How to: Port Forward

Why can’t people see my game?


War for the Overworld operates on a peer to peer architecture, when you host a game your server is advertised on Steam’s Master Server and players locate it via that but they connect direct to you.


In order for other players to see and join your game you will need to open ports which will allow data from the internet to flow into your network and to your computer specifically on those ports. This is common to any game where you host the server yourself i.e. Minecraft. The process of opening these ports is known as port forwarding.


But isn’t that risky?


By it’s nature you are opening holes in your router’s firewall, your first line of defense. Doing something like that is taking a risk but only if it is mismanaged, while it’s easy to imagine that someone could use this new door to steal all your personal information it’s not quite as simple.


Traffic that goes to a port is only picked up if something is listening for it, your PC will ignore any data coming in on that port unless there’s some form of application listening (In this case WFTO) when WFTO isn’t there the data will simply be dropped.


That’s not to say there aren’t other risks and while the chance you encounter any problems is minor we still recommend that once you’ve played your game you disable the port forwarding.


Can’t you do this automatically?


WFTO tries to automatically open the necessary ports on your router via a process known as NAT Punching (also as Universal Plug and Play) sadly this protocol is not supported on a great deal of routers and itself is aged and unreliable. This means it can’t always open up ports on some routers, requiring some manual assistance.


When WFTO tries to open ports it only opens ports 27015 and 27016, two standard steam ports.




A guide to Port Forwarding.

Welcome Underlord, this guide should provide you with sufficient information for you to successfully port forward, allowing you to invite friend and foe alike into your battlegrounds.


This information will vary from router to router and hence can not guarantee that this method will be accurate for you, but we will provide as much information as we can to help you on your way to getting in game as smoothly as possible.


Common Terms


Before we begin I will briefly explain terms that you may encounter while you go through the port forwarding process


IP Address - Your IP Address is the unique address that identifies your device on the network. There are two types of IP Address:

  • Local - typically identified within the 192.168.x.x range which identifies devices on your network
  • Global - which identifies your Router and your network on the internet, this is typically assigned by your internet provider.
  • Default Gateway - A default gateway is the Internal IP address of your router.

TCP & UDP - Are different kinds of ports which handle different tasks. Generally UDP handles faster transmissions for real-time applications such as gaming, video etc. All Network devices have lots of these, they are used to help identify an internal network device to the internet.



1. Get your IP Addresses


Let’s begin by finding out what your default gateway address is, this will give you access to the internal setup of your router and this will be where the magic will happen. We’ll also get your IP Address at the same time as you’ll be needing this later.


  1. Open your start menu
  2. Enter cmd.exe into your search bar and launch the cmd.exe application.
  3. You will see a black screen with white text, This is known as command prompt.
  4. Type the word “ipconfig” into this box and hit enter, this should give you an output that looks like this
  5. Now to identify your ipv4 address and default gateway, depending on how your computer is connected to the network you will have to look for either “Ethernet Adapter” or “Wireless Adapter”
  6. From the appropriate adapter pick out your IP Address and Default Gateway, note these down.

2. Find out more about your Router


There’s a huge range of different Router’s out there and sadly this means that there’s no set way for you to port forward. It’d be impossible for us to cover every possible variation of Router so we can only advise that you head on over to http://portforward.com/ and look up your Router’s model.


You can usually find your Router’s make and model simply by looking at it, usually the manufacturer will place a sticker with both their name and the model in question somewhere on the Router.


If you can’t find that try entering your default gateway address into your web browser this should allow you to connect to the router and scour it’s interface for information.


Once you’ve discovered the make and model be sure to look it up onhttp://portforward.com/ for specific port forwarding instructions.



3. Connect to Router and Forward Ports


Once you’ve confirmed how to port forward via http://portforward.com/ there’s not much more that we can teach you here. You’ll simply need to connect to your router on your default gateway address and then follow the instructions provided to you.


Forward the ports 27015 and 27016 TCP & UDP to your computer and voilla you’re done! With that your games should now be visible on the Multiplayer lobby and ready to join!


Please be aware that if you have done any port forwarding in the past and have forwarded these specific ports that you MUST avoid conflicts so check your PF list for any similar entries, especially if the destination IP is not your PC.



Addendum


As an extension to the above one of our users over the equivalent topic on our official forums added these minor points. Thanks to Psycix for these facts that I had overlooked. I've also added some extra points to be aware of below.

Static and dynamic IP-addresses

You may find that after restarting your PC, the local IP address found in step 1 has changed. This means your IP is dynamic: it is automatically obtained from your router, and may change every now and then. Especially with multiple PC's on the network, the IP addresses may be scrambled every day.

When the IP address changes, this means that the ports are now forwarded to the wrong IP, and it won't work anymore.
You will have to find the new IP and change it to that.

However, it is also possible to change your IP address into a static IP, so that your PC will always request the same IP from the router, and your forwarding stays intact.
For more information on how to do that, visit these guides onhttp://portforward.com/networking/staticip.htm

Firewalls


This one may speak for itself, but a firewall running on your PC also blocks ports. Make sure that you allow WftO in your firewall. Most firewalls pop up an "allow/deny" dialog which allows you to let the program accept connections.

In some cases it may be necessary to explicitly add WftO to a whitelist.


Hamachi & Tunneling Software

In some cases where your computer is running tunneling software such as Hamachi you may find that the port forwarding test does not result in a success. This is because network adapters for such software are often prioritized above your normal internet connection and the ULink networking middleware attempts to communicate outwards on these adapters.


This means you may not be able to host, even if your port forwarding has truly been successful, because the game is listening on the wrong adapter. In order to work around this we advise temporarily disabling any tunneling adapters.


UPNP Conflicts

In some cases UPNP (The service responsible for automatically opening ports for applications) can generate a faulty config, so when you port forward it can consider both the UPNP and Manual forward active. If for some reason your port forward is still failing try disabling UPNP and restarting your router with the Manual forward enabled.


DHCP (Auto IP) Changes

If some one day you find that your successful port forward no longer works it is likely the result of a changed IP Address assigned by your router. Depending on your Router's implementation of DHCP and configuration you may find that your internal IP address changes. In these cases your manual port forward will no longer work as it is pointing to the wrong IP address, make the changes required and try again.

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