anyone else confirm this has helped? or even still, OP why did this work? in lamen terms :P ?
    "insert long character list here"


    Guilds
    Dracarys
    Zombie Death Machine
  • Icy
    Icy
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    @Giahh Hum, let's see...

    A very bad analogy
    So, imagine there's a pipe between you and ZoS. You don't know who built it, so you've no idea if it's up to code; could be wider in some places, narrower in others. You send messages down the pipe, but you don't know how big a message you can send, so you just send the biggest message you can and it says something like "reply so I know you got this" and you shove it in the pipe (MTU or packet size =1500)

    The pipe fairy knows that your big message won't fit, so she automatically chops it up into a bit that fits and a leftover and shoves them through. The fairy at the other, who works for ZoS and goes by the handle @ZOS_GinaBruno, takes the message and reassembles it, reads it, then sends you a message back saying "got it".

    If the pipe fairy at your end (or anywhere along the line, but let's face it, a home computer is the weakest link in the chain) gets overworked she drops the packet when she's splitting it and she's so busy she doesn't even know that something has gone wrong. So you send it again, and again, and eventually the ZoS fair goes "right, guess they're not playing anymore" and kicks you from the server.

    The changes above essentially ask the pipe fairy to do one less job. You cut the message to size (set the MTU to your best number) before you push it down the pipe, so there's one less thing that can go wrong.

    Risks
    I can't see that changing the LSO to off has any risks in and of itself. If you're confident (or are happy with the clarity of the linked instructions in the OP) you could just go ahead (I did, but I do this for a living).

    There is a risk that you might change the wrong thing and bugger something up. If that happens you could uninstall the network device, reboot and let Windows re-detect it again.

    If you have a laptop, that might be OK as you could use the other connection (wired/wi-fi) to connect to the internet to download the driver if it's not auto-detecting. If you only have one connection, you would want to make sure you'd downloaded the most recent driver to the hard-drive before you start, or have another computer in the house that you could and then transfer a driver over on USB.

    Setting the MTU is pretty low risk I would think. Note down the original MTU before you start. The only impact I can think of is if you use a VPN for work on the same computer. It would be worth testing the connection after you've made the change to ensure everything still works (it may even improve your service). If it doesn't, just reset the MTU back to what it was before.

    Does this help?
    _____________________________________________________________________________________________________
    Kittehs are the new META :P
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    Greetings, Outlanders from -Icy (@IcyIC) - CP1000+
    Twitter: @individualchic Twitch: https://twitch.tv/IcyIC YT: https://youtube.com/individualchic
    Zone: Sydney AU UTC+10. Mon-Sun 19:30-21:00, M/T 10:00-15:00, S/S 13:00-15:00
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  • Vilestride
    Vilestride
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    yeah man sounds good, this DC'ing is terrible so I am defs gonna try it, if I have any trouble I can always google
    "insert long character list here"


    Guilds
    Dracarys
    Zombie Death Machine
  • Asmael
    Asmael
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    I'll definitely try this out tonight, sounds neat.
    PC EU - Zahraji of the Void, aka "Kitty"
    Poke @AsmaeI (last letter is uppercase "i") and receive a meow today. Retired for Dragonhold
  • Threemoons
    Threemoons
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    Very good explanation, thank you! I wonder if everyone did this if it would improve overall gaming experience....
  • Icy
    Icy
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    Updated with a video of how to do it. ^_^

    A number of people in other posts have reported this has worked for them too.
    Edited by Icy on October 31, 2015 11:20PM
    _____________________________________________________________________________________________________
    Kittehs are the new META :P
    _____________________________________________________________________________________________________
    Greetings, Outlanders from -Icy (@IcyIC) - CP1000+
    Twitter: @individualchic Twitch: https://twitch.tv/IcyIC YT: https://youtube.com/individualchic
    Zone: Sydney AU UTC+10. Mon-Sun 19:30-21:00, M/T 10:00-15:00, S/S 13:00-15:00
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  • Wollust
    Wollust
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    I feel sorry for you australians and your high ping. :neutral:
    Susano'o

    Zerg Squad
  • pandoraderomanus
    pandoraderomanus
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    @Icy hello there, do you know any other possible solutions? My guildmate has the same problem, this insrtuction didn't help. Well it seemed to be working at first but the next day he had the same disconnections in Cyro as usual.
    PC-EU since 2014
  • Icy
    Icy
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    Hey @pandoraderomanus

    Hmm, I'd suggest that your friend first check the MTU settings have "stuck". If you miss the "store=persistent" bit of the instructions it's possible the MTU has reset back to normal after a computer reboot.

    If your friend has switched from wireless to wired, or he's moved location, or another change to his internet connection it's worth following the instructions again, just to check.

    If the the MTU is the same as the new value he set and there is nothing different about his internet, it certainly wouldn't hurt to drop it by another 28 and test again. Lower is fine, as long as the reliability is there.

    Apart from that, I'm not sure, I'm sorry. I'd suggest trying to gather more information to see if he can diagnose anything else going on. One thing he might do is run the command "ping google.com -t" in the background. This will run a continuos ping command until you hit Ctrl+X. If the rest of the game world freezes but he keeps moving, he should switch to the desktop and check to see if he's lost connection to the internet.

    He could also following the instructions at https://www.reddit.com/r/elderscrollsonline/comments/2drsa3/does_anyone_know_the_eso_na_megaserver_ip/cjsrgk6 and work out the IP address his computer is using to talk to ESO. Then run the command with the IP address instead, for example "ping -t 198.20.200.30". The addresses do change though, so he will need to check the address for himself. It's also entirely possible he won't be able to ping it at all, as often ping is blocked at a remote site.

    Anyway, I hope something helps!

    (I will say, even for me, I still get the world freeze and then disconnect, but it's MUCH less frequent than before. Maybe once in a play session once a week).
    _____________________________________________________________________________________________________
    Kittehs are the new META :P
    _____________________________________________________________________________________________________
    Greetings, Outlanders from -Icy (@IcyIC) - CP1000+
    Twitter: @individualchic Twitch: https://twitch.tv/IcyIC YT: https://youtube.com/individualchic
    Zone: Sydney AU UTC+10. Mon-Sun 19:30-21:00, M/T 10:00-15:00, S/S 13:00-15:00
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  • Ignotus
    Ignotus
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    I'm located in the US, but I am getting disconnected constantly while attempting to play ESO. I do not have any issues playing Wildstar. I do not PVP and have not been to Cyrodiil. I can log in, and then at some random point between 1 minute and 10 minutes I will get kicked to the login screen without any errors. I was going to try this idea with adjusting the MTU, but I cannot ping anything with IPv4 and the -f command doesn't work with IPv6. My ISP is Xfinity/Comcast. Perhaps IPv4 is disabled for my connection, I do not know. I'm not much of a networking person. Here is some data that may or may not be useful. I'm on Windows 10 Pro. I am also having the same problem when trying to play on Windows 7 as well on the same machine.

    Tried command in the OP, timed out. IPv4 forced due to using -f
    C:\WINDOWS\system32>ping google.com -f -l 1472
    
    Pinging google.com [216.58.216.206] with 1472 bytes of data:
    Request timed out.
    Request timed out.
    Request timed out.
    Request timed out.
    

    Tried command without options, IPv6 reply.
    C:\WINDOWS\system32>ping www.google.com
    
    Pinging www.google.com [2607:f8b0:4006:80a::1012] with 32 bytes of data:
    Reply from 2607:f8b0:4006:80a::1012: time=47ms
    Reply from 2607:f8b0:4006:80a::1012: time=45ms
    Reply from 2607:f8b0:4006:80a::1012: time=46ms
    Reply from 2607:f8b0:4006:80a::1012: time=47ms
    

    Specified packet size (-l) without -f option, got IPv6 reply
    C:\WINDOWS\system32>ping google.com -l 1422
    
    Pinging google.com [2607:f8b0:4002:801::1003] with 1422 bytes of data:
    Reply from 2607:f8b0:4002:801::1003: time=26ms
    Reply from 2607:f8b0:4002:801::1003: time=25ms
    Reply from 2607:f8b0:4002:801::1003: time=25ms
    Reply from 2607:f8b0:4002:801::1003: time=24ms
    

    Tried to use -f and force IPv6, not compatible
    C:\WINDOWS\system32>ping -6 google.com -f -l 1422
    
    The option -f is only supported for IPv4.
    

  • Icy
    Icy
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    It certainly looks as if ping is blocked for you!

    While the ping -f -l <MTU> is helpful to work out exactly the right value for your computer, it isn't nescesary if you're happy to try a number of reboots.

    I'd suggest you pick a value like 1000, set your MTU to that, reboot, try to connect and repeat adding 100 each time. I can't guarantee that this particular solution will work for your particular problem though, but it certainly doesn't hurt to try!

    Also, try seaching these forums for the phrase "Port Triggering" which is a way for your computer to open all the ports required by ESO on request. That may help as well.

    And if all this fails you should both start a new post asking if anyone else has problems on the same ISP and log a support request with ESO as well giving them all your troubleshooting data. They will ask you to do a number of things that you may be pretty sure won't work, but do them anyway so that the non-problems are eliminated from consideration (standard support practice).

    I hope one of these things helps!
    _____________________________________________________________________________________________________
    Kittehs are the new META :P
    _____________________________________________________________________________________________________
    Greetings, Outlanders from -Icy (@IcyIC) - CP1000+
    Twitter: @individualchic Twitch: https://twitch.tv/IcyIC YT: https://youtube.com/individualchic
    Zone: Sydney AU UTC+10. Mon-Sun 19:30-21:00, M/T 10:00-15:00, S/S 13:00-15:00
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  • Ignotus
    Ignotus
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    Wow, thanks for the quick response. I just read the following at http://www.networkworld.com/article/2224654/cisco-subnet/mtu-size-issues.html
    The IPv4 router will fragment and forward the packet, but also send back to the source an ICMP “packet too big” error message to inform the source that it should use a smaller MTU size. IPv6 routers do not fragment the packet on behalf of the source and just drop the packet and send back the ICMPv6 error message.
    So I tried IPv6 pinging with various packet sizes. 1452 is successful while 1453 times out. So I'm thinking that I will try setting the MTU to 1452+28=1480. That's not much of a difference, but I figure it probably won't hurt and I'm willing to try just about anything at this point. :/

    I already tried port triggering and various other troubleshooting. I started a new thread five days ago. I have not opened a ticket however.
  • Gilvoth
    Gilvoth
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    i love the effort and work you put into this and your obviously very smart in that field, and thank you for this ... but,

    i shouldn't have to do this, i should just be able to click "play" and for the game to work ...
    best in slot: is the armor, weapon, clothing look, pet, or no pet, jewelry, race, class, skill choices, amount of DPS, and skin color best fit to you and the way you wish to play and makes you feel good and performs what YOU think it should be.

    worst in slot: what you read in zone chat, and forum comment, and forum thread, and you tube video, and live streamer advice, and class rep advice, and guild chat advice, and whisper told you to wear, and use for skill, and dress like, and use for weapon and armor.
  • Ignotus
    Ignotus
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    i love the effort and work you put into this and your obviously very smart in that field, and thank you for this ... but,

    i shouldn't have to do this, i should just be able to click "play" and for the game to work ...

    COMPLETELY agree! I've been troubleshooting the nvidia driver crashing and especially the random disconnects off and on for two weeks. I can play other games, but ESO won't run anymore. To be fair, the driver crashing in Windows 10 does affect Wildstar too, but it always recovers and continues to be playable. I have never been disconnected while playing it though.
  • Icy
    Icy
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    i love the effort and work you put into this and your obviously very smart in that field, and thank you for this ... but,

    i shouldn't have to do this, i should just be able to click "play" and for the game to work ...

    /blush

    Look, I think of IT support rather like being a doctor (hopefully without the life threatening consequences of getting something wrong). There are SO many variables and half the time you don't know what they are. You're sick and you don't know why so you go to the doctor and they ask you a bunch of questions. But they didn't ask you what you ate last night, or that time you bumped your tooth last week and it's been sore ever since, and you don't think to tell them because that's a dentist thing, but really you have an un-diagonsed gum infection that's screwing up everything else with your body... (just an example).

    In this case I can think of a whole bunch of variables that it could be (and the problem is going to be a combination of them): my ISP, my router, my location, my *** cabling, the ESO hosting, the route the traffic takes, etc, etc. Some of those may be under their control, most of them are not. And it's possible they may have made a choice on how something works, just to keep something bigger from failing.

    It's possible they don't know about this problem AT ALL!! Which is why you should always put in a bug report, even if you don't get a response. If they get enough, with enough specific troubleshooting, they may be able to work out where the problem is. I hope.
    _____________________________________________________________________________________________________
    Kittehs are the new META :P
    _____________________________________________________________________________________________________
    Greetings, Outlanders from -Icy (@IcyIC) - CP1000+
    Twitter: @individualchic Twitch: https://twitch.tv/IcyIC YT: https://youtube.com/individualchic
    Zone: Sydney AU UTC+10. Mon-Sun 19:30-21:00, M/T 10:00-15:00, S/S 13:00-15:00
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