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  • Announcements


    Capt Roberts
    The S-1 Personnel Staff, Headquarters, and Command Staff of the 15th MEU Realism Unit would like to congratulate the following individuals for successfully meeting the requirements and approval for promotion. They are to be afforded the respect that accompanies their new rank, and will be expected to uphold their new responsibilities and higher standards as is appropriate. We wish them continued success in their e-Marine careers. 
    Approved by the Command Staff, Effective 17JUN18
     
     
    Promoted to the rank of Captain (Capt)
    1stLt Johansen, D
     
    Promoted to the rank of First Lieutenant (1stLt)
    2ndLt Stewart, B. D.
     
    Promoted to the rank of Second Lieutenant (2ndLt)
    SNA Charboneau, P
    SNA Olivella, L
     
    Promoted to the rank of Sergeant (Sgt)
    Cpl Flavin, A
    Cpl Genge, C
     
    Promoted to the rank of Hospital Corpsman Second Class (HM2)
    HM3 Lockworth, S
     
    Promoted to the rank of Corporal (Cpl)
    LCpl Breach, D
     
    Promoted to the rank of Lance Corporal (LCpl)
    PFC Nissen, M 
     
     


    Col Penny
    Attention All Hands,
     
    Following up with last cycle's post regarding server issues I would like to get everyone into the loop to what's going on now.
     
    Task Force Alpha, essentially, accidentally ran next week's test. The ping kicker was accidentally left off prior to the first catastrophic server crash (although the kicker for desync was left on). Task Force Bravo also had both of these disabled. Prior to combat I tried to keep an eye on ping/desync for Task Force Bravo, and everyone was below 250 ping and no desync, which is good. Once combat hit though, and given the other issues, I was unable to continue to look at this. Task Force Alpha's server was rebooted after the initial crash, re-enabling the ping and desync kicker. From this moment on they had no issues.
     
    We also encountered issues within the mission itself not related to players. We noted heavy desync increases when utilizing Zeus Artillery, especially heavy or concentrated fire. We also noted major jumps in playability when removing groups in buildings with ACE Garrison. This was also slightly marked with enemy air assets.
     
    We could also be experiencing issues with JSRS. It's still unknown exactly what caused the issues for Task Force Bravo to be unable to hear gunfire. What we did conclude was that gunfire was unable to be heard from downrange, though we could still initially hear it during testing by being right next to the OPFOR. Initially we believed this to be an issue with only GHM and BRG units, but it was also claimed to be heard with ChDKZ units (however many of these claims came during a period of time when there were zero enemy units on the map at all, so the complaint is suspect). Task Force Alpha had none of these issues.
     
    All of this could, also, be related to Tanoa, or at the very least the specific area of Tanoa Task Force Bravo was operating in. We also determined that, given the marked improvement for even Task Force Bravo with no 'safety net' that the datacenter hosting the Unit's server box is subpar. This server will likely be scrapped and we will move forward with the new procurement.
     
    We also noted some things we can do better on the S-Shop end of things to improve performance and cooperation. This includes the server load-in method. We are not seeing any marked improvement for performance using the all-in load-in method, and Zeus is instead suffering in focus and effectiveness. Thus we will be returning to the piecemeal method to allow Zeus time to set up and concentrate without rush.
     
    To summarize all of the above:
     
    Task Force Alpha's year-long issues can be linked to a particular set of personnel. TFA crashed initially due to a few reasons, but one of which was the ping kicker was not enabled (desync kicker was, that's why you saw some personnel kicked). TFB did not have these enabled either, and did not have as many issues (ie. server crashing). Ping/desync kicker is going to need to be enabled for the first time in Unit history (thanks ArmA). Changes to the coding have now made higher ping level unforgiving. JSRS is likely an issue, again. It should probably be removed from client side approved again. It's only partially confirmed it caused the inability to hear gunfire. This will continue to be evaluated, though it is recommended you cease running it. •The Unit Server Box datacenter is subpar (though the hardware was in a class of its own) and also likely contributed to TFA's issues this year. It should be canceled and scrapped. Zeus needs to lighten up on the artillery shells. It will not go away entirely, but it will be markedly less. ACE Garrison is wonky. TFB server FPS went from 19 (AI and players skating around the map) to 24 (passable) by removing garrisoned AI. This should be avoided. We are not gaining any marked server performance with 'all in one' join, and Zeus' performance is suffering because they are being rushed. We will return to piecemeal load (except for server crashes/reboots) and allow Zeus their set-up time again. S-4 Mission Team needs to be included on S-2's 'plan' so they can pre-place AI and objectives better on the mission file. This will not only enhance the experience, but server performance from pre-spawned AI and Zeus from rushing all the time. Enemy Air Assets need to be limited in their runs, much like ours. A Ka-52 was left free over TFB and not only did it wreak havoc on a TF that had no protection, it impacted the server quite a bit. These should be available for time intervals and then removed if they are not pursued or destroyed by ACE in that time. Potential for Tanoa to be fucking us over, but there's little we can do about that. Some of TFB's issues may have been related to the specific area we were in.  
    The ping/desync kicker will be implemented effective immediately. For OP 04-18 it will be set at 450 ping and 1700 desync. Immediately following OP 04-18 these will be lowered to 300 ping and 1500 desync, and remain in effect until the ArmA code changes to be more forgiving again.
     
    Tests are, for the most part, concluded, and we should begin to see marked server improvement beginning this week with these new implementations. Further issues are likely to be related specifically to ArmA updates/mod issues (because of, or independent of, ArmA or other mod updates), the map, or (currently) JSRS specifically.
     
    -Col Penny
    MEU CO

    Col Penny
    Attention All Hands,
     
    This coming Sunday, 17JUN18 is Father's Day. Originally we were scheduled to have this operation off. However, given recent events of the past few operations, we feel it would be inappropriate to cancel this operation, and rather we should carry our positive momentum forward and finally have a good operation.
     
    Because of this we are going to have an operation. However, given that it is Father's Day, this operation will be non-mandatory. That means all absences are excused in light of the holiday and you are not required to attend (however if you're not attending festivities why wouldn't you?).
     
    Have a Happy Father's Day. And don't forget to call your dad. We'll see most of you Sunday.
     
    -Col Penny
    MEU CO

    Capt Roberts
    The S-1 Personnel Staff, Headquarters, and Command Staff of the 15th MEU Realism Unit would like to congratulate the following individuals for successfully meeting the requirements and approval for promotion. They are to be afforded the respect that accompanies their new rank, and will be expected to uphold their new responsibilities and higher standards as is appropriate. We wish them continued success in their e-Marine careers. 
    Approved by the Command Staff, Effective 03JUN18
     
    Promoted to the rank of Second Lieutenant (2ndLt)
    SNA Lebowski, J
    SNA McCoy, J
     
    Promoted to the rank of Gunnery Sergeant (GySgt)
    SSggt Caesar, P
     
    Promoted to the rank of Corporal (Cpl)
    LCpl Wilson, M
     
     
    Promoted to the rank of Lance Corporal (LCpl)
    PFC Adam, S
    PFC Dykes, R
    PFC Nguyen, T. T.
     
    Promoted to the rank of Hospitalman (HN)
    HA Krisanits, M
     
    Promoted to the rank of Private First Class (PFC)
    Pvt Johnson, D
    Pvt Tater, Herbie
     

     

    Col Penny
    FROM THE DESK OF THE MEU CO
    21JUL18 (IGT)
    0930 Local (IGT)
     
    Sailors and Marines of the 15th MEU (SOC) [Realism Unit],
     
    We have been tasked with a difficult job: The recent cyclone and flooding of the island of Tanoa has devastated the local civilian populace and further destabilized the local government, who is already in the midst of a growing insurgency. We, having been in the area, were tasked to assist the local government with relief efforts and to quell the unrest. Another power of the area, the Democratic Republic of Borneo has also sent forces to the area to assist.
     
    It seems we may have ruined some of their plans.
     
    Approximately two hours ago forces of our India Company were conducting searches in our agreed-upon area of operation to find intelligence on the local insurgency. For this, as normal, we had rotary forces deployed in support. An unknown aircraft, since confirmed as a member of the air forces of Borneo, shot down and injured Marines operating one of our aircraft. Flying CAP in the area along the No Fly Zone, one of our F-35 pilots witnessed this and sprang into action to prevent further injury or loss of life. In his zeal to protect his comrades, this pilot crossed the No Fly Zone, which seems to be exactly what the Borneans wanted. Almost immediately artillery units of the Borneo Revolutionary Guard deployed to the area opened fire on India Company and attached elements, forcing them to take cover in the local jungle. Air forces of the BRG were further deployed to intercept our air assets, harass our ground troops, and even mounted an attack on the ESG Matthew Barton.
     
    I have since spoken with USPACOM, the Joint Chiefs, and the President. It is agreed that the rapidity and eagerness of the response by Borneo troops means they expected us to do exactly as we did and that we were led to such actions. We suspect that Borneo was going to attempt to utilize the recent natural disaster and local insurgency to expand their territorial holdings and take control of the island of Tanoa. The President has directed the 15th MEU to prevent this from happening.
     
    Intelligence has reached us that Bornean troops are now on the move across the borders of our agreed-upon area of operations. Effectively immediately I have given orders to our air forces that a No Fly Zone no longer exists for anyone except Bornean Air Forces, and they are to execute such a No Fly Zone aggressively. We have been directed, and orders are coming to you as you read this, directing our forces to intercept and block the movements of aggression of Bornean troops. It is no question that a state of war now exists between the Democratic Republic of Borneo and the United States of America. As the Tip of the Spear of US forces in the area we must, and will, aggressively defend not only ourselves, but our local Tanoan allies. We will seek out and kill anyone who attempts to hurt us or our allies. The Borneans must also deal with the local insurgency, so neither of us are in for a fun fight. A three-way war between a well-trained and well-equipped conventional enemy nation and a local insurgency who is convinced God sent them to kill Americans is nothing anyone hopes for... but if there's one Unit who can handle it it's on the ground right now.
     
    Reinforcements are on the way, but I don't think I'm the only one who says we don't need them. We can take care of this mess. Let's do so and go home, and leave the Army to clean it up after us.
     
    Ooh-rah.
     
    -Col Penny
    MEU CO

    Col Penny
    Attention All Hands,
     
    'Furious' and 'spitting mad' are phrases that can perfectly encapsulate the response to the OP 02-18 actions, and yet still not even come close to understand exactly how angry very nearly everyone - including myself - were at what occurred that night... or rather didn't occur. Because of this I thought it would be good for you to all understand what happened, and what will be happening going forward for the rest of this deployment.
     
    OP 02-18 was intended to be the consummate COIN operation. GCE would have been searching the structures that they did, but they would have found something. The intelligence found would have represented very important repercussions to the main story line plot (of which many of you have been grossly under-informed about) and had lasting and damning consequences for our stay on Tanoa. This was directed, however it was failed to be relayed to the Zeus Guide, and thus failed to be executed.
     
    During your search GCE was intended to take constant harassing fire by local insurgents. This was not a large force. At most there would have been 10 enemies total, but in most occasions no more than a team, constantly stalking GCE and harassing them with small mortars and small arms fire. It would have been frustrating and yet interesting, because it would have been exactly what is encountered in the real world. This was relayed, however it was not executed. Both TFA and TFB experienced, and return, no gunfire at all. In some case no enemies were spawned at all, and in some cases small amounts of enemies were spawned, but in no areas nearby of GCE for them to actually engage and... you know... matter.
     
    After stomping around the H&S Channels finding out who I was going to fire, or at the very least NJP, the following courses of action are being implemented to ensure a productive and enjoyable Sunday operation is had by all parties:
     
    COIN is done. This is not just because of the storyline, but by know I hope you all understand that COIN in ArmA is not only not fun, but highly difficult to execute without a system like ALiVE - which no one wants to get into. Beyond that almost every here is here for fun and action. COIN Operations provide this for very few people, and that is only those who get to actually operate. The 'vote' held previous to this deployment which showed COIN was heavily favored and wanted prompted the course of action the first few operations of this deployment have taken. You all should know finally see and understand why this is terrible, and why most of our deployments (and all of our successful ones) have been fully kinetic ground wars. This Unit emulates the Marine Corps, but we do not simulate it. Our deployments will be highly kinetic ground wars with focus on action and fun. I hope you all now understand this... we will revisit it in two years when the new blood clamors for it and the old new bloods forget. The 'chess match' of S-2 versus S-3 is done. The last successful 'chess match' was between MSgt Phillips and I when we were directing operations, however it was less departmentalized and closeted than it is currently. S-2 and S-3 will now be working hand-in-hand to direct the OPFOR and BLUFOR movements to insure a healthy and fun operation. Some of these may be lighter operations than others, but these days of 'oh you moved to an empty square, no enemies there, sorry' are over. OPORDs and all S-3 movements will be approved by MEU HQ prior to publication. MEU HQ will work hand-in-hand with S-3 to ensure movements are realistic and provide a fun and dynamic atmosphere for everyone. Failure to follow through with this work will result in formal disciplinary action, and possible replacement. S-2 Intel Reports and OPFOR movements will be approved by MEU HQ prior to publication or enaction. MEU HQ will work hand-in-hand with S-2 to ensure all movements and actions are realistic and provide a fun and dynamic atmosphere for everyone. Failure to follow through with this work will result in formal disciplinary action, and possible replacement. All Zeus Guides will be reviewed and approved by MEU HQ prior to publication. These guides will be filled with plenty of action, dictating realistic movements of the enemy, and will provide a fun and dynamic atmosphere for everyone. Failure to execute these guides properly will result in formal disciplinary actions, and possible replacement.  
    I am further preparing other actions which will dictate next year's deployment. I am not prepared to divulge those actions yet, as they are still in the infantile brainstorming stages, but they could end up involving other units, with our units and other existing on the same universal plane. These will not only involve dynamic story elements all over the world, but open avenues for joint operations with other units during deployment.
     
    OP 02-18 was beyond unacceptable by the standards and expectations of not only MEU HQ, but every individual in this Unit. It is the last in a string is miscues and lack of execution that starts with MEU HQ. It will not be repeated.
     
    -Col Penny
    MEU CO

    Col Penny
    Attention All Hands,
     
    The last few weeks we have been testing and changing many settings and possibilities with our servers, which have not been working in the year of 2018 as we expect them too. These can be drawn back to a multitude of reasons, most especially mod and ArmA updates, but that doesn't really tell the whole story. I will attempt to break that down somewhat, as best I can.
     
    Updates
    There is really not much we can do here. We are all at the mercy of the updates to ArmA, and any changes they do are effective to everyone immediately, and there is no stopping it. In ArmA 1 and ArmA 2 we were able to tell people to hold off of updates until those updates had been vetted, and any possible hotfixes had been made, if needed. Unfortunately the nature of ArmA 3 and Steam makes this impossible now. As such we are at their mercy. We have recently switched to Steam distribution of our major mods (CUP Terrains, ACE, RHS) in order to keep us in line with these major updates. If a major update is applied to ArmA, we are able to follow the immediate update of these major mods through their Steam distribution, without worry of missing them because it's too late to update our repo or to get people to update.
     
    Unfortunately there is nothing much more we can do on this front. We can be more diligent on the types of mods we add to our pack (ie. the SU-34 that was added to the OPFOR pack and was explicitly told not to be used... but why was it added in the first place in that case? Or the invisible MiGs) but the updating and any possible instability from those updates are something we cannot do anything about until it happens, really (like the cTab memory leak).
     
    Hardware
    Many people have brought up concerns of hardware. Allow me to give you a breakdown of our server hardware:
     
    1 Gbps Dedicated Port Bandwidth Unlimited (10TB Full Speed) 16 GB DDR4 RAM Intel Core i7 6700K 256 GB Primary SSD Drive Windows Server 2012 R2 Standard DDoS Protection 20 Gbps DDoS Protection  
    This is a very powerful server, more than suitable for ours, or anyones needs. This is not a question of hardware.
     
    However. We have, regardless, purchased a secondary server for testing purposes, on the hypothesis that there is an issue with the data center. This server is what Task Force Bravo was operating on during OP 02-18. While the server performed well, it was inconclusive as to whether or not this new server is the/an answer. That will not be clear until after OP 03 or OP 04, depending on the outcomes of tests during those operations.
     
    Settings
    We have talked a lot about server settings during this fiasco. A lot of care and attention has been paid to these settings, being tweaked here and there to attempt to get that sweet spot. I could get in to what we've done with 'Max Guaranteed Bandwidth' and 'Minimum Messages' and a whole bunch of crap.. but I won't. Mostly because it's boring and I don't even understand it all personally. Suffice to say in the majority of settings we have what is required and needed, but we need to talk about one specific setting: Max Ping and Desync.
     
    I spoke about tests earlier. Many of you know that for the past few operations we have been using the MSOT server box to load balance our servers in attempt to see that the issues are. In OP 01-18 Task Force Alpha operated on the Unit Server Box, while Task Force Bravo operated on the MSOT Server Box. Both servers ran the exact same settings, with the exception of this ping/desync kick setting. TFA did not have this enabled. TFB had this enabled for all pings over 450, and desync for over 9000. TFB ran at 45 FPS all night, with no issues. TFA crashed. Catastrophically.
     
    This is when Maj Thomas purchased a new server box (hereafter referred to as the Thomas Server Box). OP 02-18 saw TFA operating on the MSOT Server Box, and TFB operating on the Thomas Server Box. Both servers had the exact same settings, including the ping/desync kicker. Both servers ran at 45 FPS all night. However because of the lack of OPFOR, this is an inconclusive test, though one that does draw some very concerning conclusions.
     
    OP 03-18 is going to see a follow-up tests. Company HQ and 1stLt McNeely are already aware of this impending test, as well as anyone who read my post in the Tun Tavern (forums or Discord). OP 03-18 will again see TFA on the MSOT Server Box, running the same settings. TFB will be operating on the Thomas Server Box, however we will be removing the ping/desync kicker. There are two possibilities of the outcome:
     
    1) TFB runs with no issues. This points to either an issue with the Unit Server Box or the specific personnel makeup of Task Force Alpha, with a handful of individuals causing the lacking server performance
    2) TFB runs with many issues. This points to a fundamental change in the netcode of ArmA, no longer being so forgiving to those with higher desync and ping.
     
    In the case of outcome #1, we will in OP 04-18 be placing TFB on the MSOT Server Box with the 'control' settings, and TFA on the Thomas Server Box without the ping/desync kicker. If it performs without issue, then we know the Unit Server Box was an issue, and it will be cancelled, and MEU HQ will foot the bill for the Thomas Server Box and an additional server box to compensate (the Thomas Server Box is a smaller VPS that is less able to run two full-sized Task Forces at once) until September, when donations were collected through. If it performs with issues, then we know it is a specific personnel composition to Task Force Alpha.
     
    In the case of outcome #2, we will be forced to permanently implement the ping/desync kicker on our Task Force Servers. This will lead to many of our Asian, Australian, Eastern European, and some Western European members being unable to join us anymore, and close off that avenue for a long time to come. If it comes to this, we will be discussing the opening of a sister/child unit catering specifically to these regions, or directing those interested to other units with which we already have close contact that cater to these regions. This will be a public discussion for all of those affected.
     
     
     
     
    I understand you are all frustrated. Believe me, so am I. Most of you understand that we have been working on this furiously, however there are some of you who would like to ignore that fact. This Unit has been through many such trials and tribulations that ArmA likes to throw at us. You can cower and point fingers and cry and quit if you like, lacking the fortitude and will to weather issues like your brothers and sisters of the Unit deserve; or you can buckle down and raise one another up. We all come here for Sundays, obviously, and we will always do everything we can to make those enjoyable and memorable experiences. But we all stay here for the ones beside us. Don't forget that.
     
    We are on the cusp of having this fully solved. It may be May, basically June now, but this has been a more... interesting... year that ArmA has given us. So let's make the second half our little bitch, shall we?
     
    -Col Penny
    MEU CO

    Capt Roberts
    The S-1 Personnel Staff, Headquarters, and Command Staff of the 15th MEU Realism Unit would like to congratulate the following individuals for successfully meeting the requirements and approval for promotion. They are to be afforded the respect that accompanies their new rank, and will be expected to uphold their new responsibilities and higher standards as is appropriate. We wish them continued success in their e-Marine careers. 
    Approved by the Command Staff, Effective 06MAY18
     
     
    Promoted to the rank of First Lieutenant (1stLt)
    2ndLt Towers
     
     
    Promoted to the rank of Sergeant (Sgt)
    Cpl Johnson, A, B.
     
     
    Promoted to the rank of Corporal (Cpl)
    LCpl Bass, B
    LCpl Glenn, J
    LCpl Lacey, J
    LCpl Lee, J, I.
    LCpl Padgett, C
    LCpl Sweet, J
     
     
    Promoted to the rank of Lance Corporal (LCpl)
    PFC Anderson, G
    PFC Bing, D
    PFC Jefferies, B
    PFC Roark, J
    PFC Wilder, D
    PFC Bern, E 
    PFC Chevy, S
    PFC Khodadad, S 
    PFC Rheel, J 
    PFC Shipman, S 
    PFC Tarver, A 
    PFC Thompson, J 
    PFC Trevelyan, W 
     
     
    Promoted to the rank of Private First Class (PFC)
    Pvt Bowman, G
    Pvt Carr, C
    Pvt Cuendis, D
    Pvt Hunter, M
    Pvt Jefferies, J
    Pvt McLaughlin, M
    Pvt Olivera, M
    Pvt Smith, J
    Pvt Smith, T
    Pvt Stearns, D
    Pvt Uno, A
    Pvt Wanner, L
     
     
    Promoted to the rank of Hospitalisation Apprentice (HA)
    HR Lowther, J
     
     


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