Author Topic: Locking player in seat, auto save and a critical error or two  (Read 4832 times)

adhawkins

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Locking player in seat, auto save and a critical error or two
« on: November 19, 2006, 06:05:49 AM »
Hi,

I ran my first tournament using TD last night, and on the whole it went very well. However, I had a couple of 'issues'.

1. I had locked myself into a seat next to the laptop so that I could get easy access to it. However, as the players were eliminated, TD eventually decided that my table needed to be closed, and I was moved to a table nowhere near the laptop.

Could we have an option to apply this 'locking' even when a table needs to be closed (i.e. close one of the other tables and move players appropriately)

2. I asked another player to restart the timer on the laptop by 'pressing the tournament button at top left, then press the space bar'. Unfortunately, he's obviously not very computer literate and hit the button at the top left of the keyboard, which happens to be my power button!

Of course, if I'd had 'auto save' turned on, that would have ben less of a problem. However, I've been experimenting with auto save this morning, and found that it auto saves based on a timer. I tried setting this timer quite short, and it appears that this makes the screen update a bit laggy at times. Could the auto save option automatically save when a 'big' event happens (someone goes out, table seating changes, the round changes), and then also save based on a timer to keep the round time saved in the file?

So, I could set the time to something like several minutes, and then know that if anyone was busted out before this timer expired (or a new round started) then the data would be saved.

In this instance, all I would lose would be the fact that we were a few minutes further into a round than the save file indicates/

3. I had a couple of 'critical errors' appear. Luckily, pressing 'OK' on these allowed the software to continue. They appears to be related to players going out at the same time as something else happening (perhaps the round time expiring?). I can't give much more details as I was a little stressed running my biggest tourney ever while also playing in it.

On the whole though, very useful sotware. Thanks a lot.

Andy
Organiser of Swindon Poker Live
http://www.swindonpokerlive.co.uk/

tandemrx

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Re: Locking player in seat, auto save and a critical error or two
« Reply #1 on: November 19, 2006, 08:01:40 AM »
1.  How about setting your table as the "final table", that is, right click on the table with your locked seat and choose the option "designate as final table".

Then your table will not close down.

If, after you bust out, you wish to redesignate a different final table, you can do so simply by designating a different table as the "final table".

(check the help section under the "table" section and it explains all of this).

2.  I would have to believe that setting the auto save for every 3 minutes would capture all important events.  At least enough such that you could recreate anything that happened since then.  I have left mine at the default 5 minutes and, although I haven't had to use it, I feel comfortable that I could recreate the previous 5 minutes.

3.  Can't help with the critical error problem, but weren't there other threads that addressed this regarding IE 7.0 or something like that and some patch you can run from Microsoft to possibly fix it?

adhawkins

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Re: Locking player in seat, auto save and a critical error or two
« Reply #2 on: November 19, 2006, 08:07:54 AM »
1.  How about setting your table as the "final table", that is, right click on the table with your locked seat and choose the option "designate as final table".

Then your table will not close down.

If, after you bust out, you wish to redesignate a different final table, you can do so simply by designating a different table as the "final table".
That's an idea I guess. Thanks, hadn't thought of that.

2.  I would have to believe that setting the auto save for every 3 minutes would capture all important events.  At least enough such that you could recreate anything that happened since then.  I have left mine at the default 5 minutes and, although I haven't had to use it, I feel comfortable that I could recreate the previous 5 minutes.
Last night was a bit hectic, particularly with me playing as well. I did consider not playing, but this was our first big tournament so I really wanted to be involved.

As such, I'm not convinced I could recreate the last 5 minutes if I'd had to, particularly if more than one person had busted out.

I still think that automatically saving immediately on 'important' events (busting out, rebuy, new level etc. etc) would be a good idea.

3.  Can't help with the critical error problem, but weren't there other threads that addressed this regarding IE 7.0 or something like that and some patch you can run from Microsoft to possibly fix it?
Ok, I'll do a search and see if I can find anything.

Thanks

Andy
Organiser of Swindon Poker Live
http://www.swindonpokerlive.co.uk/

tandemrx

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Re: Locking player in seat, auto save and a critical error or two
« Reply #3 on: November 19, 2006, 08:35:30 AM »
I guess I couldn't find other "critical error" fix suggestions.

But, there is this thread - not sure if it will help or not, but check out these 2 threads (second simply refers to the first)

http://thetournamentdirector.net/forums/index.php?topic=15.0

http://thetournamentdirector.net/forums/index.php?topic=53.0

I am betting that Corey will need to know your operating system, computer set up (processor, memory), operating system version and what version of Internet Explorer you are using (are you using IE 7?).

I do see some value of an autosave after a bust out.

One workaround - or something that might just help you - is to make a "save" button for your layout.  That way you can manually hit "save" whenever you want (maybe anytime you bust out a player or a major event happens).

Simply insert the <tdbutton> token somewhere in your layout with the action "save" chosen for this token.  Then from the layout showing during the tournament you can click on it whenever you want. I realize this is a manual, semi-kludgy solution, but it may be useful for you.

adhawkins

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Re: Locking player in seat, auto save and a critical error or two
« Reply #4 on: November 19, 2006, 08:40:04 AM »
I guess I couldn't find other "critical error" fix suggestions.

But, there is this thread - not sure if it will help or not, but check out these 2 threads (second simply refers to the first)
These don't appear to be what I'm seeing. I think that one of the times was when I hit 'X' to bust someone out, and then immediately clicked on the mouse.

I'm not too concerned just yet, if it happens again I'll make a note of the error and the circumstances it happened under.

I am betting that Corey will need to know your operating system, computer set up (processor, memory), operating system version and what version of Internet Explorer you are using (are you using IE 7?).
Windows XP SP2 with pretty much all patches applied, Laptop with 512M meg RAM. IE 6.

I do see some value of an autosave after a bust out.

One workaround - or something that might just help you - is to make a "save" button for your layout.  That way you can manually hit "save" whenever you want (maybe anytime you bust out a player or a major event happens).
That's a good idea. Also, isn't there a hotkey for 'save'?

This was my first event using TD, so I'm still feeling my way around it to a certain extent.

Thanks for the advice.

Andy
Organiser of Swindon Poker Live
http://www.swindonpokerlive.co.uk/

JonnyRockets

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Re: Locking player in seat, auto save and a critical error or two
« Reply #5 on: November 19, 2006, 10:53:36 AM »
In response to AutoSave -

With all the players at your tourney - you'll be able to agree upon what happened in the last 3 or 5 minutes easily.   Use your players! they'll be happy to help!   

adhawkins

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Re: Locking player in seat, auto save and a critical error or two
« Reply #6 on: November 19, 2006, 11:09:29 AM »
You don't know my players :)

Most of them were disappearing to the bar or into side games immediately after busting out. I even had one player not tell me that he'd been eliminated at all, I found out about 10 players later when my tables wouldn't balance properly...  >:(

Andy
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Corey Cooper

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Re: Locking player in seat, auto save and a critical error or two
« Reply #7 on: November 19, 2006, 07:38:09 PM »
Locking players in their seat will not affect whether or not the table gets chosen for consolidation.  You could have a locked player at every table (players who double as full-time dealers, for example).  Which table would then get chosen to be eliminated?  Not only that, but locking a player from moving doesn't necessarily mean the table shouldn't be consolidated.

The final table designation workaround suggested by tandemrx is your best bet.  If/when a feature to specify table breakdown order is implemented, it should take care of this.

As for the auto-save, I recommend placing a button on the screen as tandemrx suggested, or using the hotkey to save (Q by default - for "Quicksave").  There's also a Quicksave option on the context-menu (right-click).  I'll put down a feature request for auto-saving after a major "event".

And finally - if you see an error, send it to me.  The error dialog even has a convenient "Email to Support" button to mail the error report to me (of course, you must have an email program installed and be connected to the internet).  I can't help if I don't know what happened!

adhawkins

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Re: Locking player in seat, auto save and a critical error or two
« Reply #8 on: November 20, 2006, 03:28:49 AM »
Locking players in their seat will not affect whether or not the table gets chosen for consolidation. You could have a locked player at every table (players who double as full-time dealers, for example). Which table would then get chosen to be eliminated? Not only that, but locking a player from moving doesn't necessarily mean the table shouldn't be consolidated.The final table designation workaround suggested by tandemrx is your best bet. If/when a feature to specify table breakdown order is implemented, it should take care of this.

Yeah, I've since thought of that. Making 'my' table the final table seems to be the best bet as you say.

As for the auto-save, I recommend placing a button on the screen as tandemrx suggested, or using the hotkey to save (Q by default - for "Quicksave"). There's also a Quicksave option on the context-menu (right-click). I'll put down a feature request for auto-saving after a major "event".
Yes, I realise not turning on auto-save in the first place was a bad move.

The reason for this comment arising was because I asked someone to operate the laptop for me one time in this first tourney, and (being a computer illiterate) they pressed the 'power' button.

Since thinking about this, I've realised that the software didn't put up a 'Do you want to save' prompt, I think it just exited. Are you catching the Windows 'shutdown' message (I think it's WM_QUERY_SHUTDOWN or something like that) and dealing with it the same way as someone closing the software?

That's more serious IMO, as it would mean (for example) all tournament info being lost if (say) a laptop decided to shut down cause of a low battery.

I realise that auto-saving would help stop this, but the software should never exit without asking you to save if there are changes you would lose.

And finally - if you see an error, send it to me. The error dialog even has a convenient "Email to Support" button to mail the error report to me (of course, you must have an email program installed and be connected to the internet). I can't help if I don't know what happened!
Agreed. I'm a software developer myself, so I realise there's nothing worse than a user telling you 'I got an error, but I can't remember what it was' :)

In future I'll try to remember to at least jot down the error message and the circumstances that appeared to cause it.

As I said previously, this was my first 'big' tourney (most others have been 2 tables max) so I was a little stressed out anyway!

Cheers

Andy


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Corey Cooper

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Re: Locking player in seat, auto save and a critical error or two
« Reply #9 on: November 20, 2006, 05:57:59 PM »
Quote
Since thinking about this, I've realised that the software didn't put up a 'Do you want to save' prompt, I think it just exited. Are you catching the Windows 'shutdown' message (I think it's WM_QUERY_SHUTDOWN or something like that) and dealing with it the same way as someone closing the software?

That's more serious IMO, as it would mean (for example) all tournament info being lost if (say) a laptop decided to shut down cause of a low battery.

I realise that auto-saving would help stop this, but the software should never exit without asking you to save if there are changes you would lose.

The software does note when any change is made and prompts you before you do something destructive, including exiting the program.  But whether or not a system shutdown triggers this is beyond my control, unfortunately.

adhawkins

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Re: Locking player in seat, auto save and a critical error or two
« Reply #10 on: November 21, 2006, 03:35:47 AM »
The software does note when any change is made and prompts you before you do something destructive, including exiting the program. But whether or not a system shutdown triggers this is beyond my control, unfortunately.
I don't think it is, unless you've written it in a language that can't process the required windows message.

The relevant message is WM_QUERYENDSESSION:

Quote
The WM_QUERYENDSESSION message is sent when the user chooses to end the session or when an application calls the ExitWindows function. If any application returns zero, the session is not ended. The system stops sending WM_QUERYENDSESSION messages as soon as one application returns zero.

After processing this message, the system sends the WM_ENDSESSION message with the wParam parameter set to the results of the WM_QUERYENDSESSION message.

A window receives this message through its WindowProc function.

LRESULT CALLBACK WindowProc(
  HWND hwnd,          // handle to window
  WM_QUERYENDSESSION, // the message to send
  WPARAM wParam,      // not used
  LPARAM lParam       // logoff option
);
Parameters
wParam
This parameter is reserved for future use.
lParam
Specifies whether the user is logging off or shutting down the system. If this parameter includes the ENDSESSION_LOGOFF value, the user if logging off. (Note that this parameter is a bit mask. To test for this value, use a bit-wise operation; do not test for equality.)
Windows 2000/XP: If this parameter is zero, the system is shutting down.

Return Values
If an application can terminate conveniently, it should return TRUE; otherwise, it should return FALSE.

I'll do a proper check this evening to ensure the 'save' prompt isn't displayed during a shutdown, but I'm pretty sure I didn't see it (although I was the other side of the room when the person concerned hit the power button on the laptop).

Andy
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Corey Cooper

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Re: Locking player in seat, auto save and a critical error or two
« Reply #11 on: November 21, 2006, 03:40:23 PM »
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I don't think it is, unless you've written it in a language that can't process the required windows message.

Bingo.  Actually, it probably COULD be done, but would require a custom Active-X control, and even then I'm not positive it's possible.  Either way, I agree it is an important function, but in over 2 years, you're the first to report this happening.

adhawkins

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Re: Locking player in seat, auto save and a critical error or two
« Reply #12 on: November 21, 2006, 03:51:21 PM »
I guess I must just be lucky to have players that don't know the power button from a button on the screen marked 'Tournament' :)

Andy
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Corey Cooper

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Re: Locking player in seat, auto save and a critical error or two
« Reply #13 on: November 21, 2006, 04:28:57 PM »
Power buttons need to come with a clear, flip-up cover to prevent you from accidentally pushing it.  Like you see in movies where they are about to launch a nuclear missile...

adhawkins

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Re: Locking player in seat, auto save and a critical error or two
« Reply #14 on: November 22, 2006, 03:55:44 AM »
Power buttons need to come with a clear, flip-up cover to prevent you from accidentally pushing it. Like you see in movies where they are about to launch a nuclear missile...
Anyone know where I can get one of these for an Acer laptop? :)

Andy
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