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Running Your Server Part 3: Dealing with X-Rayers

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avatar NewLibertyMC
Level 44 : Master Network
146
Running Your Server Series:
1. The Basics
2. Choosing the Staff

So now you got your server up and running. You have your excellent staff helping new players out. But then you see the new guy you welcomed to your server just 10 minutes ago strutting around the spawn in Bling-Bling Armor (for the rest of you that's Diamond Armor). Now the chances are is that you are dealing with a X-Rayer.

Ore to Client Obfuscators, To Be or Not To Be?
Ore to Client Obfuscators simply don't work. I am pretty much opening myself to a sucker punch here, but it is true. It simply is not an effective way to deal with it. Why? Let me explain it to you what exactly these things do your server. When a player on the server starts mining, their client requests information to the server. The server in return gives the information back to client which shows the user whether there is a diamond vein or simply a deposit of gravel. X-Rayers take advantage of this by manipulating the client to showing what would usually be hidden and by enabling full brightness they can do a lot a damage to fair players.

Obfuscators act as "gate guardians" so that when the server gives information to the players, that information packet has to pass through the obfuscators. These manipulate the packet so that when the client (not the player) receives it, there are seemingly diamond ores everywhere. Therefore all the X-Rayers would see is mountains full of diamonds. When they actually mine it however, the plugin forces the server to update the client with an un-manipulated packet.

If you could not already tell, the whole process is extremely complex and while it is a good concept it does not work in reality. Yes it runs! What I am saying though is that if you have a large server (20+ players) the plugin simply cannot keep up and your worst night mare starts. CHUNK ERRORS. Not only this causes major lag issues for the server, but I had heard of servers crashing and others having to completely reset due to chunk corruption.

My suggestion. It's not worth it.

Ore Loggers
These are my favorite way to deal with X-Rayers. These ore loggers report suspicious ore mining activity to the OPs of the server and allow staff to easily see X-Raying. So how do these work? (I will not be revealing all secrets of this so that X-Rayers don't get too smart from reading this post.)

Ore loggers work in two ways to make it full-proof. First they log every ore that is mined by the players along with details such as mineral vein size and some other cool stuff <= Note the censoring XD All this can be accessed through FTP.

Second way they work is by bring up In-Game notifications to the Staff. It automatically detects fishy behavior by looking at some factors which I will have to censor again to prevent X-Rayers exploiting it. Just keep in mind that these notifications report SUSPICIOUS ACTIVITY.

The key to dealing with X-rayers with this combination of ore logs and snooping is a well coordinated, active and trustworthy staff. You want to be careful that players do not slip through the cracks, however you also do not want the same player jailed three times by three different staff members for the same logged discrepancy.

So how do New Liberty Staff deal with X-Rayers?
When Staff are Online
1. In-Game Notification from Ore Loggers alerts staff to suspicious activity.
2. Staff goes into invisible mode and teleports to the suspicious player.
3. Staff follows the player for around 3 minutes to gain evidence of X-Raying.
4. Staff jails convicted players.
5. If the degree of X-Raying is not serious, we try to "reform" the player by clearing all his inventory and giving them a last chance to uninstall X-Ray mod and play as usual. (We keep a list of these "reformed" players and we check them up around 3 days after they were jailed.

OR

If the degree of X-Raying is serious and the player is uncooperative by continuously lying "What is X-raying?" we ban 'em forever.

When Staff are Offline
1. Staff goes through Ore Logs through FTP.
2. Filter out only "Diamond Ores"
3. Checks timestamps of the Diamond Ores mined according to player.
4. Also Checks ore ratio that the players are mining. (If the player is mines 20 diamonds and 0 iron, that would be definitely a case of X-Raying)
5. Use "/tppos " to check whether the diamonds were mined in an X-ray tunnel
6. Jails the player to deal with them later when the staff comes online.

So hope this helps to all you survival + PVP + Hardcore servers that are suffering infestations of X- Rayers. I was hoping to be a blog post just about hacking, but I got too carried away in dealing with X-Rayers :P

As always feel free to ask me any questions / criticize me.

Next Running Your Server Part 4: Strategies for Installing Plugins

Run on Beastnode
Need help with your server? Check out New Liberty Tech Support Today!
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Comments : 55

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1 - 50 of 55

  • Shredbummer
  • Level 35
  • Artisan Mage
  • January 18, 2013, 11:07 pm
Why are x ratters bad
  • vastscatman
  • Level 12
  • Journeyman Skinner
  • September 27, 2012, 2:58 am
if i use the mine down my house? no one finds it >:)
where i download?
  • ali91000
  • Level 1
  • New Miner
  • September 5, 2012, 4:41 pm
stop sayng bad words
  • wannamymilk
  • Level 19
  • Journeyman Princess
  • September 1, 2012, 6:36 pm
HAS X RAY

l

l

V
  • DreadxDragon
  • Level 25
  • Expert Dragonborn
  • August 14, 2012, 2:45 pm
HAS X RAY

|

|

V
  • wannamymilk
  • Level 19
  • Journeyman Princess
  • September 1, 2012, 6:36 pm
lol u did it wrong ur pointing at ur self
  • wannamymilk
  • Level 19
  • Journeyman Princess
  • September 1, 2012, 6:36 pm
oh crap. now its pointing at me
  • vastscatman
  • Level 12
  • Journeyman Skinner
  • September 27, 2012, 2:57 am
now it points me too
  • cam121333
  • Level 1
  • New Miner
  • September 5, 2013, 3:23 pm
and me :D
add me in!
  • DreadxDragon
  • Level 25
  • Expert Dragonborn
  • August 14, 2012, 2:45 pm
HAS XRAY...... crap i did it wrong LOL

^

|

|
  • wannamymilk
  • Level 19
  • Journeyman Princess
  • September 1, 2012, 6:35 pm
lol
  • minij516
  • Level 30
  • Artisan Farmer
  • July 7, 2012, 5:52 am
I just go turn on vanish and tp to people and if they has xray tunnels i kill them,then jail.
  • surfd1
  • Level 14
  • Journeyman Engineer
  • June 19, 2012, 5:14 pm
HAS XRAY
|
|
|
/
Hmmm what do we have here DIAMOND! <sighs> DAMMIT My inv is full <me gusta face>
  • Pugzwithgunz
  • Level 3
  • Apprentice Skinner
  • June 14, 2012, 6:06 am
XRAY IS AWESOME
l
l
l
l
V
I USE XRAYZ
x
What if a player has a reason for having 20 Diamond and no Iron? Maybe they didn't have much Inventory and/or a weak pick, therefore they didn't mine any Iron they came across. :P
  • joey41114
  • Level 16
  • Journeyman Mage
  • May 16, 2012, 1:58 pm
or the xrayer can look for diamond yet still go slightly off track and mine iorn/redstone/lapis luizuli/gold so they have 20 diamond and somthing else
Good point :l
  • heartshapedBox
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 22
  • Expert Miner
  • December 1, 2011, 7:32 pm
I don't use X-Ray in SMP, only in SP, but, I do find diamond easily. After a while it isn't surprising seeing diamond, it's like iron, you see it all the time once you get used to it. ):
  • TyrOvC
  • Level 1
  • New Miner
  • November 10, 2011, 3:19 pm
As programmer of the modification that is the origination of the term "Ore To Client Obfuscators" and administrator of three minecraft servers that each hold around 50 players at a time that all use it, I disagree with you. I program it with efficiency in processor and ram usage in mind, and what resources it does use are in a separate thread, not slowing down the minecraft server on multi-core systems.

"I had heard of

servers crashing and others having to completely reset due to chunk

corruption."

The crashes and corruption you've heard of were almost certainly from an older, outdated bukkit plugin called "AntiXRay". It actually changed the saved world data, and quite a bit more tasking on server resources, although an admirable attempt considering it was the first thing to do anything against x-ray.

While it's the perfect solution against minecraft x-raying, that being an unmodifiable/unhackable/non-memoryreadable client with encryption on packets between the server and client (such a thing is quite impossible), it's the best way to add extra security to servers against it.
  • NewLibertyMC
  • Level 44
  • Master Network
  • November 10, 2011, 3:40 pm
Hey, its nice to meet you. As an admin of a server that holds up to 110 players, and aside from hearsay, our server starts to give enormous chunk errors at about 30 players and has never lasted without a crash for more than 3 hours. We use spout and the spout compatable version, and as I am not a coder, it may be that the version that actually edits the CB file works better, but I do not know. However, if it works for people they should absolutely use it, because it is very effective. All we are trying to do is spread the experience that we have had and heard from others, personally and second hand.
  • NewLibertyMC
  • Level 44
  • Master Network
  • November 9, 2011, 11:44 am
Love how this is turning into a battleground between X-Ray Trollers and Righteous Minecraft Players.
  • anonpmc78577
  • Level 6
  • Apprentice Miner
  • November 8, 2011, 11:07 pm
[deleted]
  • N52
  • Level 40
  • Master Taco
  • November 9, 2011, 9:38 am
<LOLLLLOL
  • anonpmc78577
  • Level 6
  • Apprentice Miner
  • November 9, 2011, 10:53 pm
[deleted]
  • Ozicarus
  • Level 1
  • New Miner
  • November 8, 2011, 11:24 am
X-ray can be a good thing, for example you were in single player mode and wanted some gold for that super awesome construction you have been working on, but didn't want an inventory editor. X-ray could help find it, and other ores when you really need them desperately. OR a player is using sneak hack in multiplayer mode and is trying to dig under your house to break into that chest you hid under the floor? X-ray would allow you to see them breaking in, making it useful as a crime stopper. Of course, that was probably how they saw the chest in the first place, so I suppose it can be both good and bad...
  • NewLibertyMC
  • Level 44
  • Master Network
  • November 10, 2011, 12:59 am
In theory this could combat sneak hack, but if you are on a good server with active staff, you should just report it. Similarly, I think it would be a first for me to find someone who only used xray to combat sneak hack.
  • Dagorex
  • Level 46
  • Master Necromancer
  • November 9, 2011, 9:51 am
butif you are not a noob you would find that gold yourself in singleplayer, and in multiplayer you could see their nametag above their head.
  • MinerMine
  • Level 33
  • Artisan Narwhal
  • November 9, 2011, 11:50 am
Sneak.Hack. Don't You Get That? Sneak Hacks Makes It So Their Name-tag doesn't appear!
  • Cazzark
  • Level 9
  • Apprentice Network
  • November 8, 2011, 11:07 am
Like a boss. +1
I believe I helped contribute to this...?

Yes I actually waited until you put it out liberty!
  • NewLibertyMC
  • Level 44
  • Master Network
  • November 8, 2011, 4:57 pm
LOL Many thanks to FabulousthinkR for your inspiration :P
  • brandman
  • Level 31
  • Artisan Narwhal
  • November 8, 2011, 12:44 am
What if someone was mining with a friend and 1 only wanted iron ores and the other wanted diamonds and redstone?
  • NewLibertyMC
  • Level 44
  • Master Network
  • November 8, 2011, 12:48 am
Even if this were the case, players would not have X-ray tunnels, and they would not find 10+ diamonds in 5 minutes.
  • Chainsaw99
  • Level 34
  • Artisan Taco
  • November 8, 2011, 1:37 am
thats still possible thru, by making a shaft tunnel, you can gather huge amounts of diamonds and maybe find an extreme rare cluster of 15 diamonds like here: Click here

Note: THIS IS NOT ADVERTISEMENT!
  • ehdfawq3er
  • Level 60
  • High Grandmaster Modder
  • November 21, 2011, 8:20 am
I also noticed that this is not an ad :D
  • Chainsaw99
  • Level 34
  • Artisan Taco
  • November 21, 2011, 12:59 pm
yay!
  • Brvtvs
  • Level 1
  • New Miner
  • November 8, 2011, 4:53 am
That is still very rare, and the first step when you find a person who mined a lot of diamonds in any situation is to see how close they are (i.e. if they mined 8 diamonds in a minute but they were in one big vein) and if the accused says that they found a lot of diamonds in one vein after you have flagged them, you can always just go check.

The system is tried and true so far. The margin of error is extremely low if you act diligently. With our experience with obfuscation, this is by far the most effective way, as it catches almost all X-rayers except those who are being so cautious that they are only marginally increasing their mining.
  • Chainsaw99
  • Level 34
  • Artisan Taco
  • November 8, 2011, 1:22 pm
ok thx alot!
  • TheFUUU
  • Level 20
  • Expert Dragonborn
  • November 8, 2011, 1:54 am
Yup, confirmed not a ad.
  • Chainsaw99
  • Level 34
  • Artisan Taco
  • November 8, 2011, 2:26 am
yay!
  • Ddiablorz
  • Level 25
  • Expert Geek
  • November 7, 2011, 5:48 pm
cant wait for next one also how do i enter the ftp system of log blocker could you make a video tutorial?
  • NewLibertyMC
  • Level 44
  • Master Network
  • November 7, 2011, 6:04 pm
Actually we use a Bukkit Plugin called LogOres. I believe they have an in-depth tutorial on how to check it. It is very easy to use though. If you want however, you can reply later for more questions after you installed the plugin and take it out for spin.
  • Brvtvs
  • Level 1
  • New Miner
  • November 7, 2011, 5:41 pm
These are words to live by
  • LLegionInfo
  • Level 1
  • New Warrior
  • November 7, 2011, 5:24 pm
You are godly
Nice work, I always like your stuff. You are a great blogger, and will Be admired by many others.
  • NewLibertyMC
  • Level 44
  • Master Network
  • November 7, 2011, 5:05 pm
And as usual my thanks go out to you :)

Please ask any questions if you have any!
Thanks. You know, sometime, we Should Work together to make an
[img=___njpg]profile.ak.fbcdn.net/hprofile-ak-ash2/187817_100807543338157_4951598_n.jpg[/img]
Blog
We would Be great together. Lets skype (if you wish) And discus Our
[img=___njpg]profile.ak.fbcdn.net/hprofile-ak-ash2/187817_100807543338157_4951598_n.jpg[/img]
Blog.
Also, we should
[img=imagesqtbnANdGcSMsj_wuytfjOA-OtAj]t2.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSMsj_wuytfjOA-O22tA2jmj15CP3_x4UJOsG5nJLocgHVTqI7rag[/img]
sometime
  • sparky127
  • Level 19
  • Journeyman Hunter
  • November 8, 2011, 11:21 am
can I join LOL
  • NewLibertyMC
  • Level 44
  • Master Network
  • November 7, 2011, 6:30 pm
Haha after I finish this series, I might be interested if I have time :)

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