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Is my RAM Slow? WoW lags when loading things into memory?

Last response: in Video Games
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November 14, 2008 2:38:50 AM

Hey guys. Here are my system specs real fast:

CPU: Core2Duo T9300 @ 2.50 GHz

RAM: 4 GB Memory (Stock with Dell XPS M1530)

GPU: NVIDIA GeForce 8600M GT

OS: Windows Vista Ultimate 32-bit


Problem: Choppiness, but only occasionally when the game is loading new things into RAM. How can I tell? Because when I am sitting in front of Cenarion Expedition, it is for the most part very smooth on the highest gfx settings. When I turn around or move and the game has to show more things on screen, it lags! I can tell its loading/unloading things from RAM because in Task Manager I can see the RAM usage go up or down)

So, is there a problem with my RAM just being slow? with WoW? Should I upgrade to 64-bit Windows? I'm not really sure what to do to fix this problem.

The card is definetely not the problem in my opinion - I'm able to run games like Crysis and Left4Dead relatively smoothly. Again, WoW seems smooth except when its loading things into memory.
November 14, 2008 5:50:55 AM

More likely its your hard disk that is the weak link. Most mmorpgs have problems with crowded areas, and its not always slow server response or bandwidth related! In an mmorpg you have so many players and so many different possible configurations of equipment that the hard disk has to skip all over the place to load all the appropriate textures, its not through put that is the problem its seek time normally...

Its also very possible that the game loads things to page file by default to help manage physical ram, seek times on page file operations could also be slowing things down! I run 8gb of memory under vista 64, and have switched of the page file completely.

In a single player game the devs can very much control what is seen where and can reuse many elements already in cache to speed things up etc, thats just not possible in an mmorpg where theres so many variations in appearances etc.

Ive got an SSD Hard disk that I use for MMORPG's, unfortunately Ive only played two mmorpg's since getting it - one was star wars galaxies - it made a huge difference to loading star ports and interiors of player houses. Lord of the rings online it made a big difference to running around bree FAR smoother than it used to be
November 14, 2008 6:06:59 AM

IMO it has nothing to do with your RAM or your HDD.... Unless your HDD is so badly defragmented and slow (damaged) that even the slighest loading of a texture would then slow down WOW. But if it doesnt effect other games then it cant be that, tbh i think j your just trying to run the game on too high GFX settings.

I could understand if it was HDD if you say it was choppy going into a new area, a major city for instance but just general walking about and turning... no way. All the graphics would have been cached by then so no heavy loading involved.

I have a e8400 @ 4.2ghz, 8800GTX and running at 1920x1200 with all the graphics on maximum and this runs about 80% of the time at 60fps. But, if you go to a busy city (shattrath is a good example) and look around and watch the frame rate, one direction your facing could be running at 60fps and the other at 50fps. Try lowering your graphics detail quite a bit initially and see if the problem goes away. Download Fraps to see what FPS you are getting.

Dont forget that as of patch 3.0..... they have improved the graphics and added lots of shadows and full screen glow effect amongts other things which can reduce the frame rate quite a bit depending on the area your in.
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November 14, 2008 8:54:24 AM

I would hazard it may well be a combination of the above.

Try defragmenting your hard drive AND turning down graphics quality a touch.
November 14, 2008 12:28:50 PM

Can't be that, are you loading a million addons at the same times?
Some can eat up memory pretty bad.
November 14, 2008 1:55:10 PM

Heya,

He's using NTFS, he shouldn't waste his time defragmenting.

He just said that he has it at the highest graphics settings he can put it. And it runs smooth usually, but sometimes chops. There's your answer. You have it cranked up really high on the graphics, and that 8600 frankly can't handle it maxed out at whatever resolution you're using. Couple that with a slow HDD (this effects it when you load it the first time, slow access time, slow random seek, etc) since the whole system will hang while it waits for the data it called for.

Very best,
November 14, 2008 11:24:46 PM

Ah well thanks guys.

I've basically just settled on about 80% of max graphics settings with the draw distance on a little less than 50%. Granted I can't see **** too far from me, but at least my gameplay is really smooth.
!