Best Way to Tackle Texture Load Stuttering (in games)?

Hello and thanks for reading. This question is the product of one of my prior threads (just thought I should mention it; reading the previous thread isn't necessary).

Gamers are always complaining of framerate stuttering and lag, and the culprit (when we're not talking about a slow internet connection or server lag) is nearly always the graphics card. But this isn't the case for me. In my case, it's not the slow-motion-like experience of consistently low framerates (the sign of an overtaxed GPU), but rather abrupt, yet not constant total stops in the action. It's like the game slams on the brakes for a second before picking right back up to liquid-smooth speed for a time.

My take is that this is the result of my hard drive being asked to load textures from memory. Once loaded (either into hard drive cache, PC RAM or graphics card RAM — I don't know enough to say which), the game functions perfectly until another demand for new textures is made. My play experience — stutter occurring only when moving into new areas, etc. — confirms this.

And it can get pretty awful. What's the best way to tackle this? Loading the game to a solid state drive? Will more RAM/cache help, or is this determined more by the game (triggering more or less to load at a time) than by the hardware?

Any input would be greatly appreciated.


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  1. The way the game is written will affect whether or not the problem is solvable. I think your best bet might be to find a game-specific forum and ask people there if they experience similar issues. If it's not happening for them, then find out how much RAM and what kind of disk subsystem they have.
  2. Also, it may not be loading textures. You say it happens when you move into a new area. This also means it can be loading the next game level, not necessarily graphics. In either case, it's reading from disk.

    I think sminlal has the right idea, but it won't hurt to run a chkdsk on your drive and run a defrag on it.
  3. Thanks to you both for the thorough, clear responses. Obvious what I have to do now.

    Thanks again,

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