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Steam Download Changes

Steam News announces some new underlying download technology for Valve's online service. Here's a chunk:

As of today, you can download some of the content on Steam using all-new server and client code to get the job done.

The new content system is designed to do two things: deliver better download rates in more places around the world, and also to simply streamline the publishing process on Steam, ultimately making it possible to ship more games than we would have been able to with the old system.

The maximum aggregate bandwidth of the system will be greater than the current system; this will help us satisfy spikes in demand when thereís a big release. We will also be able to send content from more places, to better serve people all around the globe. All the content on the new system is sent via HTTP; this is more firewall-friendly than the current system, and will automatically take advantage of web-caching proxies installed at ISPs.

Another way that the new content system improves the bandwidth picture is by requiring each user to download less data. With the Steam content system thatís been in place for a few years now, if an individual file on disk were modified by a game update, your client had to download the whole file. That can be painful when the file in question is really large. The new system supports delivering only the differences between the old and new files, meaning game updates will be much smaller overall.

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41. Re: Steam Download Changes Jul 19, 2011, 12:58 Dev
 
Thats cool valve that you are making better use of your available bandwidth, but maybe expand it too?

Although, if your server stats reflect reality on your link
http://store.steampowered.com/stats/content/
None of the regions maxed out on all servers when I was checking it during summer sale days when I was getting errors about servers being too busy. I'm guessing this means its not the content servers that get overloaded as much as the load balancing and request filling servers getting overloaded. And THOSE are at your end valve, not the content server end. And doing all these optimizations aren't going to help a bit if the request filling and forwarding servers are still choking when they are getting the same number of total requests at the same time, even if the requests are for smaller chunks of data.

So yeah, this might help with download speed, but if the downloads are just getting denied period from load balancing servers getting overloaded, its not going to help much with that.
 
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40. Re: Steam Download Changes Jul 18, 2011, 08:54 Verno
 
Krovven wrote on Jul 16, 2011, 14:29:
Company of Heroes. Every patch required people on Steam to download basically the whole game again.

Yeah that was annoying but it was Relics fault as much as Steams. I remember a friend of mine owned the retail version and he had to go through this hilariously archaic patching procedure that took almost 2 hours every time he reinstalled the game.
 
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Playing: Fire Emblem, Diablo 3, Bravely Default
Watching: The Machine, After the Dark, Devils Due
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39. Re: Steam Download Changes Jul 17, 2011, 19:08 Ant
 
descender wrote on Jul 16, 2011, 13:40:
Steam lets me cap out my Optimum Boost+ connection... 6.4MB/sec

The rest of you need to move out of the sticks...
Some of us are in the big cities already!
 
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Ant @ The Ant Farm: http://antfarm.ma.cx and Ant's Quality Foraged Links: http://aqfl.net ...
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38. Re: Steam Download Changes Jul 17, 2011, 07:48 =WTE=MavericK
 
Sepharo wrote on Jul 17, 2011, 01:46:
=WTE=MavericK wrote on Jul 17, 2011, 00:54:
Seems to be working nicely. Getting 9.1 MB/s sustained download

Damn, what region is this and who provides that bandwidth?

Netherlands, Ziggo cable. 120Mb down / 10 Mb up.
 
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37. Re: Steam Download Changes Jul 17, 2011, 01:46 Sepharo
 
=WTE=MavericK wrote on Jul 17, 2011, 00:54:
Seems to be working nicely. Getting 9.1 MB/s sustained download

Damn, what region is this and who provides that bandwidth?
 
Avatar 17249
 
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36. Re: Steam Download Changes Jul 17, 2011, 00:54 =WTE=MavericK
 
Seems to be working nicely. Getting 9.1 MB/s sustained download though I think time of day (7 in the morning) has its benefits aswell. Still, never used to get much above 2-3 MB/s before so quite happy with this update.  
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35. Re: Steam Download Changes Jul 16, 2011, 18:33 Paketep
 
About fucking time, indeed.

I hope we never have to see again the "steam servers are too busy" message.
 
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34. Re: Steam Download Changes Jul 16, 2011, 14:37 Kevin Lowe
 
jimnms wrote on Jul 16, 2011, 02:14:
I don't see any new regions in the US. I see something called LAN Event (USA), LAN Event (Europe) and LAN Event (Asia). I think I saw those before, but I've never found an explanation of what they're for.
Node in a box? Just drop off a flight case at the event, pop the top off, plug in power and network, and you have an on-site content cache. Send along a second flight case full of banners ("Don't have the game everyone's playing? Buy it from Steam and have it installed in minutes!") and it could probably pay for itself. The trick is knowing what to pre-load it with - you wouldn't precache every game in the catalog, just the ones likely to sell to the crowd that weekend.

Sun actually has a similar concept on a much larger scale - it's a small datacenter inside a shipping container, so that you can load it onto a train to move it around to wherever it's cheaper to operate, where you need more capacity, etc..
 
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33. Re: Steam Download Changes Jul 16, 2011, 14:29 Krovven
 
necrosis wrote on Jul 16, 2011, 12:39:
Also whats with everyone ranting about 1+ GB patches? This actually happens? First I have heard of it. Also whats the big deal?

Company of Heroes. Every patch required people on Steam to download basically the whole game again.

 
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32. Re: Steam Download Changes Jul 16, 2011, 13:40 descender
 
Steam lets me cap out my Optimum Boost+ connection... 6.4MB/sec

The rest of you need to move out of the sticks...
 
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31. Re: Steam Download Changes Jul 16, 2011, 13:39 Kajetan
 
necrosis wrote on Jul 16, 2011, 12:39:
fix-cz wrote on Jul 16, 2011, 01:17:
Luckily I buy games mostly elsewhere since Steam has such rip-off prices for Europeans.
People are still crying about this?
No. Most Europeans just don't buy full price games on Steam.
 
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30. Re: Steam Download Changes Jul 16, 2011, 13:10 reisub
 
PHJF wrote on Jul 16, 2011, 12:58:
I hate manufacturers that measure hard drive capacity in megabits instead of megabytes.
They don't, they just use base 10 instead of base 2.
 
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29. Re: Steam Download Changes Jul 16, 2011, 12:58 PHJF
 

I hate you people that measure your download speeds in MB instead of Mb.

I hate manufacturers that measure hard drive capacity in megabits instead of megabytes.
 
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Steam + PSN: PHJF
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28. Re: Steam Download Changes Jul 16, 2011, 12:54 necrosis
 
Overon wrote on Jul 16, 2011, 10:11:
Byte delta patching. Now you only download what has changed in the file that you have, not the entire file all over again. That means smaller downloads. When Witcher 2 patches were released via steam, people had to almost redownload the whole game because witcher 2 has a few very large files.
RTP patcher. Its been around for YEARS. First game I remember that used it was Rainbow Six: Raven Shield. Problems is (tho probably moot now) is it required a fast HDD to apply the patches because of how it had to move files around. I remember patches for RvS taking in excess of 45 min to install.
 
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27. Re: Steam Download Changes Jul 16, 2011, 12:39 necrosis
 
fix-cz wrote on Jul 16, 2011, 01:17:
Luckily I buy games mostly elsewhere since Steam has such rip-off prices for Europeans.
People are still crying about this?

Also whats with everyone ranting about 1+ GB patches? This actually happens? First I have heard of it. Also whats the big deal?
 
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26. Re: Warhammer Online Patched Jul 16, 2011, 12:24 Marvin T. Martian
 
About time they fixed the update/patch function. Downloadiing 9 gigs for a 1gig patch was just ridiculous. They kind of had to to save their bussiness model since many IPS are begining to restrict d/ls and charge an arm and a leg when you exeed your plan.(unless you pay lots to get unlimited).  
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25. Re: Steam Download Changes Jul 16, 2011, 11:36 StaTik
 
I hate you people that measure your download speeds in MB instead of Mb. Furious  
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24. Re: Steam Download Changes Jul 16, 2011, 11:33 inveigle88
 
Just tell me I can purchase BF3 from STEAM and I will be happy. All else is superfluous.  
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23. Re: Warhammer Online Patched Jul 16, 2011, 11:32 Slashman
 
Snabel wrote on Jul 16, 2011, 10:46:
CreamyBlood wrote on Jul 16, 2011, 04:42:
I luv big werds.

'content system', 'streamline publishing process', 'aggregate bandwidth', 'web-caching proxies', 'content', 'painful', 'much smaller'.

My favourite is: 'satisfy spikes in demand when there's a big release.'

Seriously, who writes this shit?

At least the 'updates will be much smaller overall'.

For fucks sake.


Is it words in general that are giving you a headache, or just certain letters?

He should sound out the words, a syllable at a time. They won't seem quite so big then...
 
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22. Re: Steam Download Changes Jul 16, 2011, 10:54 Creston
 
Sounds good. I'm glad they're FINALLY doing something about their lethargic system when a major release (or sale) hits. That only took four years...

Creston
 
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41 Replies. 3 pages. Viewing page 1.
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