XP/Windows Setup, System Optimizing and Drivers

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XP/Windows Setup, System Optimizing and Drivers

Postby NickN » Wed Apr 23, 2008 9:12 am

SEE O&O DEFRAG v8.6 or v11 2 POSTS BELOW THIS ONE

WARNING: WITH VISTA I NOTED THE AREAS YOU SHOULD NOT DO


---------------------USE AT YOUR OWN RISK-------------------------

---------------------DO NOT USE FOR WINDOWS XP SP1/SP1a OR a web updated SP2 system----------------------

What I list here CAN be applied to VISTA as well, use at your own risk if you do


--------------DELL AND ALL SYSTEMS THAT UPDATED XP TO SP2 VIA THE WEB, BE CAREFULL WITH THIS LIST------------

Web updated and patched XP systems to SP2 may have a bug whereby the entire hard drive can become corrupt from a Microsoft web SP2 update glitch.

ANY system install CAN have the SAME problem.. Dells are not the only computers that can be affected by this issue!

This IS NOT A O&O ISSUE>>> IT IS A MICROSOFT ISSUE

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/941715/en

As long as you installed WindowsXP SP2 from a Windows SP2 Install disk and did not web update, you should be safe


START - RUN type: regedit

click OK

Regedit will open. Find the following keys in the tree:

Browse to:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE
\SYSTEM
\CurrentControlSet
\Control
\FileSystem ----> Look for the following key in the right pane
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Re: XP/Windows Setup and System Optimizing

Postby NickN » Wed Apr 23, 2008 9:13 am

LAST: MAKE SURE THE STARTUP SYSTEM IS CLEAN... GET RID OF PROGRAMS STARTING WITH WINDOWS YOU DONT NEED. YOU SHOULD HAVE RIGHT AROUND 30 PROCESSES RUNNING AT BOOT.. COULD BE A FEW MORE... LESS IS BETTER BUT IF YOU HAVE 38 OR MORE.. YOU HAVE TOO MANY

LOCATE, ATTACK AND DESTROY ALL ITEMS NON ESSENTIAL TO BOOT AND OPERATE.. IN EXAMPLE: MS MESSENGER CAN BE KILLED AT STARTUP. YOU CAN BOOT IT AS NEEDED, NOT WITH WINDOWS




===========================================


O&O DEFRAG

NOTE; IF YOU HAVE MORE THAN ONE HARD DRIVE IN THE SYSTEM YOU MUST PERFORM THE SAME DEFRAG RUNS ON EACH DRIVE EXACTLY AS I OUTLINE BELOW.



If you do use version 10 of O&O Defrag, do DO NOT run the SPACE defrag past the first 2 defrag passes and never again... just the first runs... (you will see the list below) after that only run the COMPLETE\NAME defrag as I outline below

I recommend version 8.6... if you are on XPx64 or Vista x64 you need the X64 version of O&O Defrag. See several posts down for links to the product

NOTE: O&O v11 IS CONFIRMED TO WORK THE SAME AS v8.6. THE ONLY VERSION THAT MUST NOT RUN THE SPACE DEFRAG AS OUTLINED ABOVE IS VERSION 10

NEXT:
Boot O&O Defrag. The first time it is run a wizard will appear, just get rid of it and if possible, select to not have it run again (there may be a checkbox for that in the wizard that appears) Once you get rid of the wizard, do the following

Go to:
FILE MENU/OPTIONS: GENERAL TAB:
UNCHECK Create Reports

O&O DEFRAG VERSION 11: DISABLE THE TRAY SYSTEM (last option)

OFFLINE DEFRAG TAB:
LEAVE THIS ALONE FOR NOW but we will change it later.

TUNING TAB:
Bullet in
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Re: XP/Windows Setup and System Optimizing

Postby NickN » Wed Apr 23, 2008 9:15 am

O&O DEFRAG v11 is fixed in comparing use to the v8.6 version

I am sorry its taken so long to get a look at O&O v11 and put it through the paces however I have now confirmed that (at least in WindowsXP) v11 of O&O works exactly the same as v8.6

The massive freespace issue which was present in v10 of the product does not appear in the v11 product

There is no cluster free space between used clusters


As for settings.. there are minor additions from my original instructions located in this thread which I have also edited into the 'list' posts above


CHANGES IN SETTINGS FROM 8.6:

First, in the SETTINGS, under the GENERAL TAB disable the tray display as it is not needed (last item)


Next, make sure MONITORING is DISABLED on the main GUI as it too is not needed for a performance system



Otherwise everything I listed in the lists posted above about O&O setup and use is EXACTLY the same. There is no restrictions on SPACE defrag use with v11 of the O&O Defrag product. You can use the SPACE defrag between regular maintenance NAME defrag intervals without any problems


As far as I can see there is no performance gains by switching to v11 from v8.6 so if you are already on v8.6 and its working fine for you, stay with it as there is no need to purchase O&O v11

If you may be having problems in Vista with 8.6 its possible v11 may resolve those issues.. that I do not know as I have not use v11 in Vista and can not comment on what it may or may not correct however in either case I see absolutely no reason to upgrade to v11 unless you are having difficulty with v8.6 and at that point I would try the TRIAL O&O v11 to confirm your issues are resolved. You should uninstall the version you are using before installing the trial.

I would say anyone on v10 should probably try the trial version of v11 and if it is working, upgrade.

If you are thinking of trying O&O and have never used it, v11 will work for you in the list that I posted without issue. v8.6 is no longer required but will work as well.







NOTE: VISTA users MUST use version 11
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Re: XP/Windows Setup and System Optimizing

Postby NickN » Wed Apr 23, 2008 9:16 am

USING MORE/LESS or EQUAL to 2GIGS OF SYSTEM MEMORY IN WINDOWS XP x32 OR VISTA X32 with OOM

-OR-

HOW TO PROPERLY TUNE VIRTUAL ADDRESS SPACE IN WINDOWS (x32) FOR OUT OF MEMORY ERRORS

x64 operating systems do not need the following changes



PLEASE NOTE: This section is for anyone who sees out of memory error while using FSX. It applies to ALL circumstances.

to clear up confusion about this change.. the amount reserved for the cache is NOT and DOES NOT have anything to do with the amount of memory in the system or how much memory you are allowing access to the system!!

This change only tweaks the address space, relieving the OOM error. The 32bit system will use the physical memory installed up to 4GB regardless!





If you have FSX SP2, the exe file is already 2G+ aware

If you have XP or VISTA x32 and more than 2GB you need to MARK the OS for that use or it will ignore the sticks and never use them

x64 operating systems do not need the following changes


For XP:

disable hidden files and folder, then on the root C:\ you will find a file named: boot.ini

Open it in notepad and add the follwoing to the end of the OS boot line:


/3GB/Userva=2560

multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINNT="Microsoft Windows XP Professsional" /fastdetect /3GB /Userva=2560 <---- add it here


save and close the file

reboot

to set that back to default, simply remove the edit


If you are using XP SP2 and are running a dual, quad, OR a single core Intel HYPERTHREAD processor, make sure this update is applied
http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/deta ... laylang=en

Systems running XP-SP3 does NOT need that update

For Vista:
WINDOWS VISTA ONLY:
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Re: XP/Windows Setup and System Optimizing

Postby NickN » Wed Apr 23, 2008 9:20 am

[size=18]
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Re: XP/Windows Setup and System Optimizing

Postby NickN » Wed Apr 23, 2008 9:21 am

Drivers, Nhancer and setting them up


NOTE: The post in the link below shows the new Nhancer GUI and a step by step in how to set it up based on the instructions below

http://www.simforums.com/forums/forum_p ... 769#156769



it is usually best to run a DRIVER CLEAN program when changing drivers however that is NOT a requirement. I do it.

There are several on the freeware market.. DRIVER CLEAN PRO and DRIVER SWEEPER are the two I use. You must be careful with such software and ONLY flush the DRIVERS for video and not the chipset or other areas

You can find most of the latest beta drivers and older ones listed here:

http://www.laptopvideo2go.com/forum/ind ... owforum=66\

the threads have the driver links in them

usually find all drivers there... you may or may not need the modified .ini file. The modded .ini file is designed for laptops but it also allows other cards to install the drivers..
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Re: XP/Windows Setup, System Optimizing and Drivers

Postby NickN » Fri Apr 25, 2008 9:09 am

A NOTE ABOUT STORAGE PERFORMANCE





You do not need the best solution for good FSX perf however you do need to look at the list below and take heed of the precautions when setting up a system for FSX perf.

The storage system presents one of the greatest perf reductions to FSX simply because of the latency and CPU time they consume



MOTHERBOARD RAID0 WILL KILL FSX PERF and CREATE STUTTERS



-REPEAT-

MOTHERBOARD RAID0 WILL KILL FSX PERF and CREATE STUTTERS







The ONLY RAID that will enhance FSX is HARDWARD RAID on the RIGHT professional PCIe solution which allows a 256K BLOCK OR STRIPE with the RIGHT controller card settings to eliminate features such as NCQ

2 Velociraptors in RAID0 (256K STRIPE) on the right card are very close to SCSI performance

2 Velociraptors in RAID0 (or SCSI/SAS) on the right card are overkill for todays processors and memory subsystems in conjunction with the video adapter in FSX and will deliver very large amounts of data faster than the system can process/render it

Therefore the best solution for FSX with a Professional SATAII PCIe 256-512MB card based on highest to lowest perf

a. 2 VelociRaptors on RAID0

b. A single VelociRapor

c. 2 32MB Cache SATAII HDD in RAID0

d. A single 1st Generation 150GB Raptor

e. A single 32MB cache SATAII


All of which will do the job but the VelociRapor RAID0 configuration on the right card with those drives will do the job and then some.. very overkill

The OS drive should be on another single drive connected to the same card.. does not have to be RAID0 and does not have to be a VRap but should be a decent spec cache SATAII drive


MOTHERBOARD SOLUTIONS based on highest to lowest perf



The next step down is A single VelociRapor on Motherboard SATAII

The next step down is 2 VelociRapor in RAID0 on Motherboard RAID ... NOTE: Due to the Vrap design the single and RAID version of motherboard based storage is about equal

The next step down is A single 1st Generation Raptor on Motherboard SATAII

The next step down is A single 32MB cache large platter hard drive on SATAII

The next step down is 2 1st Generation Raptors in RAID0 on motherboard RAID

The next step down is 2 of any other drive in RAID0 on motherboard RAID



Notice where RAID0 sits on that list for Motherboard SATA RAID controllers




So there is your list to consider when planning for a FSX system


If you may be interested in high end storage solutions 3ware makes a great card for under 400 bucks. They have them in 256 or 512MB onboard DDR2 PCIe and you must use the battery backup for the card to ensure safe operation in 'high performance' mode as I assisted someone in this thread set up correctly on the 256MB model card

http://www.simforums.com/forums/forum_p ... ?TID=28350



You must have a motherboard with a 2nd PCIe x8 or x16 slot to use those cards

Standard PCI RAID cards are NO BETTER than Motherboard RAID



RULES:

DO NOT PARTITION A DRIVE AND PLACE A OS OR FSX ON A PARTITION OTHER THAN THE FIRST PHYSICAL PARITION OF THE DRIVE

ALWAYS MAKE SURE THERE IS A MINIMUM OF 40-50% FREESPACE ON ANY PERFORMANCE DRIVE OR PARTITION

NEVER PARTITION A RAID ARRAY - EVER!

BEST SETUP IS TO PLACE FSX ON ITS OWN DEDICATED DRIVE WITH NO 2ND PARTITION





MYTH: NCQ and advanced BIOS SATA functions such as AHCI increase FSX performance

TRUTH: TRUE for network servers and workstations, UTTERLY FALSE for high performance drives such as the Rap, Vrap and gaming system use.



A Western Digital VelociRaptor is the best investment you can make for a FSX system. Even without an expensive controller card those drives will deliver the scenery where others can fall short
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Re: XP/Windows Setup, System Optimizing and Drivers

Postby raptorx » Thu May 01, 2008 10:04 pm

Nick,  I see that Disktrix has a new Ultimate Defrag version 8 that seems to be new.  I've heard that this product allows some manipulation of the MFT for better performance.  What do you think?

-Jim
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Mushkin Redline DDR3 1600
XP x64 SP2
ASUS Matrix GTX285
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Re: XP/Windows Setup, System Optimizing and Drivers

Postby NickN » Fri May 02, 2008 3:21 pm

Nick,  I see that Disktrix has a new Ultimate Defrag version 8 that seems to be new.  I've heard that this product allows some manipulation of the MFT for better performance.  What do you think?

-Jim


If it ain't broke, dont fix it
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Re: XP/Windows Setup and System Optimizing

Postby N. Chapman » Wed May 07, 2008 10:42 pm

If you are using XP SP2 and are running a dual, quad, OR a single core Intel HYPERTHREAD processor, make sure this update is applied
http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/deta ... laylang=en

With SP3 this update is no longer needed.
Last edited by N. Chapman on Wed May 07, 2008 10:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: XP/Windows Setup, System Optimizing and Drivers

Postby Sterk » Sat May 10, 2008 11:47 am

Made optimizations described in your first post-related to virtual memory and registry twicks...

FS perfomance is noticably WORSE now...
Before windows visual effects optimization you forgot to mention that after these optimizations one will loose all his settings for windows appearance-for example if somebody uses(like me) windows classic style instead of XP style and some twicks for colors,font etc., he is going to loose all this and return back to XP default appearance...

How many times I said to myself not to listen to all that is posted in forumes?Sorry
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Re: XP/Windows Setup, System Optimizing and Drivers

Postby NickN » Sun May 11, 2008 8:49 am

Made optimizations described in your first post-related to virtual memory and registry twicks...

FS perfomance is noticably WORSE now...
Before windows visual effects optimization you forgot to mention that after these optimizations one will loose all his settings for windows appearance-for example if somebody uses(like me) windows classic style instead of XP style and some twicks for colors,font etc., he is going to loose all this and return back to XP default appearance...

How many times I said to myself not to listen to all that is posted in forumes?Sorry


I dont doubt for one minute that things run worse... That list is a ALL or NOTHING change order. If you do one or two items and not follow the list to the end, you can expect no gain or poor performance


As long as you do exactly as I outlined above AND DID NOT SKIP any steps or try and get -cute- or SMART with extra tweaks... and most of them other than what I posted ARE TRASH I assure you... you should now have a very optimized FSX rig



Every item in that list has dependencies on the proceeding steps. In example, ...
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Re: XP/Windows Setup and System Optimizing

Postby NickN » Sun May 11, 2008 9:01 am

If you are using XP SP2 and are running a dual, quad, OR a single core Intel HYPERTHREAD processor, make sure this update is applied
http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/deta ... laylang=en

With SP3 this update is no longer needed.



If you are running XPSP3, then all you will get during install of the patch is a message that says the update is already applied.

XPSP3 will not in any way shape or form make you system run any better if you have been keeping up with updates and have already applied patches as I outined
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Re: XP/Windows Setup, System Optimizing and Drivers

Postby Groundbound1 » Mon May 19, 2008 10:08 pm

On behalf of all of us, THANK YOU for taking the time to do all you do for us Nick, many of us (I at least) would be lost without your help.

Now I just noticed this new list, but I had followed the previous one to the letter, and though you may have had FSX users in mind while making it, I had great results in FS9 under XP Pro SP2. Would I see better results with these steps over the other set of tweaks, and would this new list be as effective in FS9 as they are for FSX?
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Re: XP/Windows Setup, System Optimizing and Drivers

Postby NickN » Mon May 19, 2008 11:13 pm

On behalf of all of us, THANK YOU for taking the time to do all you do for us Nick, many of us (I at least) would be lost without your help.

Now I just noticed this new list, but I had followed the previous one to the letter, and though you may have had FSX users in mind while making it, I had great results in FS9 under XP Pro SP2. Would I see better results with these steps over the other set of tweaks, and would this new list be as effective in FS9 as they are for FSX?



http://forums.simviation.com/cgi-bin/ya ... 055375/0#7
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