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jfri

How can I in the best way improve world scenery in XP

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Since scenery in out of the box XP is inferiour to what i Have in FSX I immediately started to add scenery products. I encountered more problem than expected. First I tried the World Mesh Scenery V3 and i used a tile in Europe covering Sweden so no densely or mountainous area. After that around my home city the scenery improved to approximately what I have in FSX with GEX Europe + UTX Europe.

After that I also tried the W2XP scenery for Europe. Than the sim went practically unusable because of prompts about being low on memory and messages about not being able to load scenery and then crashes (that sometimes made it necessary to press the computers reset button).

Then I tried disabling W2XP and even after that I encounter low on memory prompts. First after disabling the mesh scenery (or flying in area with default scenery) the low memory prompts were gone.

As I see it I should be fine with 8 Gb with the World Mesh scenery V3

('I recommend at least 8 GBytes or RAM for a smooth (hopefully crash free) experience (and if you combine it with other scenery and want to be on the safe side, take at least 16 GBytes of RAM)!')

What alternatives do I have ? Is 16 Gb the real minimum hardware requirement for XP 10 if you want it better than default ?

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Hi,

 

You're quite right, scenery addons such as the HD Mesh and W2XP are very memory hungry. Europe in particular has a high scenery density and requires careful balancing of settings.

The thing is, you need not only RAM but also VRAM, especially if you want to use high-resolution textures. 8 GB of RAM and 2GB of VRAM are the bare minimum, but having 3 or more GB of VRAM helps a lot.

 

Some things you can do to reduce memory usage:

- reduce texture resolution ("high" still looks decent)

- enable texture compression

- Use Simheaven OSM continent sceneries instead of W2XP (W2XP has a lot of custom buildings and looks great, but it uses a ton of memory. The OSM continent sceneries are more generic looking, but still very good IMO and are more memory friendly)

- Disable extended DSF loading

- Disable AI air traffic

- reduce AA settings (this helps with VRAM usage)

 

If you're still struggling, you can also downsample the textures of addon aircraft. Many XP aircraft use high res 4096 textures, but in many cases reducing them to 2048 (or even 1024 for external textures) still looks very good. Can be done very easily with Gimp or a similar image editor.

 

I hope that helps a little. With some of the above measures I've managed to get XP with the HD mesh V3 and other addon scenery to run half decently on my old system, which had 8 GB of RAM, so it can be done, although you will have to sacrifice some visual quality for it.

 

Steve

 

 

Edit: Also make sure that you have your pagefile enabled. If XP starts to run out of RAM it should start to offload data into the pagefile, which causes heavy stuttering but it's better than crashing.

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The issue with the W2XP scenery hosted on Simheaven is that it uses smart exclusions (These are areas which allow the default scenery to come through when there is no data). This really kills performance and loading times, and simply requires a load of memory. Since exclusion zones are rectangular only, you can imagine how many it takes to get the scenery to work. In fact, I hear so many bad thinks about the scenery now, that I think it just needs to be removed (i.e. Host the country regions OSM only), as it's putting people off W2XP in general.

 

That being said, I think 8GB of RAM is becoming too little these days, with things like UHD Mesh, high res photoimagery and textures, and of course OSM sceneries it's really pushing it. In fact Andras warns on his website that 16GB is probably a min for UHD sceneries. The pro sceneries I've done and working on are better than the default W2XP sceneries because they don't use exclusions or lots of different object types, so they load quicker and use less memory, but they don't cover everywhere.

 

What is needed is someone clever/artistic to come along and make some regional ground textures like ORBX have done.

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You're quite right, scenery addons such as the HD Mesh and W2XP are very memory hungry. Europe in particular has a high scenery density and requires careful balancing of settings.

 

Do you mean that for example HD mesh for USA would be less memory hungry ? Should this not be more dependent on the specific are being close to big cities with many objects ?


 

 


The thing is, you need not only RAM but also VRAM, especially if you want to use high-resolution textures. 8 GB of RAM and 2GB of VRAM are the bare minimum, but having 3 or more GB of VRAM helps a lot.

 

I do have a videocard with 4 Gb VRAM


 

 


- enable texture compression

 

Already done so actually it was enabled first time I run XP


 

 


- Disable extended DSF loading

 

Same here already done. Actually it was first enabled when I tried the HD mesh for the first time which resulted in out of memory crash. After disabling it I could fly at least one time in the HD mesh. Then I added W2XP and the low memory was back. After that it does not help to disable W2XP to prevent a low memory crash. Could these libraries I needed still consume memory ?


 

 


- Disable AI air traffic

 

Where do you disable that. I find no AI air traffic setting in the rendering options

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Do you mean that for example HD mesh for USA would be less memory hungry ? Should this not be more dependent on the specific are being close to big cities with many objects ?

 

There is very little data in the US inside OSM, so yes

 

 

 


I do have a videocard with 4 Gb VRAM

 

It still uses your local memory to determine what to load and how to draw it. 4GB will help with high-res textures and lots of geometry, but your computer still needs to place objects/forests and mesh in the tiles it has loaded (and it loads a large area at once), and the more detail you have the more RAM it needs.

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Use Simheaven OSM continent sceneries instead of W2XP (W2XP has a lot of custom buildings and looks great, but it uses a ton of memory. The OSM continent sceneries are more generic looking, but still very good IMO and are more memory friendly)

 

Going to that link the first I read is that they are dated and to use the new w2xp scenery. Recommended only for low end hardware. Is it really low end hardware I have with I7 4770K haswell CPU and GTX970 4 Gb videocard and 8 Gb RAM ?

What are these W2XP scenery actually doing. When I was able to make a flight with it I didn't notice very much difference compared to HD mesh only ?

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Depends where you fly? You'll notice a difference in Germany, but very little in Denmark, Poland, Czech, Spain, etc..

 

As Don says, the OSM2XP sceneries don't use themed objects and are from an older application which W2XP continued on. It's still an amazing scenery, but the look of the buildings can be a bit lego-brick/plastic, but flying above 3-4000ft, you won't notice.

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Actually it was first enabled when I tried the HD mesh for the first time which resulted in out of memory crash. After disabling it I could fly at least one time in the HD mesh. Then I added W2XP and the low memory was back. After that it does not help to disable W2XP to prevent a low memory crash. Could these libraries I needed still consume memory ?

 

The libraries themselves shouldn't be doing any harm since there's no scenery that calls for the files to be loaded.

 

Where do you disable that. I find no AI air traffic setting in the rendering options

 

The setting is hidden somewhat, go to aircraft > aicraft & situations > other aircraft. Set "number of aircraft" to 1. That will disable any AI aircraft.

 

 

Going to that link the first I read is that they are dated and to use the new w2xp scenery. Recommended only for low end hardware. Is it really low end hardware I have with I7 4770K haswell CPU and GTX970 4 Gb videocard and 8 Gb RAM ?

What are these W2XP scenery actually doing. When I was able to make a flight with it I didn't notice very much difference compared to HD mesh only ?

 

The W2XP sceneries do look better but as mentioned the OSM continent ones are more memory and framerate friendly.

 

 

Personally I use two X-Plane profiles, one for GA flying which has W2XP enabled, and another one for airliners in which the OSM continent scenery is used.

 

Using the "airliner" profile, starting XP with the default C172 at ESSA Stockholm I'm seeing about 4.8 GB of RAM usage (using the Windows resource monitor, not the task manager). Can you please test the same scenario and report your RAM usage? If it turns out to be significantly higher, there's a chance that something has gone wrong with your X-Plane installation.

 

Additionally, can you post a screenshot of your video settings? What aicraft are you using, and do you have any other addons (airports, Skymaxx, etc) installed?

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A common error that many new users make is to load up X-Plane with too many 3rd party features all at once.  It's very difficult to troubleshoot (well, not difficult but time-consuming) when you have multiple problems all competing for CPU/GPU space and time.

 

I would suggest moving all the new stuff off to the side and just get X-Plane working smoothly with default aircraft and scenery.  Then add in mesh, w2xp and custom scenery one at a time and adjust as you go.  I have almost all available goodies installed on my system and it runs beautifully, but I have a lot of RAM to work with.

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Using the "airliner" profile, starting XP with the default C172 at ESSA Stockholm I'm seeing about 4.8 GB of RAM usage (using the Windows resource monitor, not the task manager). Can you please test the same scenario and report your RAM usage?

 

I tried that and got 4330 Mb in use

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That sounds alright, so we can assume that there isn't any addon installed that consumes too much memory.

 

Do you have your pagefile enabled? This is very important as I've found out by some experimentation. Even with 16 GB of RAM, XP10 will crash regularly if the pagefile is disabled.

Also, try to close any programs running besides XP10. Browsers such as Firefox, Chrome etc. can use a lot of resources.

 

Other than that I'm out of ideas I'm afraid. If your problem persists I'd recommend looking for help over at the Tech Support forum at the .org.

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That sounds alright, so we can assume that there isn't any addon installed that consumes too much memory.

 

Do you have your pagefile enabled? This is very important as I've found out by some experimentation. Even with 16 GB of RAM, XP10 will crash regularly if the pagefile is disabled.

Also, try to close any programs running besides XP10. Browsers such as Firefox, Chrome etc. can use a lot of resources.

 

Other than that I'm out of ideas I'm afraid. If your problem persists I'd recommend looking for help over at the Tech Support forum at the .org.

 

For now it works after I changed the setting texture resolution from extremely high to high

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