Sometimes users report that they cannot permanently ban someone there isn't anything wrong with the server simply that you need to tweak a few settings.
First off the value in i_client_ban_max_bantime is based off seconds so a value of 86400 would ban someone for 1 day. If you would like to ban someone forever use -1 this means forever.
If you have two server groups and one allows infinite ban while the other allows 2 hours, the 2 hours will be taken since 7200 > -1. If you want to have two different server groups and you want to allow both to ban you will need to check the negate checkbox on i_client_ban_max_bantime on the server group, which makes it so that the lowest value from all server groups is taken if you are in that group. As such your -1 bantime would be used and you are allowed to ban indefinitely.
To further explain this lets use this example. You have two server groups.
- Server Admin with a i_client_ban_max_bantime of -1
- Admin with a i_client_ban_max_bantime of 86400
John Doe is a part of both Server Admin and Admin groups. If the Negate value isn't set for i_client_ban_max_bantime in the "Admin" group then the 86400 value will be used. If you simply check the negate box in "Admin" then the -1 value from "Server Admin" will be used. If on the same server Andy admin was part of the "Admin" group but not part of the "Server Admin" group he still would only have the the ability to ban for 1 day.
Please keep in mind that it is possible with certain methods to get around IP and unique ID bans. If you find that you ban someone and they still get back on simply raise the security level of your server to a level that takes at least a few hours. This can be achieved by editing your virtual server settings going to the security tab and raising the level from the default 8. We suggest something around 25-30 (takes about 30min to an hour depending on your computer's speed.). This means that all NEW visitors to your server will need to raise their security level for a few hours before they can connect to your server. After that first time of waiting they will be able to connect instantly each time. IMPORTANT: do not raise your security level too high or it will take literally weeks-years to connect to your server.
The person that keeps coming back even though you ban him will need to wait a few hours each time they want to get back on. The amount of time they need to invest in getting back in will be really annoying to them and after 1-2 tries they will give up and accept the ban. That is... unless of course if they don't have a life. If that is the case then at least you only need to deal with them every few hours.
The final solution that always works is putting a password on your server. If you and your users really don't want to use a server password you can make it temporary or you can set each of your groups to ignore passwords. If you do this make sure to not give the permission to the default group. Doing this will enable your users to join the server without needing the password but new users will need to enter the password.