Important info about public servers in V3.0+

Place for people to discuss public servers, and also for admins to lay out the details of their servers
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JeffM
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Important info about public servers in V3.0+

Post by JeffM » Tue Jul 21, 2009 4:01 am

With version 3.0 we are making a small change to the public list server usage policy that will affect all users that host public servers. So this post is here to let you know what's coming up and how to be ready for it.

BZFlag servers of version 2.99.44 and later are now required to authenticate with the public list server before they are able to list a game.

This authentication is so that players and project staff members have some contact information for the owner of the server in case there are any problems. This will also tie into the new stats system that is being worked on.

To authenticate each server will need an Authentication Key and use that key with the -publickey config option. Keys are automatically generated by a key management website, and tie the server instance to a specific forum account.

This policy does not affect players in any way. It only affects how servers connect to the public list. Server owners are NOT required to force player registration. This policy does not affect private, unlisted, or LAN servers, only servers that wish to use the public list, or the global authentication system.

A wiki page describing more about the policy and the key system is located at http://my.bzflag.org/w/ServerAuthentication

Please note that this feature is still under development and parts of it may not be final (the key management website for sure).

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Re: Important info about public servers in V3.0+

Post by I_Died_Once » Wed Jul 22, 2009 6:13 am

What if my server can only be accessed by command line, remotely. I can't "go to a website" from the machine in question in the traditional sense. How do I generate a key from that IP address if I can't use firefox (or whatever) to go to the key site?
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Re: Important info about public servers in V3.0+

Post by joevano » Wed Jul 22, 2009 8:33 am

You can go to the page from any machine and generate a key for the IP address of your server, no need to do it from the actual machine.
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Re: Important info about public servers in V3.0+

Post by tobylane » Wed Jul 22, 2009 9:59 am

Is this in its end format, even needed for servers using auth but not listing?

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Re: Important info about public servers in V3.0+

Post by blast » Wed Jul 22, 2009 12:21 pm

tobylane wrote:Is this in its end format, even needed for servers using auth but not listing?
Well, to use auth, you have to be set up as a public server, and would therefore be using the list. Sure, you might have "-advertise NONE" in your config, but your server is still being stored in the list server's database and would fall under the same rules.
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Re: Important info about public servers in V3.0+

Post by mrapple » Wed Jul 22, 2009 2:41 pm

So just to make this clear, basically you need ONE authentication key per IP Address, not one per IP:PORT? So if I had 3 servers,

1.1.1.1:5154
1.1.1.1:5155
1.1.1.1:5156

I would only need one authentication key to cover all of those? But what if you have a chaning IP (dynamic I believe), Do you have to get a new Authentication Key every time it changes for the new IP?

Thanks for clearing this up!
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Re: Important info about public servers in V3.0+

Post by JeffM » Wed Jul 22, 2009 5:21 pm

It is up to you. You can use a single key for all the ports on a single server if you want them all to have the same owner.

If you want each instance to have a different owner, then you can use a key for each if you want.

Basically it's a key per Owner/machine pair.

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Re: Important info about public servers in V3.0+

Post by blast » Wed Jul 22, 2009 8:57 pm

If you want to avoid the issue of a changing IP, then use a hostname that always points to your IP.
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Re: Important info about public servers in V3.0+

Post by JeffM » Wed Jul 22, 2009 10:16 pm

static domain names that point to dynamic IPs are available for free from websites like http://www.no-ip.com

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Re: Important info about public servers in V3.0+

Post by Spazzy McGee » Wed Jul 22, 2009 11:58 pm

Here's a question. If I have two host names that point at the same machine do I need two separate keys, for example:

spazzy.planet-mofo.com and bzflag.planet-mofo.com both point to the same machine, and are for all intents and purposes the same IP address. Do I need a separate key for each host name, or will the same one work?
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Re: Important info about public servers in V3.0+

Post by JeffM » Thu Jul 23, 2009 5:06 am

nope, you can use the same one.

What it does is simply verify that the hostname that is associated with the key resolves to the same IP as your server when it hits the list server.

The use of the hostname is just to prevent the key from being used by another machine.

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Re: Important info about public servers in V3.0+

Post by joevano » Thu Jul 23, 2009 8:41 am

But, you CAN have different ones if you like (if I understand this)
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Re: Important info about public servers in V3.0+

Post by JeffM » Thu Jul 23, 2009 9:53 pm

I think the important thing to understand about the host portion of the key is that it is just there to prevent someone else flagging you as the owner of a machine that you did not want to own ( assuming they got your key somehow)

The key ONLY sets the listed owner for a server. It does not affect the public address or any other aspect of the server. The list server just checks to see if the IP of the host associated with the key matches the ip of the requesting server. The web page for making keys can be accessed from anywhere, and does not need to be used from the server, there is just a place for you to type in the host/IP.

People that host more then one bzfs server can choose to use one key for all servers, or individual keys for each bzfs server, it is up to them.

Being the 'Owner' of a server does not confer any permisions, those are still handled by your groups file.

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