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Chris341

Pulling My Hair Out

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Okay... I've been struggling with FS2004 performance for about 3 days now, and in that time I have tried to do every single thing I can think of to bring it back up. The details:

A couple days back, I set up a whole bunch of settings in NVIDIA inspector for FS9 to use. After I did that, I noticed my performance had tanked. Turns out I had accidentally turned off compatability with Optimus, which didn't allow my NVIDIA card to be used with FS9. I fixed that, no problem, and performance saw a huge boost with all my planes with a test flight around Seattle by FlyTampa. Frames went from about 10 to well over 60 so I had no issue, or thought I didn't. The next day, or yesterday, I attempted to fly an Alaska Airlines 737-400 (by Wilco) from a freeware scenery of Ketchikan PAKT to Seattle KSEA. At first, all was well, great performance, no issue. But before I had pushed back, my FPS had dropped from 60+ to about 30. No big deal, still looked smooth. But then as I pushed back, my virtual cockpit FPS absolutely TANKED, straight down to less than 8 when moving the head, and outside my FPS was down to about 20. i have tried this flight about 5 times now all with the same results, no matter what I try. I recently wiped my hard drive and don't have a lot of addons installed. Before wiping my drive, I had almost no issue with performance at ALL.

Alienware M14xR2
Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 64-bit
Intel Core i7-3630QM CPU @ 2.40GHz
8GB of RAM
NVIDIA GT650M 

FS2004 settings all to the max, have attempted to lock frames at 30, 40, 60 and unlimited with no change.
FS2004 installed to C:\FS9
Addons Installed:
REX and HDEv2 Clouds
REX water and effects including contrails
HDEv2 sky textures
Ground Environment Pro
Ultimate Terrain USA
A few freeware sceneries
FlyTampa Seattle
Aerosoft AES
ImagineSim KCVG and KLGA
Ultimate Traffic utilizing high quality models (never had issue here before)
Active Sky Evolution weather
iFly 737NG
Wilco E-Jets v2 (E-170 and E-190) and PIC 737
A couple freeware planes

I have tried the following:
Deleting the FS9.cfg and letting it rebuild a new one (no change)
Changing NVIDIA inspector settings (not quite so experienced on that though)
Disabling AI Traffic (no change)
Disabling or tuning down weather settings (no change)
Fixing missing alpha maps/faulty textures (no change, though I haven't noticed nearly as many CTDs)
Changing NVIDIA Inspector settings to default (where they remain now)

I will do almost anything EXCEPT re-installing again if it can be avoided.
Any and all help is appreciated,
Chris

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Noticing from your post that you were changing your Nvidia settings, did you get a new driver recently? I know when some tout a new driver, I d/l it and find the performance is worse because every system is different. If that's the case I'd roll back. What are your current Inspector settings?

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Okay... I've been struggling with FS2004 performance for about 3 days now, and in that time I have tried to do every single thing I can think of to bring it back up. The details:

 

A couple days back, I set up a whole bunch of settings in NVIDIA inspector for FS9 to use. After I did that, I noticed my performance had tanked. Turns out I had accidentally turned off compatability with Optimus, which didn't allow my NVIDIA card to be used with FS9. I fixed that, no problem, and performance saw a huge boost with all my planes with a test flight around Seattle by FlyTampa. Frames went from about 10 to well over 60 so I had no issue, or thought I didn't. The next day, or yesterday, I attempted to fly an Alaska Airlines 737-400 (by Wilco) from a freeware scenery of Ketchikan PAKT to Seattle KSEA. At first, all was well, great performance, no issue. But before I had pushed back, my FPS had dropped from 60+ to about 30. No big deal, still looked smooth. But then as I pushed back, my virtual cockpit FPS absolutely TANKED, straight down to less than 8 when moving the head, and outside my FPS was down to about 20. i have tried this flight about 5 times now all with the same results, no matter what I try. I recently wiped my hard drive and don't have a lot of addons installed. Before wiping my drive, I had almost no issue with performance at ALL.

 

Alienware M14xR2

Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 64-bit

Intel Core i7-3630QM CPU @ 2.40GHz

8GB of RAM

NVIDIA GT650M 

 

FS2004 settings all to the max, have attempted to lock frames at 30, 40, 60 and unlimited with no change.

FS2004 installed to C:\FS9

Addons Installed:

REX and HDEv2 Clouds

REX water and effects including contrails

HDEv2 sky textures

Ground Environment Pro

Ultimate Terrain USA

A few freeware sceneries

FlyTampa Seattle

Aerosoft AES

ImagineSim KCVG and KLGA

Ultimate Traffic utilizing high quality models (never had issue here before)

Active Sky Evolution weather

iFly 737NG

Wilco E-Jets v2 (E-170 and E-190) and PIC 737

A couple freeware planes

 

I have tried the following:

Deleting the FS9.cfg and letting it rebuild a new one (no change)

Changing NVIDIA inspector settings (not quite so experienced on that though)

Disabling AI Traffic (no change)

Disabling or tuning down weather settings (no change)

Fixing missing alpha maps/faulty textures (no change, though I haven't noticed nearly as many CTDs)

Changing NVIDIA Inspector settings to default (where they remain now)

 

I will do almost anything EXCEPT re-installing again if it can be avoided.

Any and all help is appreciated,

Chris

 

Maybe its still not running on the 650 or switching back and forth? You can check GPU usage to verify.

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I just updated my driver from 344.48 to 344.60 this morning to see if I could find a difference. No change at all. My current inspector settings are 'out of the box' default, as in, I have reset them all back to their default states, with no change still. As for switching back and forth, I'm not sure. I'll test that one here in a bit

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Well I went to 344.48 after I heard about all this DSR business and it made changes in the lighting and the performance dropped. That's why I asked if you updated your drivers. I went all the way back to 310 and got my performance back.

 

As for Inspector settings I use the following: (and this is on a 7 year old XP CPU)

 

 

Antialiasing

16xS [Combined: 2x2 SS + 4x MS]

 

Transparency Supersampling

2x Supersampling

 

Anisotropic 16X

 

texture filtering Negative LOD bias  clamp

 

texture filtering high quality

 

Power management mode: prefer maximum performance

 

And the biggest performance boost was:

 

Vertical sync 1/2 refresh rate,  then set your frame lock in the sim at 30. You don't need to see 60+ if your frames are gonna' tank.

 

My old rig runs smooth as glass with this and I can even get FSX with Orbx scenery to run smooth at dense scenery settings.

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Well I went to 344.48 after I heard about all this DSR business and it made changes in the lighting and the performance dropped. That's why I asked if you updated your drivers. I went all the way back to 310 and got my performance back.

 

As for Inspector settings I use the following: (and this is on a 7 year old XP CPU)

 

 

Antialiasing

16xS [Combined: 2x2 SS + 4x MS]

 

Transparency Supersampling

2x Supersampling

 

Anisotropic 16X

 

texture filtering Negative LOD bias  clamp

 

texture filtering high quality

 

Power management mode: prefer maximum performance

 

And the biggest performance boost was:

 

Vertical sync 1/2 refresh rate,  then set your frame lock in the sim at 30. You don't need to see 60+ if your frames are gonna' tank.

 

My old rig runs smooth as glass with this and I can even get FSX with Orbx scenery to run smooth at dense scenery settings.

I tried reverting back to the 310.70 driver and using these inspector settings, but almost zero change, however I think it did just barely improve a little. Not sure.

 

I haven't tried this yet, but I may give it a shot, though I don't think it'll work. Is it worth noting that I use Delta Virtual Airlines ACARS?

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Okay friends... I figured it out. The issue was specific to the Wilco PIC 737, and I fixed it by turning OFF compatibility mode for FS2004. I originally had it on Windows XP, but turning it off completely fixed the issue. Turns out the problems can be solved by the simplest of things! Thanks for all the helps anyway~

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Ugh... I'm back again, but this time I'm having crashes, not performance issues. I've been noticing a sharp increase in the number of crashes I'm having, and almost every time it's been because of FE.dll, which would lead me to believe it is a bad texture... I did some testing, disabling AI traffic, and all that. Disabling AI resulted in no crash at a point and time where I previously received a crash. I turned it back on and tried again, and as expected, I got a crash. I've used FS Texture Checker to check all my AI textures, and I fixed the ones that were actually in use on my system. I went back and tested, and the issue seemed fixed, except that I tried again later at the same airport, FlyTampa Seattle, and I got a crash at a later time. I REALLY don't want to go through all my AI for a single texture, and I'm almost positive that it isn't anything to do with the scenery (Although I do get some rather weird terrain shaping around Seattle), so I was curious about a couple things.

 

1. I stated that I was led to believe that FE.DLL crashes are due to bad crashes... Just wanted to verify, is this true? Is there any easy way to prevent more of these crashes?

 

2. If possible, would there be an easy way to salvage my UT and planes instead of having to just scrap them forever, something that might be a fix to the crashes by the textures?

3. I use Ultimate Traffic and swapped out the major airlines in the US (American, Alaska, Delta, etc.) for higher quality models (AIA, FAIB, etc.). I'm thinking that one or the other (UT or the newer models and textures) might be at fault, so I was curious if it might be a lot easier on me to just rid myself of UT and associated AI and just start anew with WOAI or something?

4. I've noticed on one occasion that a crash was caused by Weather.DLL. What's the reason(s) behind this, and what can I do to prevent it, if anything, in the future? 

 

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If it is a faulty ai texture, you will do better to locate it rather than start installing ai (WOAI) all over again. You may end up installing the same faulty textue !

 

From your testing you have established you can create at least two instances (same time/day/aiport) where you will get a crash. Set yourself up at the airport on this  day/time and go to spot view. Pan your view so that your are looking down on your own aircraft and zoom in. Now use Ctrl-W to cycle through all ai aircraft in the vicinity. What you want to do is be zoomed so you can see as little as possible of other aircraft apart from the one you are looking at at the time. If your problem is a fauly ai, you should at some point cycle to an aircraft which appears for a split-second as a grey unpainted texture just before you crash. If you are lucky you should however just be able to make out what the aircraft is. It is then a matter of removing texture folders from that aircraft type until you are able to repeat the procedure without a crash.

 

It can be a bit laborious. I had to remove whole aircraft folders first to narrow down the exact type, then removed texture folders in batches to narrow it own. When you find the faulty texture , open it in imagetool.exe and save it. Usually fixes the problem.

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There is this tool called alpha channel fix, look in this thread. It fixes textures automatically I think: http://forum.avsim.net/topic/382519-a-huge-fps-increase/

 

Another one is dxtfixerX http://library.avsim.net/search.php?SearchTerm=DxtFixerX&CatID=root&Go=Search

 

Might be worth your while to run one of these. I use dxtfixerX. It will show all textures missing alpha channels. This usually improves performance but it will show textures which are in an incorrect format.

 

If it doesn't fix your crash you will at least have some info on bad textures.

 

I recommend not running a fix the first time but just a diagnostic.

 

Cheers,

Sascha

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Pschlute, that's actually not a bad idea. I never thought to try to do it like that. I'll give that a go later today.

 

Sascha, I've already done both of these. Alphasearcher fixed some of my stutters and gave a bit of a boost, and I've used DXT3FixerX and FS Texture Checker to identify and fix wrong formats and missing alphas.

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Pschlute, that's actually not a bad idea. I never thought to try to do it like that. I'll give that a go later today.

 

I have had two occasions when I needed to do this to isolate a faulty texture. It does work. The important thing is to make sure you are there at exactly the correct day/time when you know you will get a crash. Might take you a few attempts, as the faulty texture can trigger a crash even when you are looking at another aircraft, if the rogue a/c is in the background of the view. That is why you need to zoom in a bit and be looking down on the aircraft, but not so close that you cannot identify the aircraft type.

 

Chances are that you will get a split second view of a 737 type aircraft and you have -300/-400/-500/-600/-700/800/-900 plus winglet types in your ai collection ! It can take time to narrow down which it is. Temporarily removing whole aircraft folders from the FS9\aircraft folder may be needed to narrow it don.

 

good luck and let us know how you get on.

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Looking through all the posts to see if I could help, I wasn't sure if you had tried rolling back the drivers to an earlier version as was suggested. I can certainly confirm that a year or so ago that was the solution for me. The newest nVidia drivers jut did not seem to work with FS9 and rolling back to the one I had used before the update fixed my problem

Ian

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I fixed the issue, but I ended up wiping my drive again because I had a virus  :help:

 

I've been more careful with it this time, and so far it's running okay. Thanks again for the help guys.

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I got it all set up again and running great now :) Thanks everyone! I just set the NVIDIA settings Roger recommended, except instead of 1/2  Vsync refresh rate I have it just set to 'Force on', and made sure to have all my textures include alphamaps, and it looks amazing! Thanks again.

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