Poker Copilot News for Merge Network

The next Poker Copilot will have some improvements for Merge Network rooms such as Lock Poker, Carbon Poker, and RPM Poker.

The first important improvement is letting you tell Poker Copilot what your “preferred seat” setting is in Merge.

Screen shot 2011 04 30 at 11 07 35 PM

Ideally Poker Copilot would auto-determine this. But Merge Network stores the info in a file whose format I’ve been unable to reverse-engineer.

The second important improvement is finding way to detect the table size:

Screen shot 2011 04 30 at 11 09 37 PM


I solved this one by hard-coding a list of Merge Network table names in Poker Copilot, each with a pre-defined size. So, for example, if you play on any of the “Santiago” tables, Poker Copilot knows this is a 6-player table. Again, not an ideal solution, because when Merge introduces new tables, I’ll need to update Poker Copilot. But until Merge add this information to hand history files it is the best solution I’ve thought of.

There are limits to this approach; so far it only works for real money ring games. Play money and tournaments will need other solutions.


News for Winamax users

It seems yesterday’s Winamax update broke Poker Copilot. However the latest news I heard is that Winamax have today rolled back to the previous update, as there were some problems at their end. So Poker Copilot should work once again. Simply restart Winamax, let it update, and things should work again.

Let me know if this is not the case.


Merge Network – How You Can Help

There are two pieces of information I need to add a specific Merge Network partner to Poker Copilot:

  1. The name of the software while it is running, as seen in Activity Monitor
  2. The name of the folder the software creates under ~/Library (if freshly downloaded, this folder is created after you’ve played at least one hand)

In both cases, case and spaces are important.

For example, for Lock Poker, it is like this:

Screen shot 2011 04 27 at 11 09 40 AM

Screen shot 2011 04 27 at 11 08 55 AM


If you want to see a specific Merge Network partner added, then please post the info I’ve requested in the comments. Or send screenshots as above to




Merge Network Pains – Can You Help?

It’s a recurring pattern and it goes like this:

  1. I download software for a Merge Network partner
  2. I sign up and join
  3. I make a first deposit of US$20, the minimum amount
  4. My account gets suspended almost immediately and I receive a vague email citing security concerns
  5. I need to convince them via email that blocking the developer of possibly the most popular Mac OS X poker tracking software is not so smart

It’s getting tedious, especially now that I’m getting many requests from US players to add any and all Merge Network partners to Poker Copilot.

If you have an account on Players Only (a Merge Network partner), I’d be most grateful if you downloaded and tried this test update of Poker Copilot. Let me know in the comments if the HUD is working for you on Players Only.

Many thanks.


Poker Copilot and Lock Poker

Many American online poker players are moving to Lock Poker and other Merge Network poker rooms following Poker’s Black Friday. Here’s how to make sure Lock Poker is correctly configured for Poker Copilot.

1. In Lock Poker’s Lobby, click on “Settings”

Screen shot 2011 04 23 at 5 31 52 PM


2. Go to the “Game” panel in the Settings window.

3. Make sure the “Keep Hand History” box is checked, with hands saved for “Forever”

4. Click OK


Screen shot 2011 04 23 at 5 32 10 PM

5. Now start (or restart) Poker Copilot. It will detect the Lock Poker hand history folder. The HUD should now also function.


Having problems still? Make sure you have the latest Poker Copilot update.

Update Instructions:

1. Download the latest version here:

2. Open the downloaded file.

3. Drag the Poker Copilot icon to the Applications icon. If prompted to replace an existing version, confirm that you do want to replace.

Now you’re done and ready to hit the tables.

Poker Copilot 2.86 Now Available

Poker Copilot 2.86 is now available to download.

What’s fixed:

  • New PokerStars “short” tables are now recognised correctly
  • Buy-in and winnings in Full Tilt play money tournaments are now handled correctly
  • Fix for change in Winamax tournament summary format

Update Instructions:

  1. Download the latest version here.
  2. Open the downloaded file.
  3. Drag the Poker Copilot icon to the Applications icon. If prompted to replace an existing version, confirm that you do want to replace.

Now you are done and ready to hit the tables.

Why is Poker’s Black Friday a Potential Catastrophe for Me?

Loyal long-time blog reader Sohail asks about Poker’s Black Friday:

I don’t understand the issue for you. I thought most of your customers are outside the US anyway? If so, the online poker sites switch to different domains and life goes on. Maybe a blog post on exactly why online poker is really affected would be useful.

First, roughly 50% of my customers are in the US, give or take 10%. Losing half of your revenue at once is a big hit for any business.

Second, It’s sort of like this: an earthquake in Indonesia in 2004 caused a tidal wave that devastated Sri Lanka some 4,500 kilometres away.

Less cryptically, an anecdote: I met with a German friend of mine yesterday who plays poker online. She is intelligent and a computer professional. Full Tilt Poker stopped working for her a few days ago. Full Tilt’s software wanted to auto-update, but the update mechanism was broken. She went to and saw that nasty FBI/DOJ notice. So she assumed Full Tilt Poker has been taken down for everybody. She wasn’t aware that the company is based in Ireland and can be accessed fully from She had no reason to be aware of this, as she doesn’t spend her spare time scouring online poker forums.

Many other Germans are scared to keep their money in Full Tilt Poker. Maybe, they wonder, the whole operation will be closed down. Maybe the company will go bankrupt, they worry.

Additionally, a lot of the worldwide poker publicity and advertising originates from the US. This publicity has just had its funding cut off.

What I describe is a worst-case scenario. It could be that online poker bounces back strongly and quickly. However I just don’t know.




Gracious Losers and Winners

I think I’m quite a gracious loser. I had plenty of practise on the basketball court, that’s for sure. Over the years I’ve refined my gracious losing to an art form.

Last night I discovered my winning could be somewhat more gracious. I was playing some home poker with a few friends and we had a hand almost directly out of Rounders. That scene, you know, where Matt Damon has a killer hand, thinks he can’t lose, and thinks he is extracting every cent possible out of KGB, aka John Malkovich. But then it turns out that Malkovich’s hand was one better and he had actually been slow-playing Matt Damon.

So my Russian-accented friend Anton shows his full house aces full of twos, expecting me to muck. Instead I taunted him (“a full house? what could beat a full house? a better full house maybe? but what could be better than aces full of twos?”), until he demanded I show my cards, a full house Aces full of kings. He was not a happy Russian speaking player.

I think he’ll come back next week. After all the beer was free, there is not much else to do on a Tuesday night, and he’ll be dreaming all week of getting revenge.

And by then hopefully I’ll learn to be a more gracious winner. The type who doesn’t brag on the Internet about taking his friend down in a low-stakes home poker game.



Poker’s Black Friday and Poker Copilot

The partial shutdown of online poker in the USA by the FBI and the Department of Justice last Friday has been labelled Black Friday. At the moment there are many rumours and opinions but nobody knows what the outcome will be.

For me, the worst-case scenario is that online poker remains in trouble in its American home. This destroys the world-wide poker boom, even in the many countries where it is explicitly legal, people find other ways to satisfy their card-playing desires, and Poker Copilot becomes irrelevant.

A better scenario is that the American authorities decide a popular activity like online poker can’t be shut down. It will keep raising again, and the best approach is to regulate it.

I’ll be following events closely in the coming weeks to decide the best course of action. Or inaction.

An event like this was high on my list of potential business threats. I made sure to save well so that I have a safety net.