XP/Windows Setup, System Optimizing and Drivers

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Re: XP/Windows Setup, System Optimizing and Drivers

Postby NickN » Sun May 03, 2009 10:54 am

Nick - is there any chance you can strip the information on setting up the computer into a locked thread as you have with the FS tweaks. 33 pages is a lot to go through.

Thanks.

EDIT - it occurs to me everything that has arisen on subsequent pages may have been incorporated in the first page - is this correct?



that is correct

everything is up to date in the first 5 posts
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Re: XP/Windows Setup, System Optimizing and Drivers

Postby Flt4ever » Thu May 07, 2009 12:34 pm

Thanks Nick!

 After much frustration, even with all your System Optimizations followed to the letter.  (Which made a large improvement.)  I still had stutters and freezes occasionally.  So I bit the bullet and followed your equipment advice. Switched  to Velociraptors RAID 0 on a separate controller and XP-64.  Wow I though for the most part I had been doing good. But Wow !!! what a quantum leap in performance.  Saw a slight increase in FPS, but more consistent and smooth as silk, even over large cities. Whole new ball game! THANK  YOU!!!!!
:) :)
I7 980X
ASUS P6X58D
12 gig Patriot ddr3 2000 mhz
Windows 7 64 bit
Nvidia GTX 470
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Re: XP/Windows Setup, System Optimizing and Drivers

Postby Flightsim Phil » Fri May 15, 2009 3:07 pm

Nick:

I am planning on a completly virgin install this weekend on a new computer system I just built....   Vista x64 on Raptor Drive #1 and FS-X on Raptor Drive #2 (No RAID!!).  I am planning on following your excellent tips on both system optimization and FS-X tuning.  A couple of questions:

- Can the command "rundll32 advapi32,ProcessIdleTasks" still run on Vista x64?

- When should I install nHancer?  After the Vista install and after I update to the new nVidia driver but before I install FS?

- Should I apply your system optimization tips before or after I install FS?

Thanks!!

Phil
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Re: XP/Windows Setup, System Optimizing and Drivers

Postby NickN » Fri May 15, 2009 5:10 pm

1. No.. do not run the command line not unless you follow and try the routine I posted later in the thread (check back a page or 2)

2. Nhancer goes in anytime after the video drivers

3. Does not matter when you apply them but the final parts in running the defrags must be done after ALL software is installed and verified and no assessment can be made in tuning the sim till after the opts are complete.
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Re: XP/Windows Setup, System Optimizing and Drivers

Postby Dougal » Sun May 17, 2009 7:03 am

A Tech Question Re O&O...  I have v8.6 installed.

After installing some very large files, I ran SPACE defrag agin, I then thought I'd try the NAME defrag again.

Even after 24hrs of being left to run, it will only get to 55%.

Any ideas please?
Phil 'Dougal' Symonds ------ XP-Pro 64bit - FSX(SP2)
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Re: XP/Windows Setup, System Optimizing and Drivers

Postby Dougal » Sun May 17, 2009 10:18 am

and here's another i'm concerned about:

According to the 'Belarc Advisor', my XP-Pro SP3 installation is missing 39 CRITICAL updates.

However, Windows update says there are NO critical updates for my PC

What do you suppose that's about then?  I thought Belarc was highly rated.  I'm wondering now by whom :-/
Phil 'Dougal' Symonds ------ XP-Pro 64bit - FSX(SP2)
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Re: XP/Windows Setup, System Optimizing and Drivers

Postby NickN » Sun May 17, 2009 12:32 pm

A Tech Question Re O&O... I have v8.6 installed.

After installing some very large files, I ran SPACE defrag agin, I then thought I'd try the NAME defrag again.

Even after 24hrs of being left to run, it will only get to 55%.

Any ideas please?



Then there is something causing the defrag to loop .. either a non-moveable or readable file or area.. or an error on the drive

Usually when this is seen its time to run a FULL DISK CHECK to see if there are serious errors on the disk.

There are 2 levels of this check.. one during Windows boot and another performed from a C prompt after running the recovery console using the WindowsXP CD to boot the system

You can try the 1st method and see if it clears..

Go to MY COMPUTER - Right click your C drive, select PROPERTIES, then TOOLS TAB. On ERROR CHECKING, click CHECK NOW. In the box that appears place a check in "Automatically Fix File System Errors" AND "Scan for and attempt recovery of bad sectors". Click START.

A box will appear telling you the disk check cannot be performed.... click YES to have it performed at boot.

Reboot the computer. The disk check will run automatically while booting. Don’t touch anything and let it finish. Once done the system should automatically reboot back into Windows.

That full check can take hours




as for belarc .. I have not used that old tool in years.
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Re: XP/Windows Setup, System Optimizing and Drivers

Postby Flightsim Phil » Sun May 17, 2009 7:27 pm

Interesting observation...

This weekend I finally put together my new gaming rig:

Intel Core-i7-920
Asus P6T Deluxe V2
6 GB DDR3 RM
Velociraptor 150 GB HD
nVidia 9800 GTX
Corsair 850w PSU

After installing Windows Vista Home Premium x64, all the updates, NOD32 and O&O 11, I ram 3DMark06 @ 1900x1200.  I got a score of 12684.

I then followed Nick's optimizing instructions to the letter, the only exception being that I did not disable System Restore.  I went throught all the steps, including the many O&O defrags, and then I ran 3DMark06 again @ 1900x1200.

My new score was 12381.   While 3DMark06 may not be a good indicator of potential FS-X performance. it struck me as odd that my score would go down, given that I had eliminated dozens of uneeded background services and processes prior to re-testing.  

Any thoughts??

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Re: XP/Windows Setup, System Optimizing and Drivers

Postby NickN » Sun May 17, 2009 8:13 pm

yea.. 3DMark is absolutely meaningless except to try and sell you more hardware

I use it to heat up components in stress tests while clocking with loops ignoring the score and thats about it

MSFS is a year 2000 triangle rendering engine and 3DMark from 05 up is geard to shader based rendering hardware and engines

The 3DMark that is closer matched to MSFS is 3DMark03
Last edited by NickN on Sun May 17, 2009 8:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: XP/Windows Setup, System Optimizing and Drivers

Postby Flightsim Phil » Mon May 18, 2009 9:36 am

I agree with you re: 3DMark....  seems like it's designed to get folks to buy, tweak, overclock, whatever to squeeze out add'l points on their score.  Having said that, it still does seem odd, FS-X aside, that my score would go down after following your optimization tips, given that many of the services and processes that were previously running in the background were now shut off and not loading up at start-up.  I was simply curious if you had any thoughts/ideas on why that might be the case.....

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Re: XP/Windows Setup, System Optimizing and Drivers

Postby NickN » Mon May 18, 2009 2:48 pm

I agree with you re: 3DMark.... seems like it's designed to get folks to buy, tweak, overclock, whatever to squeeze out add'l points on their score. Having said that, it still does seem odd, FS-X aside, that my score would go down after following your optimization tips, given that many of the services and processes that were previously running in the background were now shut off and not loading up at start-up. I was simply curious if you had any thoughts/ideas on why that might be the case.....

Phil



I thought I did with what I said..

But perhaps not

Games that 3DMark05/06 score would show influence are pretty much video card driven with some CPU

Modern shader engine games and tests like 3DMark06 get their boost from the video adapter and not from the memory subsystem.



And

It shows you how much the OS and system really influence such titles as compared to titles that need every stinking cycle of CPU/memory and storage access perf they can get.. like MSFS

Shutting down Windows services PAST what I posted is a FARCE. Black Viper is a joke. I have fixed more systems ENABLING services people disabled using that site than I can count. A service being polled by Windows that is not there in a loop will in fact cripple the application being run..

Machine Gun service shutdown programs do nothing. A system must be rebooted with the service completely disabled at LOGON to not have any footprint on the system.

Cleaning out the STARTUP system for apps is different. As long as the app is not needed to run the game of choice such as sound and video driver support killing those are of benefit. At the same time the right AV such as NOD32 wont interfere with the game in use.. others and especially freeware are well known for killing perf and really should be shut down (service and app with a reboot) unless the user is 100% sure the AV or scanner is not interfering.
Last edited by NickN on Mon May 18, 2009 2:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: XP/Windows Setup, System Optimizing and Drivers

Postby truck911 » Mon May 18, 2009 5:25 pm

I agree with you re: 3DMark.... seems like it's designed to get folks to buy, tweak, overclock, whatever to squeeze out add'l points on their score. Having said that, it still does seem odd, FS-X aside, that my score would go down after following your optimization tips, given that many of the services and processes that were previously running in the background were now shut off and not loading up at start-up. I was simply curious if you had any thoughts/ideas on why that might be the case.....

Phil


I seem to remember my score in 3DMark going down after I used Nicks” tuning as well. I f I am not mistaken 3DMark recommends that the test be run 3-times consecutive and also that V-sync is disabled. If you followed Nick’s tuning to the letter then your v-sync would be enabled. Also AA is supposed to be turned off and I wouldn’t suggest use of nhancer when testing. I chocked my test up to either having to set my system to obtain a better 3D score or better FSX performance. I opted for the better FSX performance and have never looked back at the 3D thing since.

Bottom line is Nick’s tuning is about optimizing smoothing of FSX performance not high 3DMark (meaningless) scores. Your choice you can uninstall nhancer and set the Nividia profile back to default< I think that the Nvidia profiles even have a custom program setting for 3DMark you could set that and try again. As I say I gave up on 3DMArk long ago.

I think the combination of Nhancer, AA 16x’s and vsync enabled is probably skewing your 3D results. Like I said you could prove this by removing Nhancer and setting Nvidia defaults and re-running the 3DMark.
Last edited by truck911 on Mon May 18, 2009 5:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: XP/Windows Setup, System Optimizing and Drivers

Postby NickN » Mon May 18, 2009 7:55 pm

Nhancer has profiles for 3DMark and those should not have the settings I posted for Nhancer enabled

Thats the idea behind the profiles.. just because what I posted was set up for FSX and Global does not mean it will be the same for the 3DMark or other game profiles.. but it is good to verify. Its also possible the drivers in use are locking Vsync even if the profile says "APPLICATION"
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Re: XP/Windows Setup, System Optimizing and Drivers

Postby Flightsim Phil » Mon May 18, 2009 8:20 pm

Thanks for the responses...   Just for the record, I am not running nHancer (yet).  I did run the test 3 times consecutively (after rebooting) and basically got the same score.  I did not have AA enabled but I did not disable Vsync.  I do have a copy of 3DMark03 laying around...  I may try to see how that runs.

Undertand that I do agree with you.... I am looking to tune for FS-X optimization, not the highest 3dMark score....   I just found it odd that the score went down.  Glad to see I'm not the only one who experienced that.

Thanks!
Phil

BTW, I was thinking of mildly overclocking my nVidia card...  should I just do it through the Forceware control panel or do you guys recommend a third party program???
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Re: XP/Windows Setup, System Optimizing and Drivers

Postby NickN » Tue May 19, 2009 8:36 pm

I dont know of any overclock tool available on modern Nvidia drivers.. they make you install Ntumb

Try Precsion Tool by EVGA.. its simplistic and its free and it will monitor temps and fans speed too
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