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Please help me get f.e.a.r working properly on XP

Last response: in Video Games
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February 20, 2011 11:50:32 PM

Ok, so first time starting a topic on toms hardware, I have a problem with a particular video game running properly in XP while running fine in 7.

I started off playing F.E.A.R on my previous computer, a pentium IV 3.0ghz 1gb ram, shabby graphics etc, It ran pretty sweet on this not many issues.

I have upgraded my PC, i currently have;
AMD x6 1055T
Gigabyte m/b
4gb ddr3
hd5670 graphics

My first major problem was that F.E.A.R would not even run in XP. crashing during startup. I searched quite a few KB's and found that this was due to DirectX only being capable of addressing <4 cpu cores (or similar) and applied a hotfix which got F.E.A.R and a few other games working again.

Working... but lagging and skipping in the game. It's weird, it runs normally with no people, even faster than in windows 7 which is why i want it to work. But as soon as i get to people it stutters real bad. It is still very playable, but it feels like it used to in my dell when it couldn't cope with a full server etc i.e. 5-12fps.

But.. In windows 7 it works fine, albeit a bit slower than XP. but none of the skipping really occurs.

I have checked Fraps in WinXP, it shows no significant frameloss, where it is skipping and feeling like <20fps it still shows 200fps or so.

I have tried reassigning affinitys, assigning to single core. Changing every setting, updating drivers, software, reinstalling the OS on occassion but can never get it to run without the skipping.

I've run into a dead end and can't get it to work properly. The last thing i can think of is that the Hotfix i applied from microsoft isn't working properly. But i haven't yet found an alternative...

Or could it be that 32bit XP is installed? Should i be trying to run 64bit XP instead? Would this make a difference if the processor is designed to handle both anyway?

Any help would be appreciated!! Even just a suggestion, If you need any more info just let me know.

Thanks!

More about : working properly

February 22, 2011 3:15:09 AM

Hi werner123, Thanks for your reply and your suggestions.

Unfortunately my bios doesn't have any option to enable or disable individual cores. However i have tried to do this with startaffinity, amd overdrives smart profiles, /numproc switch in boot.ini (have also tried /usepmtimer , amd dual core optimizer, All msconfig startup and services entries are stock, nothing extra ... I've gone through all your suggestions and here is what i've tried (each with half hour of testing or so after)

(completely removed prior catalyst and driver)
Have tried ati catalyst 9.1 and 10.3 to no effect. Have canceled them out from starting up.
The system is completely barebones, just stock OS and drivers and f.e.a.r, catalyst as well.

Have tried installing WMFAdist.exe which made the sound sound better but didn't stop the stuttering.. I've tried and use iobit gamebooster regularly, it's a great program!

I can't really run less than 1.08 Patch because I only really play the multiplayer, and there isn't really any servers left in the earlier patches..

Have tried many combinations of vsync and triple buffering, none of which have worked.

I'm wanting to get it working in XP for a few reasons, one i'm not really too keen on windows 7 and just want to go back to XP UI (on dual boot with 7 though), the other reason is it is a hell of a lot faster multiplayer. When it does go fine, (before i go into intense action areas) it is unbelievably smooth. Plus also the proper EAX sound rather than EAX virtualisation with 7.

Thanks for your ideas, but throughout i'm still getting glitches; minor pauses/stutters, probly only 0.1seconds each and only occurring in busy sections. I end up going to turn one way and it'll glitch and i will have turned to far, or leaned to far out etc.

I found this helpful thread which sounds about the exact same as what i have except for dual core;
http://hardforum.com/showthread.php?t=983781
Have tried all these suggestions..

Here is my system and current software installed;

AMD 1055T x6 2.8GHz
4gb Strontium 1333mhz (2*2gb)
Powercolor Radeon HD5670
Onboard realtek audio
600w Litepower PSU
2*80gb RAID (this is only recent change, the f.e.a.r problem occurred on a no raid drive also)
32" LCD

Windows XP SP3
.NET 2.0
ATI Catalyst
K-lite codec pack
Winamp
Firefox
F.E.A.R combat 1.08

Anyway, Thanks heaps for your help, i do appreciate it. If you think of anything else please let me know, cheers
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February 23, 2011 1:08:32 AM

Hey thanks again for your reply.

Yeah i fully agree with you there. Though, to date this is the only game i've played in XP that is affected by it. In my limited experience, it is a really good processor, just not so great legacy instruction set. I have tried in the past heaps of other games like blur, split second, stalker, metro 2033 etc. None have the stuttering effect, all run faster than in windows 7 which is good.
At present I only have f.e.a.r combat, which is just the multiplayer component of fear. In the past i've tried single player fear on there & it has the same stuttering. Internet should be pretty ok. speed test ranges from 10 to 20mbps down and 800kb up . Qos was set on manual and not started, but i disabled it to be sure.
Have tried multiple servers, heaps in fact, from all different countries and the problem is with all of them.
VPU recover is disabled. All catalyst settings are at absolute minimum or off.
Tried playing once on each ramm dimm with the other one uninstalled, Unfortunately i have no onboard graphics or another card to test it on. Today i installed a quality 5.1 card and disabled onboard sound in bios, still have the problem, I did this because if i listen closely i can hear the audio skipping a little too & thought it may be related.
Yeah i thought the dual core optimizer might not be right, it just sounded so much like the symptoms and the suspected problem that i'm having, too bad there isn't a 6 core AMD XP optimiser. I'm sure that sounds like what i need lol..

Have tried also on a AOC 19" lcd, and a 32" CRT (crazy ay) My 32" lcd doesn't have a HDMI in, but i tried a HDMI to DVI cable (previously I had DVI -> DVI)
I've just noticed you'd written make sure 'top performance setting in BIOS is disabled' I read it as enabled before. I will have to try that and report back to you.

I am not sure which BIOS i have, i'll have to check. I'm a bit hesitant to update the BIOS .. Never really had to do it before & don't want to screw it up lol. I've checked the BIOS updates and there is something there that looks promising ;

http://www.gigabyte.co.nz/products/product-page.aspx?pi...

(If it's not there, goto Products -> Motherboards -> AM3 -> 770 -> 770TA-UD3 -> Downloads -> BIOS)

The agesa, update for 64 bit support bit.. I'll have to check what revision I have already.
Good idea though.

Cheers, yeah it is a bit frustrating. I've been playing the MP component of fear for years and years. It's like having ultimate performance (in XP) while you're playing then as soon as you start fighting or go into an action scene having it go to crap lol. Win 7 is okay, but even with every non essential thing disabled and lowest graphics etc it's not really near as fast and fluid as XP.

I'm going to set up triple boot probly tomorrow with xp 64 bit also. and see how that goes. Be interesting if anything.
Thanks again for your help. I appreciate the suggestions. Hope yer having a nice week
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February 23, 2011 1:39:26 AM

Checked and i already have F3 version of BIOS, I don't think there is anything in F4 (the latest) that would help.. Just new cpu id support etc.. ah well
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February 23, 2011 5:12:35 AM

[SOLVED] !!!

Okay so tonight I installed XP 64bit, The problem is gone!!! woohoo !!!!!!

Have loaded everything up the same as in XP 32 bit and the problem is gone, nada. AWESOME!!

So for anyone experiencing stuttering options in XP 32bit with F.E.A.R or F.E.A.R. combat, It may be your processor not syncing with the timing of the 32bit OS exactly.

so.. Get WinXP 64bit or later and the problem is no longer there.

Thanks heaps for your help werner, I really appreciate it!

Woohoo
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February 23, 2011 6:25:20 AM

[/Shame] Posted to soon...

While it took longer to start happening this time for some strange reason, it still occurs. Wonder why that was?

Ah well, ignore prev post, back to the drawing board i guess! Thanks all the same!

Mate mentioned today that i could always try WINE addon for linux as an alternative OS for gaming, I wonder if this supports EAX.. And also whether it's fast.. Have also been wondering whether Win2k could be a viable solution as well. Does 2K support EAX? i'm not sure..

Anyway i'll keep trying things till i get it...

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February 24, 2011 10:08:19 PM

cheers for that, I had a look at crossover games, looks a bit better than trying to do it the wine way. Yeah i thought it might be, i don't really have too much experience using linux so maybe easier to try something else first.
Yep the win7 i run is 64bit. I am building me up a new i5 system, still savin for a few parts, but mostly done, I can try it on that soon and see if there's any diff :D 
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February 28, 2011 4:35:03 AM

werner123 said:
Why are you spending money on a i5 system? wait for bulldozer and see how that turns out, i think amd's got a winner with that one.Anyway there is nothing wrong with your current system, just get a faster gfx card.Enjoy the weekend


It's part of the CompTIA A+ course i'm doing, you build it, and it's all half price so you might as well buy it. Mmm i've seen the reviews, looks awesome! I had been looking at a skull trail for a while too though... Seen those?
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March 12, 2011 6:29:54 PM

Best answer selected by soulreaper666.
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