PlayStation 2 XLink Kai Setup

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XLink Kai is a multi-platform and peer-to-peer LAN tunneling service which enables users to play system-link / LAN and ad-hoc multiplayer games on their consoles online with people all over the world. XLink Kai was first released in 2003, supporting the Xbox, PS2, and Gamecube at launch, with PSP, PS3, Xbox 360 and others support arriving soon after.

PS2 guide header.jpg

XLink Kai Home Page - https://teamxlink.co.uk
XLink Kai Status Page - https://status.teamxlink.co.uk/
Popular on XLink Twitter Bot - https://twitter.com/PopularOnXLink
Team XLink Official Discord - https://discord.gg/UyyjNpa
Supported Games List - https://www.teamxlink.co.uk/supported-games


Getting started & required hardware

  • A PlayStation 2 console and Network Adaptor depending on PS2 model
  • A PlayStation 2 Memory Card
  • One of the 57 supported games with the LAN feature
  • A game with built-in network setup utility, or a modified console running uLaunchELF
  • A PC/Mac/raspberry Pi
  • 1 or 2 network cables depending on your setup
  • Some form of internet connection


Creating an Account

To begin, you'll need to register for an XLink Kai account and download the program. Click on 'Sign Up' at the top of the XLink Kai home page and fill in your details, then click Submit. You then need to verify your email address and consent to the XLink Kai data collection policy (GDPR compliance). Please be sure to read the Acceptable Use Policy.

Installing XLink Kai

Follow the installation guide for your Operating System:


Supported Games

There are 57 games with the LAN feature for the PlayStation 2. To see if the game you want to play is supported please check the supported games page or look for "Network Adaptor" on the back of the game case.

PS2 LAN game case.jpg

PlayStation 2 Network Hardware

There are two models of PS2 hardware and they way they connect to XLink kai is slightly different.

PlayStation 2 "Fat"

The original model known as the "fat" version requires the Network Adaptor accessory.

PS2 Network Adaptor 1.jpg

PS2 Network Adaptor 2.jpg

The Network Adaptor installs on the back of the console over the expansion bay slot.

PS2 Network Adaptor 3.jpg

PS2 Network Adaptor 4.jpg

PlayStation 2 "Slim"

The newer "slim" model has built in network capability and doesn't need any extra accessories.

PS2 Slim 1.jpg

PS2 Slim 2.jpg

Connecting your PlayStation 2

Wired Connection

The best way to play PlayStation 2 LAN on XLink is with a fully wired set up. You will get the lowest latency (ping) and most stable connection possible.

Connect your PS2 and computer to your router with Ethernet cables as shown below:

PS2 slim connected to router and laptop.jpg PS2 fat connected to router and laptop.jpg

Wireless with PC/Mac/Raspberry Pi

If its impossible to use a wired connection, WiFi can be used instead but the PC/Mac/Raspberry Pi must be connected to the console or your wireless router with an Ethernet cable. The computer running XLink Kai can not be fully wireless and there must be a wired connection to the computer for the network interface going towards the PS2 console.

The easiest way to have a semi-wireless setup is to connect your PC/Mac/Raspberry Pi to your PS2 with an Ethernet cable.

PS2 slim connected to laptop.jpg PS2 fat connected to laptop.jpg

If you computer does not have an Ethernet port a USB Ethernet adapter can be used.

PS2 slim connected to laptop by USB.jpg PS2 fat connected to laptop by USB.jpg

PS2 Network Settings

Every console on XLink Kai needs to be using a unique IP address to avoid conflicts. We do this based on the last 4 digits of your console's unique MAC address. (Think of it like the serial number for the network interface) There are two ways to set the correct IP; Automatic (DHCP) or Manual Static IP setting. If your PS2 is connected directly to your computer with an Ethernet cable like the examples above automatic IP address (DHCP) assignment should work for you just fine as long as XLink Kai is started and logged in before the PS2 is powered on.

If your PS2 is connected to your regular home network or is on your WiFi it is highly recommended you set a Static IP as detailed below. Automatic IP assignment is literally racing against your router to offer an IP address first and will often lose. Setting the IP manually ensures the smoothest experience possible.

If your PS2 is connected directly to your computer and is NOT bridged and Internet Connection Sharing (ICS) is NOT enabled you can safely use Automatic IP addressing aka DHCP. If your PS2 is connected any other way it is highly recommended you use a Static IP address.

Loading the Network Settings Utility

To start, load a game with a built-in network setup utility. This guide will use Star Wars Battlefront as an example.

  1. Select Multiplayer and press X
    PS2 SWBF 1.jpg
  2. Select LAN and press X
    PS2 SWBF 2.jpg
  3. Select OK and press X
    PS2 SWBF 3.jpg
  4. Press Square. The Network Settings Utility will now start.
    PS2 SWBF 4.jpg

Dynamic IP address (DHCP)

To set up a profile for automatic IP addressing follow these steps:

  1. Select Add Setting and press X
    PS2 net DHCP 1.jpg
  2. Select your Memory Card and press X
    PS2 net DHCP 2.jpg
  3. Press the right directional button
    PS2 net DHCP 3.jpg
  4. Press X then press the right directional button
    PS2 net DHCP 4.jpg
  5. Select OK then press X
    PS2 net DHCP 5.jpg
  6. Select Not Required then press the right directional button
    PS2 net DHCP 6.jpg
  7. Select Auto then press the right directional button
    PS2 net DHCP 7.jpg
  8. Select Auto then press the right directional button
    PS2 net DHCP 8.jpg
  9. Press X
    PS2 net DHCP 9.jpg
  10. Write an easily recognizable name to say what this network profile is used for. Press START when complete.
    PS2 net DHCP 10.jpg
  11. Press the right directional button
    PS2 net DHCP 11.jpg
  12. Press X to save the network profile.
    PS2 net DHCP 12.jpg
    PS2 net DHCP 13.jpg
  13. Press X
    PS2 net DHCP 14.jpg
  14. Select No and press X
    Note: If you do run the connection test it will always fail, this is normal.
    PS2 net DHCP 15.jpg
  15. Press X to return to the main menu. Your network profile is now configured.
    PS2 net DHCP 16.jpg

Static IP address (Manual)

To set up a profile for static//manual IP addressing follow these steps:

  1. Select Add Setting and press X
    PS2 net DHCP 1.jpg
  2. Select your Memory Card and press X
    PS2 net DHCP 2.jpg
  3. Press the right directional button
    PS2 net DHCP 3.jpg
  4. Press X then press the right directional button
    PS2 net DHCP 4.jpg
  5. Select OK then press X
    PS2 net DHCP 5.jpg
  6. Select Not Required then press the right directional button
    PS2 net DHCP 6.jpg
  7. Select Auto then press the right directional button
    (More on this later)
    PS2 net DHCP 7.jpg
  8. Select Auto then press the right directional button
    (More on this later)
    PS2 net DHCP 8.jpg
  9. Leave the name as is. Press the right directional button
    PS2 net DHCP 9.jpg
  10. Write down the last 4 digits of the MAC Address , in this example A1 60
    This automatic/DHCP profile was set up just to get the MAC Address, we don't need this profile. Press O to cancel.
    PS2 net static 1.jpg
  11. Select Yes and then press X
    PS2 net static 2.jpg
  12. Back on the main screen select Add Setting and press X
    PS2 net DHCP 1.jpg
  13. Select your Memory Card and press X
    PS2 net DHCP 2.jpg
  14. Press the right directional button
    PS2 net DHCP 3.jpg
  15. Press X then press the right directional button
    PS2 net DHCP 4.jpg
  16. Select OK then press X
    PS2 net DHCP 5.jpg
  17. Select Not Required then press the right directional button
    PS2 net DHCP 6.jpg
  18. Select Manual and press X then press the right directional button
    PS2 net static 3.jpg
  19. Using the last 4 digits of the MAC Address you write down use the IP address calculator at http://www.teamxlink.co.uk/ipcalculator/
    Select Sony Playstation 2, enter the 4 digits, then click Calculate IP Address.
    Note: Your results will be different than what is shown below, this is just an example.
    PS2 net static 5.jpg
  20. Select IP Address then press X
    PS2 net static 4.jpg
  21. Enter the IP address provided by the calculator.
    PS2 net static 6.jpg
  22. Enter the Netmask and Default router as well then press the right directional button
    PS2 net static 7.jpg
  23. Select Manual and press X then press the right directional button
    PS2 net static 8.jpg
  24. Enter the IP address 10.253.0.1 for the Primary DNS setting then press the right directional button
    PS2 net static 9.jpg
  25. Press X
    PS2 net static 10.jpg
  26. Write an easily recognizable name to say what this network profile is used for. Press START when complete.
    PS2 net static 11.jpg
  27. Press the right directional button
    PS2 net static 12.jpg
  28. Press X to save the network profile.
    PS2 net static 13.jpg
    PS2 net static 14.jpg
  29. Press X
    PS2 net static 15.jpg
  30. Select No and press X
    Note: If you do run the connection test it will always fail, this is normal.
    PS2 net DHCP 15.jpg
  31. Press X to return to the main menu. Your network profile is now configured.
    PS2 net DHCP 16.jpg
  32. Back on the main screen press O
    PS2 net DHCP 1.jpg
  33. Select Quit and press X
    PS2 net static 16.jpg

Playing a game on XLink Kai

  1. Start XLink Kai and log in.
  2. Power on your PS2 and load a game with LAN support. This guide will use Star Wars Battlefront as an example.
    PS2 guide header.jpg
  3. Click Game Arenas at the top
    PS2 gameplay 1.jpg
  4. Navigate to the Star Wars Battlefront arena using the directory on the left.
    PS2 gameplay 2.jpg
  5. On your PS2 start the game and select Multiplayer then press X
    PS2 gameplay 3.jpg
  6. Select LAN then press X
    PS2 gameplay 4.jpg
  7. Press X
    PS2 gameplay 5.jpg
  8. Select the network adaptor profile you created then press X
    PS2 gameplay 6.jpg
  9. Select Join or Create as appropriate then press X
    PS2 gameplay 7.jpg
  10. Start searching for matches or create a match then click Metrics and scroll down a little. Your PS2 should be shown along with 'Configured OK'. If not check your network setup!
    PS2 gameplay 8.jpg
  11. You're now ready to go! Join a match and play! Happy gaming!
    PS2 gameplay 9.jpg


Finding players

If you are having trouble finding other players to game with please join our Discord chat and use the various game-specific channels. There are also several fan-run discords that host regular game nights.

Troubleshooting

  • How long does it take to set XLink up?

This varies on a user to user basis. For example, a user with their hardware already set up using methods one or two, and UPnP enabled in their router may be able to simply download the program and get going in under 10-15 minutes, whereas a user with a router that requires manual port forwarding, and who made need to source a USB Ethernet adapter for Kai may take an hour or so to get set up, when troubleshooting time is factored in.

  • Does XLink support modded consoles?

Yep, all systems are supported regardless of whether they're retail or modded.

  • Can I play with people on a different orbital server from me?

Yes, only chat and arena data passes through the orbital servers. Game traffic is completely peer-to-peer.

  • Do I need to bridge my two adapters or use internet connection sharing for hardware setup method two?

Nope, only the computer needs to have a connection to the internet, not the console.

  • XLink doesn't start up

On Windows, this is usually due to WinPcap/Npcap not being installed. On any OS, this can also be due to you not being connected to the internet.

  • I can't access LAN mode. It is greyed out in game

Check that the Ethernet cable is firmly plugged in on both ends. If that doesn't fix it try using a different Ethernet cable and ensure that there are no issues with the Ethernet port on both the PS2 and the PC/router.

  • I disconnected from a match and can't rejoin

Restarting XLink should do the trick.

  • Other users have 'No connection' under their names

This indicates that XLink cannot make a P2P connection to the user, and that either your port or the user's is closed. If both users have port forwarding set up correctly, try restarting the XLink Kai client. If that fails, restart your router. Ensure that you also do not have DMZ enabled on your router for any IP address. UPnP as a protocol can be rather unreliable so if this happens a lot for you, try switching to manual port forwarding.

  • I've manually port forwarded but I still get 'No connection'

If you have two or more routers on your network (you are double NATted), you should set one of them to bridge mode so only one router is performing NAT. If you only have one router, double check that port forwarding has been done correctly: the rule needs to be applied to the IP address of your computer running Kai, UDP selected as the protocol, and the port then manually set in Kai's configuration menu.

  • I can see my console and establish a ping to all other users but I can't see matches

Make sure you have the same game updates as the other players and get any other user in your arena to search for matches while you have the metrics tab open, then check if broadcast traffic inbound flashes a 1 or some other value. If it remains 0, double check there are no firewalls on your network that XLink Kai has not been set as an exception in. If you can detect other users' consoles, read on.

  • I can see my console and establish a ping to all other users, plus see broadcast traffic inbound but I can't see matches

Make sure you have the same game updates as the other players. Search for games, then ask users in the arena to check if they see your console under your profile. An alternative method of checking this is looking at outbound broadcast traffic under metrics while searching. Upon doing this, your console should be visible to all other users. If ethernet adapter shows "no traffic", navigate to the configuration menu and select your adapter manually. If you cannot see your adapter, refer to the issue below. If your consoles are visible to each other under your profiles, check if the game you are playing has any issues with region locks, ping limits, or update version incompatibilities (this info is usually pinned in the XLink arenas for the games).

  • I cannot see my network adapter in the configuration menu

If you are on Windows, there is a WinPcap bug which occurs if a network adapter's drivers are installed after WinPcap is installed. To resolve this, open an admin command prompt or powershell, and type in net stop npf followed by net start npf.