Error: 'Guaranteed message could not be delivered'

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This solution covers three separate error messages, as well as excessive lag in general:

  • Guaranteed Message Could Not Be Delivered
  • Error: Pings not coming back
  • DPlay Session Terminated

These error messages come up when Allegiance's signals are not reaching your computer or the Allegiance Server in time. The messages may be lost along the way, or they could simply be delayed long enough for your computer to declare them as unreceived, even though they just got there a tad late.

Another common reason for this problem is the messages are being scanned by something, delaying their receipt. Some higher-end routers and modems include a built-in Anti-Virus program that scans all data sent and received through it. This scanning, although pretty fast, delays the data enough for Allegiance to declare it as never being received.

  • Verify that your devices are not performing any packet inspection on Allegiance's data

After that, you should double check the same thing on your computer itself. Some AntiVirus and Internet Security programs scan all data sent/received from your computer as well. Most particularly, Norton's products have been widely identified as being the culprit of lag and this "Guaranteed Message" error. Consider replacing your Norton products with those of other vendors. Personally, I recommend Grisoft's free AVG program over Norton Antivirus (please note that AVG does not work with Allegiance on Vista, but should still work on XP).

  • Verify that your computer is not performing any packet inspection on Allegiance's data

Next up is your cabling. While most networking devices use standard Ethernet cabling (it looks like a fat telephone cord), there are some modems that connect to your PC using a USB cable. USB cables introduce noticeable lag into the system which definitely will increase your lag in game, and the frequency of "Guaranteed Message Not Delivered" error messages.

  • Verify that your modem is using Ethernet cabling instead of USB. Replace USB connections with Ethernet ones

If you have verified these 3 things and are still experiencing problems, there's a couple more things that might work... Some routers can just be troublesome when certain settings are chosen. The uPNP setting causes the most problems.

  • Try toggling your router/modem's uPNP setting

If it's on, turn it off. If it's off, turn it on. Also sometimes unplugging it, waiting 10s, then turning it on gets it going. I've found that for my router, every once and a while I have to go in and disable, then re-enable my port triggering rules in order for them to start working again.

  • Try rebooting the router/modem, and/or disabling and re-enabling your port settings.

Are you on dial-up?

There are different things to take into consideration if using a Dial-up modem. Sometimes, your phone line has noise that interferes with your internet connection. To counteract this, modems have a built-in fix for this called "retraining." When your modem detects it's connected too fast for the current line noise, it will "renegotiate" a slower speed and then reconnect in mid-session. During this time, no signals can be sent or received.

This temporary downtime while your modem "retrains" will disconnect you from Allegiance, since Allegiance's signals cannot get through. It is possible to force your modem to always remain at the same speed, even if the line noise gets too strong, which may improve your results. In addition, dropping your modem speed by 1 level will further improve the effects of line noise. You'll have to experiment with preventing retraining/dropping speed/both to see which combination works best for you.

To force your modem to never retrain in Windows XP, follow these steps:

  • Disconnect from the Internet
  • Open Control Panel and click on Phone and Modem Options
  • Click on the Modems tab
  • Highlight your modem
  • Click on Properties on the lower right
  • Click on the tab named Modem here
  • Click on the Advanced tab
  • Where it says Extra initialization commands you should type "AT%E0" without the quotes, in capital letters.
  • Click OK on each dialog to save your settings

Once saved, these settings will be applied each and every time you connect to the Internet, instructing your modem to never retrain its connection. Parcival has done a lot of investigation into this problem, and has written a very good help topic on configuring dial-up modems. Consult his post here for more information.

If this problem is persisting after trying these things and is preventing you from playing, post a new topic in the Helpline Forum following the guidelines requested in READ ME FIRST.