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Reduce game network latency in Windows 7 or Vista


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blacksheepwarrock #1 Posted Aug 02 2011 - 04:39

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Another of my tips for helping purpose:

After installing Windows 7 I noticed a slight increase in network latency in several online games. It wasn’t a big deal – I’m talking 200-300ms, but this is on a connection that was reliably < 100ms in the past. Beyond the obvious settings in Windows or on your router, here’s a list of tweaks that may help quite a bit. It involves disabling Nagle’s algorithm, also commonly known as TCP no delay, which is basically an optimization of network traffic that tries to reduce overall packet volume but can cause extra latency in the connection. This should work on Windows 7 or Vista, though the same principle can probably applied to other operating systems as well.

   1. From a command prompt (usually in All Programs -> Accessories -> Command Prompt) run “regedit”
   2. Browse to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\services\Tcpip\Parameters\Interfaces
   3. Browse the items under interfaces until you find one that has an IPAddress entry matching the network interface you want to affect (typically LAN IP addresses start with 192.168 or 10.0); note that if your IP address is automatically assigned by a DHCP server you may need to look for a matching DhcpIPAddress instead of IPAddress
   4. Right-click on the interface and select New > DWORD (32-bit) Value, name it “TcpAckFrequency”
   5. Right-click the new TcpAckFrequency value and select Modify, enter “1″ (Hexadecimal radio button should be selected)
   6. Right-click on the interface and select New > DWORD (32-bit) Value, name it “TCPNoDelay” (note that TCP is all uppercase this time – that’s intentional)
   7. Right-click the new TCPNoDelay value and select Modify, enter “1″ (Hexadecimal radio button should be selected)
   8. Verify that both TcpAckFrequency and TCPNoDelay now show up in the adapter’s property list with types REG_DWORD and values 0×00000001
   9. Exit regedit and reboot (reboot is necessary for the changes to take effect!)
  10. Play a game and enjoy your new low ping

This decreased my ping in most games from 200-300ms to 50-60ms, which matches the latency I would see via a tracert to the game’s server.

Axiom2 #2 Posted Aug 02 2011 - 08:05

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Gave me a 10-30ms ping drop. Still nice though, thank you.

amade #3 Posted Aug 02 2011 - 08:38

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I had a look and found 2 items under interfaces with DhcpIPAdress entries, one that starts with 192.168 and the other starts with 10.0
Which one should I be adding the new DWORD values to?

I'm not tech savvy, sorry.

edit: nvm, I understand now I have two values because I alternately use 2 types of connections on this PC. Figured out which I should be editing.

bobdawonderweasel #4 Posted Aug 02 2011 - 17:30

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Also disable IPV6 (if you don't need it).

Control Panel -> Networking and Sharing Center -> Change Adapter Settings -> (pick your network adapter)-> Right Click and select Properties -> Uncheck the Internet Protocol Version 6 (TCP/IPv6) and hit OK.

If you are not using IPv6 this is just throwing out useless frames on your network and chewing up CPU.  It may not make a big difference in latency but it will help with overall PC performance.

blacksheepwarrock #5 Posted Aug 03 2011 - 01:30

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View Postbobdawonderweasel, on Aug 02 2011 - 17:30, said:

Also disable IPV6 (if you don't need it).

Control Panel -> Networking and Sharing Center -> Change Adapter Settings -> (pick your network adapter)-> Right Click and select Properties -> Uncheck the Internet Protocol Version 6 (TCP/IPv6) and hit OK.

If you are not using IPv6 this is just throwing out useless frames on your network and chewing up CPU.  It may not make a big difference in latency but it will help with overall PC performance.
Nice to know!, thanks for your sharing.

bobdawonderweasel #6 Posted Aug 03 2011 - 13:32

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View Postblacksheepwarrock, on Aug 03 2011 - 01:30, said:

Nice to know!, thanks for your sharing.

No problem.  I work as a Network Engineer and see this all the time at work (and in people's home networks).

amade #7 Posted Aug 03 2011 - 19:25

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How do I know if I need IPV6 or not? I tried looking it up but couldn't understand a single thing about it :P

guska #8 Posted Aug 04 2011 - 06:58

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View Postamade, on Aug 03 2011 - 19:25, said:

How do I know if I need IPV6 or not? I tried looking it up but couldn't understand a single thing about it :P

If you don't know what it is, then you can be 99.99% sure you don't need it

lalala999 #9 Posted Aug 04 2011 - 19:41

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latency: 300ms .... it doesn't work at all :(

bobdawonderweasel #10 Posted Aug 05 2011 - 14:49

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View Postlalala999, on Aug 04 2011 - 19:41, said:

latency: 300ms .... it doesn't work at all :(

Latency is influenced by a number of factors.   The registry changes merely turn off the Nagle Algorithm which aid in sending of itty bitty packets (like unmodified PING's)

Things that influence latency

1.  The number of hops (aka routers) between you and the target
2.  Time to serialization of the local access media.  I can go into this if you wish.
3.  Over crowded wireless (this is a big one in apartments)
4.  Just plain shitty ISP's

If you are running WoT on wireless try a wired connection and see if that helps.

Troubleshooting Internet latency is rather difficult over a forum but I hope this at least gives you some idea of what might be happening.  :)

Captain_DirtyLeotard #11 Posted Aug 05 2011 - 18:47

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me smash buttons ping still same

lugzan #12 Posted Aug 07 2011 - 09:15

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30 ms less  :Smile-izmena:

Saumerez #13 Posted Aug 07 2011 - 15:33

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Ok, I was able to do all that until I got to this step:

8. Verify that both TcpAckFrequency and TCPNoDelay now show up in the adapter’s property list with types REG_DWORD and values 0×00000001


What adaptor? Where do I find the property list?

DeviantSmurf #14 Posted Aug 10 2011 - 16:17

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View Postbobdawonderweasel, on Aug 02 2011 - 17:30, said:

Also disable IPV6 (if you don't need it).

Mine has IPV6 and IPV4 do I need either?

FumaKilla #15 Posted Aug 11 2011 - 04:57

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I have a dumb question : what is the NA server IP address?

Iera_Polemistis #16 Posted Aug 11 2011 - 08:38

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if i have a 64 bit windows 7 should i be adding a Qword (64 bit) instead of a Dword?

edit: also should i be putting this under the one with the ip ending in 1.1 or 1.4?

SnowFox #17 Posted Aug 11 2011 - 13:58

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I dont recomment to do this if you trying to lower the ping for many computers on your bussines network for example, it may slow it.
for just your home computer it may help.

fugue_fighter #18 Posted Aug 19 2011 - 13:38

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I would think this game primarily uses UDP vs. TCP? Any ideas on that?

Cloudyy #19 Posted Aug 20 2011 - 00:13

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thanks works like magic

fugue_fighter #20 Posted Aug 20 2011 - 22:26

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Tried it...No change...