World Transfers - July 2015

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News(43 P)

World Transfers

Originally posted 28 July 2015.[1]
By Frelorn
Greetings Citizens of Middle-Earth!
We are finally ready to reveal the details on the new World Transfer process, the consolidation of LOTRO's worlds, and their movement to a brand new data center. We appreciate your patience as we have worked to make the new transfer process as well-rounded, simple, and effortless as possible. The first part of this article will discuss our timeline and the second part will go over the details of the new transfer features themselves. So grab a goblet of Elvish Wine and kick back, because this will be a long one.

Timelines

On August 3rd we will announce the worlds that will be impacted and the entire game will be brought down for a small patch which will send out an in-game email to all characters notifying them of the beginning of the World Closures and what that will entail along with a link back to this article and others to be released in the coming weeks. Additionally Character Creation on the worlds we are closing will be turned off at this time.
All characters on all worlds will receive a gift box as a thank you from us as a remembrance of the worlds we will be closing that hold so many fond memories for all of us. The Free Peoples' gift box will contain a Title Picker Box “Of <World> with choice of any of the 29 worlds, hooded and hoodless variants of a cloak, and a housing banner decoration. Monster Characters will receive the monster version of the Title Box “Bane of <World>” with choice of any of the 29 worlds.
The new Transfer Service will become available with this patch. You will be able to access it through the launcher at the World Selection screen after logging into your account. There will be a button that says “Transfer” underneath the “Play” button. Beginning August 3rd the service will be available for copying characters to the Bullroarer Test World and for free moves between the ten worlds (5 US and 5 EU) that will be remaining available after the end of this year. This is just the beginning of the process.
We will be monitoring the transfers between those worlds for a couple weeks and if all is going well, we will move on to the next step of the process which will be to turn off Auction Houses on the first two of the sunsetting worlds and allow characters, kinships and shared items on those worlds to move to the ten remaining worlds.
Once again we will monitor the moves and if all is going well we will move on to the next two worlds and so on until we feel comfortable with opening transfers off of all of the impacted worlds. The theme here is a slow and steady migration.
On October 1st, transfers between the remaining ten will once again become paid, however transfers off of the impacted worlds will remain free indefinitely.
After the start of the new year you will no longer be able to play on the impacted worlds. You will still be able to see the worlds, and the characters and shared account items will remain available for migration to a remaining world indefinitely.
As you can see, this is a monumental effort and we want to do it as correctly and painlessly as possible. We will be providing lists of the next worlds to be opened for transfer as we go along. We also have in-game mails that will go off when your world is ready so you will see it whether you check the site or the game for your updates. We will also be updating more precise timelines as we close in on each event and have a higher degree of accuracy.
Now on to the details you really want….

New Transfer Features

New Launcher Service

We are changing our transfer service to occur in the game launcher itself. In the world selection window, you will see the “Transfer” button. Click on that and you will see all the worlds and the characters you have on each. You can choose to move just one character, all characters, shared items or no shared items to a target world of your choosing.

Shared Items Transfer

This new checkbox in the World Transfer interface will allow the transfer of all account level items that are shared between your characters on a world from one world to another. These items include the following:
  • Account Shared Currency (Mithril Coins & Skirmish )
  • Shared Storage
  • Housing Storage
  • Wardrobe
  • Destiny
The Shared Items Transfer will always be a free service and will be available even if you have moved all characters off of a world, just in case you moved a character and left some account level items behind.

Kinship transfer

When transferring a character who is a Kinship leader, the game will disband the kinship on the home world and reform it on the new world complete with all historical data. Players who were in that same kin will be instantly added to the kin on the new world if they decide to follow the Kin leader. Kin leaders, please coordinate with your Kinship members ahead of time, add target world to your MOTD, etc so that your members know where to follow. Bound items in the Kinship house will be returned to their owners and unbound items will be put in the Kinleader’s personal house storage or escrow. Any remaining pre-paid credit and unlocked storage levels on the Kinship house will be automatically granted upon purchase of a new Kinship house on the new world.

Naming Priorities

With the new transfer process, when you transfer your character to a new world, the world will check to see if there is a naming conflict. If there is, it will grant the name to the incoming character if the character existing on the world has not been active for one year or more. The less active character will have a -1 added to their name and a rename token granted to the character. (Rename tokens have no expiration date.) This should prevent the majority of unnecessary renames for those transferring from the impacted worlds.

Region Transfer

Existing characters on EU and US worlds will have a data conflict moving to a different region, so we are only able to support transfers of characters from an EU world to another EU world and US to US. You will note that we have now labeled all worlds on the launcher with their region. However, there is no restrictions on where you might start a NEW character and play based on your physical location, so feel free to try out new worlds in which ever region you feel most comfortable.

Housing Transfer

When transferring a character who owns a house on a world, the belongings and the history of the ownership of that house will go with that character to its new world. This means storage capacity, Upkeep Prepayments, Ownership time and Grace period time will all be remembered and applied to the house you might purchase on your destination world. When you log into the new world with your Home owner, you will find an email that will inform you of your previous address and will contain an attachment of currency equal to the purchase cost of the house. All of your deco is now in Escrow Housing storage, and character bound items are returned to the appropriate characters. If you already own a house on the destination world the upkeep, storage capacity and items will be granted to the existing house on the account.

Recommended Transfer Order

To lessen the chances of item confusion or loss, it is recommended that you transfer any Kinship leaders first, then Home Owners, Shared items, and then other characters or all at once if they are going to the same world.

The Future

So what happens after we are all moved over to the remaining ten? Lots of fun times ahead. The new data center we will be moving provides a much faster connection to the internet with more direct ports to all territories. We are updating all of our software to the latest and greatest versions and all of the worlds are moving to new top of the line hardware allowing for less interruptions of service and a smoother gameplay experience for us all. Having fewer worlds means the ability for our team to run more Live Events on those worlds and the consolidation of players will mean the worlds will be more active, giving you more people to form fellowships, kinships or even just enjoy a festival with. We are really excited about this chance to re-invigorate Middle-earth and we hope you are as well!

The FAQ

I have covered a lot in this article and there will be more to come in the form of more exact timelines and the list of worlds, but I hope this helps to clarify many of the questions and concerns that have been rolling around the last few months. However I am certain there are still questions. See the FAQ below for some and feel free to ask us anything we have not covered and as we answer we will add to the FAQ list.
Q. Will transfers be free? For how long?
A. Transfers to or between the worlds that will be kept will be free until October 1st. After that point all transfers off of closed worlds will continue to be free indefinitely. But transfers between the live worlds will go back to paid.
Q. What is the Timeline?
A. August 2015 Transfers Begin. January 2016 impacted worlds are no longer available
Q. What Account info will transfer?
A. Account properties:
  • Destiny
  • Shared storage (Bank)
  • Housing storage
  • Wardrobe
  • Shared currency (all account-shared paper items, including Mithril and Skirmish Marks)
Edge-case: if a paper item used to be character-only (i.e. not account-shared), and the player hasn’t logged in since the currency was changed, any amount they had banked will remain with their character and will not be transferred unless they transfer that character.
  • Loss Risk:
Housing storage pre-2014 – previously, housing storage was maintained in a very different way from the current bank-based system. If your character has not logged in since then, those items will be lost
Q. Can I transfer my Kinship?
A. We are implementing the ability for Kin leaders to move their Kin with them to a new world. This collects the Kin name and rank and creates a guild of similar rank and name and will add any members who also follow to the new world.
Q. What about my name?
A. The world checks for a name conflict. The character that has been active in the last year keeps the name and the other character gets a -1 and name change token.
Q. What about Lag on Brandywine?
A. Brandywine will be made unavailable as a transfer destination until that server is moved to newer hardware and performance improvements are confirmed.
Q. What interface will players use for transfer?
A. Transfer will now be available through the launcher.
Q. Can we do a full account (all characters included) transfer option?
A. Yes this will be an option
Q. What if I have all my character slots filled?
A. We have doubled the amount of max character slots you can purchase
Q. What about my Bounder’s Bounty Recognition?
A. We have created a Bounder's garden which will have a plaque for the world you are on as well as all the worlds that have been retired.
Q. Will my mail be transferred?
A. Mail does not transfer, therefore it is recommended that you clear all items you wish to keep out of your mail box before transferring.
Q. I still have a balance on my housing maintenance. Will I get that money back?
A. Yes, when your house is put into escrow for the transfer any remaining maintenance balance will be credited to a new house or an existing house owned by your account on the new world.
Q. What is the requirement for a character to receive the thank you gift box?
A. The character must be created by the patch on August 3rd, 2015
Q. What would happen if a character was transferred previously to sunsetting world from a remaining world and the player has other characters, shared banks and such on the remaining world already when they choose to move their account back to that remaining world? Will all the items merge? Overflow?
A. Items will merge with the already present account and in cases where this reaches storage limits, they will go into overflow.

Forum Thread Comments

27 July 2015

[2]

Originally posted by Vyvyanne:
5 US and 5 EU is correct. In our selection we will have one RP per region (EU & US) and one world per language (DE, FR and ENG).

[3]

Originally Posted by Thalifea:
So it's possible that transfers to Brandywine won't open up till you revert back to the pay per transfer mode?
Response posted by Vyvyanne:
Yes. We are working on getting up sooner, but as this is our largest population and there are many concerns with it being "too Populated" making it a paid transfer only will prevent a land rush. We can reconsider this once the world is up in the new datacenter and we see how performance is doing.
However once we open the initial transfers, those who wish to move off of Brandywine to another server are welcome to do so during the free period.

[4]

Originally Posted by Thego:
And if both were active before the merge?
Response posted by Vyvyanne:
Then the character that is already present on the destination server takes precedence and the incoming character gets a "-1" added to their name and a name change token.

[5]

Originally Posted by Warmutkan:
Suggestion, as a Kin leader:
Please include a dev diary or similar walkthrough for the kinship transfer process when the time comes. Making a mistake when transferring my own characters isn't a big deal, it only affects me. A leader making a mistake on a kinship transfer is a bigger deal since it can affect dozens-hundreds of people.
Thanks for the diary. Very detailed.
Response posted by Vyvyanne:
To Transfer Kinship:
1. Choose destination world and announce this to your kinship via MOTD, emails, etc
2. Transfer your Kin-leader character to the preferred world via the character transfer interface in the launcher
3. When you log in on the destination world with the Kin-leader, the kinship will be already created and ready for you. As Kinmates join that world they will be auto-added back to the kin. All items from housing or storage will be granted back to the character they were bound to, or in the kin-leader's storage.

[6]

Originally Posted by CM-Amenophis:
What happens to all none Account Shared Items? My Shared Bank is full, also my Private Bank and Housing Slots. Will i lose something? That wasnt mentioned in the Diary.
Response posted by Vyvyanne:
Any overage on the target server if combining shared items will go into overflow. As you empty items from slots or get more storage upgrades, those items will be able to be accessed. At no point are they lost.

[7]

Originally Posted by Forestwyn:
Thanks Frelorn! Question; What will happen to shared storage? If we purchased additional shared storage on different servers will those additional storage spaces transfer too? I can see that being a problem for me since I am lotro hoarder
Response posted by Vyvyanne:
Yes, you will have the same number of slots on your new world.

[8]

Originally Posted by Linwenn:
Question :
Server 1 (going to close) : i have 3/6 characters
Server 2 (future server) : i already have 6/6 character
does it become 9/12 ? or 9/9 or 3 become unplayable and i need to purchase slots?
Response posted by Vyvyanne:
You will have 9/6 and in order to play the 3 extras you will need to delete a character or get extra slots. All of your characters do not have to go to the same world, however.

[9]

Originally Posted by Farcho123:
What's happening when our kinship leader is transferring to a world on which a kinship exists which has the same name?
Response posted by Vyvyanne:
In the case of a conflict of Kinship name, the transferring Kinship will have a -1 added to their name and will need to open a ticket with Customer Support to choose a new name. We know this is not ideal, but this situation was one we did not have a good solution for in the time we had.

[10]

Originally Posted by Familiarity:
My question is for players who already have characters on the Brandywine server and potentially have alts, account information (mithril coins, destiny points, marks, etc.) on other servers that are potentially being shut down.
Is there any way that I can consolidate all of that information on Brandywine beginning August 3 or will it have to wait after the hardware changes? I've barely played on my previous servers I've been on and would rather not pay to put everything in one place since it's become my permanent home at this point. Understandably it may be difficult to distinguish between long time players of the server and people who will just create a new character to then get a priority to move things over but I was curious if this was considered by Turbine or an incentive to get people to leave the server where they can combine everything elsewhere.
Response posted by Vyvyanne:
Account data transfer without characters will always be free.
So once Brandywine opened back up to paid transfers, you could choose just to move your shared account data there and move the characters to another world. Also once we open Brandywine back up for transfers, if you are coming in off of a closed world, it will be free. It will never cost you money to move your character off of a closing world. I just realized that may have been unclear earlier. Brandywine's Open/ Closed to transfer status will be based on population and server stability, but when it is open it will only be a paid transfer from another Open world.

[11]

Originally Posted by Namesse:
If we are transferring, will our friend's list get wiped, with no way to tell where our friends went and what new name they might have?
Response posted by Vyvyanne:
Due to the way in which our friend's lists are created, these will not be transferable. The data is based on the name and not the ID of the character, so the new world would have no idea if a person of the same name is actually your friend or someone else. Same if your friend had to change their name for one reason or another.

[12]

Originally Posted by Marancil:
I am on Firefoot-US.
As I understand you text, Frelorn (and Vyvyanne) migration between US and EU will not be possible, is not possible and, will never be possible? When I started playing there was no distinction between EU or US in the Launcher, and there was nothing in the download or the installer to tell me anything about what to consider when picking server.
I guess many EU players may be in this situation, and perhaps also many US players, we would like to transfer to our "Region" but can't and this also may have an impact on interacting with other players, timezones being a constant issue. (Yes I have said many times I play solo, but that is also a result of a necessity being on a "low populated" server...also a bit of a lonewolf...).
I must admit I am more than reluctant to end up on a "high populated" US server.
Response posted by Vyvyanne:
Sadly we do not see cross region transfers ever being a thing that we can offer. This is due to the original regions being set up in two different account systems, which allowed duplicate character IDs to be created. The transfer of a character to a world on which it might share an ID with another character can result in the loss of all character data. This is not a situation we want to see happen, especially to some of the oldest characters on the servers.

[13]

Originally Posted by kickman77:
So there is no way to open up free kinship renames for a set amount of time? Was that not done recently? Just seems like an easier option to let all players have a free kinship rename because we are the ones being forced to move
Response posted by Vyvyanne:
We do not have the ability for kins to be able to change their names developed, thus it is not something we can give away. This is a GM power only for now which is why we are willing to help out if it becomes a problem.

28 July 2015

[14]

Originally posted by Vyvyanne:
"Ok so catching up on the thread since I headed out last night. Here are some additional clarifications:"
1. Are we keeping the most active servers? In some cases, yes. The intention is to move the least amount of players while maintaining some of the more specialized environments.
2. Does the Kinship disband when the Kinleader moves? Yes, it does. This means all messaging to players should be through in-game mail and forums before leaving the world. We can set mail to last longer on the closing worlds (6 months) so that those who log in after the kinleader moves, but before the worlds become unavailable can receive mail on destination target.
3. What happens to a bound item in a Kinhouse from a character that has been deleted or already transferred? Items in this case will be deleted as the owner of the item no longer exists so there is no location to assign that item. If the Kinleader moves before the owner of the bound item moves and the owner has not been deleted, then the item will be placed in the owner's housing escrow account.
4. Transfer of Reaver (or other Monster characters): You can have multiples of one type in cases of transfer of monster characters. In this case you should find a small drop down arrow next to that monster type that will give you a selection of Reavers (or other types) to choose from.
5. Can I transfer to multiple worlds while in the free transfer period? Yes. There is no limitation to the number of transfers you can do. Once the transfers between the remaining 10 are no longer free, however, you will have to pay to move between them.
6. Can you grant more character slots? We are now looking into adding 2 free character slots to all Premium and VIP accounts. We will also have a sale on character slots.
7. Why not do names purely on seniority? A few posters have explained the complication of this already. We had to come up with a solution that would work for Transfers going forward. Going off a seniority based system would result in active players always risking that their name could be changed at any point, not just when they transferred. No solution was perfect. We went with an option that will help free up a number of names for players transferring in, while not disturbing the players who are already there and actively playing the game.
-Vyv

[15]

Originally posted by Mnemesis:
I have reserved my kinship's name on other servers. If we need to move, will I be able to disband that kinship and then immediately move and recreate the name?
Response posted by Vyvyanne:
It might not be immediate...it takes some time to delete info and free up from the servers, but yes it should free up within a few minutes.

[16]

Originally posted by thebravecaptain247:
Will all items in chest of standard and kin house transfer to the new server or do I have to put them in a vault in order to prevent them from being deleted?
Response posted by Vyvyanne:
Yes. The only exception is Bound items for which the owner character no longer exists.

28 July 2015

Oceanic Server

[17]

Originally posted by snakeeyes00:
My question is this. Will there be an official "Oceanic" server from the selection of 5 US servers that will be remaining? If not, can you please designate one.
Currently Elendilmir is the unofficial Oceanic server, which is fantastic for all us Australians, New Zealanders and night owls whose normal play time is outside of prime time US time, like 3am EST. Having scout some of the bigger server, while they are extremely active during prime time US time, they are dead quiet during our normal play time. Whereas Elendilmir has activity all around the clock. For example, last night, a quick server check showed over 100 people (At max limited) playing at 3am EST, which is abnormal for other servers.
It would be good to have a designated Oceanic server so if we have to move, all the Oceanic people will know which server is best suited to our time zone needs
Response posted by Vyvyanne:
We do appreciate all of our Oceanic Players, but we do not feel comfortable making an Official Oceanic world as we will not be officially supporting those play hours or languages specifically and with the reduced number of world we do not want to discourage players from other regions from playing on the server due to such a designation. However, I do encourage the Oceanic community to discuss amongst themselves a world to move enmasse to and publish that here on the forums as well as in World chat and other locations where your friends can see it and follow.

29 July 2015

[18]

Originally posted by LauraHolt:
I'm curious if characters that have been created within the time frame considered "active" will be considered "active" if they never logged in after character creation or if "active" will only mean characters that have entered or (preferably) finished the tutorial. I hope it's the latter because that would solve a lot of griefing issues and since I see others have posted similar questions, I hope we get a response from Vyvyanne or Frelorn on this...
Response posted by Vyvyanne:
The way the system is reading the information to determine priority, it can not see if a character has gone through the tutorial. It is purely based on character creation time stamp.
Originally posted by LauraHolt:
Also, I'm still unclear regarding housing chest items transferring - personal AND kin house items. Will Bound items transfer if they are in a house chest or do they need to be in their individual owner's Bank Vault? Will unbound items in house chests (personal and kin) transfer and just go into escrow on the new server until a house can be purchased? And what about items on hooks? Will hooked items transfer or do they need to be in a chest? I don't want to end up leaving anything behind if my server is unlucky enough to be demolished... Sadly, in my kin house there are items bound to characters that have been transferred or deleted or whose players just quit, so I already know I won't get to save them for my kinnies if my server is toast...
Response posted by Vyvyanne:
All those items (with the exception to those belonging to deleted characters) will be packed up and placed in escrow. Hooks, chest, bank, etc all come with you if they belong to you.
Originally posted by LauraHolt:
Finally, I'm curious if Turbine has considered (if it's even possible), making houses upgradable - so that if someone buys a standard house they can just pay a few more gold to "upgrade" it to a deluxe? Any house that was upgraded that later got foreclosed would, of course, revert back to being a standard house... That might encourage people to buy the standard houses so neighborhoods aren't ghost towns. Well, that and neighborhood crafting areas with discounts for homeowners...
Response posted by Vyvyanne:
This is a great idea and something we can look into for a future update, although there may be limitations based on the footprint of the housing plots within the neighborhoods. But if that is the case we will certainly keep a town easement idea in mind if we build new ones.

[19]

Originally posted by maartena:
When it turns out that I lose my name, and automatically take "Name-1", and after I have properly joined the server and add the character with "Name" to the friends list.... and I find out that character has not logged on for at least 9 months. Can I save my free rename token, wait 3 months based on the last logon date of "Name" use the token to claim the name from the inactive character "Name" and get the name back, as by then 1 year of inactivity has passed?
It would be a shame to see your name lost to e.g. a level 12 that hasn't logged on for 9 months... and then finding out you can't claim it after the character becomes inactive after 12 months. Also with paid renames you should be able to claim an inactive name.
Response posted by Vyvyanne:
Rename tokens do not work the same way as transfers when it comes to overwriting another name. We can look at making a change to this later down the line after the majority of transfers are completed, but for this time frame we feel it is better to give the players who are transferring the priority to claim their name from an in-active account, over giving that to a any player using a rename token.

30 July 2015

[20]

Originally posted by Decaran:
I have a few questions that it would be nice to get some answers to, as I think it might alleviate some players' anxiety. I've read the whole thread, and I'm not sure my exact questions were answered anywhere, but apologies if they were!
1) Can you share any information on how you will choose the order in which servers will be able to transfer? To me, using a randomised order seems the most fair, but it would be nice to know if you plan on opening transfers to the smallest servers first, etc. Obviously no one wants to be stuck on the last server to transfer and lose their house location, name, etc, but I don't see a (fair) way around this unless servers can all transfer at the same time.
2) I presume that a main motivation behind transferring several at a time would be so server populations can be monitored by Turbine, allowing any worlds that approach the size of Brandywine to be closed for transfer temporarily. Basically, is this the current plan - to deactivate transfers to servers that become too large? I'm asking because I know several players who don't want to play on a large world, but if this is implemented, it seems server sizes will all end up roughly equal. So I'm wondering if it's better to just let all servers (barring Brandywine) remain open for transfer for the whole period and see if one server establishes itself for this crowd? It also seems to keep it fair for servers who would transfer near the end of the process, especially if they had planned to move to Server A, only to find transfers to Server A are not allowed because it has become too large.
Response posted by Vyvyanne:
We are starting with letting the remaining worlds redistribute first to allow players to choose to leave the largest ones if they wish making room for more players and also because we expect to see the smallest number of moves during this stage. Next we will be opening up with the smallest population closing worlds and going up the list from there. The purpose of this is not to overtax the system by allowing everyone to slam into it at once and also so that we can monitor populations. If one of the destination worlds is getting overfull we can provide it with more resources or fix any issues we might run into. We do not expect any of the remaining worlds to be closed to transfers permanently. Once they are all on new hardware they should be capable of handling current population load, but while we work through the process we want to be able to respond and correct appropriately.

[21]

Originally posted by Vyvyanne:
A couple of things to add before I head home for the night....
1) We begin with copies to Bullroarer on Monday, but only some of the features are available through copy. For example Kinships do not move in copy. Once we have worked out any kinks we will open the actual transfers.
2) For those concerned that your server will be last to move, you can still create new characters on the remaining worlds. So you can still reserve character name, Kinship names, and houses using a new character or one already on a remaining world if this is a concern for you. One house per account per world, means your items from the previous world will just be added to your placeholder house once your server is opened for transfer.

31 July 2015

[22]

Originally Posted by RJFerret:
A question was raised in another thread Vyvyanne, and you've been doing such a great job cluing us in, I thought I'd bring it to your attention here.
It's a matter of escrow for kin houses that are transferred, and regular houses, as this person has multiple houses with more stuff than they can contain in bags/storage.
Given escrow currently holds your items for 30 days if you abandon your house, and forever if foreclosed, what is the circumstance with items returned and items in escrow due to transfer?
Response posted by Vyvyanne:
The transfer is treated like a foreclosure. The items will be placed in escrow on your destination server until you are able to retrieve them.

[23]

Originally Posted by Frelorn:
Greetings Citizens of Middle-Earth!
We are finally ready to reveal the details on the new World Transfer process, the consolidation of LOTRO's worlds, and their movement to a brand new data center. We appreciate your patience as we have worked to make the new transfer process as well-rounded, simple, and effortless as possible. The first part of this article will discuss our timeline and the second part will go over the details of the new transfer features themselves. So grab a goblet of Elvish Wine and kick back, because this will be a long one. Read more.
Response posted by Vyvyanne:
Please note I found an error in the original article, which we are working to correct, but I will state here:

“The new Transfer Service will become available with this patch. You will be able to access it through the launcher at the World Selection screen after logging into your account. There will be a button that says “Transfer” underneath the “Play” button. Beginning August 3rd the service will be available for copying characters to the Bullroarer Test World and for free moves between the ten worlds (5 US and 5 EU) that will be remaining available after the end of this year. This is just the beginning of the process.”

The paragraph has incorrect information. Free moves between the main worlds will not start Monday, only Bullroarer copies will be available that day. Transfers between the remaining worlds will probably be a week or two later after we spend some time with the copies to Bullroarer and make sure there are no issues.
I am sorry for any stress this error may have caused.

References

  1. https://www.lotro.com/en/game/articles/world-transfers
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World Transfers Data Center updates

14 March 2016

Posted by Frelon

Originally posted by Frelon:
LOTRO.com Data Center Migration - Tuesday, March 15th
We are in the process of preparing to move LOTRO.com to our new data center. What this means for you is that sometime around 9:00 AM Eastern (-5 GMT) on Wednesday, March 16th we will temporarily close the forums to posting, so that we can copy the data over to the new data center, do some checks on it, and then reopen the forums to posting. It's possible the web site may be unavailable for a while as this work is being done.
When the web site is reopened, you should simply see the ability to post in the forums, and that's that. However, some Internet Service Providers may take some time for the new DNS information to propagate, so if you run into an issue, you can clear your browser cache, or, if you are technically savvy enough to want to do it, open up a command prompt on your computer and type ipconfig /flushdns. This would be something you could choose to do after we reopen the web site on Tuesday. Eventually, all ISPs will have updated their DNS information, so regardless of whether you take these steps, things should "just work".
We'll keep you updated.

Posted by Vyvyanne on 14 March:

Originally posted by Vyvyanne:
Upcoming Performance Work + Bullroarer and Update 18
This week we have a few things coming online we hope will improve some of the issues you have been experiencing since the Data Center move.
Tomorrow at 6am EST we will be switching over to a new ISP channel which should help get those of you on connections going through unnecessary hops, come through the quickest channels to our servers. We expect our EU players will see more of a change from this than others, but it may help others as well. There will be no downtime besides possibly a 10 min service hiccup around that time. We would love to hear how things feel for you after that.
Additionally this weekend we will be placing [B]Update 18 on Bullroarer[/B] for it's first Open Beta session. In this build we will have much of the content going out with U18 but it will also have the following items we hope will improve performance in various areas:
  • Awesonium upgrade to fix the store crashes some folks are seeing
  • Login Server fix to the "Server Full" error
  • New graphics setting options for reducing graphics and client load in PvMP areas
  • Reducing the data footprint of the Minas Tirith and Pelennor areas
More details and patch notes to come towards the end of the week.
We hope that you will have a chance to jump in and help test these things out with us and keep providing your feedback here and in /bug. We are reading all of it, even when we can not respond. Your feedback makes a difference!
Thank you,

Vyvyanne

Posts by Vyvyanne on 14 March concerning Bullroarer and Upate 18

Originally posted by Vyvyanne:
Yes there will be a character wipe. QA will post in the appropriate Bullroarer thread when it is complete and it is safe to copy characters back over.
Originally posted by Vyvyanne:
The PvMP graphics setting add a couple more items to options you could turn off to reduce graphics quality anywhere, but the PvMP aspect gives one checkbox that can turn off several options all at once. One of the problems in PvMP is loading all of the graphical renderings of that many characters in one area. This reduces the amount of visual extras your client is trying to load, thus it should help on the individual (client side) basis.
Originally posted by Vyvyanne:
 BR will be up for a few weeks, but it will probably get patches in that time and it will not always be open to players in that time. The fix that went in fixes a problem where the login server was not handing off load to the second server that was waiting to take the load, and this would get into an over-loaded and stuck state. We have also added code to make it crash gracefully if it gets into that state anyway.

9 March 2016

Originally posted by Vyvanne:
As stated before we upgraded may different systems when we did this move, so the performance issues you are reporting are coming from a number of different areas. There fore there will be several fixes involved here, not just one fix to rule them all.
The maintenance restarts are to prevent the login error that gave the "server full message" we believe we have a fix that is being tested internally now and will require a patch to fix on live. Until we are fully through testing on that and patch we will continue the restarts to keep the error from occurring.
Additionally we are working on some performance improvements that we hope will help with the loading and lag issues in the MT, Pelennor and PvMP areas. These are also in development and internal testing and we hope to have them out on Bullroarer along with U18 content for testing soon.
The ISP issues are something we have to work through with other companies, and due to that is not something I can give timelines on but we are in daily conversations with them as we pass along data for them to analyze and adjust accordingly.
This is not a matter of just a switch somewhere someone forgot to flip, this is a matter of adjusting code that is over 9 years old from the Operating system it was built on to a new one, hardware it was built for to newer hardware, and internet routes that had been set in place to new ones. There are many kinks to work out along the way. Some of the changes will occur in the background, such as the ISP corrections without us knowing, and the client side ones have to go though the full patch/ update process before they can go live and we are getting through that as quickly as we can. We just dont have anything to show you on that yet, but as soon as we do, we will let you know.
Thank you,

Vyvyanne

26 February 2016

Multiple important comments by Vyvanne today!

Originally posted by Vyvanne:
New websites are in the works with the marketing team. 2-26-2016
Retailers have been made aware of the IC closure, but they control their own inventory. All we can do is inform them those items are no longer valid, which we have done.
To those concerned that we are working on multiple things at once, the LOTRO team is a group of people all with specializations in different areas.
We have a team that works on the networking, server maintenance and datacenter. They are actively working with our vendors to improve the ISP routing and looking into any problems created by the set-up or capabilities of the hardware itself (which is fully configured for all 10 worlds as well as set-ups to keep each of the closing worlds running until April and character data from them available even after that.)
We have game side engineers who are looking into the issue with the login server that occasionally starts giving the "Server Full" message and preventing logins when the server is not actually full. Additionally they have stopped any work they may have been doing on Update 18 to troubleshoot the problems we are seeing with transitions between landblocks since switching over to the new OS and hardware in the new datacenter.
We have game engineers working with QA, designers and artists to work on reducing over all client memory footprints in our newer areas as well as ways to reduce memory usage in PvMP.
QA has already completed the testing required to come to new recommended game specs. This is a process that takes months and an outside hardware compatibility lab to run, we are just in the process of compiling those results and running them through the various teams here for approval and they will be posted once they have completed that process and translations.
And we still have designers and artists whose talents do not lean on the side of performance improvements that continue to work away at U18 content.
Getting the new datacenter to be even better than what we had before is still our goal and we still have folks working heavily on it, but everyone has to work within their own strengths and due to the number of things that changed with this move it will take multiple approaches to get us back to where we want to be.
Originally posted by Vyvanne:
[QUOTE=Wibz;7545938]Do these improvements include fixing the horrendous buff/debuff lag/client performance hit that happens in fellowships and raids? This performance hit can send the client from running 60fps (or 100+, etc) down to less than 10 fps on very powerful PCs. Also when this happens all the buffs/debuffs of the selected mobs start to flash, jump around and sometimes totally disappear.
The issue has been raised multiple times over the last 4 years and has been totally ignored by Turbine.[/QUOTE]
We are looking into all of it. If there is something that will tweak performance in a positive direction without destroying the integrity of the game, we are looking at it whether it is new since the move or from before. We have found that the move has exacerbated issues we had before but we infrequent or not as noticeable until we performed our upgrades. So we are looking into these things as well. I dont see us doing a complete overhaul on our game engine code as one player mentioned. The cost in time and resources as well as stability risk there would be very high, but there may be adjustments that can be made without that needing to be necessary.
Originally posted by Vyvanne:
/bug reports are always helpful as they increase the amount of data we have to work with. Please do be aware that a /bug will never get a response, it is just a way to send data for us for our QA team to parse and use to verify/ reproduce issues but it gives them valuable data from which to do this.
We also could still use traceroutes from players experiencing latency issues. We present these to our ISP partners to help them diagnose problems on that end. You can send those to tech support or post them here.
And yes feedback if you see improvements is helpful as well. It lets us know if we are on the right track. For example it would be good to know if you have seen any improvement since Wed. Last week vs this week since we restarted the servers. We are investigating if we have a degradation over time issue. We know the login server issue presents after it reaches a thresh hold of time so we are resetting those before the weekend to prevent weekend interruptions while we work on a longer term fix. We would like to see if the game servers have a similar issue. If they do then there should be an improvement in gameplay this weekend vs last weekend, but if you are also in the group of folks having ISP route issues, you might not notice.
More specific problems like the client-side problems in PvMP will take a patch. Those will go into beta on Bullroarer once we have enough changes to test out effectiveness. We will announce testing periods for those on those forums once they are ready.

23 February 2016

Originally posted by Vyvanne:
Datacenter Status Update 2-23-2016
Dear Players,

Now that we have been in the new datacenter in New Jersey on the new hardware for several weeks now, we have learned a lot about how our service works with domestic and international ISPs. Early efforts at tuning have been showing progress, leading to measurable improvement in latency for both US and EU players. Based on this early information we believe that players will be best served by us focusing on improvements to the new datacenter, rather than moving the EU servers to Amsterdam.

Going forward we’ll continue to work on with the technology team at our datacenter as well as key regional ISPs to improve the performance of LOTRO for all players worldwide. The next step of this process will have us on a new routing system in the next few weeks. This is expected to improve performance for players in much of the EU, and certain parts of North America as well.
For those players experiencing issues in PvMP we are adding in client side optimizations with Update 18 that we hope will lessen the strain on client and server alike when in battles with large groups. We are also looking into the cause of client crashes when traveling and changing instances. We will continue to optimize the configurations of our servers to improve service stability. These efforts will not be over night, but should improve the situation over time so that your play experience will be even better than it was prior to the move.
Once again we thank you for your patience and understanding while we work through this construction.

Thank you,
Athena “Vyvyanne” Peters”

Originally posted by Frelorn:
Hey folks, we just wanted to give a little bit more information on the things we are working on related to the performance issues many players are still seeing, as we still have a few things that are being actively worked on.
Routing: We are still working with individual ISP’s and our own provider to help improve how traffic to and from the datacenter is being routed. This is something that can take a little time but we are making progress with everyone involved to make sure things are as efficient as they can be.
Server Configuration: As we are working with a new setup and server operating system, there are things that can be very different from the previous versions. Like changing from for example, Windows 7 to Windows 10, there can be and are some things that behave differently even though they in theory should not. There are also things that weren’t in previous versions that can help us that were not there before. Our Ops team has been constantly monitoring and making changes to help improve performance and will continue to do so.
PvMP: We know that playing in the Ettenmoors has not been a good experience since the move and we are looking at both server and game side solutions to help improve the performance. Some of these things may be simple adjustments we can make and some other will more than likely be a bit more on the complicated side, as nothing to do with PvMP is done easily due to the nature of it works.
here are just a few of the things that are being worked on, along with a few other options the team has been exploring. Overall we just wanted to make it clear that we are by no means done working on making the performance of the game better. We will continue to work on making improvements to all aspects of game performance as we move forward. We thank you all and appreciate everyone’s continued patience as we continue to make these improvements.

26 January 2016

Posted by Vyvanne on 26 January 2016 at 11 am

Originally posted by Vyvanne:
Datacenter Status Update 1-26-2016
Hi everyone.
With our datacenter transition still creating issues for many of you, I wanted to provide you with the latest update regarding the server stability issues.
While we have accomplished quite a bit we have much work to do to provide you with the service you deserve. When we moved our hardware from Boston to New Jersey, we not only upgraded our hardware, but we also had to move from an outdated Operating System to a new one. We also moved to a more modern set up of physical plus virtualized machines vs. just physical machines like we had before.
As with all software, there are a number of connection points to configure just right in a move as complicated as this and now that we are in the new location on the new hardware and OS we have found some issues in our configurations. We are working around the clock to address these issues as you have seen from the various down times you have experienced over the last couple weeks. Additionally we are working on code side fixes to correct the disconnections you are seeing which has to do with the servers smoothly transitioning your characters from one server to another. This transition time was affected by the OS and hardware upgrades.
Please note that some Internet Service Providers (ISPs) have not yet caught up with our new route. If you are seeing an increased ping time since the move, please submit a bug in game with the name of the ISP you are using. Putting in a ticket directly with your internet company telling them of the issue may help as well. We already have a couple tickets in with the main ISPs we have already identified with inefficient routes to our new home.
We did do extensive testing on the new datacenter, there are many things that did not come to light until we had the full live configuration online. We will continue working on this until the service is completely back online.
Once again we all thank you for your understanding and patience while we work through this.
Athena “Vyvyanne” Peters

Executive Producer, The Lord of the Rings Online™

6 January 2016

Originally posted by Vyvanne:
Data Center Launch! 1-11-2016
We are finally at the point at which we are ready to announce the opening of the new Datacenter with all new hardware! It has been a long road as we purchased and set up new hardware with updated operating systems, transferred all the data from the old worlds to the new and had to correct systems that had trouble with the transition for 32bit to 64 bit processing. But all of that is past us now and we are pleased to announce that on January 11th, 2016 we will come down for a maintenance window at 5am EST and come back up around 3PM in our new home!

22 December

Originally posted by Vyvanne:
3 Free Transfer Tokens
This morning we added 3 Character transfer tokens to every account and enabled the ability to use these to go between any of the ten remaining worlds. Transfers are 1 token per character so you can use these to move your main characters while you wait for a free window for your world or hold on to them for a later time in case you decide to try out a different world.
This also means that the Account/ shared storage transfer is now available between all worlds and is free (no token needed).
Currently the 3 tokens we have granted or any that you may have purchased prior are the only ones available. We will offer a way to purchase more in the new year.
We hope this helps those of you who may have made a mistake in your transfer choice or simply want a change of pace without waiting for free transfer windows.
Happy Holidays from all of us to you!
LOTRO Team

11 December 2015

Originally posted by Vyvanne:
Data Center Update and Free Transfer Period Announcement
While we are still working through some kinks in upgrading from 32-bit to 64bit Operating Systems for our new hardware, we have come to the last of the list of opening closing worlds for transfer. On Dec 14th Snowbourn will be opened for transfer.
All closing worlds will then be available for transfer.
We will also be offering Free transfers between remaining worlds following the below schedule.
  • Dec 7th- Jan 3rd: Arkenstone & Gwaihir
  • Jan 4th- 10th: Landroval & Belegaer
  • Jan 11th- 17th: Crickhollow & Sirannon
  • Jan 18th- Jan 24th: Gladden & Laurelin
  • Jan 25th- Feb 29th: Brandywine & Evernight
  • March 1st- 31st: Arkenstone & Gwaihir
  • April 1st - May 1st: Landroval & Belegaer
  • May 2nd- May 31st: Crickhollow & Sirannon
  • June 1st- 30th: Gladden & Laurelin
Please note that transfers off of closing worlds will remain free permanently regardless of schedule.
All Closing worlds will no longer be available for play on April 4th 2016. Characters will remain available for transfer to an open world.
Once again we are grateful for your patience throughout this process that took longer than any of us expected, but we are very excited about this upgrade and the boosted activity on the top ten worlds and we hope you are as well!
Thank you,
Athena “Vyvyanne” Peters
Executive Producer- Lord of the Rings Online
Originally posted by Vyvanne:
The actual turning on of the Datacenter will occur after the holiday. We are starting the free moves now because with the closing worlds all able to transfer as of Monday, there is no reason not to begin the cycle for those who have been waiting on it. The longer time for Arkenstone and Gwaihir is due to the impending Holidays which affect our work schedules and response times, so it makes it more difficult to start a reliable weekly window until January
Originally posted by Vyvanne:
We are working through some issues with turning Paid (token use) transfers back on, including granting 3 free tokens to every account. I do not have n ETA at this time, but as soon as possible. We understand some of you just want to transfer one or two characters or shared storage without waiting on a window and we want to let you do that, but it is gated behind us working through this issue.
Originally posted by Vyvanne:
Mine too, but this is a major upgrade and monumental transfer of data from one place to another that affects all of our systems including our support system. The last thing we want to do is push it out hastily right before most of our staff is off spending time with their families. Thus we had to make the call to hold on to it until we are secure in the functionality and will have a full staff ready to handle any difficulties we encounter during the launch and the weeks following.


9 December 2015

Originally posted by Vyvanne:
Snowbourn available for transfers December 14th!
Title says it all, the last of our closing worlds to begin migration will be Snowbourn on Dec 14th!


2 December 2015

Originally posted by Vyvanne:
More Closing worlds opening for transfer and New Free remaining world transfers
On Monday December 7th we will open transfers off of Vilya.
At this time we will also be closing free transfers off of Brandywine and Evernight and switching to Arkenstone and Gwaihir.
Tuesday Dec 8th we will be opening transfers off of Meneldor completing the US closing worlds.
We are holding off on opening Snowbourn for a week or two as we add hardware capacity to our larger EU worlds to handle the load. It is possible this world may not be opened for transfers until we are in the new data center.
Work is coming to a close on this project and we hope to have a launch date for you soon once we have worked though the final testing of the environment.
Thank you for your continued patience!
Athena "Vyvyanne" Peters

New Hardware Update

9 November 2015

Two postings by Vyvanne.
Originally posted by Vyvanne:
Greetings players!
Thank you once again for assisting us in this Stress Test of the new server hardware and environment. It was a lot of fun and a great success as well!
Thousands of you joined us this past Saturday bringing us closer to knowing the limits of our new hardware. During the test, we did find some things we need to work a bit more on to make the launch of our new datacenter the best it can be. This means that we are going to make some more adjustments and then schedule another load test in a couple of weeks. This means we will not be making our previously targeted pre-Thanksgiving launch in the new facility.
When is the new target? Until we complete the next test it is hard to say. When we have a more solid date we will let you know.
The good news is that in this time we have been able to add additional server power to the older hardware so that while we all await the great migration, we will be re-opening transfers, starting with the long awaited Brandywine! As of today all closing US worlds already open for transfers should now see Brandywine as a target destination. Additionally next week we will open Maiar for transfers on Monday 11/16 and Imladris on Tuesday 11/17. We will continue to monitor and open worlds for transfer as appropriate while we wait for the buildout to be completed.
Thank you again for your patience and understanding in this transition!
Originally posted by Vyvanne:
Closing dates for the Closing worlds will be extended to the end of Q1 2016 so that players have time to return and get mail from kinships and friends in game before making a decision on where to move.

German translation

Originally posted by Vyvanne:
Seid gegrüßt, liebe Spielerinnen und Spieler!
Nochmals vielen Dank für Eure Hilfe bei dem Stresstest der neuen Server-Hardware und -Umgebung. Wir hatten nicht nur viel Spaß dabei - es war darüber hinaus auch ein großer Erfolg!
Tausende von Euch haben uns am vergangenen Samstag unterstützt, als wir die Grenzen unserer neuen Hardware getestet haben. Dabei sind wir auf ein paar Dinge gestoßen, die wir verbessern wollen, um einen erfolgreichen Start unseres neuen Datencenters zu gewährleisten. Das bedeutet, dass wir weitere Änderungen vornehmen und in ein paar Wochen einen weiteren Load-Test durchführen wollen. Das bedeutet auch, dass wir den bisher geplanten Termin von vor Thanksgiving (26. November) nicht einhalten werden.
Wann wird der neue Termin sein? Das ist ohne die Ergebnisse des nächsten Load-Tests schwer zu sagen. Sobald uns ein konkretes Datum vorliegt, werden wir Euch natürlich Bescheid geben.
Die gute Nachricht ist, dass wir bei der alten Hardware die Serverkapazität erhöht haben, sodass wir in der Zwischenzeit die Übertragungen wieder aufnehmen können (als Nächstes für den heiß erwarteten Server Brandywine). Ab heute werdet Ihr in allen schließenden Welten, die für Übertragungen bereits freigegeben wurden, Brandywine als Ziel-Welt-Option gelistet sehen. Darüber hinaus werden wir am Montag, den 16. November Maiar und am Dienstag, den 17. November Imladris für Übertragungen freigeben. Wir werden diese Übertragungen weiter überwachen und nach und nach mehr Welten freigeben, während wir auf den Abschluss der Arbeiten an der Hardware warten.

French translation

Originally posted by Vyvanne:
Nouvelles concernant le nouveau matériel informatique
Bonjour tout le monde !
Merci encore pour votre aide durant le test de charge du nouveau matériel et environnement de serveur. Ce fut un bon moment passé ensemble et un grand succès !
Vous avez été des milliers à nous rejoindre samedi et à nous aider à découvrir les limites de notre nouveau matériel. Le test nous a permis de déceler quelques éléments qui vont nécessiter un peu plus de travail de notre part pour que l'entrée en service du nouveau centre de données se déroule le mieux possible. Nous allons donc procéder à quelques ajustements et programmer un autre test de charge d'ici deux semaines. Par conséquent, nous n'atteindrons pas notre objectif initial d'une mise en service de notre nouveau centre avant Thanksgiving (fin novembre).
Quelle date ciblons-nous à présent ? Difficile à dire avant d'avoir effectué le prochain test. Nous vous tiendrons au courant dès que la date se précisera.
La bonne nouvelle, c'est que nous avons été en mesure d'augmenter la capacité de l'ancien matériel. En attendant la grande migration, nous allons donc rouvrir les transferts, à commencer par le tant attendu Brandywine ! À partir d'aujourd'hui, Brandywine devrait être listé comme destination possible sur tous les mondes US qui ferment et qui sont déjà ouverts aux transferts. Par ailleurs, la semaine prochaine, nous ouvrirons les transferts depuis Maiar le lundi 16 novembre et depuis Imladris le mardi 17 novembre. En attendant que les derniers préparatifs concernant le nouveau matériel soient menés à bien, nous continuerons à surveiller le déroulement des transferts et à les activer sur d'autres mondes de manière ordonnée.

2015 World Consolidation Event

  • In January 2015 Turbine announced that they were physically moving the location of their servers from Boston to two locations - North Jersey, and back to the EU, in Amsterdam.
  • It was also announced that the Contract to provide the two Russian servers was not being renewed and that they would therefore shutdown on 1 June 2015.

Server Moves and Migrations: Additional Details

Note that this is a currently (14 October 2015) evolving topic. Additional detailed and current information is found at:
Historical information
The most current information is here in this article