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April 25, 2013

Setting up Punkbuster PowerPoints (PCUcon control)

by MordyT

Imagine the following. You have a gameserver running punkbuster and you want to give some fellow players a small level of control on the server that is logged. Most of you would say (baring third party tools like B3) that you have to give them the RCON password so they can login and preform the administrative actions.

As it turns out, you don’t need to give out the precious password. And you don’t need anything else  besides punkbuster. Punkbuster has a voting facility built into it that allows players to preform actions that you define.

Here is what you need:

  1. A file called pbpower.dat
  2. A file called pbrcon.dat

These files need to be in the pb folder of your gameserver.

The contents of the pbrcon will look like the following:

25 pb_sv_kick
75 pb_sv_ban

To explain, the number (25 or 75) is the amount of points it needs to pass the vote to execute the command. In the first case, after 25 points are applied to the command pb_sv_kick, it will pass and the server will execute it.

The contents of the pbpower.dat will look like the following:

[08.13.2009 15:00:00] 99 GUIDHERE Mordy

To explain, the first part is the date. The second part is the amount of points I have, 99 in this case. Third is my GUID (full 32), and lastly is my name. The only parts that need to be accurate is points, and GUID. The rest can be any value.

So, using the files above, if I open a full console (Shift + ~), type /pb_power, next to my name i should see a 99 (under the points heading). I can also see my slot number as well as other peoples (usually 4,5, etc).
Then I could type /pb_rcon pb_sv_kick 5 60 kicking you for 60 minutes , and it would kick the player in slot 5 for 60 minutes with the kick message of “kicking you for 60 minutes”. The reason it works is because I have 99 points, it only needs 25 to use the command.

But lets say the pbpower.dat file has me listed as
[08.13.2009 15:00:00] 24 GUIDHERE Mordy
and I tried the command, it wouldn’t work since I need 25 points.

Here comes the nice cool part. If I do that command with 24 points, and then someone else comes in with at least 1 point and does the same command, their 1 point and my 24 combine and =25, the min needed to use that command. And it will kick the player. This allows you to have a voting system.

Some other notes:

  1. You can set what the default number of points a player has in the pbsv.cfg. Normally it is one.
  2. You can see if a command is used and by whom in the pbsv.log
  3. There is another command just for kicking a player for a predetermined amount of time. The time is 5 minutes, set in the pbsv.cfg, and the default points needed (also in pbsv.cfg) is 10. Right now I am willing to bet if 10 players on your server want, they can kick anyone, including you, with this command.
  4. Be careful with the pcrcon.dat file. Make sure there is no blank lines (allows anyone to exec any command), and understand if you define a command like pb_sv, I can use any command that starts with pb_sv such as kick, ban, exec (which executes a command through rcon), etc. Always go as far down the command line (pb_sv_kick instead of pb_sv) since if the first part matches, the end part doesn’t matter.
  5. There is no protection from these commands (unlike b3).  If I have enough points, I can use the command against any player…
  6. PB slots are not the same as B3 slots – /pb_power and /pb_plist give you the slots for PB.

Hopefully that helps. Let me know how it goes!

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