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Fallout 3 crashes/freezes !?!???!!

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October 30, 2008 3:10:19 PM


When i'm in the game especially when using computers or pip-boy 3000 the screen locks up with small squares every where(like a chess board).... i have to restart it every time. sometimes i play 2 min. then it locks up or if im lucky may be 20mins. its got nothing to do with the temperatures, they are fine.

I'm using a core duo2 e6750, sapphire 4870, 4gigs corsair ram and using vista ultimate 32bit...(all latest drivers) :fou: 
October 30, 2008 7:52:18 PM

Well, either you are playing a downloaded review copy that was floating around a few days prior to release (and many who downloaded it are having the same problem as you), or you need to lower the game settings and check your temps. Your system may be overheating.

The simplest solution would be to get the latest updates for your video card, sound card and motherboard, as well as Vista, but since you did all that I think you are having a heat issue.
October 30, 2008 7:59:32 PM

Only time when FO3 freezes (2 times in 10 - 11 hours of play) is when AVG Free is scanning for viruses. Gotta remember to disable it.
Related resources
October 30, 2008 8:03:19 PM

I've been having issues where it would crash on startup, missing cues in the game (things won't trigger early so I can't move past the Tenth Birthday bit) and also I have no sound, but I think that last one's unrelated since I've been having driver issues lately.
October 30, 2008 8:48:32 PM

thx for the replies.... my codecs are up to date... same with all my drivers including motherboard... and i've got no antivirus program to scan my comp. I just reformatted it and installed the drivers then fallout to see if the other programs caused it but again i had the same issue.

Ill probably have to wait for a update for fallout 3 or the drivers for my vga card... thx for the ideas...
November 1, 2008 12:07:51 AM

i am having the EXACT same problem vudali! screen locks up with small squares, have to restart, sometimes after 2 mins, or 20 mins. i dont knowww, it might be just a hardware incompatability issue because i just happen to have to same exact hardware as you (except a e7200 cpu). pleaaase post back if u ever fix the problem!
November 1, 2008 7:13:11 AM

i found the problem... while researching on the net i found somebody with the same problem. He flashed his video bios... did the same thing... works like a charm
November 2, 2008 12:01:53 AM

nice vudali! can you please tell me a little about flashing the video bios? i looked it up on google, and it seems like you can really mess things up if u screw up. and all the guides i found are old, with old gfx cards and floppy drives.
November 2, 2008 7:44:11 AM

first of all i downloaded the bios from sapphires official website. then got a floppy disk and formated it and made it a boot up disk. Added the files i downloaded. restarted the computer and booted the comp. from the floppy drive. Then typed in flash.bat. Finished...

Never crashed after... just unbelievable that it was all caused from the vga bios...

take care
November 2, 2008 3:01:21 PM

This is a common problem with Fallout 3. Bethesda is releasing a patch soon to fix this. I guess just try different settings and see if you can get it to play longer. It's going to crash eventually, but in my case I can play for about 4-5 hours before it crashes.

Awesome game by the way.
November 3, 2008 2:48:38 PM

Now I am experiencing more frequent crashes than before.

I wonder if it has anything to do with the increasing saved game file size and the fact that I am building up a large cache of armor, ammo, weapons, etc.
November 4, 2008 3:03:01 PM

HAHA SUCKERS its FLAWLESS FOR ME! [don't hate me cause im lucky]

but yeah, the only thing that came close to a glitch for me was some lag, probably due to the low 2gb of ram i have, and pathetic e4500 @ 3.00ghz... and when i entered vault 106 and everything turned blue. thats normal though, i think its supposed to simulate the gas or some sht
November 7, 2008 11:26:43 AM

One fix that works for many (i've posted it on one forum and gotten feedback from 4 players already that they've had NO problems what-so-ever after that.

It's VERY simple. Disable your virtual memory (pagefile).

That means 0Mb pagefile for all drives. Or you can just click in the "My computer" Preferences "no paging file", apply, and you're set.

I'm using XP, so not sure how it works for Vista.

Have fun with the best game of the year :) 

-Jay604
Anonymous
November 10, 2008 5:26:38 AM

Hello folks,

i have a real SOLUTION for permanent CRASHES.

I tried all this Codec-, Configuration and tunrning off AA stuff - none worked, still crashed every 5 minutes or so. Patch released on November 6 is installed.

However, if i run the game in WINDOWED MODE it works perfectly.

XP SP 3, Athlon X2 6000, Geforce 9800GT.
November 12, 2008 10:21:48 AM

Problem Solved !!!!!!! Random Crashes to Desktop.

If you have or have had the Arc Soft Media package installed - Disable the service (do not set in manual) and rename the file ASAUDIO in the program files, common folder to something like BACKUP_ASAUDIO.AX

This file causes spontanious random crashes at frequent intervals.

Test to make sure your Windows Media player will handle MPEG Audio files after renaming. It probably will.

November 12, 2008 2:06:09 PM

i have core 2 duo 2.ooghz,2gb ram,xp service pack 3 and a gma x3000 featuring 384 mb of shared video ram...wen i click play in fallout 3 it loads for a min and then crashes to the desktop...can anyone tell me what is d problem wid me??
November 15, 2008 2:16:10 AM

I have quad core HP, ~2.2 gigahertz, 3 gig ram, NVidia 8800 card.

Game ran fine for first week, then started freezing. I have to ctrl-alt-del, to Windows task manager to close program (not responding)

I have emailed Bethesda about this, and have been searching the forums. I have the latest patches, have tried uninstalling extra codecs, and have tried various settings.

Initially, the game ran perfectly well, no crashing, on almost-ultra graphical settings. I always hear a slight crackle in the sound when the game first loads, but all my drivers are up to date. The game is all-but unplayable now. Freeze occurs within seconds of starting game.
November 15, 2008 7:44:36 AM

Well, with as popular as this game is and the number of sales they got, I imagine they will be patching it up pretty quick. It desperately needs it.
November 15, 2008 7:49:53 AM

Isn't there already a fix out there?
November 15, 2008 7:08:19 PM

There is a patch, but the game is still very crashy
November 17, 2008 2:56:02 AM

ok... this is getting to be ridiculous..

I haven't played Fallout3 in a few days because I've been busy and WoW - WotLK just came out, I've played it a bit for my spare time. Tonight, however, I decided to continue my Fallout -game.

I got crashes. AGAIN. I haven't done anything so special to my computer that it should affect fallout. Only installed old paint shop pro 7, new version of firefox, updated windows and the usual stuff.

So, having crashes again, I went to bethesdas web page and downloaded the patch. Thought that maybe it'll fix it.

But it's kinda hard because I can't install the patch!

Every time I try to patch the game and launch the patch file executable, it opens two fallout patch -programs, then a command line and tries to start fallout the game. Then everything stops and I can't do anything.

I know that it says to wait about 20minutes to the game to patch, but is that normal that I can't do anything else? There's just that hourglass everywhere and nothing seems to happen (waited a few minutes).

Windows task manager just says that CPU usage is almost zero, and memory usage doesn't vary a bit. Applications -tab shows that all three, 2x fallout patchers and fallout "is not responding".

That doesn't seem normal to me...

Anyone else had problems with the patch? Does it connect to the internet btw, to download some files? ..because if it does, my firewall might be the cause of it. Fallout3 starts then firewall asks if the patch file can have access to the internet

I'm only speculating, because there's a good chance that if the game launches and my firewall brings it back to windows right after that, it might cause the crash..
November 17, 2008 8:46:47 AM

Russtopher said:
I've been having issues where it would crash on startup, missing cues in the game (things won't trigger early so I can't move past the Tenth Birthday bit) and also I have no sound, but I think that last one's unrelated since I've been having driver issues lately.


I had the exact same problem. CTD at the exact same spot. I read on another thread that the Key remapping is very buggy and it works better on default keys. Tried this and it worked!!! It still crashed on me after about 5 hours, but at least its playable...touch wood.

I think its unacceptable that they release it with all these bugs. I would have rather waited a couple months for them to clean it up. Guess its all about sales...less about customer satisfaction. I think its an awesome game, but it doesn't deserve 10/10 with all the bugs it has.
November 17, 2008 10:40:51 AM

Xmas markets ftw.

Incidentally ive played through about 6 hours so far with zero crashes / glitches / anomolies - Retail out the box.
Configuration listed if anyone is interested.
November 17, 2008 12:47:23 PM

im on my second run, my first game never crashed after 16 hours play and only completing the main story.... however my second run through has crashed multiple times after about 25 hours of play time ive had about 10-15 crashes in-game it appears to be directly related to how big the save game file is, and i appear to have more crashes in heavy populated areas compared to out in the wasteland, in this second run through ive completed over 50 quests.
November 18, 2008 3:55:40 PM

I have been experiencing crashes on my primary PC (see sig), but strangely enough not on my HTPC PC.

My HTPC was my old primary PC which basically consists of the following:
- MSI 975X mobo
- C2D E6600
- 4GB of RAM (1GB x 4)
- 9600GT (newer than my X1900XT on my Primary PC - silent 'cause it's passively cooled).
- Win XP
- Planar 19" PX191 (from 2002)


I have not experienced any crash at all on my HTPC which seems surprisely odd. I am running v1.0 on both machines. On my Primary PC, my character is Very Good (though he is a slaver) and level 18. On my HTPC, my character is Good, but I am trying to shift her to Neutral or Evil; she is currently level 9.
November 18, 2008 4:10:37 PM

Forgot to mention...

While playing FO3 on my HTPC I am also encoding video (DivX) at the same time.

On my Primary PC I only play FO3.

Weird... maybe it's the quad core in my Primary PC or the X1900XT that's causing the crashes?
November 18, 2008 4:29:53 PM

From what I understand, they have had a lot of problems with sound card drivers and cheap built in sound chips. Not sure what exactly the problem is but thats what a lot of people are reporting. If you haven't tried it yet, you might want to install new sound drivers.

They really should have cleaned up a lot of these bugs before shipping.
November 18, 2008 4:33:13 PM

I originally was crashing every time I tried to start a new game.

I solved all my crashing issues by starting the computer in a "Clean Boot" mode, by disabling all but the original MS programs and processes that start when windows boots. I haven't had a single problem since, I just have to start in clean boot mode any time I want to play.

This should work for both Vista and XP.

I would highly recommend giving this a try. See this MS article on how to start with a clean boot: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/331796
November 18, 2008 4:40:55 PM

I close out steam and save obsessively. I'll try updating my audio and chipset drivers probably later today.

Mine crashes probably once every 3 hours or so. Not terrible, but certainly not good either.
November 19, 2008 3:18:58 PM

i just wanted to say that i completed the game. And after updating vga bios the freezes which occured completly disappeared.

I only had a couple of crashes exiting and one in game but these where different crashes. Not the ones i explained above. These crashes just gave me errors and i needed to re-enter the game after crashing to the dektop. These are mostly probably from the game itself and will be eliminated after patches for the game.

Great game.... take care everybody
January 10, 2009 4:37:32 PM

Yup I got the same deal with the little squares on my 4870, it is definitely NOT the temperature of the card. I installed a temp monitor in the foreground and the temperature only goes up a few degrees at full settings. I think its some compatibility issue with vista/your video card/fallout 3. I decided to load up oblivion on my vista and I would get the EXACT same issues, random freezing with the little squares. Luckily however I downloaded the big patch they released for oblivion + an unofficial patch that fixes vista issues and tadah oblivion can run for days at a time if I want it to without any crashing/freezing. So unfortunately we'll probably have to wait for a major patch or even newer drivers (even though the last ones were just released a month ago).

And btw I loaded the game up on my dell xps laptop and tried to run it on xp and the game runs great albeit at lower settings than my PC but no crashes/freezing
January 11, 2009 6:38:51 PM

never seen a crash with Fallout3. the little square problem it seems everyone who is saying they see that is running ATI cards. maybe the next catylist driver will have a fix in there for it.
January 23, 2009 4:46:20 AM

hey whats up, I have been having terrible trouble with this game crashing every 10 or so sec. and just today I updated my graphics card driver to the 1-22-09 patch and the game plays perfectly no glitches no crashing. my specs

Nvidia Geforce 9800 GTX+
Windows Vista 32bit
January 28, 2009 11:30:29 PM

i had my first game crash to desktop yesterday. i had alot of crap running in the background so i will dismiss it from being a game issue unless it starts giving fits. played it an awful lot, beat it twice, went through as many side quests as possible so i can live with one crash that was probably my fault.
February 11, 2009 11:43:16 AM

Just received fallout 3. I have an aging PC by most people's standards:

Gigabyte GA400Npro motherboard - At least 6 years old
Kept alive with AMD 3200+XP CPU - (That's one core - Barton for the w1n)
1 gig of corsair XMS v (overclocked) RAM
ATI X1950pro sapphire turbo doing all the hard work. Catalyst drivers 8. something from Nov 2008
Windows XP sp2
-
Nvidia on board sound card with some ancient drivers from 2004=]

Here's how I managed to get past my persistent Black screen then CTD.

Usually comp is pretty stable.
Last problem I had was with Gears Of War running at 2 fps. Gave up on it thinking it was my PC finally admitting graphical defeat and begging to be put to pasture to simply churn out word documents. Turns out one x1950 pro driver update later and it was fine on medium settings.

Anyway, Fallout 3:- Installed it, perched the little nodding figurine on desk, and flipped through instruction book whilst it installed. Clicked play.

- Black start-up screen - then :"Fallout 3 has had to close - sorry for the inconvenience" - again, and again and again.

Hit the forums and tried:

1) Patch - no joy
2) Completely clean driver install - latest 9.whatever catalyst drivers. - No joy
3) Looking for FFshow codec. Couldn't find it - I ended up uninstalling Community Codec Pack I had, and installing the k-lite codec pack, then disbling FFshow in the options - still no joy
4) Updated windows - There were a few critical things I hadn't installed, but none looked particularly relevent - none the less, did it. - No joy
5) Uninstalled games for windows - no joy
6) Tried the page file 'fix' (secretely knowing it wouldn't work) - No joy
7) Playing in windowed mode/compatability for other windows mode/disable visual themes mode/ tinkering with antialiasing etc etc - No F***ing joy.
8) Tried loading through the DVD, through the fallout 3.exe, tried defragging HD, disabling everything deemed 'possibly unnecessary', under and overclocking the RAM, CPU and GPU, disabling Norton, turning off t'internet- Still wouldn't show anything apart from black screen then CTD

Then thought I'd just uninstall games for windows again - did this
Tried to uninstall fallout 3. - No icon in add/remove programs - possibly caused by deleting games for windows first?
Ended up just deleting the fallout 3 folder.
Used DVD launcher and clicked play again. It started to re install.
Saw one forum tip that said open up DXDIAG in run menu and turn hardware acceleration for sound to minimum - Did this.
Didn't install the patch.
Reboot of comp. Now it starts and runs on medium settings with not one glitch. Bizarre.

So:
Latest catalyst drivers (clean install++),
Uninstall of games for Windows Live (previously there from Gears of War)
Hardware acceleration for sound set to minimum,
Not patched.


Good luck. Hope this has helped someone.

Dave
February 11, 2009 7:24:26 PM

My "fix" was suing for my money back on the grounds the game was defective, and Bethdesia broke federal law for not giving back a cash refund for a defective product.

I'm $60 richer after the first judge refused to throw out the case. Guess they didn't want to risk being liable for their code...Gotta love the legal system!
February 16, 2009 10:04:49 PM

So a fix for me, though not a very satisfying one, is to reinstall your graphics drivers every time the game crashes. It clears up my problems for about a day, and then I have to go and reinstall it again. It always seems to work... Another note is it usually only crashes on the large world spaces such as the wasteland but never in any towns....
Anonymous
February 22, 2009 12:01:08 PM

Arizen said:
I have quad core HP, ~2.2 gigahertz, 3 gig ram, NVidia 8800 card.

Game ran fine for first week, then started freezing. I have to ctrl-alt-del, to Windows task manager to close program (not responding)

I have emailed Bethesda about this, and have been searching the forums. I have the latest patches, have tried uninstalling extra codecs, and have tried various settings.

Initially, the game ran perfectly well, no crashing, on almost-ultra graphical settings. I always hear a slight crackle in the sound when the game first loads, but all my drivers are up to date. The game is all-but unplayable now. Freeze occurs within seconds of starting game.


I have 100% the EXACT same problem - same graphics card but i have 4GB of ram and a quad core cpu so its not your spec.

The game has been running with only a single crash in the ladt 6 days and since about 1am last night i have had over 20 crashes, ive given up now load of bolox it is.

And the worst part is i am in doors (tenpenny estate) so i know its not a problem with the visuals. ive goggled and read many web pages and no help.

i might follow the above posters suggestion and sue for my money back (but i will also have to sue for the time ive wasted looking for a solution) and the best part of it all is i love in Ireland and it will cost them a fair bit sending a lawyer over here over such a small amount, im sure if EVERY gamer who had problems sued the cost would be so high to companies they would not release products until they are finished.

Do you all remember when game companies actually released finished products? i still haven't completed mass effect because of crashing problems with the game (crashes every 10-15 min)

10 or 15 years ago i never had any problems with any of the games i bought they all worked like a dream. Id happily sacrifice "modern graphics" for a game that actually works
February 22, 2009 11:58:52 PM

I found the fix for one of the freezing problems and it worked for me.

I had played Fallout 3 in the last few weeks and had no problem.

I recently did a clean vista install and also added a new video card. A 1GB 4870 Sapphire.

I started playing F3 and it started crashing. sometimes within five minutes,s ometimes within 15.

So I started looking all over the web for a solution. I did the fddshow trick, the bios problem was only with the 512mb versions of the Sapphire 4870.

Then I found the following link.

http://www.pdsys.org/blog/post/2009/02/07/Fallout-3-Vid...

Turns out the patch for 1.1 breaks quad core support. The game can't handle 4 cores anymore. So if you have a quad core pc and you install the latest patch the game will start crashing. There are instructions on how to fix this.

Open up the fallout.ini file in: My Documents\My Games\Fallout3
Find the line:

bUseThreadedAI=0

change it to:

bUseThreadedAI=1

Add another line after it and insert:

iNumHWThreads=2

This will limit the game to 2 cores and prevent the engine bug from causing the game to freeze.

I tried this and it worked for me. And I have a quad core pc. Also, I didn't have freezing issues before the patch. Only after the patch. I thought the culprit was my new graphics card but this was my problem. After I made the fix, I played two hours without freezing.

So give this a try. It MAY fix your problem.
May 11, 2009 4:35:59 PM

Like Jay064, I set my virtual memory(page file) to minimum of 2MB and game freezing stoped. Good work. But my RAM is 2GB, I don't sugest doing that if you have less then 2GB.
May 12, 2009 4:19:21 PM

I'm very hopeful for Admiral Ackbar's suggested fix. Here's my old setup, with which I had absolutely NO PROBLEMS with Fallout 3:
AMD Athlon X2 64 5600+ 2.9Ghz dual core CPU
ASUS M2N-SLI Deluxe mobo
4GB Corsair DDR2 800 RAM
2x XFX Geforce 8800GTS (G92) in SLI mode
Windows 7 Beta, 64-bit

Again, NO PROBLEMS with this setup

With the new setup (listed below) I am able to start the game, load my saves, and when I stand in one place everything is great. Once I start moving around, about 30 seconds later the game freezes and I have to open Task Manager to close out. I have not been able to play since changing my equipment:

AMD Phenom II 940 Deneb 3.0Ghz quad-core CPU
ASUS Crosshair II formula mobo
4GB Corsair DDR2 800 RAM (same as before)
2x XFX Geforce 8800GTS (G92) in SLI mode (same as last time)
Windows 7 beta, 64-bit

Besides the different hardware, I updated fallout 3 to the latest update.
Neither of the setups were overclocked; everything was running at factory settings.
I will try Ackbar's resolution tonight and reply back if it worked or not. I hope my setup can help some other people that might be seeing this same problem.

[EDIT]
preliminary tests are good. I was able to load my saved game (before you go into the final building to beat the game) and the game ran flawlessly with no crashing. I will play some more to be safe, but it looks like ackbar's resolution fixed my crashing issue!

[EDIT]
...Nevermind. After sitting down for some real play time on it today, I'm back to square one. Game crashed just minutes after fast-traveling to another area. Same thing each time, about 2 minutes into the game....freakin bugs!!
June 17, 2009 8:51:15 AM

hey guys im trying to run fallout 3 on my laptop the thing it works fine sometimes and then it starts to crash as soon as i load it leaves small boxes on the screen which remain even after i close fallout

spec: 2.0GHz 3Gb RAM 256mb nvidia 9200 video card
July 5, 2009 6:19:30 PM

Damn, so many solutions and no one works for me

My computer runs on XP
Intel Pentium Dual CPU T3400 2.16 GHz
3,00 Gb RAM
Nvidia GeForce 9300M GS

The Game crashes when entering certain areas or talking to certain NPC's, for exemple, the pimp suited guy in Megatron inside the bar.

And most of the times te game crashes to the desktop randomly.
I restart the game and try to load the last save, and as soon as it's done it crashes again.

Ten i need to load an older save to keep playing, and sometimes it crashes in the same area it crashed before....

Can anyone help??...
July 10, 2009 4:03:18 PM

I just downloaded and installed patch 1.6, and I was able to run around this morning for about 10 minutes before work without any problems. I warped around to a couple places, got in some fights, jumped in and out of buildings, etc, etc.....Basically did anything that was causing it to freeze and crash before. I'll play some more this weekend and update accordingly.

Please see post (a couple up) for hardware specs if you need 'em

UPDATE (from a couple weeks ago): I booted up Fallout 3 and played all morning long! NO issues whatsoever. NO crashing, NO freezing, nothing. I did everything that I could think of that was causing issues before, and I was able to breeze though with no problems. I'd have to say that patch 1.6 fixed my issues!
July 20, 2009 5:25:25 PM

for me its even worse than feezing up for 20 minutes i was currently working on the quest stealing independence and i had just got the ink and was returning to Button Gwingett and now every time forte psat 2 months when it is loading it freezes!!!!!! Does anyone know what to do?
July 20, 2009 5:31:19 PM

u guys are also all talking about PC any solutions for x box
July 20, 2009 8:23:00 PM

Xbox? ouch. I would think you're kinda screwed until they release an update for it...
September 10, 2009 1:05:55 PM

Admiral Ackbar said:
I found the fix for one of the freezing problems and it worked for me.

I had played Fallout 3 in the last few weeks and had no problem.

I recently did a clean vista install and also added a new video card. A 1GB 4870 Sapphire.

I started playing F3 and it started crashing. sometimes within five minutes,s ometimes within 15.

So I started looking all over the web for a solution. I did the fddshow trick, the bios problem was only with the 512mb versions of the Sapphire 4870.

Then I found the following link.

http://www.pdsys.org/blog/post/2009/02/07/Fallout-3-Vid...

Turns out the patch for 1.1 breaks quad core support. The game can't handle 4 cores anymore. So if you have a quad core pc and you install the latest patch the game will start crashing. There are instructions on how to fix this.

Open up the fallout.ini file in: My Documents\My Games\Fallout3
Find the line:

bUseThreadedAI=0

change it to:

bUseThreadedAI=1

Add another line after it and insert:

iNumHWThreads=2

This will limit the game to 2 cores and prevent the engine bug from causing the game to freeze.

I tried this and it worked for me. And I have a quad core pc. Also, I didn't have freezing issues before the patch. Only after the patch. I thought the culprit was my new graphics card but this was my problem. After I made the fix, I played two hours without freezing.

So give this a try. It MAY fix your problem.


Anyone with a Quad-Core Processor and the 1.7 update installed, who experiences semi-random in-game freezes and stuttering while opening the Pip-Boy 3000 or V.A.T.S. should try this tweak. I tried to ignore the crashes at first, but when I got to the Abandoned House inside Tranquility Lane, the game became virtually unplayable for me. It crashed every few seconds after I loaded my save game. Admiral Ackbar, I can't thank you enough. You really saved my ass out there! *You have gained Karma* ^_^"
September 26, 2009 4:30:57 PM

Fajita3053:

My Fallout 3.... the effin video freezes randomly, but the sound still works. I have to close it with task manager. No fukin clue.

My specs:
2 Intel Xeon 3.6ghZ HT
6 GB DDR2
ATI Radeon HD 4870
Windows 7 Ultimate

Any help is greatly appreicated
October 13, 2009 10:39:52 PM

My fallout 3 doesn't crash but the game will freeze randomly from 30 to 45 seconds
it freeze's often
tried all the fixes in here no dice
if bethesda could build me a machine that could play this i'd buy it but i bet they can't

specs
intel 9550 quad
8 gigs of ram
ati 4870x2
windows vista 64
!