Crash Prevention
(moved from the article) Crash prevention and general performance -- While the timing will depend upon your system and hardware, every half hour to one hour of continuous game play, save your game, exit to desktop, and open a small program such as TweakUI. Wait for a minute or two then restart the game. Like various commands in the console, this clears the memory buffers, but also gives a number of additional features: It forces the game to 'pack' and 'unpack' itself which can clear various hanging wait states. It clears the memory buffers, both video and system RAM, and with video cards that are pushed to their limit, it gives things a chance to cool off. This is usually just as effective as doing a cold reboot of the computer. Keeping a special save game after each clear and reload assures you will always have a clean back up save in case your in game saves become corrupted. Keep in mind, no matter how much memory you have, the buffers, memory, will spool to the disk drive. Each time it does it increases the chances of corrupt data and saved games. Giving the system a chance to properly pack the data away permits it to run it's own internal corruption prevention measures which are far more extensive than the game can provide.
- This is an utterly ludicrous, cargo cult tip. Many computers run the same programs for months, or even years without quitting programs and reloading them. This "tip" also contains a number of gross inaccuracies, like the "pack" and "unpack" thing - simply not true. If you quit the game, it's removed from memory - that's it. rpeh •T•C•E• 07:20, 1 December 2010 (UTC)
I noticed on 3 different computers, that after a crash, Oblivion, Adobe progs, etc, the computers would run clunky and run much better after a cold reboot. I mentioned this to a tech friend who gave me the tip and some background info. There are numerous settings in memory that are not cleared when a program exits. One obvious example is Windows itself asking to clear the memory after a large cut and paste. Even more significant is the data spooled to disk is, as he put it, in chaos: badly fragmented. "By simply running a new program, all wait states and temporary buffers are flushed." So after several crashes in Oblivion I tried his tip. Most immediate and notable was just firing Oblivion back up after a crash it could take up to 1 1/2 minutes. When I first ran a small program, it started up normally in 15 seconds. I tested this approximately 150 times. The longer Oblivion ran, the slower it restarted unless I did the 'flush'.
"Few programs simply load straight into memory. They often make partial loads while check various things, clearing some data, adding more and so on. They commonly use the disk to spool this data as they boot up. After multiple uses and disk crashes, the spooled data will become badly fragmented. This is why, after a crash, many programs recommend closing the program properly and sometimes recommending a cold reboot."
On a personal note, there were dozens of different ways you could have queried the information I relayed from him that wouldn't sound acerbic ridicule. I implicitly trust my friend's computer wisdom. He has been in the computer programming business since 1971. Sniffles 08:30, 1 December 2010 (UTC)
I quote: "All programs eventually corrupt data. This is why servers are rebooted on a regular basis. Mini and mainframe servers have special routines that fork, splitting programs and clearing data while running. Home computers that run Windows inevitably require rebooting on a regular basis, along with maintenance tasks, programs, to help keep the stored programs intact and running correctly. The Windows machine that has not been defragmented, it's registry cleaned, and it's disks data integrity maintained on a regular basis inevitably will crash. Many of those crashes can be prevented by simply doing basic maintenance and things as simple as clearing the data out by properly exiting a program and running something else, giving Windows maintenance programs a chance to catch up. The trash and crash related to Windows is one of the main reasons for newer editions of the beast." Sniffles 08:44, 1 December 2010 (UTC)
- Believe me, I chose the least acerbic words I could conceive given just how ludicrous the suggestion is! That last quote is also full of wrong. Servers are not often rebooted on a regular basis in many cases: having been a DBA at a company with offices in London, Dubai, Athens, Rome, Houston, Shanghai, Beijing and Sydney, where there was literally zero time when people weren't using several of our database servers and reboots had to be scheduled a week in advance, I can tell you that for a fact. While there's some truth in the comments about Windows needing to be cleaned, it has nothing to do with quitting and reloading a program. I'm not getting into a debate on this because UESP isn't the place for it. rpeh •T•C•E• 11:28, 1 December 2010 (UTC)
- I agree with Rpeh, servers are ideally not shutdown or rebooted at all, restarting and getting the databases and servers back online and functioning properly can take a while. If the computer is running a stable and well programmed OS, has no malicous or badly designed programs running, a reboot should not be required, or even have any benefit. The only time a reboot could improve performance is if a program(s) crashed or was badly coded and didn't clean up its resources (i.e set variables to NULL and release pointers). GetOutOfBox 23:00, 6 December 2010 (UTC)
"It is simple enough to test. On a machine that isn't extremely fast, load a program such as Photoshop and time how long it takes to load. As soon as it is loaded, exit to desktop. Immediately restart the program again and again retime how long it takes. It will usually be faster. Some code segments and routines have been left in memory which meet the identifiers and checksums and are reused. It is very rare for programs to flush all buffers and code out of memory upon closing as some of the resident code may be shared by other programs or the operating system and clearing them out can cause the OS to become unstable."
I've given this article a much needed overhaul, as many of the tips were very obsolete. It would be great if anyone would like to add information, though if you disagree with any of the changes and additions I've made, I suggest you list them here, as all of the tips I made are based off of the general consensus of the PC upgrading community and industry, not specifically my personal opinion. If you doubt any of the additions I've made, I'll be happy to provide links to reliable sources. GetOutOfBox 18:04, 7 December 2010 (UTC)