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Einstein

[UPDATED]W3D-Asterisk Connect Tool (beta)

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I like this! It was easy to connect to the official APB server and your application opens and loads faster then the W3D Hub launcher for me. I'll be using this to connect to the server in the future because it's just quicker to use.

Nice work!


Edit: My only suggestion thus far is that when you select a new theme have the faction/game logo replace the W3D* logo in the top left corner. ;)

Edited by NodGuy

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12 minutes ago, NodGuy said:

I like this! It was easy to connect to the official APB server and your application opens and loads faster then the W3D Hub launcher for me. I'll be using this to connect to the server in the future because it's just quicker to use.

Nice work!

Thanks! The reason that it works faster all around can be attributed to the aforementioned nature and design. This can't download games or game updates like the launcher can, nor can it display whether or not the server is online and how many players, ping, etc. Its a one trick pony :D

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5 minutes ago, Einstein said:

Thanks! The reason that it works faster all around can be attributed to the aforementioned nature and design. This can't download games or game updates like the launcher can, nor can it display whether or not the server is online and how many players, ping, etc. Its a one trick pony :D

That's what this is for. Much quicker to see if players are online using the site compared to loading a launcher. Thus I only need to use the launcher to update the game. :D

Now we just need a stat page for Reborn, which I'm sure we'll get when Reborn is ready and has the stats implementation that was mentioned in the past.

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And If anyone is curious, here is a screenshot of my current progress. In an effort to make things a little easier when launching single player games, I've re-arranged a thing or two and added a "games list" in place of just the exe paths, and made the games in the list selectable via dropdown menu on the main screen for quick and easy access. It mostly works, I'm just working out some bugs mostly. After this, there is one more major feature that I would like to add later, but I'll keep that to myself for now. Unless someone has a really great and easy-to-implement idea, you're likely looking at the final UI design (haha, I've said that before).

newDesign.thumb.PNG.56ce35c4a9c1f0d9f3cdda602dbd1732.PNG

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If you can make it retrieve server information (players, map, ping) then that would be great as well. It doesn't need anything else that a full-blown launcher can do, but if it first pings the server for this basic info prior to actually connecting, then you'd know if connecting was worthwhile or not.

 

I don't mean a full server listing here. I mean, you set up the connection info, and make the joining process a 2-click affair; First you get a server info window with map/players/ping, then on it you could choose to connect or cancel.

Edited by Raap

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I would love to add something such as that, but thats a tad beyond my knowledge range currently. Anyone that knows how to make this happen and wants to help, it would be greatly appreciated.

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I thought I should mention (because I forgot to before) what local data this program creates, and what it does behind the scenes. This program should run with any permission set, it does not require any special rights to operate, certainly not admin, though it will work as admin. If you look in your "My Documents" folder, you should see a folder called "W3D-Asterisk", and inside there should be a "profiles.ein" file. This file is just a renamed text file that stores the saved profiles in plain text. You can open and edit it with any text editor. In the next version, there will also be a "games.ein" file that stores a list of games and their executable paths in the same format, also in plain text. Aside from these, the only local data that this program creates is a few user-registry keys (and I don't even know where exactly) that it uses to retain the last set of data used to connect from one program run to the next, as well as some other settings such as the "state" of the checkboxes and what theme you're using. Thats it! :D

 

*An additional note: Next version will have a slightly different layout in the profiles.ein file, and saved profiles from previous versions of this tool will not be compatible. Just backup that file if you need the info inside it and you can put it back in manually - sorry.... Nevermind that, I've fixed it where it will modify the existing format to be compatible. In the new version, start by adding a game, then just select a profile, hit edit, select the game you just added, save and it will automagically re-format the profiles to be correct. You will need to do this for all your saved profiles.

 

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Update time!

In the last couple days, I've added a couple things and taken care of some bug squashing that accompanied the new stuff (and some old ones too). I won't go into all the details because its mostly boring stuff, but for all you programmers that might be reading, I finally got around to organizing the code a bit. I busted my main .vb file out into the main + 4 modules, each with a specific purpose. This greatly increased my ability to think while working on this thing, and also helped me find things faster (duh!). I wish I had started off doing that. Now I know better!

So as far as new stuff visually, there isn't much. I introduced a "games list" to cater more to anyone wanting to just quickly select and launch a single player game, so there is a new dropdown selector for that, as well as some buttons for adding/editing/deleting games, and a new window for that as well. Other than that, nothing has changed visually.

 

update.thumb.PNG.bb02cc2888613b69481916dfa11a0784.PNG

The only bugs that I am aware of are on the "add profile" and "add game" windows. There is no input validation (yet)! If you find something else that seems to be amiss, please let me know!

If you used the previous version, you'll need to follow this process to "import" your saved profiles:

  • Add all the games you had before.
  • Select a profile from the list and hit "edit".
  • Select the game that you wish to be associated with that profile.
  • Save!
  • Repeat for all your previous profiles.

Download here: [Old version removed]

Enjoy!

EDIT: If you downloaded this before, get it again. I messed up and left debug code enabled that prevented launching anything at all! :o

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Another update!

Nothing major, just tied up some loose ends involving input validation. No visual changes.

[Old version removed]

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Update!

No visual changes, just a handful small bug fixes, as well as a few bug discoveries.

  • Fixed bug where adding a new game or editing the .exe associated with an existing game could sometimes activate a Microsoft OneDrive window......long story..... (dialog.AutoUpgradeEnabled = False) for any interested programmers.
  • Fixed bug where "Save" buttons on secondary forms were disabled by default when editing a server or game profile, until you change the contents of a field.
  • Fixed bug where editing the game for the selected profile would clear the server profile box (it should not)
  • Fixed bug where adding a new game would not clear the server profile box if a profile was already selected (it should)

Known bugs:

  • Deleting a game will automatically save the first game in the list as the "last game used", to be restored on next launch if the program is then closed without launching a game. This causes some field-checking code to false-trigger and causes weird results (all fields are blank except for the game).
  • Games can be deleted even if there is a saved profile that uses that game, which results in a broken profile.
  • New Games and Profiles may be saved with identical names to existing saved ones, creating identical copies in every sense except the coded index number.
  • EDIT: Field focus is not reset on secondary forms between multiple calls (fixed in next version).

Thats it!

Download: [Old version removed]

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Its been a little while since I've put anything new out. I've been a little busy with life things, but I've managed to make a little progress. While I can't put out an update just yet, here's whats in the works for the next update.

  • Made a handful of small changes and fixes, etc.
  • Fixed bug where focus was not reset on secondary forms between calls.
  • Added Feature: Menu option to "Save Current Profile As Default".
  • Added Feature: Automated !auth user in IRC. Very useful for server mods or anyone that uses a protected nickname.
  • Added Feature: Built-in wwconfig-like settings screen where most game-related settings can be changed. Resolution, texture quality, and other things of that nature. This portion of the tool is being developed by ChAoS. Last I heard, he is planning to release it as a standalone tool, but he also expressed to me an interest in integrating it into Asterisk. I'm quite impressed with the work he's done on it so far and I look forward to sharing more about it with you.

Known bugs:

  • Deleting a game will automatically save the first game in the list as the "last game used", to be restored on next launch if the program is then closed without launching a game. This causes some field-checking code to false-trigger and causes weird results (all fields are blank except for the game).
  • Games can be deleted even if there is a saved profile that uses that game, which results in a broken profile.
  • New Games and Profiles may be saved with identical names to existing saved ones, creating identical copies in every sense except the coded index number.

The bug list is the same as last time except for one easy one I was able to quickly fix. The rest will require a bit more time to completely solve (remember, I'm not actually a programmer so this is all a learning experience for me). I have not even begun to check the two new features for bugs at all, so there is a significant potential there for more quirky things that I don't yet know about.

Hopefully we will have this milestone completed soon and ready for public use. Stay tuned!

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It'd be ace if this tool could be combined with the playercount tool, or otherwise use its features.

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That has been suggested already, and indeed that would be pretty awesome. However, that would bind Asterisk to the W3D-Hub infrastructure if we used the current method for how that tool is coded to find that information. If we could get it working using GSA then I would definitely be open to that. A renlist-like functionality has been on my "I want this" list from the beginning (which would encompass such a feature as what you suggest), but I believe it will also be one of the last things added due to my own lack of knowledge, and some other factors.

Thanks for the feedback!

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The entire world would explode.

 

Kidding. There are a handful of reasons why we can't do this though. On that note, I have heard something about someone else possibly taking on fixing up the official launcher soon. I'll hold my tongue in case that person wants to reveal it in their own time.

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Remember when I said that I thought the UI design was finally "final" and then made a joke about how many times I've said that before? Welp gg.

v38.thumb.PNG.cf2ac89a5f3078bb2a15dcd0fb2b339e.PNG

As you can see, some things have changed...again. I removed many of the buttons in order to give it a more simple and concise look overall. There were too many buttons and I needed to add three more! So I opted to make some new menus to stuff my buttons into instead. I feel that this works better because those buttons don't get used a whole lot, even though they are necessary. All adding/editing/deleting of games, server profiles, and IRC profiles is now done through the menus at the top.

Also notice the addition of an "IRC Profile" dropdown box. The functionality is there, but I'm still finalizing the input window for that information. This feature should be complete for the next version that I make public.

You may also notice that the menu strip color matches the theme now. Good news and bad news there! The good news is that it does look cool! The bad news is that because there isn't an easy way that I can find to make all the menu elements behave (change color properly) the way I need them to, I have temporarily disabled the theme module. I'll probably have to do some digging to get this working as intended but I've fixed the default theme to look alright for now.

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Alright folks, here we go!

I finally have something new for you all. As you can see in the above screenshot, I've refined the UI a bit more and moved the majority of the buttons (along with the new ones) into menus at the top for a cleaner look. This list of changes will overlap some with the list a few posts back about what I thought was coming for this update.

  • Internal code cleanup and general refinement.
  • Fixed bug where focus was not reset on secondary forms between calls.
  • Fixed some overlooked input validation and enforcement issues.
  • Added Feature: Menu option to "Save Current Profile As Default".
  • Added Feature: Automated !auth user in IRC. Very useful for server mods or anyone that uses a protected nickname.***
  • Reminder: Themes are temporarily disabled pending a debilitating color bug fix. (Yellow on white = bad)

For those wondering, ChAoS's wwconfig replacement tool will be available in the next update. He's still got some hurdles to get over before he's ready to release his work. Again, I'm impressed with what he's come up with.

I won't repeat the known bugs list because it hasn't changed (to my knowledge :D )

***This feature will not work if you are already logged into IRC with the same nickname that you plan to !auth with. Its just a simple name conflict. If you want to keep your IRC client open when you launch the game, you will have to !auth through it because it will cause the Asterisk !auth to fail.

If you find a bug, please let me know either in this thread or via the email address that is listed in the program's help screen.

[Old version removed]

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Update time! Here's the rundown for version 0.40:

  • Added Feature: Help -> Reset menu, with various options inside for clearing some or all of the program's saved settings. More to come here!
  • Added Feature: Menu item to toggle automatic saving of last used connection data (on by default still).
  • Fixed bug where IRC profiles were not correctly linked to server profiles.
  • Fixed bug where the title of secondary windows could read incorrectly in specific circumstances.
  • Fixed bug where the program was performing an IRC join and !auth for single player launch operations. (whoops) :p
  • Fixed bug in setting-saving code for single-player instances.
  • Changed some minor UI elements.
  • Added "GSA Server List" button. It is disabled for now as it doesn't do anything besides spit out a list of around 14 IP addresses + ports, but hopefully one day I'll have it completed.

Still working with ChAoS on getting his work finalized. It was planned to be in this version but it seems it will get pushed back again. No new known bugs.

Check it out!

[Old version removed]

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Sorry, there is a problem

We could not locate the item you are trying to view.

Error code: 2D161/2

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The forum won't let you download it? That could be a perms error I suppose. Hmmm. I'll post it as an attachment then. Thanks for bringing this to my attention!

Here: [Old version removed]

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Hotfix for the one-time error message issue in the previous version. The only other changes since the last version are a couple of labels I decided to change.

[Old version removed]

A side note about something else that may happen. One user reported that his antivirus didn't like this file, and labeled it a "confuser". This is due to the use of an obfuscator program on my part. Basically I run Asterisk through a program that makes it difficult for others to decompile and see my code. This is common practice though, so I'm not really sure why an antivirus would feel threatened by this.

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You click the link in the post above. Alternatively, you can get it from the downloads section of the MPF forum.

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v0.41

I've discovered a small few bugs and/or better ways to do certain things in code since the last release. Here's the rundown!

  • Fixed bug where IRC profiles could show up twice in the list in the when editing a server profile.
  • Fixed bug where the IRC profile field could be blank, which could in certain cases cause a crash.
  • Changed delay before connecting to IRC from 10 to 15 seconds in an attempt to fix a bug where network/internet latency could cause the IRC connection to terminate prematurely, resulting in a failed !auth attempt. I'm looking for a better way to implement this so I can eliminate issues with slow connections completely.
  • Implemented better delay code which allows the program UI to stay responsive rather than frozen from the effects of the previously threading.thread.sleep() method.
  • Corrected text on Save button when editing an IRC profile.

Due to certain antivirus applications causing a ruckus, and me deciding to be lazy now, I will no longer be attempting to obfuscate the code for this program. I initially tried it, as it is considered "best practice", but I've deemed it not worth it in this case. Don't know what this means? Don't worry about it :p

Now that the W3D-Hub downloads section is up and running, I will be making use of it! I have pinned a perma-link to the OP where you can always find the most up-to-date version!

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v0.42

  • Added feature: GSA query proof-of-concept. Currently only lists server IP addresses and ports, and allows them to be copied into the appropriate fields for use. Good luck figuring out what server you're connecting to! :p (I will eventually get that working too!)
  • Added Feature: Pre-launch application (set in options menu).
  • Added Feature: Post-launch application (set in options menu).
  • Ensured that IRC Profile field could never be blank (will always read "None" if not in use).

i've had the most basic bit of the GSA query working for a while now, I just haven't shared :p It didn't take much to fix it up enough to do something though, so enjoy! More to come on that bit.

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v0.43

  • Renamed "Clear Saved Default Fields" (which was a naming blunder anyway) to "Reset Program Settings".
  • Fixed where saved pre- and post-launch application paths were not being cleared when selecting the "Reset Program Settings" option.
  • Fixed application focus issues with programs launched via the pre- and post-launch options. The game should receive proper focus now.
  • Added Feature: Menu option to open the selected game's install directory.

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v0.44

  • Renamed "Save Current Profile As Default" option to "Save Current Data As Default", and coded it to work with single player-only data as well as server profiles.
  • Renamed "Reset Program Settings" again to simply read "Reset Fields" to be more accurate.
  • Added some code to catch program exceptions at game launch and produce error messages that don't result in a program crash.
  • Fixed coding error with the "Save New Profile" button, which was erroneously calling the wrong function (and subsequently performing an incorrect action).
  • Fixed coding error which allowed the user to save a blank value in the IRC profiles field via the secondary server profile form, which would cause a crash.
  • Enabled all the "Purge" options in the help menu. Use at your own risk!

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I'm unable to create a new IRC profile. I click New > IRC Profile but the 'Save New Profile' button is faded out and never becomes clickable, no matter what I enter into the fields.

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Get enough experience working on this, and you might be able to jump to the current W3DHub launcher for development there.

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