Many users of dtella are unfamiliar with the “behind the scenes” workings of their computers and network connections. That is absolutely okay, and not uncommon. One of the most confusing parts of setting up dtella for many is Port Forwarding and Router Configuration. This page discusses the issues that many people run in to and how to understand and resolve them.

Note that if you are connected directly to the wall via ethernet, or to PAL via wifi, the information on this page likely will not resolve your issues. Try skipping directly to the “Diagnosing Your Connection Problems” section and follow the steps there.

What is Port Forwarding, and Why Do I Need It?

When your computer is connected to a router and not directly to the wall, some additional complications are added when communicating online. These are often not noticed by the normal user due to the fact that many common applications are set up to deal with these issues inherently. However, some setups make this impossible. In the example of dtella, traffic can come in to your network without your computer “expecting” it. That is, someone could try to download from you at any time. Therefore, you have to tell your router where to send their traffic, since you likely have more than one device connected to your router at a time. This is the essence of port forwarding; telling your router “Any time you see traffic come in on port 1555, send it to my computer, and not to my phone”.

Common issues seen by users when their port forwarding is incorrectly configured involve “connection timeout” messages, and the inability to download anything. The below error message also indicates these types of problems:

In order for Dtella to communicate properly, it needs to receive UDP traffic from the Internet. Dtella is currently listening on UDP port ####, but the packets appear to be getting blocked, most likely by a firewall or a router. If this is the case, then you will have to configure your firewall or router to allow UDP traffic through on this port. You may tell Dtella to use a different port from now on by typing !UDP followed by a number.

Note: You will also need to unblock or forward a TCP port for your DC++ client to be able to transfer files.

If these issues are appearing when you are trying to connect to the network, you can try to following steps to diagnose and resolve the issue.

Diagnosing You Connection Problems

The easiest way to diagnose a port forwarding problem is to take your router entirely out of the equation temporarily. Try connecting your computer directly to the wall via an ethernet cable, or to PAL via wifi. Retry your connection, and if your issue is resolved, the problem is likely with your router configuration. Continue below to set up your router. If these steps do not resolve your issue, it is possible that your computer’s firewall is blocking connections. See the Firewall Setup Guide to diagnose and resolve this issue. If that still does not resolve your issue, come ask for help. Please make sure to tell us what issue you are having and what you have already tried in order to get the most efficient and accurate assistance.

How To Set Up Your Router

We currently have dtella specific router setup guides available for the following routers/firmwares:

If your router or firmware is not listed, you can try one of several things.

  1. First, try to follow one of the above links and see if your setup looks similar to those above. You may be able to figure out what you need to do just by clicking similar sounding phrases!
  2. If that does not work, you can try to follow the instructions on this page. Note that the linked page is not controlled by dtella administrators, but does have many good guides for setting up many types of routers.
  3. Finally, if you are still having trouble, come ask for help! We are more than willing to help you out, just make sure to tell us what issue you are having and what you have already tried.