Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

desertwind

Added RAM not addressed by FS9?

Recommended Posts

This is not an out of memory nor a frame rate issue. I've been creating photoscenery which, assumedly due to the more complex textures, was taking a long time to load in certain areas during flight. (Default C-182 at 10,000 feet) I could see there was a lot of disk accessing which led me to believe that perhaps insufficient RAM space might be the problem. I bought 1GB of additional RAM which brings my total to 2GB on an AMD Athlon 64 3500+ with NVidia GeForce GS7600. However, during runtime, Windows Task Manager only reports only about 1GB of RAM being used. This seems that the amount of available RAM is being either underutilized or unaddressable. I would think that the more RAM FS9 had to work with, the more scenery data would be available, minimizing the well-known slow loading texture issue. Frame rate is locked at 20 fps, and is usually running at or near this target just about all the time.Anybody have any ideas on why FS9 does not seem to be taking advantage of the additional RAM I installed?Tawni

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Help AVSIM continue to serve you!
Please donate today!

If, as seems possible, this arisesarises because of high volume of data transfer which is limited by the disk transfer rate then adding more RAM is unlikely to have much effect.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Because game textures must get piped through to your Video RAM. Even if you have a lot of system RAM, there will still be a bottleneck between your CPU-RAM-Video Card. If you want textures to load faster, you can try adding more VRAM to your GS7600, or upgrade this card to a faster GPU with lots of VRAM...FS9 is a CPU/GPU hog, its RAM usage actually isn't that high.-feng

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Tawni:Its not as simple as that. First, FS9 and FSX are very processor intensive. Texture loading must be processed and your processor speed is your main bottleneck. Since your processor is very low end (by today's standards) even before any textures can be loaded and displayed, your processor is your first bottleneck.Second, while adding more RAM can help, remember that the TYPE of RAM as well as the type of motherboard bus to that RAM will play a part. Also, remember that you also gave WINDOWS more RAM which will take advantage of it first and give your programs the rest. You didn't give FS9 2GB of RAM, you gave WINDOWS 2GB of RAM. At 1GB it was starving anyway so you may see a boost in Windows speed.Third, FS will take advantage of any RAM you put into your system, but FS doesn't attempt (nor can it) load all of your textures into memory and will swap it to hard drive no matter how much RAM you have. This is where a 10,000 RPM HD in RAID 0 plays a large part. Faster access to textures and other data = faster rendering on screen.Forth, your GS7600 only has 256MB of video RAM therefore your video card is doing very little to help with rendering and loading large chunks of textures.Under the performance section of Task Manager, are you showing 2GB installed (the amount being 'used' is a different story.)At the end of the day, for your system, adding another GB of RAM will give you very negligable results for loading large phototextures. Large phototexture scenery areas will even bog down my system.In general the forumula for fast texture loading in FS is:1 - The fastest CPU possible2 - FAST memory (not budget) @ 4GB which is generally optimal3 - The fastest hard drive (optimally 10,000 RPM in RAID-0)3a - Optimally a seperate hard drive from your system hard drive4 - A high end video card with at LEAST 512MB of vRAMShort of this, adding another stick of RAM will do little especially since you are loading scenery that is the most demanding no matter how fast the system.HTH,Mike T.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the responses, guys.Mike, the system is reporting 2GB of RAM installed. While fast disk accessing and fast memory may optimize performance, if the data isn't getting loaded into that fast memory, it would all appear to be for naught. I contend that performance would be optimal if more physical memory were used for holding texture data since swapping data within physical RAM is going to be oodles faster than even the fastest hard drive, don't you think? As far as processor speed and data pipeline bottlenecks, to test this theory I set the frame rate throttle from locked at 20 fps to unlimited. One might expect that the texture rendering would go from slow to marshmallow. :( To my utter amazement, load times actually DECREASED and framerate never dropped below 40 fps. In fact, where I previously had to actually pause the sim (remember that old trick?) occasionally to let the rendering catch up, no such tomfoolery was required. This makes me wonder what the heck FS9 is doing with all those extra clock cycles when you lock the framerate at a lower value.In very high density scenery areas, including several hi-resolution airport areas, the rendering times are still, shall we say, a bit leisurely. But overall, performance is higher. Riddle me this!Tawni

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Tawni- good topic! I'm no tech whiz so I can only describe my experiences with adding RAM for FS9.My sys is now 5 yrs old- an AMD XP2200 1.8 GHz with GeForce FX5200 cards driving triple monitors with triple views LFwd,Fwd,RFwd and 2D panels with most popups on display. After considerable experimentation I concluded that setting FPS to Unlimited was the optimum for my sys.Originally, RAM (DDR PC3200) was 768 GB and while FPS performance was adequate, improvement was desirable! Increasing RAM to 1.28 GB gave a FPS boost of about 20% - very flyable.A year later I just had to go for broke and bumped it up to 2GB.Alas no increase in FPS ! But wait- a closer look showed the low/bottom end of the FPS range to be improved significantly. And to my surprise, the sim is now quite smooth and very flyable at FPS rates as low as 6 ! ( No- I don't smoke!)Below about 12 you can start to see a flickering or chattering of nearby objects such as runway lights flashing past wingtips. As FPS drops further, nearby buildings may show a chatter with rapid aircraft motion, but the plane continues totally smoothly. Only at about 6 FPS does the sim become unworkable. I have landed very smoothly at night at LAX with this spectacular scenery stretching across 3 monitors and FPS about 7-12. Anything above 16 is very smooth and my old eyes can not see any quality difference between 16 and 24- the latter being about the top end of my sys frame rate.So was 2 GB RAM worthwhile? My experience says definitely so- but not in the manner I expected!Alex Reid

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

AFAIK FS9 has no way of forcing itself into RAM. I guess the OS can do that but it operates at a higher privlege level than a user app like fs9. Win XP/ Vista controls how much RAM fs9 gets. Ideally, all of fs9's allocated memory would be in RAM of course. scott s..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mike,>Forth, your GS7600 only has 256MB of video RAM therefore your video card is doing very little to help with rendering and loading large chunks of textures.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites