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Thread: Safe to patch ???

  1. #1
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    Default Safe to patch ???

    I have the plain non-plus version of TRS2019 and am at build 100240.

    I have avoided patching offers for many months since I recall when the first patch came out, users reported something about road vehicles not working.

    So is it safe to patch now? Thanks.

  2. #2
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    Are you subscribed to Plus?

    If you aren't there's no need to be concerned because that update is for subscribers only. The latest released version is 106618 and it's okay, but has issues however it's usable.
    John
    Trainz User Since: 12-2003
    Trainz User ID: 124863
    T:ANE Build: 94829
    TRS2019/Trainz-PLUS: 106618

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by JCitron View Post
    Are you subscribed to Plus?

    If you aren't there's no need to be concerned because that update is for subscribers only. The latest released version is 106618 and it's okay, but has issues however it's usable.
    Thanks John
    No plus, just plain vanilla. So if I chose to patch and I'm at 100240, do I go to 106618? If so, I want to make sure I'm not worse off at 106618 than I am now at 100240 which I have not had any problems.

    Your words "has issues however it's usable" are not encouraging.

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    Quote Originally Posted by schweitzerdude View Post
    Thanks John
    No plus, just plain vanilla. So if I chose to patch and I'm at 100240, do I go to 106618? If so, I want to make sure I'm not worse off at 106618 than I am now at 100240 which I have not had any problems.

    Your words "has issues however it's usable" are not encouraging.
    If you have no problems running vanilla stay with vanilla. Plus is beta and future testing so we are always on the edge. 106618 is only available if you subscribe to Plus. I use it almost daily and it's not that bad. It has its quirks, but its usable. What Trainz version doesn't? Being beta means it's going to have more than others.

    The unified driver-surveyor (UDS) interface is quite handy when setting things up and testing because it beats jumping in and out of Surveyor constantly while adjusting and testing. This feature is also found in Platinum, which doesn't have the beta aspect. The other neat things such as using splines such as track and roads along with the bulk replace tool to put down ballast along a path is a nifty thing. I only wish that was a bit more refined such as being able to control the width. The other neat thing is saving Turf-FX presets which can be loaded up in other routes.

    Now I don't know if what you have is SP1. It's been awhile since I used vanilla if you haven't updated to that, I do recommend going to SP1. That does fix a lot of little annoyances in vanilla.
    John
    Trainz User Since: 12-2003
    Trainz User ID: 124863
    T:ANE Build: 94829
    TRS2019/Trainz-PLUS: 106618

  5. #5
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    Thanks again John.

    I wish N3V when offering a patch would explain what the result will be in terms of build number. That way users would be able to make an informed decision.

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    I have several installations of TRS19, some with and some without SP1. For route construction I use the without version because it gives me direct access to the do / undo buttons at the top of the screen.

    If you don't do routes then consider SP1. Though in actual practice I can't tell the difference between with and without SP1.

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    Schweitzerdude,
    If you are running TRS19 version 105096 or below and you load the update to Coal Country, all your sessions for the in-game routes will fail, due to an update for Navigation Display version 2 to version 4. The update to version 4, contained in Coal Country, caused all in-game route sessions to fail because Navigation Display became faulty for non-subscription versions of TRS19 version 105096 and below.

    I've been advised by N3V that there is a fix they are working on for this, but probably not anytime soon. Those with subscriber versions 105100 and above shouldn't see this problem with Navigation Display.

    If you don't have Coal Country, I think you don't have to worry about this. Or, if you don't care about sessions. Sadly, sessions are the parts I enjoy the most.

    Heinrich505

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    Quote Originally Posted by Heinrich505 View Post
    Schweitzerdude,

    If you don't have Coal Country, I think you don't have to worry about this. Or, if you don't care about sessions. Sadly, sessions are the parts I enjoy the most.

    Heinrich505
    Thanks this is useful info.

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    Just my opinion, but I wish I could have done as you did and held back. You are at the most stable version. The SP1 patch broke several functions that work at your level but not at the SP1 level. Some users pooh pooh these issues but to me they made my North American Edition unusable for how I use Trainz. Hence I purchased TRS19 Platinum in the mean time to have a version I could use.

    I believe that the SP1 patch is broken by the process of disabling several features that are present in Platinum such as the UDS but that N3V did not want to make available to non-subscribers without them paying for those features. Fair enough but just disabling those features without sufficient testing was a mistake. For example, the diurnal cycle function in edit environment does not work. How was this missed? I know the patch was available for testing to users that purchased TRS19 from N3V but I had the Steam version and no patch was available until I was forced to update or lose the use of the program entirely. As it turns out I did anyway. The concept that just letting users "play" with a test version is not a substitute for real beta testing. Testing means trying every button and every feature to see if it works as expected. It means spending hours finding steps to reproduce a bug and reporting it in detail with examples, video and screenshots. Just complaining in the beta thread that "it is broke" doesn't do any good. N3V has limited time and money to spend on fixing bugs and without proper testing they don't know what to fix. But they seem to feel that the current system of testing is "good enough".

    If you are happy with your current version stay there until there is an SP2 or at least a Hot Fix for the bugs.

    William

  10. #10
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    N3V is selling a product called PLAY. The commentary in the previous messages raises a point - Does PLAY have these issues or is it only the BETA version and PLAY is NOT A BETA version.???
    Dick near Pittsburgh, Pa. i5-2500K 4.2ghz, 8gb memory, GTX1060 3gb video card. 106618

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    Quote Originally Posted by boleyd View Post
    N3V is selling a product called PLAY. The commentary in the previous messages raises a point - Does PLAY have these issues or is it only the BETA version and PLAY is NOT A BETA version.???
    I'm not sure what you are saying.

    We all know that there are dozens of ways to "play" with Trainz. Some users build routes, some build sessions, some build content and only test their content in the game to see if it works and so on. If you give them a patch to test, they are only testing to see if it improves or harms what they are doing. Not a lot of people want to commit hours to testing parts of the program that they seldom use. Hence the hope appears to be that with a large enough sample of users you hit every aspect of the game. Clearly this isn't working out well as several glaring bugs exist in SP1 that should have been spotted. The diurnal cycle function is broken and weather settings only take effect in surveyor after a save and going to driver and then returning to surveyor. The mini map is also not working as it should. Any route builder should have spotted these bugs quickly as it is hard to build a route without using them. But given that route builders aren't likely to use a beta version as it might eat their route that they have spent years working on I'm not surprised that they were missed.

    William

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    Quote Originally Posted by wreeder View Post
    I'm not sure what you are saying.

    We all know that there are dozens of ways to "play" with Trainz. Some users build routes, some build sessions, some build content and only test their content in the game to see if it works and so on. If you give them a patch to test, they are only testing to see if it improves or harms what they are doing. Not a lot of people want to commit hours to testing parts of the program that they seldom use. Hence the hope appears to be that with a large enough sample of users you hit every aspect of the game. Clearly this isn't working out well as several glaring bugs exist in SP1 that should have been spotted. The diurnal cycle function is broken and weather settings only take effect in surveyor after a save and going to driver and then returning to surveyor. The mini map is also not working as it should. Any route builder should have spotted these bugs quickly as it is hard to build a route without using them. But given that route builders aren't likely to use a beta version as it might eat their route that they have spent years working on I'm not surprised that they were missed.

    William
    It's not like us beta-testers have tried.

    The mini-map hasn't worked since T:ANE. We complained back then and it was never fixed.

    AI got stupid. We complained and the code was reverted back to T:ANE SP2 so now we have creepy AI when it comes to switching. We were told that this requires a complete rewrite of the AI system. This will happen sometime soon(tm) perhaps...

    AI flip junction levers for themselves even if they sit on the junction lever and then frog hop over the points without derailing. It looks really, really stupid and is unrealistic. Users can't do that. I complained and was told it's by design. B.S. I called them out on it. This is in 106618 and also occurred before that.

    AI are more aggressive with the current version. There's nothing like having junctions set for a particular direction only to have an AI train miles away, with other junctions and signals in between, flip them as the user-controlled train approaches or is on the switch. Perhaps there needs to be a balancing act here, or priority of user over AI when there are user-controlled trains. We've complained. Nothing was said.

    AI get stupid over time. They sit there and stare at signals, ignore track marks, and direction markers, or just sit there staring off into space while "waiting for clearance". Pausing, waiting a few seconds, and then resuming fixes the problem temporarily. I reported this last year. I was told it's a threading issue which requires a whole rewrite of code. Soon(tm) on that one.

    Splines act weird sometimes. Reported...
    Turf-FX does weird stuff. Reported...
    Diurnal cycle, I think was reported...
    Weather issue was reported early on...
    Snowline and seasons issue reported and acknowledged.

    I know that N3V likes to keep moving forward and in some ways they have to, but they need to also focus a lot more time on fixing outstanding problems. It's a dual-edged sword and requires a balancing act along with priorities. Unfortunately like many companies and developers, they like to focus on the fun things rather than fixing.
    John
    Trainz User Since: 12-2003
    Trainz User ID: 124863
    T:ANE Build: 94829
    TRS2019/Trainz-PLUS: 106618

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    Hi John,

    I know that there are good testers such as yourself and I understand the routine you describe as I was a private beta tester for TS2009, TS2010 and TS12. I'm still bound by at least one of the several NDAs I signed I believe.

    It sounds like what you are describing is part of the "good enough" mindset that is re-enforced by having hundreds or thousands of users testing the program. If only a few complain then the issues can wait on the real soon list.

    It is fair for N3V to say that changing game engines was a much bigger endeavor than they expected. Seems like almost every part of the game code has to be rewritten to some degree.

    A big part of the issue with AI (I hate calling it that as there is no intelligence involved) is that we don't know the built in basic rules it is following. We are in fact doing a form of object oriented programming without having the manual. Trainzscript gets updated and improved as it should but then commands and rules that depended on the older behavior don't quite work the same with the new behavior of builtin objects. So we use workarounds to make them work but the workarounds interfere with other commands and rules. Soon to get a computer controlled train from A to B requires string of fifty commands.

    Anyway, I don't mean to complain too much. But having been an engineer for 46 years, I do like seeing things run as they should.

    William

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by wreeder View Post
    Hi John,

    I know that there are good testers such as yourself and I understand the routine you describe as I was a private beta tester for TS2009, TS2010 and TS12. I'm still bound by at least one of the several NDAs I signed I believe.

    It sounds like what you are describing is part of the "good enough" mindset that is re-enforced by having hundreds or thousands of users testing the program. If only a few complain then the issues can wait on the real soon list.

    It is fair for N3V to say that changing game engines was a much bigger endeavor than they expected. Seems like almost every part of the game code has to be rewritten to some degree.

    A big part of the issue with AI (I hate calling it that as there is no intelligence involved) is that we don't know the built in basic rules it is following. We are in fact doing a form of object oriented programming without having the manual. Trainzscript gets updated and improved as it should but then commands and rules that depended on the older behavior don't quite work the same with the new behavior of builtin objects. So we use workarounds to make them work but the workarounds interfere with other commands and rules. Soon to get a computer controlled train from A to B requires string of fifty commands.

    Anyway, I don't mean to complain too much. But having been an engineer for 46 years, I do like seeing things run as they should.

    William
    Wholeheartedly in agreement here.

    As a hardware and systems technician, I put in close to 38 years and I to like things to run as they should. Being a technician, I like to fix something once and not have to revisit the same problem again unless it was a fubar on my end, which does happen more often than not but not as frequently as we encounter. With my engineering training. Yes I had to learn the processes as well, I like documentation, procedures, and processes laid out. Knowing what we're up against is a leg up when it comes to solving problems. The lack of documentation for the core parts amounts to sticking our hands, figuratively, into an unknown container and not knowing what's going to bite.

    Yeah I understand that rewrites take time. Perhaps when Surveyor 2.0, just using a made up name here, comes out some of these things will be addressed. I usually don't complain too much either and try my best, but I do get frustrated as well.
    John
    Trainz User Since: 12-2003
    Trainz User ID: 124863
    T:ANE Build: 94829
    TRS2019/Trainz-PLUS: 106618

  15. #15
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    I usually did not/do not follow a process to expose and solve a problem. Takes too much valuable time. In my case a large scale (old room sized computer) system would be down. Payroll or strike already rumored in plants around the country. This is where a good knowledge of the system is needed. You quickly get as much info as you can - either by scoping or running some diagnostics. You then take your best shot and replace a few cards. Later during weekend maintenance they can be sorted.

    Fix or else. The 3rd largest company in the USA needed their only "central computer up. If you did not know all there was to know about that computer you would be on the bread-line due to "shotgun troubleshooting".

    Later in life at 3am, the phone rings "it is down". Now it was my program that was failing. The usual upset customer. Again a shotgun approach. Quick results to get back to bed and not get yelled at in the morning.

    That is why I can't be bothered with engineering doctrine. With N3v it is try this and that. Because we have very little feedback from the software you really do not know where to start. Some of these issues have years behind them and probably a few more ahead. I have fixed my red signals a few times but that did not work in ALL circumstances. Just as a note - I had some nasty input from company engineers even when I fixed the problem - "process must be followed". I once made a wiring change on the back-plane and was formally chewed out for doing something only the engineers were allowed to do. It was only one wire on some flip-flop to get it to flip, or flop, a little sooner.

    As more N3V code is changed, and piled on top of old, N3v continues to bury issues deeper. Knowledge of how and why begins to fade. THIS is where PROCESS must be applied in a very structured fashion. . Unfortunately no one can prove that such an expensive undertaking will even come close to paying for itself, from increased sales. $$$
    Dick near Pittsburgh, Pa. i5-2500K 4.2ghz, 8gb memory, GTX1060 3gb video card. 106618

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