Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

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Re: Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

by PolySaken » Post

At the absolute least, it should be included in the default setting for what basic_privs entails.
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Re: Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

by Astrobe » Post

Personally I welcome this possibility - I have a survival setup (compass, HUD display) that uses polar coordinates and it is totally not used because players "just press F5", which is, I agree with DrFrankstone, absolutely terrible for immersion... Perhaps yet another thing inherited from MC.

But I also think Sokomine has a point when they say that one should not change the current behavior (F5 available). Give me the possibility of disabling F5 (like the minimap etc.), it's not a problem if it requires me doing some config or Lua scripting (maybe others will be less ok with scripting).

I don't mind if the client has to obey the server for this to work. The only good anticheat software is other players, and old clients get updated eventually.

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Re: Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

by ThorfinnS » Post

Not a huge fan, either.

In my case, I'm helping kids learn to code, so when one of the testers comes across something odd, he notes the position and the pointed and whoever wrote that part of the code can investigate. The options seem to be to add that information back into the HUD, which seems to defeat the purpose of taking it away, or to make items from orienteering mod (for example) easily craftable from basic materials found on the surface. Otherwise, there is little point to having playtesters.

Why not retain the default behavior, but be able to block it with a simple setting once you get your server into production status?

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Re: Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

by rubenwardy » Post

ThorfinnS wrote:
Wed Oct 20, 2021 17:41
Not a huge fan, either.

In my case, I'm helping kids learn to code, so when one of the testers comes across something odd, he notes the position and the pointed and whoever wrote that part of the code can investigate. The options seem to be to add that information back into the HUD, which seems to defeat the purpose of taking it away, or to make items from orienteering mod (for example) easily craftable from basic materials found on the surface. Otherwise, there is little point to having playtesters.

Why not retain the default behavior, but be able to block it with a simple setting once you get your server into production status?
The other option is to grant the `basic_debug` privilege. It makes a lot of sense to have this when modding!
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Re: Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

by ThorfinnS » Post

OK. How do I do that for the end-user playtesters? Is there one line of code that would grant that privilege to all users on startup? And if so, why not just add the NOT of that line for once it's in production mode? Isn't that the point of what you are trying to accomplish?

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Re: Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

by Blockhead » Post

ThorfinnS wrote:
Wed Oct 20, 2021 19:19
OK. How do I do that for the end-user playtesters? Is there one line of code that would grant that privilege to all users on startup? And if so, why not just add the NOT of that line for once it's in production mode? Isn't that the point of what you are trying to accomplish?
Add basic_debug to your server's default_privs or for singleplayer configure default_privs through the game settings menu. If you need to guarantee everyone gets the privilege, even existing accounts, you can use this code (Public domain, I may release this elsewhere at some point):

Code: Select all

minetest.register_on_joinplayer(function(player, last_login)
    local name = player:get_player_name() 
    local privs = minetest.settings:get("basic_privs") or "" 
    privs = minetest.string_to_privs(privs)
    minetest.set_player_privs(name, privs)
end)
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Re: Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

by ThorfinnS » Post

Blockhead wrote:
Thu Oct 21, 2021 03:48
ThorfinnS wrote:
Wed Oct 20, 2021 19:19
OK. How do I do that for the end-user playtesters? Is there one line of code that would grant that privilege to all users on startup? And if so, why not just add the NOT of that line for once it's in production mode? Isn't that the point of what you are trying to accomplish?
Add basic_debug to your server's default_privs or for singleplayer configure default_privs through the game settings menu. If you need to guarantee everyone gets the privilege, even existing accounts, you can use this code (Public domain, I may release this elsewhere at some point):

Code: Select all

minetest.register_on_joinplayer(function(player, last_login)
    local name = player:get_player_name() 
    local privs = minetest.settings:get("basic_privs") or "" 
    privs = minetest.string_to_privs(privs)
    minetest.set_player_privs(name, privs)
end)
Thanks. The codeblock is the only thing that will work at all in this case. Players fiddle with the game settings all the time, so counting on the testers to reset everything back is unrealistic.

And remembering all the mods you want added in to a server, then restarting a half-dozen times until you get it starting in the biome you want tested is begging for trouble. It just seems a long way to go to accomplish the end goal -- disabling the debug info on the servers that want it disabled.

But rather than just adding that codeblock, I think I'll just bypass the whole thing and add coordinates and pitch/yaw to the HUD, similar to, say, mtimer or hudbars or orienteering or any of the other information mods. If I don't, I just know how this will end here. Someone will run into an issue and report it, but because the coder forgot to add that codeblock or the tester forgot to change a setting somewhere, won't be able to give coordinates, or even roughly where it is relative to the spawn. At least this way, it's apparent from the moment you start whether you included the HUD mod.

I get that some have a wild hair about immersion and F5, but I would think it would be vastly easier to to just block it when those games go live than block it all the time and make everyone else change their workflow.

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Re: Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

by Blockhead » Post

ThorfinnS wrote:
Wed Oct 20, 2021 19:19
think I'll just bypass the whole thing and add coordinates and pitch/yaw to the HUD, similar to, say, mtimer or hudbars or orienteering or any of the other information mods.
That's good thinking. If you need one with coordinates that works out of the box now, there's poshud.
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Re: Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

by Astrobe » Post

rubenwardy wrote:
Wed Oct 20, 2021 17:51
ThorfinnS wrote:
Wed Oct 20, 2021 17:41
Not a huge fan, either.

In my case, I'm helping kids learn to code, so when one of the testers comes across something odd, he notes the position and the pointed and whoever wrote that part of the code can investigate. The options seem to be to add that information back into the HUD, which seems to defeat the purpose of taking it away, or to make items from orienteering mod (for example) easily craftable from basic materials found on the surface. Otherwise, there is little point to having playtesters.

Why not retain the default behavior, but be able to block it with a simple setting once you get your server into production status?
The other option is to grant the `basic_debug` privilege. It makes a lot of sense to have this when modding!
This is by far inferior to making the behavior change an option.

I am doing that sort of thing quite often in a commercial setting, where things breaking after a software update is a no-go. Because the person updating the thing might not notice that something broke and walk away (actually drive away hundreds of kilometers) only to be called back by the customer in the middle of the night.

Minetest is in a pretty similar situation; an update might look fine at first but a breaking change might make your server loop-crash in the middle of your night.

Now this particular feature won't really break anything, but avoiding frustrations for players and admins when you can is good thing.

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Re: Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

by ThorfinnS » Post

Blockhead wrote:
Fri Oct 22, 2021 00:25
ThorfinnS wrote:
Wed Oct 20, 2021 19:19
think I'll just bypass the whole thing and add coordinates and pitch/yaw to the HUD, similar to, say, mtimer or hudbars or orienteering or any of the other information mods.
That's good thinking. If you need one with coordinates that works out of the box now, there's poshud.
That's the one I was looking at, yeah.

Updating coordinates is slower than dirt when you are out exploring. Once mapgen is completed, it's fine. And I'd forgotten that seed is also hugely important, so I'll have to add that in, too. I can probably get away without pitch or yaw, though that makes it a whole lot more convenient when the modder screws something up and the playtester ends up encased in nodes, and has no idea which way is up.

Since the reason for this change is that it breaks immersion, would I be correct in assuming that at some point the whole /command thing is going away, too, to be replaced by having to equip or even wield the correct item in order to access that function? Or code your own mod so that you can do the things you used to be able to do with /commands?

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Re: Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

by AspireMint » Post

I hope it is joke, or just another thread like how Minetest is awful name (i like it as it is :P)
Wuzzy wrote:Debug coordinates and other gameplay-relevanted info (like pointed) in the debug screen will be hidden for unprivileged players
Bug reports without coordinates or pointed thing from unprivileged players...
Wuzzy wrote:To get the full debug screen back, players will need the "basic_debug" privilege
Give "basic_debug" to all by default, lets see how many server owners will be so cruel to disable coords.
Wuzzy wrote:For games makers that make games in which coordinates/position are important, I recommend to add HUD elements that expose the coordinates manually and maybe an item/tool/button to turn this HUD on and off.
Wuzzy wrote:Game makers who want to expose coordinates should do so via a mod / HUD elements and not rely on the debug screen
Yay, laggy hud elements on not so fast servers, that is improvement!
Wuzzy wrote:Currently, in 5.4.0, everyone can see their coordinates for "free" by pressing the debug key (F5). This is a problem for game designers since it is impossible to disable this or want to do a different method for players to reveal the coordinates. The only way to work around this is to tell players "Never press F5" or "F5 is a cheat", but this really sucks.
Or tell them to add tape over coords. Or cover it with thumb!
So this will results in increasing number of cheaters.
Question is, will be coords-CSM banned from forum/content DB?
Wuzzy wrote:Don't worry, the full debug screen is still there. To get it (and the coordinates) back, players need to have the "basic_debug" privilege. In singleplayer, you'll get it with a "/grantme basic_debug" in chat. This might be considered a cheat in some games.
Yes, cheat in some games. SOME games. So you want to remove(hide) this feature just because of SOME games.
(for fun: if SOME developers try to make racing game in 3rd person, will you remove(hide) hand, and add "basic_hand" privilege? Because with hand it would be cheating in SOME games!)
Wuzzy wrote:The reason for this change is that free coordinates in the debug screen give a gameplay advantage for every player that games can't get rid of. For some more complicated games, the debug coordinates can even be outright misleading.
Pick one: "...advantage for every player..." versus advantage for chosen players (players with CSM).
If developers want to remove something from game, something that is easy to "hack", it is stupid idea.
If you can't fully remove it, don't do that.
If cheating is problem on your server, you will hate this feature.
Wuzzy wrote:The second reason is that the debug screen is supposed to be only for debugging. Gameplay info and debug info should be fully separated.
Wait, so coords is gameplay info, or debugging info? If gameplay info, make new key for coords! In my client F4 is free. Thanks.

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Re: Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

by Mineminer » Post

AspireMint wrote:
Sun Nov 21, 2021 00:55
Wuzzy wrote:For games makers that make games in which coordinates/position are important, I recommend to add HUD elements that expose the coordinates manually and maybe an item/tool/button to turn this HUD on and off.
Wuzzy wrote:Game makers who want to expose coordinates should do so via a mod / HUD elements and not rely on the debug screen
Yay, laggy hud elements on not so fast servers, that is improvement!
It's up to the service providers/owners to assure they got the hardware to supports the game. Not anybody responsibilities except your own if you really expects a smooth uninterrupted run on a ~$15 Raspberry Pi Zero W. Where in reality you need at the very least a $300 build.

You might as well blame the driver of your pizza order that they made the pizza wrong when it's the Restaurant that fudged up.

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Re: Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

by Astrobe » Post

AspireMint wrote:
Sun Nov 21, 2021 00:55
Pick one: "...advantage for every player..." versus advantage for chosen players (players with CSM).
If developers want to remove something from game, something that is easy to "hack", it is stupid idea.
If you can't fully remove it, don't do that.
If cheating is problem on your server, you will hate this feature.
Not every player is a cheater.

And if cheating is a problem on your server, this feature won't make it better or worse. There are much more profitable or fun cheats out there than this one (if most players have fun only when cheating in your game, it might be a game design problem).

In any case, there's no reason to "hate" that feature, it is optional.

This change allows game makers to balance the paths of least resistance. Before that, if you wanted your players to use e.g. polar coordinates for educational purpose (have the players read their position with a compass etc.), you could not because it was trivially bypassed by F5. Now the choice is either "use the compass and polar coordinates" or "install some shady stuff", which is a lot more in favor of the intended way.

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Re: Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

by pampogokiraly » Post

I don't understand the hate on this new change. If you don't like it, you can just change the default privileges setting, and add in basic_debug in there.
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Re: Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

by errant » Post

pampogokiraly wrote:
Sun Nov 21, 2021 11:15
I don't understand the hate on this new change. If you don't like it, you can just change the default privileges setting, and add in basic_debug in there.
I understand as there are some mods that are built around having that debug screen available. Not everyone is self-hosting or in personal contact with their admin.

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Re: Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

by Mantar » Post

If you play on a server whose mods require you to have debug coordinates available in order to be playable, and the admins don't enable them, that's really a server problem, not a minetest problem.

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Re: Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

by errant » Post

Mantar wrote:
Mon Nov 22, 2021 20:36
If you play on a server whose mods require you to have debug coordinates available in order to be playable, and the admins don't enable them, that's really a server problem, not a minetest problem.

It really is a mod thing.

There are old, existing mods that involve or require the information in the debug screen. And then, there are hypothetical mods that are cheated or broken by information in the debug screen.

If the server admin (dis/en)ables debug_privs, it sounds like it will impact one or the others' playing experience.

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Re: Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

by firefox » Post

since this forum doesn't have a "like" feature for posts, i'm commenting here to say that i like this change.


regarding the mentioned changes in gameplay:

- most games are just modified MTG, which requires a map item in the bag to use the minimap. coordinates could be added there if you don't want an extra item.

- mods requiring to input specific item names. that's a fault of the mod, most mods i've seen use point-and-click mechanics to register targets. if a mod is too high-tech for this, then an inspector tool would likely blend in well with the scene.

- servers hiding info that the client already has.
most MMOs work that way. hacking the data just because it's on your side is still cheating.
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Re: Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

by ThorfinnS » Post

It makes perfect sense to disable debug once the game is released. Does it make sense in a game in alpha, though?

Even though it's quite common to include the [orienteering] mod in our playtesting, most of the time they never progress far enough to build the map. The testers know what kinds of things they are supposed to be testing, and that is generally not something very far into the game.

I've tried the HUD coordinates. Quite laggy, but close enough. But remembering to add that into the "game" has been an issue. Then we have to also add in other mods to reveal info like pointed? I doubt it will happen.

It's just not as easy as adding a privilege, because if you are just wanting some small aspect of your mod tested, and forget to add that privilege, that's it. No testing of any value. All you will hear is that it "didn't work" and if you are lucky, that the tester had the cursor on birch leaves at the time.

Again, in the release version of a game, this might be expected behavior, though as we all know, in many, maybe most games, similar debug information is only a function key away. It just doesn't seem to be something one expects in a development environment. Making things as painful as possible to debug is a really bad idea.

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Re: Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

by Mineminer » Post

errant wrote:
Sun Nov 21, 2021 19:32
pampogokiraly wrote:
Sun Nov 21, 2021 11:15
I don't understand the hate on this new change. If you don't like it, you can just change the default privileges setting, and add in basic_debug in there.
I understand as there are some mods that are built around having that debug screen available. Not everyone is self-hosting or in personal contact with their admin.
Still it's not a game issue since there always options to name a few...
A: you might decide to self host after all
B: Replace your admin (you been retaining restorable backups right?)
C: Plays on a server that actively keeps up with major changes like this

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Re: Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

by Mantar » Post

ThorfinnS wrote:
Thu Nov 25, 2021 03:55
It's just not as easy as adding a privilege, because if you are just wanting some small aspect of your mod tested, and forget to add that privilege, that's it.
So it's not as easy as adding the privilege, because you also have to remember to add the privilege? I'm a bit confused by this stance. Just plop the priv down in your server's minetest.conf "default_privs =" and the old behavior will remain. Heck, you could do it right now, it just won't do anything on older versions of Minetest.

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Re: Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

by ThorfinnS » Post

Mantar wrote:
Thu Nov 25, 2021 20:27
ThorfinnS wrote:
Thu Nov 25, 2021 03:55
It's just not as easy as adding a privilege, because if you are just wanting some small aspect of your mod tested, and forget to add that privilege, that's it.
So it's not as easy as adding the privilege, because you also have to remember to add the privilege? I'm a bit confused by this stance. Just plop the priv down in your server's minetest.conf "default_privs =" and the old behavior will remain. Heck, you could do it right now, it just won't do anything on older versions of Minetest.
I'm confused by your position. If it's as easy as just changing a default setting, why do you and others think blocking debugging information is such a great change? Wouldn't accomplishing your desired end state be, you know, as easy as changing a default setting?

If that were all there was to it, sure. But it's not. At each release (or even the more frequent builds like from Sfan5,) we will have to go around to each and every machine and reset that and any other settings we use.

I'm actually wondering what kind of a development cycle you use. Do you really just slam together a server config to test your mod, then create another one each time you add another mod to the list to check for compatibility? Might be, I guess. It would explain how some of the mods that are allegedly compatible end up with really hard to track down conflicts, like entire blocks of lava forming in the sky if you use [underch] and some other mod we used to commonly include but evidently no longer do. Or the weird circular reference that ended up with, what was it, [Toolranks], [Extended Ores] and [Farming Redo] that requires that if you want to use those three, you have to use TenPlus1's fork?

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Re: Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

by Mantar » Post

ThorfinnS wrote:
Thu Nov 25, 2021 23:30
why do you and others think blocking debugging information is such a great change?
I can't speak to others' positions, but in Exile, I'd really like to have players navigate in-world via landmarks, and have a real risk of getting lost. (It needs extra landmarks and maybe biome tweaks before that's fully viable though) Having universal coordinates available to everyone at a button press undermines that aspect of gameplay. If you're lost, the temptation to hit F5 and just beeline towards your base as if you had a carrier pigeon's homing instinct is pretty strong, especially considering how arduous overland travel in Exile is.
Having a button that just shuts down a gameplay obstacle like navigation is not great. You might as well have a button that restores your energy, fills your health, and stops you from drowning, too.

Also I've discovered what a crutch the "pointing at" display is a while back -- I never once noticed that freshwater and saltwater looked identical until a player who wasn't using F5 mentioned it. Playing Minetest off and on for so many years, I had become so entirely accustomed to looking at the game through the F5 info up top I could swear they were obviously different!

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Re: Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

by ThorfinnS » Post

Right. I fully understand that.

But why wouldn't a server command like /disable F5 serve that purpose just as well? Why should the default be, "NO! You are not permitted to submit bug reports!"

You are telling me it's a trivial matter to grant the privilege. In what way would revoking the privilege be any more difficult?

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Re: Debug coordinates will no longer be visible for unprivileged players after 5.4.0

by Mantar » Post

It wouldn't be more difficult, but something has to be the default. This was chosen, and it makes sense, I think.
Players shouldn't need to type out coordinates to report bugs, though, that's a pain and should be automated with a /bug command that writes up a report of where they are, what they're looking at, and lets them enter text about what happened. Could maybe even export a schematic of the current mapblock, metadata and all, for inspection.
Huh, I should slap together a mod for that.

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