This question was inspired by the first answer of this question which notes that in 5e the ranger is acknowledged as (one of) the weakest class(es). I don't play 5e but I used to play 3/3.5e and remember the ranger also having some significant issues there and being generally thought of as a very weak option. There are some questions about the 3e ranger on this site that touch on its weakness, too, including What’s the difference between a Ranger and a Scout? and A Ranger build that is close to Tier 3 classes (Tier 3 classes were often the desired “middle of the road” balance point for 3.5e classes).
I was wondering if there were some specific issues of the archetype that tended to result in this. I would be interested if anyone has done analysis of both versions of the class and maybe seen what the issues were?
What I'm looking for is whether there is some pattern from 3e (or possibly earlier) that propagates to 5e making the ranger weak or if it's just random bad luck on part of the designers. I would expect the archetype to define the character quite a bit and as such if there were pitfalls in design of 3e ranger I would expect them avoided in 5e. I want comparisons of rangers from 3e (or earlier) to 5e to figure out the history of the issue.
If this is too broad maybe it can be restricted to a question of the differences in mechanics of the class between 3e and 5e.