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gwillmot

Compressed Files? Need Input!

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Once upon a time, years ago, it was recommended to compress FS2004 files.  I have since forgotten the reason.  I have done exactly that ye these many years ..... even unto this day.  All of my FS2004 and related files are compressed .... except for my gauge files which bombed one time when I attempted to compress them.

 

Is this a recommended practice anymore?  Does anyone still do it?  Does it or could it contribute to the dreaded FS9 Stutters?

 

I submit these to the collective knowledge base of this esteemed forum ....... no FSX-related responses please!

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Hi,

 

short answer: I never heard about compressing files. I never did so with my FS9 files

 

Regards,

Harald

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it was recommended to compress FS2004 files

 

By whom?

 

Admittedly 10 years ago hard drives had much smaller capacity and were much more expensive (per Gb) than we enjoy today however, like Harald, I have never seen such recommendation nor practised it.  And, what's more, I have never suffered from "the dreaded FS9 Stutters." At all, ever, never ... fortunately.  <_<

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Compressed files may consume less disc space but the need to uncompress them every time you use each one will have a performance penalty. How significant that will be on a modern computer is debatable but certainly in the case of Flight Simulator a heck of a lot of files are read at startup so I would expect that to be noticeable even if at no other time.

 

This may be of interest:

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/307987

 

John

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Thanks all .....

They were compressed for a reason, but obviously I don't remember and evidently it wasn't a standard "recommended" practice.

..... Now, I have to see if there's room on my disk to decompress .....

gwillmot

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UPDATE - FYI

 

I went ahead and decompressed all of the files in FS2004.  After testing, I found no measurable difference in load times, stutters, frame rates, etc.  This was running with WinXP.

So ..... if you're running out of disk space, try compressing your files.  It shouldn't make any appreciable amount of difference.

 

gwillmot

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Hi,

 

short answer: I never heard about compressing files. I never did so with my FS9 files

 

Regards,

Harald

+1. 

What Compressor might you be using for this, what are its read/write effects?

Certainly anyone doing this should preface any subsequent Forum wailing about stutters or blurries or whatever, with the statement: Hello I have Compressed my flightsim...

I cannot imagine why you'd want to do this, there is no question that there will be performance issues one way or another.

Even my hugely fattened (Again!) fs9.5 is a paltry 200GB or so, these days that's not even a  quarter of a HDD.  

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We are talking about the now-discintunued compression built into some versions of MS Windows. At least, that was what I was talking about . . .

 

No visible effects during use.

 

John

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We are talking about the now-discintunued compression built into some versions of MS Windows. At least, that was what I was talking about . . .

 

No visible effects during use.

 

John

 

Yep ..... that's it and that was the result.

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Years and years ago it was speculated that because of slow IDE disk speeds in those days, that it was faster to transfer the smaller compressed files even with the overhead of decompressing them than it was to read and use the uncompressed files.

This was with the inbuilt MS compression algorithms.

These days disk performance is no longer an issue and neither is the performance of FS9 or FSX.

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Thank you, Glynn, that's very clear.

 

But that begs the question: why would it be necessary to "compress" the files? Why were they not "compressed" in the first place? If this was a DOS thing, the discussion ends here I guess.

 

Of course, in theory the same argument might hold true today: 

A smaller file transfer+decompression might still be faster than a big file transfer+no decompression  

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While FS9 folder was compressed using WinXP file compression algorithm:

 

Size:  141 GB

Size on Disk:  107 GB

 

Uncompressed FS9 :  141 GB ..... of course

 

No measurable/appreciable increase/decrease in FS9 or system performance.

Magic?  You decide ......

 

Glenn W.

 

P.S.  APPLIANCE - Definitely HAD to defrag after decompression ....... 47% fragmented files!

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But that begs the question: why would it be necessary to "compress" the files? Why were they not "compressed"

 

The were already compressed if the user had disk compression turned on in windows.

The old windows disk compression was a method developed by MS to squeeze more data onto those small HD's we had back then.

The same thing is still present today in W7 but I doubt anyone uses it, just right click on a drive in Explorer and choose properties to see the option.

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Now you mention it... years ago I used Stacker to squeeze out another 5MB on my 40MB HDD!

 

Reading a bit further on the interwebby thing:

 NTFS compression is ideal for:

  • Files you rarely access. (If you never access the files, the potential slow-down when accessing them is unnoticeable.)
  • Files in uncompressed format. (Office documents, text files, and PDFs may see a significant reduction in file size, while MP3s and videos are already stored in a compressed format and won’t shrink much, if at all.)
  • Saving space on small solid state drives. (Warning: Using compression will result in more writes to your solid state drive, potentially decreasing its life span. However, you may gain some more usable space.)
  • Computers with fast CPUs and slow hard disks.

NTFS compression should not be used for:

  • Windows system files and other program files. Using NTFS compression here can reduce your computer’s performance and potentially cause other errors.
  • Servers where the CPU is getting heavy use. On a modern desktop or laptop, the CPU sits in an idle state most of the time, which allows it to decompress the files quickly. If you use NTFS compression on a server with a high CPU load, the server’s CPU load will increase and it will take longer to access files.
  • Files in compressed format. (You won’t see much of an improvement by compressing your music or video collections.)
  • Computers with slow CPUs, such as laptops with low-voltage power-saving chips. However, if the laptop has a very slow hard disk, it’s unclear whether compression would help or hurt performance.

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Now you mention it... years ago I used Stacker to squeeze out another 5MB on my 40MB HDD!

 

Now that brings back memories, I have been sat here trying to remember the name of that program.

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I remember compressing FS years ago, I had forgot about that till I read this thread, I did it myself.

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