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Framerate as low as 3FPS on PIV 3 GHZ, with frame rate block :: Archived
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gunslinger
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 15, 2005 6:26 am
Post subject: Framerate as low as 3FPS on PIV 3 GHZ, with frame rate block

Hello, I'm new. I've a P IV 3 GHZ with 512 RAM, 800 MHz bus, GeForce FX 5950 Ultra graphic card with 256 MByte ram.

I've tried playing CFS3 on my machine and it runs SLOWER than it ran on my old 1.2 GHz PC.

I've tried all the tweaks stated in Stoopy thread. No way.
I've also lowered everything as low as it can get, and still it's slower than on my old machine.
On normal settings ground attack missions when wingmen fire their guns I get as low as 1-2 FPS, which slightly improves at 3-5 on lowest settings!
Best FPS I get is 18-20.
It's as if my graphic card just isn't there. Neutral

I add that I'm playing CFS2 at HIGHEST settings with silk smooth performance, and I'm also playing Delta Force Black Hawk Down, Call Of Duty and other such graphic intensive games with full satisfaction, so the problem presents itself just with CFS3.

A firend of mine could play CFS3 on his 2,8 GHz PC with a much older graphic card and got around 30-35 FPS with overall graphic quality at 3 and 1024x768 32 bits.

Do anybody have the slightest idea about why this happens?
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JG300-Stoopy
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 15, 2005 6:56 am
Post subject: Re: Framerate as low as 3FPS on PIV 3 GHZ, with frame rate b

Hi gunslinger.

I recently upgraded also to a system very much like what you describe and am very, very shocked and surprised to hear this.

One thing is: the "CFS3 Tweak and Tune Guide" documents everything needed to make CFS3 fly smoothly on a far older, and much more crusty, system. There's a fair amount of tweaks in there that you should be able to just flat-out ignore on a new hotrod system.

The only tweaks I applied on my new system (P4 3.2Ghz, 1MB dual-channel DDR RAM, 256M ATI 800XL PCIExpress video) were:

1) The basic CFS3Config settings (video resolution, Z-Buffer, disable dual-pass render, that section) - most of the changes there are still needed to make CFS3 less gamey-looking anyway.

2) The "MAX_FPS" settings in the XML files - to get rid of stuttering or even mini-stutters I think you ALWAYS need those no matter what.

3) Turned sound acelleration down to "Basic". Picky CFS3 thing.

Everything else, like video drivers, and all that, were left as-is although with an NVidia card it never hurts to check for the latest drivers.

How about this: Before you did any of the tweaks, did it run as slowly? I mean, on a nice fast modern system, it should pretty much run like a tiger straight out of the box. Did it? Or did the tweaks perhaps degrade performance in some way?

If it ran like dog poop right out of the box before the tweaks (but at least with basic video information set) then I'd suspect a corrupt install or some problem related to the media. Sounds like you have all the other latest directX stuff too what with the other games you got, so it definitely sounds focused on the CFS3 source. Ahhh...but then again I forgot that you were running this before on another system. CD's must be good. Damn.

And...interesting you remark about your video card not even being there. When you run the CFS3 config tool, the first thing it will show is the video system it is using - sometimes, a system will see TWO video drivers or systems, is your NVidia system the only one in the list, and if there's another system, is the NVidia system the selected option?

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gunslinger
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 15, 2005 7:29 am
Post subject: Re: Framerate as low as 3FPS on PIV 3 GHZ, with frame rate b

The CD is not only the same I used on my older system, but the very same this friend of mine used on his PC, and it worked perfectly for him. It's original from MS (just in case you are wondering Wink ) along with the Battle Of Britain expansion.
He lent me the disk since he doesn't like sims much (wonder why he bought the game AND the expansion! Rolling Eyes ).

So, to answer your questions, the game was real crappy out of the box.
It's for this very reason I started to tweak it without any improvement.
The one and only video card shown by CFS3 Config is the one I have installed.
I'm utterly confused...
Moreover, even if I think it's totally unrelated, when I finish some missions (all goals achieved in the map view) I don't get the red box for mission finished and if I just exit I get the log stating "Mission Complete" but no credit in terms of experience points or "fame" points...
???
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JG300-Stoopy
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 15, 2005 8:00 am
Post subject: Re: Framerate as low as 3FPS on PIV 3 GHZ, with frame rate b

Shucks!

Something's pretty rotten to be sure. Dangit, CFS3 is SO WORTH IT when you can run at all 5's with good frame rates. How about some more info to help pin this down.

What about your disk drive and operating system? That's all fresh and healthy and all that? Windows XP and latest updates, defragmented, all that good stuff?

If I didn't know any better I'd guess it's an overall system problem but no way jose,, all the other stuff runs fine.

AND one more thing....when it ran like poop 'out of the box' you mean exactly that, right? Pure stock, no add-on downloaded planes, effects, or other modifications, right? Sorry to ask again but this is worth double-checking.

I would consider a bad install as the possibility. Even if the CD's are good this can happen.

If you're up for it, uninstall the program properly (through the control panel "Add Remove Programs" or CFS3 Uninstall icon) and then be sure to delete all 3 folders that can be left over:

1.The one in "Program Files\Microsoft Games"
2. The folder in your "My Documents" folder (save any screenshots or stuff you can't live without)
3. The folder in your "Documents and Settings\{Your User Name}\Application Data\Microsoft\Combat Flight Simulator 3 folder.

Then do a disk cleanup, defrag, and reinstall. IF you have more than one CD drive in your system you could also consider reinstalling from the second one, and don't use the CD drive you installed from originally.

If the idea of losing all the work involved in the tweaks is not appealing, one thing you can also do is copy the folders to somewhere else and ZIP them up. Then do the uninstall/clean/reinstall thing. Your old stuff will be archived.

Just some thoughts. Something about your mentioning the wingmen firing guns is nagging at me.....did you turn the sound accelleration down to basic? Do you have an odd sound card?

Oh..as for campaign/mission problems....sorry but can't help you there. Only did a little of that stuff a couple years ago when I first installed the program. After venturing around in the menus and finding the "Multiplayer" button, there's been no going back....MP's where it's at!

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gunslinger
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 15, 2005 9:33 am
Post subject: SOME MORE TESTING...

Yes, I know it's good... I'm getting all the more pissed right because of this... The game would be plainly excellent to play and everybody seems to get a good time... but me... Rolling Eyes

Anyway, I've done some more testing (um... been 3 hours in front of my PC... my wife is starting to look pissed too Mr. Green Rolling Eyes )
I uninstalled completely the game and any expansion, deleted the directory, cleaned the registry with RegSeeker (get it, it's avery good registry maintenance utility, very safe), reinstalled and tested it. Still crappy.
It seems to get worst when somebody ELSE fires guns.
When bombers or wingmen fire their guns, FPS drop from as good as 9-10 FPS to 1-2!!

OS is Win XP Pro SP2
Disk not defragged (I know, can impair performance, I'll have it defragged this night).
Disks are super-duper S-ATAs so, they should pose no problem.

I installed the game CLEAN of everything else (including the patch) and the with the patch. No difference. Poopy before, poopy after Rolling Eyes

I'm running the program with firewall, antivirus and all accessory services that appear in the taskbar DISABLED.
As naked as it can get without messing with the services utility in control panel.

I TRIED THE SOUNDCARD AND GOT A GOOD IMPROVEMENT!
Now FPS is at 15-19 at its worst... Almost 3 times what it was before. Still pretty slow, but playiable.
What could I do to bring the FPS up to say 25-30?
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JG300-Stoopy
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 15, 2005 9:56 am
Post subject: Re: Framerate as low as 3FPS on PIV 3 GHZ, with frame rate b

First thing I'd do now is get that Max_FPS setting into the XML file, and run FRAPS to make sure it's taking effect. Set your max to your target of 25 or 30 and no higher for now. What is it locked to at the moment? You mention the lowest rate, what is the highest you're getting now after the reinstall (I know before it was 18-20)?

Interesting that you got such a good improvement by adjusting the sound accelleration. I am wondering if that's pointing to more attention that should be given the sound card, and it may not hurt to check the sound card drivers for updates (even tho everything else works...this is a Microsoft product and ya never know, they could be taking advantage of a system call that your other games don't know about or use...).

Does this system have on-board audio AND a sound card, and I wonder what Direct X thinks about that.

Sorry to waste your time on a reinstall but, you never know until you try.

And...don't get pissed. The gremlin WANTS that to happen. And your wife might want that too...... Smile Start getting even with it now by staying calm, cool and collected. If it sees it can't rile ya, it might give up and move on.....

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JG300-Stoopy
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 15, 2005 10:16 am
Post subject: Re: Framerate as low as 3FPS on PIV 3 GHZ, with frame rate b

One other idea before stepping away for a while:

You're a prety savvy guy so try this, it should tell us a few things:

Run CS3 in windowed mode (tweak guide shows you how) and fire up the task manager to check your utilization. If youre P4-3Ghz processor is anything like mine, you should be around 30 to 40% utilization flying around and shooting.

While you're there, do whatcha do to get your biggest FPS hits and just maybe, you'll see what's making the spike.

If your CPU utilization stays within reasonable limits (as you know it will naturally spike on system events anyway) but you still get FPS hit, hey presto..the problem isn't tweaking CFS3 per se but at the component level (sound card for sure,probably).

I know, I know...does't make sense if everything else works fine but flight sims are a different breed of animal....they are not just graphic-intensive, like your other games, but what with flight dynamics,sounds, all that, stress the whole system. And even though everythign else works good, guess what....CFS3 also worked good on the old system so you could just as well say CFS3 can't be the culprit either...it's just the first to show the symptom of the problem. This is such a strange one, there are no gaurantees yet where it is!

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JG300-Stoopy
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 15, 2005 11:37 am
Post subject: Re: Framerate as low as 3FPS on PIV 3 GHZ, with frame rate b

Oh...and one more thing to check (this one is quick). In your system BIOS, what is your AGP Aperture size set to? 256 to match the card?

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 15, 2005 2:12 pm
Post subject: Re: Framerate as low as 3FPS on PIV 3 GHZ, with frame rate b

Go to nvidia and get the latest driver (71.89) if you don't already have it. Also if you are using a newer driver make sure you have directx 9.0c.

Would be worth making sure you have the latest chipset drivers for you machine also.
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gunslinger
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 15, 2005 8:28 pm
Post subject: Re: Framerate as low as 3FPS on PIV 3 GHZ, with frame rate b

I'll try the tests you suggested between today and tomorrow.
Meanwhile I completely disabled audio acceleration (emulation only) and got much better framerate, but sound went down the drain (now it's sound stuttering :lol:) so I enabled the least level of accel and got good sound but slower framerate.
I also defragged the HD but without any relevant improvement.
I'll do the tests and see what happens.
In the meanwhile thanks for the suggestions.
I'll be back soon with some results (hope positive ones Rolling Eyes )
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gunslinger
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 15, 2005 9:58 pm
Post subject: Ok, here some new data.

BTW, Don't worry about me reinstalling. I wanted to do it anyway and I'd done it even before reading your advice Smile

I ran the game trying for windowed mode but no way, it stays full screen (should I disable Intro?).
Anyway, using the quick quit hotkey (CTRL - SHIFT - Q) I can exit instantly at any given time and I get a clear view of the usage graphic.
It's more about 70-80%.
Then I used FRAPS in my new config (sound at minimnum indispensable to get decent audio) and got 13 min FPS, 33 max.
My MAX FPS setting in the config file is 30. Is it normal I get 33? Or is "30" intended as "about 30"?

OK: here the latest news:
The Aperture Size was indeed 64. I thought "BINGO!" and set it to 256. The game indeed runs more smoothly. With fraps I'm getting at worst 9-10 FPS but that's just for an instant, during explosions of bombers (sound again?). On normal flight I'm now getting around 28-31FPS and during combat it doesn't get worst than 18-20.
This with everything at 3 but clouds (1) and no reflexes.
I tried everything at 5 but clouds (3) and I couldn't get better than 17 FPS... gues I shouldn't get too cocky for the results Laughing
Anyway, the average framerate stays good even during combat. I'll try against ground targets, where the number-crunching is at its worst and let you know. Still, I feel I should be getting much better than 17-18 during combats...
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JG300-Stoopy
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 16, 2005 1:55 am
Post subject: Re: Framerate as low as 3FPS on PIV 3 GHZ, with frame rate b

Well, hey, progress at least, that's a good sign!

"Guest" above makes a solid point - what version of NVidia drivers are you running?

Yep, disable the intro for running CFS3 in windowed mode. The command line in the "target" setting (when you right click and go to "Properties" for the CFS3 program icon) should be:

"C:\Program Files\Microsoft Games\Combat Flight Simulator 3\cfs3.exe" -intro -windowed

I did a quick copy/paste of the CFS3 icon so I have two of them, one normal, one windowed.

That useage is higher than I would have expected but then again I don't run my tests in combat missions with other planes - just quick combat 1-on-1.

Oh.....regarding the sound stutter...the tweak for that references a file that you can download, that pre-loads some sounds that the system normally fetches from the hard drive (like, machine gun fire!). This causes the monetary stutter when you FIRST fire guns. The link for that may be broken, so I'll see if I still have the file, upload it, and fix the link.

And...yep, frame rate cap of 30 equates to "about" 30....the system is always trying to get beyond that. It's like an NHRA Dragster being held at the starting line by a big ol' bungee cord....it wants to GO but something keeps yankin it back.

That gremlin is gettin nervous and scared now, can you feel it? Smile

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JG300-EXOS
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 16, 2005 4:23 am
Post subject: Re: Framerate as low as 3FPS on PIV 3 GHZ, with frame rate b

Put the "performance" option in your Nvidia driver to "Quality" and try these settings in CFS display options : Plane at 4, Terrain at 4, Clouds at 1 and the rest at 2.

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 16, 2005 7:02 am
Post subject: Re: Framerate as low as 3FPS on PIV 3 GHZ, with frame rate b

well I dont have much I can add myself,,,,,I'm not the guy for advice but more the seeker of.......that brings me to this question,,,,,,I mentioned this to you last night Stoopy and you hadn't heard of this before,,,,so lemmee tell you in long form what is happening......

well as we all know I am just getting back into this sim after the lengthy vacation since last WEC,,,,,,but now when I enter a game,,,,,,it seems any sort of lettering on the screen,,,(everything from the damage info, TAC stuff,,,,blue aircraft info on right, players tags ,,even the chat that appears in the top left is gone,,,,,,,),,not totally gone but either fuzzed out or in block form out in the colour that those words would normally be.....this is very strange indeed and I can fix by repeatedly exiting and re-entering the game,,,,,,I'm thinking a reinstall,,,what about you??????,,,,but before I do this I would like see if you had any ideas,,,,,,also,,,,,,,upon getting a new hard drive I transferred this,,,FS9 and another game over to it from C drive,,,,,,could maybe something in the transfer gone wonky?????,,,,,after all,,,,,those big files took quite awhile to transfer.......

sorry Gunslinger to make use of your thread for my question but it seemed rather appropriate to use rather than making new thread,,,,hope ya' dont mind ,,,,,glad all is coming together for you and hope to see ya' kikin' butt in multiplayer../....

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JG300-EXOS
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 16, 2005 7:27 am
Post subject: Re: Framerate as low as 3FPS on PIV 3 GHZ, with frame rate b

I'm thinking reinstall too....

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