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Great Program - A Couple of Small Issues

 
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ETPhHm
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2014 3:19 am    Post subject: Great Program - A Couple of Small Issues Reply with quote

Hey there Mario,

Great program, been using it for years. I noticed a couple of minor issues that may not be an issue at all, but I thought I'd mention them.

I have been experiencing a lag in the "High Bid" price shown on GDM compared to eBay several times in the past few days (maybe longer, but I just began to notice it). Prior to this morning, I was using GDM ver. 1.4. So I checked and noticed ver. 1.4.2 released and installed it this morning but the problem still occurs.

So with GDM ver. 1.4.2 installed on my XP system, I had several snipes set to go which were showing on GDM as "SCHEDULED" with the Price refresh interval set to, "Variable (default)." I had been doing some other work from my PC (web browsing and MS Office) all day long and left GDM running in the background (not minimized).

Later in the afternoon, I returned to GDM and clicked the "Refresh Gixen Status" button and it completed saying "Done refreshing prices" at the bottom. I went to eBay and looked up the same item and noticed the price was higher than what GDM was showing for my snipe in the "High Bid" column. I thought, the Gixen server probably has a slight lag from the eBay servers.

In my browser while logged into the eBay site, I clicked on the bid activity for the item and then clicked, "Show automatic bids." The last bid on eBay showing a higher value than GDM had occurred over 4.5 hours earlier than when I clicked the "Refresh Gixen Status" button (accounting for time zone differences where I am and eBay). This seems pretty excessive and was wondering if this is intended?

Interestingly enough though, after about 2 or 3 minutes of having checked the price on eBay, GDM automatically refreshed and showed the same High Bid as eBay; I am not sure if that was coincidental or something I did to excite GDM.

Also, there appears to be another issue, maybe considered minor or unavoidable. When a snipe is no longer effective due to the "High Bid" being more than the "Max Bid" in GDM, the item in GDM turns yellow alerting the user that the snipe will not be successful. However, GDM fails to consider the incremental bid requirements of eBay as follows:

Current price - Bid increment
$ 0.01 - $ 0.99 min. incr $ 0.05
$ 1.00 - $ 4.99 min. incr $ 0.25
$ 5.00 - $ 24.99 min. incr $ 0.50
$ 25.00 - $ 99.99 min. incr $ 1.00
$ 100.00 - $ 249.99 min. incr $ 2.50
$ 250.00 - $ 499.99 min. incr $ 5.00
$ 500.00 - $ 999.99 min. incr $ 10.00
$ 1000.00 - $ 2499.99 min. incr $ 25.00
$ 2500.00 - $ 4999.99 min. incr $ 50.00
$ 5000.00 and up min. incr $ 100.00

Therefore, if for example I have a snipe set up with a "Max Bid" of $275, and the current "High Bid" is $274, GDM still lists it as a valid bid, but it will not be valid when executed at the end of the auction because the minimum bid would be $279 (274 + 5 incr). Maybe I am missing some important things, but this seems like a very minor fix to build these minimum increments into GDM. Normally if you have only a couple of snipes going its not that big of deal to catch the problem and correct it on GDM, but if a person has a dozen snipes or so going with groupings and so forth, this may become more of an issue (at least to me anyway).

I hope I haven't sounded like a whiner and complainer because I have really enjoyed GDM over the years, and I have far more good things to say about GDM than these minor issues which I have described. Please let me know your thoughts, and thank you in advance.

ETPhHm
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2014 3:19 am    Post subject: Great Program - A Couple of Small Issues

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Cupid



Joined: 09 Aug 2007
Posts: 5549
Location: Bristol, UK

PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2014 3:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

ETPhHm,

I also responded to this post where you first posted it...

When you push the 'Update Gixen Status' button what that means is get all the values held on the Gixen servers... so you get all the prices from the Gixen servers too, the Gixen servers only update prices periodically, 4.5 hours is certainly not an unusual lag, that is one of the primary reasons people use the GDM, since it updates more regularly... so those retrieved prices may well be much more out of date than the ones that are held in the GDM which are retrieved direct from Ebay using your own resources... so the operation you experience in that respect is as intended and expected.

Maybe this could be turned into a suggestion that the 'Update Gixen Status' should not update the current price field if the GDM already has a value for that since if it does it is more likely to be up to date than the one on the Gixen server.

The bid increment issue is not one I have experienced, certainly it is taken into account in the web interface implementation of this feature, Mario will need to investigate and comment on any differences with the method used by the GDM.
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ETPhHm
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2014 4:51 am    Post subject: Lag Issue Reply with quote

Cupid - Thanks for the reply, however I am a little confused by your post. It seems like you are saying that the "Refresh Gixen Status" button does something different than the automatic price refresh interval that occurs in GDM. You wrote:

Quote:
"When you push the 'Update Gixen Status' button what that means is get all the values held on the Gixen servers..."


So I assume that when you click it, you are not seeing the actual eBay High Bid in GDM, but rather the price that the Gixen server has stored since its last update.

You also said:

Quote:
"so those retrieved prices may well be much more out of date than the ones that are held in the GDM which are retrieved direct from Ebay using your own resources..."


That statement seems that either you are saying: (1) GDM gets its High Bid data from eBay when it does the automatic price refresh according to the Settings Preferences (if that is what you are saying it seems strange that GDM would work that way). Or, (2) You are saying that GDM only gets it High Bid data from eBay when you create a new snipe or "Edit" an existing snipe in your list, and click "Update." Are you saying either of these or have I completely misunderstood you?

You also wrote:

Quote:
"The bid increment issue is not one I have experienced, certainly it is taken into account in the web interface implementation of this feature,"


Again, I am not quite understanding your point... Are you saying GDM does take into account the required bid increment based on the current bid price? I am positive it does not. You can very easily demonstrate this by editing a snipe and changing the "Max Bid" price so that it is less than the required bid increment that eBay has established for auctions. As long as your "Max Bid" is above the "High Bid" price (even by $0.01), GDM lists it as a valid bid (no highlighting). But if you reduce your "Max Bid" below the current "High Bid," the snipe turns yellow, indicating the bid is not valid. It really isn't rocket science, GDM just needs to take the info I posted above which I received from eBay into account when it determines whether or not to highlight a snipe in yellow or not.

Thanks for helping!
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Cupid



Joined: 09 Aug 2007
Posts: 5549
Location: Bristol, UK

PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2014 5:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am sorry if I was not clear, the GDM gets its data direct from Ebay when it does a price refresh, that is so that it is more up to date than geting it from the Gixen servers.

The price update is costly in terms of computing resources, especially when you consider how many thousands of snipes Gixen is maintaining at any one time, that is why the Gixen servers only do it periodically. The GDM was developed primarily to do it using your own computer so that the resources required have no impact on the Gixen servers whose primary role is to place snipes not update prices for existing snipes, since that has no impact on the sniping process. This is the major advantage of using the GDM for users that want more frequent updates on prices.

When you ask for the GDM to do a Refresh Gixen Status update it goes back to the Gixen servers for all the data.

It is the Gixen server that only gets the high price data when you add a new snipe or edit an existing one, not the GDM.

I have no idea whether or not the GDM takes into account the bid increment data and rules in the same way that the web interface does, from your statement it appears that it does not... all I am saying is that the implementation in the web interface certainly does take them into consideration and works as you suggest and would hope... only Mario can tell us whether or not there are any differences in the implementation.
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Last edited by Cupid on Sun Sep 14, 2014 11:21 am; edited 1 time in total
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ETPhHm
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2014 10:29 am    Post subject: Great Program - A Couple of Small Issues Reply with quote

OK Cupid, I have learned a little bit more and here is what I have found:

I noticed that when I change my "Max Bid" on the web interface, GDM will not update the "Max Bid" after the price refresh interval has completed, so I assume the only thing that is updated after a price refresh interval has elapsed, is the "High Bid" which is retrieved from eBay. And, if the price refresh is set to the default setting, the "High Bid" may be displayed inaccurately for a long period of time until the variable auto-refresh occurs. The "Refresh Gixen Status" button however, does not update the "High Bid" with the most current price from eBay, but does update the "Max Bid" that the Gixen servers are scheduled to snipe.

So what that tells me is that If I want to ensure that GDM is displaying an accurate "High Bid," I need to set the "Price refresh interval" in the Settings Preferences to a shorter, fixed interval time. Likewise, if I want to make sure GDM is displaying my "Max Bid" correctly for the snipe, I need to click the "Refresh Gixen Status" button.

Mario, (if you wouldn't mind me being a little presumptuous with a recommendation) my suggestion or request here is to modify GDM as follows:

    1. Rename the "Refresh Gixen Status" button to, "Refresh Snipes"
    2. When the "Refresh Snipes" button is clicked, GDM first grabs the "Max Bid" from the Gixen servers (just as GDM currently does). And then in a sub-routine as part of that same click, initiate a command to retrieve the "High Bid" from the eBay servers.

This would cause both prices shown in GDM to reflect accurate information without putting any more load on the Gixen servers than what the button currently does. But currently, GDM doesn't show accurate information about the snipes unless you take certain steps and know how GDM works (I don't think many people do, or it could be that I am just pretty slow Wink).

Also Cupid,

The browser-based web interface of Gixen snipes does indeed handle the minimum bid increment properly and highlights the snipe in yellow if the proper increment is not achieved by your "Max Bid," and I believe that is what you were initially saying. In GDM however, this is not true. Not sure why GDM doesn't have that same feature built-in as does the web interface.

Mario, are there limitations that prevent GDM from having the minimum bid increments built-in so that the highlighting works like the web interface?

Thanks again!
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Cupid



Joined: 09 Aug 2007
Posts: 5549
Location: Bristol, UK

PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2014 11:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree... actually, I think, I suggested that when GDM display is updated with server data that it should trigger a refresh of the prices some time ago... and, if I recall, Mario agreed but I guess has not had time to implement that yet. My suggestion in this thread that the prices are not updated in the GDM from the server if the GDM already has an auction price would also work and might be quicker and easier to implement, it would certainly save your computer having to look them up again from Ebay.

I also agree that the GDM should operate like the web interface when it comes to highlighting snipes that will not result in a bid being submitted. The highlighting is also dependant on the number of bids, for instance a bid at the starting price is acceptable to Ebay when there are no bids, but must be one bid increment higher after someone else has placed an initial bid. It is possible that the GDM does not retrieve the number of bids required for this to operate as in the web interface, however it could be extended to retrieve it from Ebay when it does the auction price updates.
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ETPhHm
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 15, 2014 2:43 am    Post subject: A Coupl of More Apparent Glitches... Reply with quote

Woke up this morning and I had left GDM running on my computer during the night. The Price refresh interval was set to 30 seconds, but it was not refreshing at all even after several minutes. I changed the refresh interval to 5 seconds; still nothing. Then I closed GDM and re-opened it. The prices refreshed as it loaded the snipes from the Gixen server. Something is amiss.

Maybe related to the above problem, GDM does not store the Price refresh settings in Preferences. When you exit GDM, and re-open it, GDM always resets the Price refresh interval to Variable (default). There is an .ini file in the Gixen program folder but it does not get updated at all when Settings are changed.
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mario
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 16, 2014 6:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ETPhHm, I agree with everything you suggested here, I am just very, very busy with Gixen backend, mostly with making sure that everything works as it should after the latest issues with eBay. GDM takes a backseat to that.

I will, however, eventually get to fixing this.

To clarify one thing - when price updates stop, this is probably because the thread in GDM that does them got stuck. It happens, and it's likely to happen if you leave it running for a long time. If you have a limited bandwidth allowance with your ISP I don't recommend leaving GDM working overnight anyway as it has a potential to consume a lot of banwidth. Plus there is no point - you gain nothing by it.
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ETPhHm
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 17, 2014 8:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sounds great Mario, thanks for your kind reply.
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