PREVIEW: Effects ddraw 2.0 with enhanced GPU support

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Re: PREVIEW: Effects ddraw 2.0 with enhanced GPU support

marcelo999
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Post by marcelo999 » Thu Mar 31, 2022 6:40 pm

Hook_Opt_Limit.dll doesn't work properly on windows 7 64 sp1, I had to replace it with the older version than the current one.
I tried everything but it didn't work like the ddraw.dll 2.0, unfortunately.

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syncopic
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Post by syncopic » Thu Mar 31, 2022 7:44 pm

blue_max wrote:
Thu Mar 31, 2022 6:34 pm
syncopic wrote:
Thu Mar 31, 2022 6:02 pm
I´m using an AMD R9 270 with 2GB VRAM (and before it was an AMD HD 6870 / 1GB) and within the driver i made absolutely no settings for XWA.
What resolution are you trying to run the game on? I'd suggest 1920x1080 for now (higher resolution needs more memory).
... hangar crashes everytime. It doesn´t matter if i fly or not - staying in hangar and want to go back / or debriefing alliance.exe chrashes.
OK, so the fastest way to reproduce this problem is to select any mission, jump to the hangar, and then just select "Go to Debriefing"? That's it?

Can you remind me again which hooks you've disabled?
This is correct - just to be in hangar is enough for crashing when want to go back. As i thought - asa 3D is used going back to 2D and it will crash. I think the non-ddraw-speedup version is also using 3D acceleration (but only without crash) ?
Actually i have no hooks disabled, because i saw, that no "deactivating" helps.
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syncopic
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Post by syncopic » Thu Mar 31, 2022 7:46 pm

Forceflow wrote:
Thu Mar 31, 2022 6:35 pm
syncopic wrote:
Thu Mar 31, 2022 12:09 pm
Hi bluemax,

the DEP already was set to "only Windows files" (as mentioned in your link), so this - likely - is not the cause.
I also deactivated the Windows Defender (there is no other virusscan or firewall on this pc) and "disabled" the Hook_Normals.dll, but no change - after mission in hangar, click "go to debriefing" = crash (see below)
If by this you mean it's set to the first option then this is not working how it sounds. For some reason this will still trigger the DEP protection even if it's not a windows program. At least this is what we have found in other cases.

c0000005 is a strong indicator of it being a DEP issue, to make sure that this is not the case please do this:
go to Windows Security -> App & Browser Control -> Exploit Protection Settings -> Program settings then click "Add program to customize", click "Choose exact file path" and add the path to the XwingAlliance.exe program. Which for me, is D:\Steam\steamapps\common\Star Wars X-Wing Alliance\XWingAlliance.exe. Then you override "Data Execution Prevention (DEP)" and set it to "off".
I will try it and report here ;)
It´s not a bug - it´s the user.

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syncopic
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Post by syncopic » Thu Mar 31, 2022 8:02 pm

@blue_max

Sorry, i forgot the resolution: 1920 x 1200, but in game with FXAA there is absolutely no problem - it runs smoothly, also in hangar ;)


@Forceflow

Nope - changing DEP, restart pc, try ... same crash.
It´s not a bug - it´s the user.

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Gutersnipe
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Post by Gutersnipe » Mon Apr 04, 2022 8:03 pm

Hey @blue_max

More of a random question. Do you think it will be possible with this new direct draw to hack in dlss like they did for prboom-plus-rt: https://github.com/sultim-t/prboom-plus-rt/releases . It would be cool if it was.

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blue_max
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Post by blue_max » Mon Apr 04, 2022 11:40 pm

Gutersnipe wrote:
Mon Apr 04, 2022 8:03 pm
More of a random question. Do you think it will be possible with this new direct draw to hack in dlss like they did for prboom-plus-rt...
Short answer: yes

Longer answer: I think I can add some form of ray-tracing support to XWA, but since I can't migrate XWA to DX12, the support will be somewhat limited. Ray-traced shadows should at least be possible at a reasonable framerate, though. So stay tuned!

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m0rgg
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Post by m0rgg » Tue Apr 05, 2022 5:13 am

I think he was referring to the "machine learning-based", NVIDIA exclusive super-sampling to escalate the rendering resolution. Before DLSS, I think it would make more sense to try to get the more compatible FSR from AMD. I'm not sure there is a huge benefit for FSR/DLSS.

IMHO, the cards that would be able to run it are already powerful enough to run the game at a high resolution. The pixel count should not be the bottleneck.
There are other optimizarions that could be done before thinking about DLSS, like instanced VR stereo rendering.

Moreover, both NVIDIA and AMD support now driver-level resolution scaling without the need game-specific support.

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Gutersnipe
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Post by Gutersnipe » Tue Apr 05, 2022 7:52 am

cool. Thanks for the answers. Looking forward to all the future performance updates and new tech integrations :)

tomjeffersonjones
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Post by tomjeffersonjones » Tue Apr 05, 2022 3:11 pm

blue_max wrote:
Mon Mar 28, 2022 6:09 pm
tomjeffersonjones wrote:
Mon Mar 28, 2022 5:36 pm
I'm troubleshooting some very minor issues with XWAUP 2020 + Update 5 + the latest ddraw posted here...
The animations in the Concourse should be locked at 25fps or the mission briefings will not sync with the audio. If you want to run the animations "full-speed" there's a setting in VRParams.cfg (concourse_animations_something_25fps), but, again, the briefings will suffer. You can try that setting and the VSync settings in DDraw.cfg before you go any further. I think the mouse lag you're reporting is simply a side effect of running everything at 25fps and probably can't be avoided for now.
Just to report back, I was unable to resolve the slow concourse performance until I limited the desktop resolution settings on my 144hz monitor to 60hz. Just locking the fps to 60 via Nvidia control center while leaving the monitor at 144hz was screwing up the math somewhere and running the concourse super slow, and well below the 25 set in VRParams.

There's an abundance of posts throughout the years recommending changing desktop res and hz for various things so I imagine this is nothing new, but just thought I'd mention.

Thanks for the help Blue_Max

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Post by cfieber » Tue Apr 05, 2022 5:27 pm

Strange.. for me the concours runs with 60fps and the voice in the mission breifings is to slow. I've solve this with deleting the hook_time.dll. But with the newer versions of the ddraw.dll (and without the hook_time.dll) the game crashed to desktop after leaving the hangar (tested in TFTC).

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blue_max
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Post by blue_max » Tue Apr 05, 2022 10:28 pm

cfieber wrote:
Tue Apr 05, 2022 5:27 pm
Strange.. for me the concours runs with 60fps and the voice in the mission breifings is to slow. I've solve this with deleting the hook_time.dll. But with the newer versions of the ddraw.dll (and without the hook_time.dll) the game crashed to desktop after leaving the hangar (tested in TFTC).
Could you provide more info about this crash? What OS are you running, what video card & resolution? What shading mode are you using? Etc. I tried to help syncopic, but I couldn't reproduce this problem. If you could maybe share more details, we might yet get to the bottom of this issue.

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Post by Bman » Wed Apr 06, 2022 6:20 am

Not sure if this is related, but I've noticed a pattern whether I turn DEP setting via Control Panel on or off for XwingAlliance.exe and still get C-T-D sometimes during flight or pressing "H" key to return to the hangar. Seems game is stable when using XWAUPGv5 / TFTC v1.2 installed hooks. But then I've manually installed all of the latest *.dll hooks from Jeremy's Github page (these are recompiled from C++ to Visual Studio perhaps with DirectX 12 library files.) Older video cards may not support that. My ATI/AMD GPU drivers stopped support back in 2015 but my MS DxDiag tool says my Windows 10 x64 system has DirectX 12 API files installed. Game still runs fine with that. Anyway, when switching from December 2021 hook_sfoils.dll to current 2022 version, is when I'm experiencing intermittent crashs. I"m going down the list and testing each hook. Tomorrow, hook_shield.dll and so on. I assume most peeps are not using latest hooks yet, but this might be related to C-T-D for some peeps. (?) I might not have the lastest MS .net package too for Windows 10 x64, if relevant.
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cfieber
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Post by cfieber » Wed Apr 06, 2022 5:04 pm

blue_max wrote:
Tue Apr 05, 2022 10:28 pm
cfieber wrote:
Tue Apr 05, 2022 5:27 pm
Strange.. for me the concours runs with 60fps and the voice in the mission breifings is to slow. I've solve this with deleting the hook_time.dll. But with the newer versions of the ddraw.dll (and without the hook_time.dll) the game crashed to desktop after leaving the hangar (tested in TFTC).
Could you provide more info about this crash? What OS are you running, what video card & resolution? What shading mode are you using? Etc. I tried to help syncopic, but I couldn't reproduce this problem. If you could maybe share more details, we might yet get to the bottom of this issue.
Yes of course: Win10, RTX2070 at 1920x1080, ssao_type = Ambient with 8 samples, MSAACount = 4, EnableFXAA = 1,EnableVSync = 1
Everything works with the hook_time.dll in the folder. But with it the concourse is at 60fps, on the "older" ddraw.dll version i could delet the hook_time.dll and the concourse runs at 25fps. Its no mayor problem. :^^:

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syncopic
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Post by syncopic » Thu Apr 07, 2022 7:36 pm

So ... after changing the graphic card and the wrecked power supply :zensur: on my Win10 pc ...
System = Win10 21H2, AMD FX-4100, 16GB RAM, AMD HD 7850 1GB - for testing without any OC

XWAU 2020 + Megapatch 5 + Newest Hook_Joystick_ff.dll + DDraw Speedup = Is running !
No more crashes within the hangar while going to debriefing :shock: :D
Just ending game - back to Windows ... seems to crash - there is no window with report but a dmp-file is made every time (just like on the Win 7 system).

This means:
Win 7 without DDraw speedup = runs
Win 7 with DDraw speedup = doesn´t run, also with older DDraw.dll
Win 10 without DDraw speedup = runs
Win 10 with DDraw speedup = runs

Therefore i have to use the Win10 system for enjoying XWAU ... and must buy a DP-switch :/

Thanks again for support ! Maybe this helps any Win 7 user ;)
It´s not a bug - it´s the user.

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blue_max
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Post by blue_max » Thu Apr 07, 2022 10:47 pm

Thanks for the update, syncopic. It's not great that you had to go through all that pain to figure this out, but at least now we know there's some outstanding problems with Win7 machines. So, thanks for sharing that.

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syncopic
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Post by syncopic » Fri Apr 08, 2022 10:44 am

@blue_max

No matter - and thank you again for your support ! ;)

I´m just wondering about this. I´m pretty sure, that this has nothing to do with the driver of the graphic card or DEP.
Maybe there´s a DirectX-issue (or depending on different DirectX versions on Win7 and Win10 and the DDraw.dll).

What i also regcognize - on leaving to Windows ... the last animation (closing menu wall) is not shown completely, it´s cut off at the end (maybe half a second).
I´m pretty sure, that this is causing the crash on leaving to windows. It seems, that not all is unloaded clearly and Windows recognize a crash.
So - for my understanding ... Xwingalliance.exe doesn´t "wait" until all dlls are unloaded :?

PS: I really love the smooth and detailed graphics now, it´s just a "new" game - GREAT WORK !!!
It´s not a bug - it´s the user.

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blue_max
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Post by blue_max » Fri Apr 08, 2022 4:45 pm

syncopic wrote:
Fri Apr 08, 2022 10:44 am
Maybe there´s a DirectX-issue (or depending on different DirectX versions on Win7 and Win10 and the DDraw.dll).
This is likely to be the issue. There's a few subtle differences in the way some DirectX instructions were implemented across these OSes, maybe some of the code I'm using is causing problems in Win7.
What i also regcognize - on leaving to Windows ... the last animation (closing menu wall) is not shown completely, it´s cut off at the end (maybe half a second).
If you notice new crash dump files every time you close XWA, then yes, it's crashing for some reason upon exiting the game. You can post the crashdumps if you want and I'll take a look.
So - for my understanding ... Xwingalliance.exe doesn´t "wait" until all dlls are unloaded :?
Well, a while ago I noticed that XWA wouldn't close completely when exiting the game. The window was gone, but the process was still on the background for some reason. To work around this issue, I forced an exit when ddraw is unloaded, so there's a chance this is what you're seeing.

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syncopic
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Post by syncopic » Sat Apr 09, 2022 5:05 pm

@blue_max

The crash at exit ... i think, it´s not a major problem ... CCleaner once in a month will clean up the dmp-files ;) and therefore that there is no SSD / NVME installed, it doesn´t matter to me - for SSD / NVME users it´s a little tricky with "burn down" the SSD / NVME (or "hosting" a lot of dmp-files about the time).

Is there a possibility to "slow down" the exit of the game, until all dlls are unloaded ?
Or maybe a wait state while exiting ? It would be interesting, if other players also have this "exit crash" (and maybe don´t recognize).

I think, it makes no sense to post the dmp-files, because in the files i´ve already posted, you said there wasn´t any relevant information. I´m afraid of this will be the same with any dmp-file, i would post.

I´m pretty pleased, that i now can be a rebel with my Win 10 system, so ... :D
By the way - i copied the XWAU / speedup folder and "installed" TFTC into this folder - runs also fine with DDraw speedup - no probs in game !
(I think TFTC is using the complete XWAU "setup" just with other story line, doesn´t ?)

May the force be with you ! ;)
It´s not a bug - it´s the user.

Bman
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Post by Bman » Mon Apr 11, 2022 1:58 am

@blue_max using the new ddraw.dll file, do you think the amount of data that is now pushed onto the GPU cards could be more than 1Gb throughput at any given second?
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blue_max
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Post by blue_max » Mon Apr 11, 2022 3:41 am

Bman wrote:
Mon Apr 11, 2022 1:58 am
@blue_max using the new ddraw.dll file, do you think the amount of data that is now pushed onto the GPU cards could be more than 1Gb throughput at any given second?
Mmmm... tough question! To properly answer this, I think we're going to need some sort of profiling tool.

When a mission is loaded, a bunch of textures are sent from the CPU to the GPU. Depending on how big they are, there's a chance we might send a lot of data as fast as possible. For instance, I think TFTC has some high-resolution textures, so that will consume some bandwidth.

XWA also loads the OPTs and their mesh data, which is then sent to the GPU. Meshes tend to consume less memory than textures, but recent models may also be quite big (also, all the LODs are sent as well).

However, these two events only happen once per mission. Afterwards the amount of data is probably less than 4k per frame. I'm not sure when the data for the different regions within a mission are loaded, but there's a chance those may also cause big chunks of data to be sent to the GPU.

So, to answer your question: I think there's a chance that we might send ~1Gb/s when a mission is first loaded. Especially if high-resolution textures are used. But to be sure, we'd need some profiling tool to measure that.

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Post by XWANar » Mon Apr 18, 2022 11:33 am

Hi

I have a win 7 pc from approximately 2010 which runs smoothly with the updated version 5 patch AFTER I disable the new shading model. The new shading model creates glorious visuals, congratulations to the designers, however it inflicts a small motion stutter on my game.

Acer Veriton M670G/M670
Pentium(R) Dual-Core CPU E5400 @ 2.70GHz
RAM 8 GB
Graphics card NVIDIA GeForce GT 610 memory : 2GB dedicated , 3.8 shared system ( I hope this is correct :/ )
Win 7 64 bit
Monitor in windows mode 1920x1080
Monitor refresh 60hz
Game resolution 1152 x 864 (less memory required ?)

The attached image shows a small problem which I hope I can solve by editing a dll or cfg file. The x-wing dashboard shows a dull radar, there are objects behind me ; and a blank screen that should display a wire frame of the targeted object.
The radar is wonderfully bright and the wire frame targeted object is displayed when the new shading model is activated.

My congratulations to everyone who is creating the upgrades. I promise I will replace the above computer one day :-)
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blue_max
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Post by blue_max » Mon Apr 18, 2022 5:08 pm

XWANar wrote:
Mon Apr 18, 2022 11:33 am
Game resolution 1152 x 864 (less memory required ?)
The in-game resolution won't affect memory requirements that much, but if you lower your screen resolution, that will help.
The attached image shows a small problem which I hope I can solve by editing a dll or cfg file. The x-wing dashboard shows a dull radar, there are objects behind me ; and a blank screen that should display a wire frame of the targeted object.
Let me see if I can fix this. I usually don't pay that much attention to the non-shaded display mode, so this is most likely a bug in my code.

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Post by Morlock » Wed Apr 20, 2022 10:52 pm

Hi all,

I am new here, and installed XWAU and the TIE Fighter conversion for the first time today. Would you recommend I play with this new .dll? And if yes, do I install the files from "JeremyaFr's xwa_ddraw_d3d11 Git Hub Page"?

Sorry if this is a little naive for your standards... and thanks!

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blue_max
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Post by blue_max » Thu Apr 21, 2022 12:23 am

Morlock wrote:
Wed Apr 20, 2022 10:52 pm
I am new here, and installed XWAU and the TIE Fighter conversion for the first time today. Would you recommend I play with this new .dll? And if yes, do I install the files from "JeremyaFr's xwa_ddraw_d3d11 Git Hub Page"?
Welcome! The recommendation is that you play with the latest Beta effects, Version 2. Go to the Downloads section, you'll find it there. You will need to configure a couple of files to get it working (see the first post in this thread or the README file in the ZIP file)

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Post by Morlock » Thu Apr 21, 2022 10:35 am

Thank you! Do I install the entire effects pack or just replace the files mentioned in the first post (ddraw.dll and Hook_CockpitLook.dll)? I am not a VR user and am particularly interested in getting my GPU more involved.

Also, with "effects installer", do you mean the XWA Hooks setup?

My apologies, but the instructions are not very transparent to me.

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