IPX support

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IPX support

Postby twipley » 5. Jul 2011, 20:55

Hello. First off, I am kind of new to both VirtualBox and Linux, so forgive my ignorance.

I have been trying to connect two Ubuntu-host machines together, to play the game Diablo under the IPX protocol through NAT on XP guest systems.

Since I have read, in the "NAT limitations" section of the manual (http://www.virtualbox.org/manual/ch06.html), that "protocols other than TCP and UDP are not supported," I thought of using a IPX wrapper.

However, over at http://www.virtualbox.org/ticket/7823, someone (Technologov) said that "IPX works in guest level network, and hosts sees this as Ethernet."

What did he meant by that? Was he meaning that the IPX wrapper is not necessary to connect two such guest machines together to play the game? And, through NAT, or what?
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Re: IPX support

Postby Technologov » 5. Jul 2011, 22:03

1. Multiplayer Diablo works. I played it.

2. IPX works in guest level network, and hosts sees this as Ethernet.
It means, that you must use "Bridge Mode" for multi-player game. NAT mode supports IPv4-only at both host- and guest-network levels.

3. If you want to play over the Internet, you might want to try VirtualBox 4.1. It has:
New Networking Mode: UDP Tunnel. This can be used to interconnect virtual machines running on different hosts directly, easily and transparently, over existing network infrastructure.
This again, supports IPX in guest level networks, but IPv4 in host-level.

4. IPX wrapper is _not_ necessary. What you need is: "Windows XP" guest. Newer versions do not support IPX.

guest-level network is your virtual network, where Diablo runs. Must support IPX. (Bridge and UDP Tunnel support IPX, NAT does not)
host-level network is your real network. It can be anything. (Bridge = Ethernet, UDP Tunnel = UDP/IPv4)

In short, I recommend you to use "Bridge Mode" for LAN games, if you use Wired/Ethernet on your hosts.
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Re: IPX support

Postby twipley » 5. Jul 2011, 22:22

I think you will be saving me a lot of time when I actually get to trying that one again.

I will save this page down for further reference.


Thanks for the exceptionally informative post, Technologov.
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Re: IPX support

Postby twipley » 5. Jul 2011, 22:38

Sorry for the double post.

What about connecting an XP "guest machine" to a "native" XP one, whether through IPX or not?

Is that overly complicated and not worth the trouble? It is either native-to-native or guest-to-guest, is not it?
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Re: IPX support

Postby Technologov » 6. Jul 2011, 03:37

"Bridge mode" solves this one too.
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Re: IPX support

Postby BillG » 6. Jul 2011, 04:56

twipley wrote:Sorry for the double post.

What about connecting an XP "guest machine" to a "native" XP one, whether through IPX or not?

Is that overly complicated and not worth the trouble? It is either native-to-native or guest-to-guest, is not it?


If by "guest" and "native" you mean a vm and a physical machine, it makes no difference. The networking protocols work the same way. They cannot tell the difference. What matters is having a direct network connection, not a connection through NAT.

As Technologov pointed out the important thing is to use bridged networking so that the guest vm looks like another machine on the same network. It should behave just like a physical machine on that network (as far as the networking software is concerned).
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Re: IPX support

Postby twipley » 13. Jul 2011, 16:00

BillG wrote:
twipley wrote:Sorry for the double post.

What about connecting an XP "guest machine" to a "native" XP one, whether through IPX or not?


If by "guest" and "native" you mean a vm and a physical machine, it makes no difference. The networking protocols work the same way. They cannot tell the difference. What matters is having a direct network connection.


[for the purposes of this discussion, let us differentiate "actual machines" (am) from vms]
So, "bridged networking" works for am/vm interaction through TCP/IP, right?

What about being under the IPX protocol, and using a wireless network card, then one absolutely has to use "UDP Tunnel" over "bridged networking," right?

So, that brings us to connecting an "UDP Tunnel" vm to an actual machine. However, the manual talks of UDP Tunnel as a "networking mode [allowing] to interconnect virtual machines running on different hosts." The question is, will it work for am-vm interconnectivity (IPX procotocol; host being on wireless)?
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Re: IPX support

Postby Technologov » 13. Jul 2011, 16:28

1. Bridge *might* work, but not guaranteed to work with Wireless.

2. UDP Tunnel is guaranteed to work with any Wireless.

3. "QuickTun" exists to connect it to host. (AM). But hard to use and I never tried it.
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Re: IPX support

Postby twipley » 13. Jul 2011, 16:52

Okay. Great. Let us use the "UDP Tunnel," then.

That brings us to connecting an "UDP Tunnel" VM to an actual machine. However, the manual talks of the UDP Tunnel as a "networking mode allowing to interconnect virtual machines running on different hosts." However, the goal is to interconnect an actual machine to a virtual one, and not two virtual machines (as such) together. Would such an AM-VM interconnection under "UDP Tunnel" networking be operative?

/sorry for such newbie-type questions, by the way.
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Re: IPX support

Postby Technologov » 13. Jul 2011, 17:18

We document only features, that were actually tested. Nobody tested "QuickTun", so use at your own risk. QuickTun is third-party software, and not supported by VBox project.
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Re: IPX support

Postby twipley » 13. Jul 2011, 18:59

Oh, I think I am getting it.

- VM to VM works fine using UDP Tunnel,
- however VM to AM does not by itself work using UDP Tunnel,

- for one has to install and configure QuickTun on the AM first.

Thanks, I will just use an IPX wrapper then (bridged), or convert the AM to a VM (UDP Tunnel).


I am leaving this topic edified.
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Re: IPX support

Postby kebabbert » 22. Jul 2011, 10:19

Technologov wrote:1. Multiplayer Diablo works. I played it.

2. IPX works in guest level network, and hosts sees this as Ethernet.
It means, that you must use "Bridge Mode" for multi-player game. NAT mode supports IPv4-only at both host- and guest-network levels.

3. If you want to play over the Internet, you might want to try VirtualBox 4.1. It has:
New Networking Mode: UDP Tunnel. This can be used to interconnect virtual machines running on different hosts directly, easily and transparently, over existing network infrastructure.
This again, supports IPX in guest level networks, but IPv4 in host-level.

4. IPX wrapper is _not_ necessary. What you need is: "Windows XP" guest. Newer versions do not support IPX.

guest-level network is your virtual network, where Diablo runs. Must support IPX. (Bridge and UDP Tunnel support IPX, NAT does not)
host-level network is your real network. It can be anything. (Bridge = Ethernet, UDP Tunnel = UDP/IPv4)

In short, I recommend you to use "Bridge Mode" for LAN games, if you use Wired/Ethernet on your hosts.

This should be pasted into the "working game thread" under Windows. It contains lot of info. Can you please paste it into the thread?

A question on UDP tunnel, I dont get it. When do I use it? I first setup hamachi network over the internet (which gives me a local lan with my friend). Then I choose UDP tunnel? Or is not hamachi needed anymore? Can I forget about UDP, and only use "bridge"?
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Re: IPX support

Postby twipley » 18. Aug 2011, 06:41

I think it should be clarified that to play with more than two players at a time, it is necessary to wrap up the IPX packets and to use the bridged-networking mode. That way, the two-players limitation of UDP tunneling is bypassed, and anybody can join the game through the router, whether through wired or wireless adapters.
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