Installing opensimulator and subsequently connecting to a grid on Mac OSX – Part Three (my experiences)

Installing opensimulator and subsequently connecting to a grid on Mac OSX – Part Three (my experiences)

Continued from part two.. Please be sure to read the first two posts before this one, thanks! :)

Not really liking the idea of paying someone to run my sim, my second option was to run a standalone server as is, and simply open network ports in my firewall, so I could have friends connect directly with thier 3D viewer of choice.

Sounded simple enough, eh? I have four sim regions, each one passes traffic on a specific network port, respectively ports 9000-9003 TCP/UDP.

Logically, if I open those ports on my firewall, traffic can get in and out. Right?

Wrong.. :( it’s rarely ever that easy! With today’s modern routers and firewalls, DHCP, NAT, and all that, you have to do some hand-configuration of the network..

Step one-
Open the firewall ports on your computer, let the application use that rule (if you have application rules set up)

On a Mac, we have the same built-in firewall that FreeBSD has, with a fairly vanilla application-based GUI which enables you to quickly add or remove rules for things like file sharing, web hosting with apache, FTP services, and other built-in Mac OSX applications. I have since grabbed some helpful add-ons for my Mac firewall monitoring and setup, namely WaterRoof. Mac people, check this opensource free app out, it’s great :)

Step two-
check to see that your router is letting the traffic through. Configure as needed.

I have two routers, one is a 1Tb TimeCapsule, the other is a old rotten 2-Wire WiFi router of some sort that came with our DSL service (yuck! makes me cringe!)

Step three-
Do you have a static IP? Great, enter that in your region ini file because SYSTEMIP (which works fine for standalone) won’t play well with the outside world.

If you are like most cablemodem and DSL customers and have an ever-changing dynamic IP, you need to use a service like dyndns to keep a FQDN updated with whatever your current IP is.

Got that? Great! Next step..

Step four-
OpenSim needs NAT loopback so that you can locally connect to your own sim from the same machine.

I am not sure my 2wire or TimeCapsule support that over WiFi, so may need to hardwire into either of those to make this work (though don’t know for sure..) in any case, going over cable for your servers is better than WiFi anyway for a few reasons I won’t get into here. In any case, some routers just won’t do NAT loopback due to some security or performance concerns, neither over WiFi or Ethernet/Gigabit cable. If you have that issue and can’t reprogram, reconfigure or even change routers, then you are SOL.

So make sure you got that going as well. Otherwise, people from the outside Internet can connect, but you won’t be able to from inside your own net (LOL!)

Step five-
Whatever extra configuration things pertaining to your own unique setup is needed, if anything, then do that too :)

Step six-
Woot you are open, hopefully. Ping or trace or telnet to test the ports, from inside and outside your network, to make sure it’s all good.

Well, hope you are doing better than me here, since for some reason I suddenly lost years of networking and sys admin experience, and couldn’t get the stupid thing to connect right away!

Must be something obvious I forgot, so I’ll go over my settings and report back once I get it fixed.. Ugh!

For the record, thus far I can get osgrid and The New World Grid builds installed on my Mac, and my sim appears on the respective grid’s world map, but for the virtual life of me can’t get there from here..

Hmm?! Tried to install OSgrid on Windows XP SP3 and same thing happens, adding that the sim hits an exception and buggers out with a screen full of error message gibberish.

WTF did I forget? We’ll go there later.

To be continued in part four!!

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