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Chris Willis

FS9 -- I'm about to give up

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I've tried to tweek FS9 and it is working better than when I began but I can't seem to get past the stutters. By stutters I mean that it goes to 1 fps seemingly ramdomly. I've added the average frame rate reading to the FS9.cfg file and here's what I get: {1.0 20.5 24.9} When it's good it's really, really good. When it's bad it's ****. It took me a good 15 minutes to complete a 10 mile final into KCLE with Shez's scenery (gMax) last evening. I was also using Bill Grabowski's ERJ panel and Nick Botamer's FSDSv2 ERJ. These pauses didn't even show up on the fps reading. These pauses were approximately 5 seconds in length. I've tried the fake clouds and that helps some but they look worse than the new FS Sky World 2.4 clouds in FS2002. My PC set up is as follows: Pentium P4 2.4 Ghz, 533 FSB, with 512 Mb PC2100 (266 Mhz) SDRAM GeForce 4200 w/ 128 Mb SDRAM with 43.45 drivers installed Windows 98 Second Edition My FS9 set up is shown in the three attachments. I desperately need some help here.

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SteveDon't give up :-)My system is a P4 2.6 Mhz, 64 Mb GeForce 4, 32.xx drivers and Windows XP. The following alterations to your setup in FS9 gives me FPS's in the 30s:Terrain Mesh Complexity = 0Scenery Complexity = DenseAutogen = Off (real performance killer)Also, try lowering Cloud Coverage Density.I also run FS9 in windowed mode rather than full screen mode. Yes, it's a pain having the menu bar at the top of the screen but it makes the sim a lot smoother.Hope this helps.David

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Holy cow! Running in windowed mode got rid of my stutters completely! I was about to give up on FS2k4 as well but I tried running it in windowed mode and that made all the difference. Now I just have to figure out a way to get my distant textures sharpened up... I'm running 8x AF and -0.1 LOD and the distant textures are just a blur... Any thoughts?-Max Cowgill

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8x AF should give you excellent distant textures. Try swapping back and forth between window mode and full screen and see if the AF shows up on one or the other. You may also want to try a reboot after making a change to your AF setting, just to make sure it "sticks" (esp. in windowed mode). I like to take a screenshot from the same vantage point when making AF changes, and then review them to see the difference. There should, of course, be a dramatic difference between 0xAF and 8xAF.If you get it working, you might want to try 4xAF as a good compromise between cost/performance (especially with clouds!). I acutally prefer 4xAF over 8xAF on my Radeon, because it blends better with the autogen.

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Steve,This is yet another bug in FS9. I know exactly what you mean. When you get those random 1 fps thing, if you are using XP then do ctrl-alt-del and in the process window you'll be shocked to find fs9.exe using 10% and processor idle time 85%!!! Thats why the drop in fps. The sad part is you cannot do anything about it...atleast I dont know a way.It happens randomly but it does happen pretty often. I tried giving fs9 process highest priority and even real time...nothing changes. The only solution is to restart FS.Something has really changed at MS. They had two great gaming products: Age of Empire Series and Flight Simulator Series. Stable leading age products and then they changed the graphics team...What did we get? FS9 and Rise of Empires. If you have played RoN then you'll be surprised to find to the extent MS has messed up the lovely graphic engine of AoE and in the process you'll realize why fs9 stinks big time as far as graphics and speed goes.You see, there will be some "know all" elements in the forum who'll argue endlessly on behalf of MS for a simple reason they put their foot in the mouth and declared prematurely that its a great product. The sad part is FS9 is not a product expected from MS. Imagine MS having engineers who do not know to write a AA routine?? Need I say more?

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Max,How does your FX5200 compare to your pre-fried GeForce 4 in performance. I am contemplating a new FX5600 as a replacement for my GeForce 2 Ti, but am still mulling it over. Thanks,Den

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I keep getting asked this question... Oh well, no big deal. I hate this card. It is a complete piece of crap. My old GF4 was much better, and I wasn't even all that happy with that card. If you're going to get a Geforce FX, make sure you get an Ultra model, don't stick with the plain jane model or you'll regret it. If I had the money, I'd get a Radeon 9800 Pro (or a 9900 pro when it comes out in a month or so) and just skip the current FX cards altogether.-Max Cowgill

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Steve....Since you have an almost identical setup to mine, and I'm not getting hit with such stutters, let me suggest a couple of things:First, try the 30.82 drivers. I seem to have avoided a lot of headaches mentioned in some of the threads.Second, it's possible your vcache, if you've never tweaked it, could be gobbling up too much memory. It happened often in Win 95/98/ME...Try adding these settings to your system.ini:In the vcache section (add it if it isn't there):minfilecache=32767maxfilecache=32767In the 386enh section:ConservativeSwapfileUsage=1My Rivatuner settings are 2x aniso, and a LOD of -.5 I'm using the default AA in FS2004 vs. forcing it with Rivatuner. I also have limited my res. to 800x600x32. I can run at 1280x1024x32, but I find that AA should be dropped once you start getting to resolutions that high.Note: Sometimes Windowed mode may seem to yield spectacular benefits, but watch out. If your desktop is set for 16-bit color, some of that benefit is a result of FS2004 switching to that color depth while in windowed mode. In 32bit mode, I have no difference between windowed or full screen. With a cpu like yours, your system should scream...Other key settings I adjust:I max all sliders except:~Cloud distance I keep at 30~Shadows and Water detail/reflection I keep off, unless I'm snapping screenshots~Autogen I keep at normal--that approximates FS2002's maxed setting~AI I keep at 50pct or less. ~I do not allow the gps to stay displayed. If a panel displays it full time, I edit out the guage. The gps is good for a 4-5 fps drop when it's in view.

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"You see, there will be some "know all" elements in the forum who'll argue endlessly on behalf of MS for a simple reason they put their foot in the mouth and declared prematurely that its a great product. "You are soooo right!

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Max, thanks for the info... If your 5200 is as slow as the ATI 9000Pro that I bought, we both have something to either curse or cry over! Slow molasses would leave that 9000 Pro in the dust laughing!Oh well, I hope that you enjoy that 9900 :)Den

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Thanks, everyone. I'll try all of the suggested tweeks -- especially running in windowed mode.As for the 30.82 drivers: I went to guru3d.com and downloaded the 30.82 drivers for Windows 98 (etc) and when I went to install it, I received the following message: Setup was unable to locate a detected device's PCI ID in NVAML.inf. The installation will be terminated. At guru3d I downloaded the inf files for the 4300s (I've got a 43.45) and installed it into the system.inf folder overwriting the old copy. Attempted to install again and received the same message as above. I guess I don't know where to go from here on the drivers. I also downloaded and installed the Riva Tuner but I can not figure out how it works. I surely don't want to mess anything up. Steve

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Steve, I'm also telling you to not give up, I have the EXACT same problem as you are having, and I'm still trying, but it doesnt look good for me.Sorry I couldnt help, but just some words of confidence.

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I just tried everything except the 30.82 drivers. Didn't help much. I did get higher top end fps in windowed mode but I still had the hesitation (stutters). The average numbers were more like {1.5 21.5 28.5} My video card is a MSI Ti4200-VTD8X which is also listed as aG4Ti4200-8X, AGP8X, 128M, DDR, DVI-I.I flew a flight today in FS2002 with the new FS Sky World 2.4 clouds and ActiveSky 1.9. I flew an Ariane 737-300 and was getting 48 fps + at altitude. At KCLE (also Shez's scenery) I was only getting 8-15 fps on the ground but never hesitated or hiccupped. I'm really confused and disappointed. You'd think that FS9 was supposed to be an improvement over FS2002. So far, the only improvement I've seen is the clouds. I took off from Cleveland this afternoon with a thunderstorm on the southern horizon. The lightning was awesome. However, until I can get some frames out of FS9 I'll limit my time to the Lear and maybe some other default aircraft to test out everything. I have been trying to use Shez's gMax Cleveland scenery and Bill Grabowski's ERJ panel both in FS9. Maybe they're the frame hog. I'll fly a short Learjet flight and see what I get.Steve

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I guess at altitude, you can set up any 'ol system to get 40fps or over.... Doesn't solve your issue... Did you apply the system.ini edits I mentioned (and did you do a subsequent reboot?)Also, to install the 30.82 driver, download Det. Destroyer, then follow these steps:~Uninstall Nvidia drivers from control panel Add/Remove Programs, but don't reboot~Use Det. Destroyer, to clean up the bits 'n pieces~Reboot, install 30.82's~If they install, then go to Start/Run, then type: dxdiag /ghost~In the More Help tab, click Inactive.~Backup any inactive devices you see....And, here's my Mirage alt altitude....Edit: I've added a second shot, just show you can see that thicker cloud layers can impact the sim. Sometimes subtle adjustments to the weather settings can improve performance by a third or more at altitude...http://forums.avsim.net/user_files/29810.jpghttp://forums.avsim.net/user_files/29811.jpg

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