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About alt3rn1ty

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  1. Dont quote me but I think (having not actually used the new CK's and their associated archivers for Fallout 4 and Skyrim SE myself) that the official archiver packs your textures and automatically optimises how they are stored in the BA2 itself, so will separate out the big layer from the mipmaps for each texture without you having to do anything, and store them how they should be. So if the mods have used the official archiver for creating their BA2's, at least they got that bit right. And if all of the textures contained are originally just the usual DXT1 for example, then the optimisation of the textures with Ordinador is probably good enough too if you are not looking too closely at the resulting textures. Best thing to check them out with is MNelson's <Gamename> Performance Monitor, he now has one for FO4 and SSE Do a strict measured run for before and after, screenshot and compare both sets of graphs and results. Have a look at the images for how I tested my progress with VRT for Skyrim LE using Skyrim Performance Monitor. I ought to have mentioned a disclaimer in my first reply, that my opinion there is just a generalisation and not reflective of the quality of any particular mod - Its just what I have collectively been seeing across nexus since FO4 and SSE have been released. Some mods using old tools may well be okay in use and in quality, only way to know for sure is check em out and see if you get any reduction in quality of texture or fps .. Or DIY. Right, gotta go I shouldn't be here right now
  2. Oh gods Well first The best way of converting textures is to use the tools which were made for the job, or used by the game manufacturers. For Skyrim LE, Photoshop plus DDS / Normals plugin For Skyrim LE Ethatron made the best home brew texture optimizer in the form of DDSOpt, which was very good in particular at regenerating mipmaps for normals Ordinator by apipino did a good job of simplifying batch processing of textures, but was not quite as accomplished technically as DDSOpt So for Skyrim LE : Textures processed individually, by people who understand all the intricacies of every texture type, using Photoshop, would give best results. Which was also a slow and monumental task given circa 33000 textures to work on. DDSOpt needed a bit of study to get the best out of it for all textures, and necessitated splitting textures up into batches and / or getting to grips with the DDSOpt filters .. but the results were really good (The STEP project has there own bunch of optimised textures done that way). Ordinator was for people who couldnt be arsed, just wanted a quick way to reduce VRAM usage, and were not so fussy about preserving detail from the original textures in the resulting textures. imho. Fallout 4 came along next. New BSA format (BA2), and the way textures were stored in those archives was new. The largest mipmap texture layer is stored separately, because it is rarely used in game, and only needs to be loaded and applied to the model in game if the model is up close. Otherwise most of the time the game engine may aswell just cache the much smaller mipmap layers for immediate use and optimise how textures are used in game. Carry that idea over to Skyrim SE, and you will also realise another reason for not having mod replacers files as loose files (mentioned elsewhere), because when the game loads the textures as loose files it has to load the large texture mipmap aswell, making the newer games less optimal in this aspect. So hopefully the mods you are looking at for the newer Skyrim SE gives its textures in BA2's, and not loose files. Also hopefully they are using the newer plugins for textures (and the newer texture types which are compatible with the newer games) Intel Texture Works. Both DDSOpt, and Ordinator Ordinador .. HAVE NOT BEEN UPDATED TO WORK WITH THE NEWER GAMES TEXTURE FORMATS So maybe there are newer textures and formats with layers that were not present in older games that these tools and there filters have not been adapted to. In a lot of cases they will work fine (because both games do still utilise the older texture formats a lot like DXT1) .. .. But really the people making these mods ought to put in a bit more effort to understand what they are doing with peoples game setups, instead of just thinking "worked for skyrim, lets see if it works on FO4 and SSE .. seems fine to me after ten minutes, lets upload it and get a bit of fame and not answer the technical stuff cause I havent got a clue anyway" Your choice. I would imagine they cut down on your VRAM use, probably do no harm, but will look glitchy, and are certainly no better optimised despite the processing if they are uploaded as loose replacers. The BA2 loading as explained elsewhere is not only faster, but also due to not needing the large base image layer the game will just ignore loading that from the BA2 completely when it is not needed .. If the replacers are loose files, the whole texture is loaded. So any VRAM saving from optimising process is lost due to loading the whole texture anyway in the case of the newer games since Skyrim LE. Reference mods being removed - Maybe they did not get permission from the original authors which were for Skyrim LE, when converting someone elses work for SSE (its been happening quite a lot, cheeky copy pastas wanting a quick fix of being an author with very little effort). Someone will probably correct any inaccuracies above (typing this quick because I need to get back on shift soon), but I think that just about sums it up. For further (but getting old now) reading, see the following topic ..
  3. I haven't listened to it yet (on night shifts at the mo), but apparently you can remove an unecessary block on Win 7 / 8.1 updates "This week Steve and Leo discuss how one of the NSA's Vault7 vulnerabilities has gotten loose, a clever hacker removes Microsoft deliberate (and apparently unnecessary) block on Win7/8.1 updates for newer processors, Microsoft refactors multifactor authentication, Google to add native ad-blocking to Chrome… and what exactly *are* abusive ads?, Mastercard to build a questionable fingerprint sensor into their cards, are Bose headphones spying on their listeners? 10 worrisome security holes discovered in Linksys routers, MIT cashes out half of its IPv4 space, and the return of two meaner BrickerBots. Then some Errata, a bit of Miscellany, and, time permitting, some "Closing the Loop" feedback from our podcast's terrific listeners." ----------- Also O/T a bit but Steve Gibsons SQRL Login client is quite stable now and nearing completion for Windows, I think he just wants to make an installer for it (not really necessary). Anyone who wants to try it out / beta test : Dev build (current update version is 6325.11.exe at time of writing) Run the client (from wherever you put the client, I just copied it from downloads into the root of my D: drive), when run it will register itself as an auto start Systray App - Once running, Right click its systray icon and choose Manage SQRL, you will then be able to setup a username and ID with an associated password (you only need to do this once, though you can have other IDs) Now restart your machine, Squirrel should auto start and be running in your Systray, go to the Demo Page and click the square QR code .. It will ask for your password and log you in. If you accepted defaults for SQRL and the Quick login default of 4 characters, then next login will just ask you for those four first characters of your password. From then on, (when all sites support it), whenever you go to a site, you dont need to type in username and password anymore, you just click the QR code, type your first four characters of the password and you are in .. The site knows nothing about you except that you are for example in my case "Alt3rn1ty", it does not store your password so cannot be hacked, and only shares a public key which also cannot be used again anywhere else ... So the problem of having to redo passwords when a website gets hacked will become a thing of the past aswell. This also means website admins will have less worry about hosting and hashing all users private information. Besides the Dev builds of Steves Assembly language client linked above, there are also the following projects completed Here's me logging in to the Demo page (using Win 10 Creators Update Game Bar to record Chromium (you will not be able to see me enter my password just after clicking the QR code because the interface for that is presented by the SQRL client not Chromium, so is not being recorded by the Game Bar recorder) ) .. GRC's _ SQRL Secure Quick Reliable Login - Chromium 27_04_2017 13_18_05.mp4 (Just use VLC Media player to play it if you havent got anything which supports .mp4 files, VLC supports everything) Edit : Forgot to link the GRC Discussions for SQRL Edit 2 : Should you wish to get rid of the current beta client from your setup, just delete the copy you ran which registered itself (in my case I would just delete the copy I placed in the root of my D: drive) .. It will no longer run at windows startup. It will leave behind a registry entry for auto starts which will always fail because the exe has been deleted .. You could use CCleaner to clean such redundant registry entries .. If you dare -- This is one of the reasons Steve is making an Installer / Uninstaller wrapper for the client when it goes live
  4. Aaargh! Organisation happened! .. and its all a bit good, in a "wish beth net was taking notes" kind of way
  5. Ghosting is for inactive (disabled / unchecked) plugins you either do not wish to be in play .. Or are fully merged into the bashed patch Read the Context Menu Description Its currently not as useful for Skyrim as it is for Oblivion. And the reason for that is to fully merge many plugins, CBash needs to be updated for Skyrim, which will not happen until someone with C++ knowledge comes back to being on the Wrye Bash team (it used to be Waruddars thing, but even with his historically long timeouts I dont think he is coming back). Or .. The normal python patchers are fully updated for ALL the different records in skyrim - The work on those patchers has not really begun yet. So currently its mostly only useful for skyrim if you have plugins installed which are not active (pointless having them installed in the first place really if they are not active) Now if you ghost a plugin, what happens is it gets renamed. So .. uselessmodinstalledbutnotcurrentlyactive.esp becomes .. uselessmodinstalledbutnotcurrentlyactive.esp.ghost The game engine will not even look at it because of the unusual file extension it does not recognise it as a valid game file, and so the old thrashing bug is solved For your case its not going to be useful, you are thinking "aha, a dummy plugin is only used to load a BSA, so if I ghost it then it doesnt count <lightbulb>" - Your lightbulb is malfunctioning, a ghosted dummy esp will be ignored by the game engine, and so will its BSA, and the content of the BSA will also be ignored. The dummy.esp needs to be active to load the associated BSA. There is a simple solution to your problems - Cut down on the amount of mods you are using. The game engine has hard limits for technical reasons which no one can get around without completely re-writing the game engine. Yep aswell as plugin limit in the load order there is also an overall limit of plugins plus BSAs If you wish to extract some of the mods BSAs and do away with a few dummy plugins, thats entirely up to you. Why not create your own BSA and dummy plugin for a bunch of dummy plugins with all the textures / meshes in the same BSA ?, then you have one dummy plugin loading one BSA full of all the resources which were spread among a few of them before. Just make sure they are all dummy plugins and do not have any record modifications to the game (load them up in xEdit) - And if there are file conflicts well thats also your choice of which you prefer to end up in the BSA, there can after all only be one of any two (or more) conflicting files will win. Personally though even these days with Skyrim Special Edition being 64 bit, I still keep my mod usage low, 8 at the moment :), game runs like a dream compared to older elder scrolls series games. On another note - Are there actually 20 mods out there using dummy plugins ?, and are they all texture mods, and do you need all of them if the majority are just doing the same bunch of textures with different objectives / style / artistic theme - Point being if you have 20 BSAs all full of the same bunch of textures, then you dont need 19 of them because more than likely the majority are conflicting files and not being used if they load earlier than all the others. Another tip, really modding so much you will never be quite happy with the whole setup, and will end up in a cycle of overhauling everything periodically, so your load order will mostly be changing regularly and causing problems with your saves forcing game fresh starts and .. Never actually enjoying the game. Or are you in so deep modding its a case of "You can actually play this game too! O_o ?"
  6. In addition to what Arthmoor just said, there is also the performance of the game being affected by slower to load large files when they are all unpacked as loose files - Especially on the newer games like Fallout 4 and Skyrim SE, which have far more efficient decompression routines making it faster to load a small file and decompress it, than to just load a decompressed but much larger and fragmented loose file. Throughput : Loading the files from a medium into ram for use by the game, gives far better results when the file is much smaller and decompresses at lightning speeds, the whole operation being far faster than just loading the equivalent larger loose file. Mentioned in the first post in section 4. Addendum: BSA Compression "Also, in reality with a modern system the decompression speed of zlib reach realistic 250-500MB/s (as you can see here), which can be far beyond any SSD-speed." In the quote from Ethatron And well, the ability to Load Order textures is also a benefit. If you had two BSAs which contain conflicting textures, only one of those textures in conflict can win and that will be the one which loads last .. You can also mix n match having a few loose files to get really granular on the details, because they will always win and override any conflicting textures in BSAs .. So you could have the majority of winners in the winning BSA, and the few you really want from the earlier loading mod just extract those as loose. This way helps preserve file loading efficiency of the overall setup. To better visualize the comparison of loose versus BSA loading of individual files Loose large file on SSD (+'s equal time taken to load all associated fragmented blocks of file data) ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Compressed file in BSA (+'s equal time taken to load whole contiguous smaller file, /'s equals time taken to decompress the whole thing into ram) ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++/////// The engine gets the whole of the compressed file out of the BSA and into ram far quicker than the already decompressed loose file off of the SSD. See?. Times the above operation by thousands and thousands of file reads
  7. @All - Thanks for trying it out with other browsers, it led me to find the problem which could be the only thing I may have different to anyone else - Ublock Origin does not like something the site is doing now when you try to login. Previously it was ok, I always use Ublock origin in its default config and just add the MVPS Hosts list to its resources. So either something new about the site, or a background auto update to Ublock Origin, is now rejecting something that beth net is doing. Temporarily disable UBlock Origin for the site and logging in works again. Edit : Turns out disabling UBlock for the login may just be a bad idea, the login page tries to load third party java scripting to track and associate your login there with other website activities. Not even sure if bethesda declare such underhand techniques as a practice to expect on their new forum software, but whatever they do or do not fess up to in clauses somewhere .. I certainly will not be disabling UBlock just to log in there. If I can never log in there again they can shove it where the sun doesnt shine, had enough of bethesda crap forum software anyway and this is the last straw.
  8. Anyone else unable to log in to recently ? I wanted to answer Utumno's post here .. and tell him I think there is an example of what he is looking for in Oblivion mod Weather - All Natural, in its wizard But for about a week now I have not been able to log in there. I click the Sign In button top of the page same as always, the browser tab goes blank, and I get what I can only describe as a black strip at the top of the screen goes slowly from left to right like a loading bar, but it never reaches the end or loads the page. Chromium, latest stable version (and its the same version I logged in with before it started doing this, so no change at my end to cause it).
  9. My bold, FTFY : "I bricked my device switching on an advanced feature" - The CCleaner Advanced features which are switched off and ghosted by default for good reason. Yeah, dont use those until you know exactly what you are doing and when they can be used My Windows.old folder is taking up 21gb space and annoying me a little, but I always leave it just in case.
  10. Yep .. Dont select an OS but just read the white text underneath the OS selection button here "Please follow below sequence to install driver. 1. Chipset, 2. Intel VGA, 3. nVidia VGA, 4. Audio, 5. LAN, 6. Card Reader 7. WLAN, 8. BT, 9. Touchpad, 10. ME, 11. Radio Switch, 12. Others" I was told by an engineer once that drivers are best installed in the same order as the manufacturer has done, usually though you dont see the vendor giving the recommended procedure, I reckon most dont care once its sold, or if they do probably assume customers will not adhere to the recommendation.
  11. The experience is probably going to be variable by the sound of it, my wifes laptop is a fairly new ASUS with NVidia graphics and had no problems at all on that machine. I know that windows has a strict chain of upgrades from the BIOS up, which includes encryption so that each step of the loading sequence is checked for signatures and cannot have anything slipped in between at a low level ( malware prevention ), so any low level drivers I think have to be re-authorised in some cases after the whole OS update .. Hence why I had to uninstall and reinstall my vendor provided sound drivers. With the previous win 10 overhaul I also had to do the same with NVidia drivers, which was not the case this time around. See if your laptop manufacturer has any driver updates specifically for your machine and this OS update compatability. I wish Windows could tell you if it had to nobble anything at a low level and give you a warning to look into things. Sometimes I wonder if some of the more obscure drivers your machine comes with, get stomped on by windows upgrades, and then windows automagically installs a generic driver for that device as soon as it goes online .. Which then means you may not have the same tailored drivers your machine vendor provides. It all probably works fine, but loses some functionality that you are not aware of on a technical level. My MSI laptop for example - Its series of drivers need to be installed in a specific order, so I numbered the archives in the order they are advised to be installed : It also has a bunch of tailored apps for this machine, but the order is not so important : Along comes windows upgrade, kicks an unverified driver into the bin, then immediately installs a generic driver after windows first boots up .. Not only is this driver not tailored to the laptop like the vendor provided ones are, but it has also now been installed not in the recommended sequence of installations. In my case with this Win 10 update, the Sound driver which went glitchy was a generic driver overwrite for RealTech, but this machine has a 2.1 surround setup with an under case sub-woofer speaker giving surprisingly good Bass, which is configured by part 2 of my Audio setup ( The Nahimic driver ), which is number 4 in the sequence of installations, just the audio realtech driver is not enough, and the Nahimic driver is specifically for the version of the realtech driver it comes with .. otherwise it does not work and makes awful scratchy noises. Thing is I know from experience what had happened, most people dont realise this shit happens ( and I reckon most people probably do not go to their machines support site and go through getting the latest of each drivers and re-installing them all in the machine manufacturers recommended order again ) .. .. So imho, Windows really ought to be warning people about anything it bins from the machines setup. Generic replacements break things occasionally. In your machines case, you may have an app which supports special function keys which are unique to that laptop, and that app also took over being the driver for your lid closing and triggering software windows actions .. Probably needs an update and hopefully your machines vendor is on the ball, and hopefully still supporting updating your machines drivers and apps ( they drop support after a few years have passed .. So if windows buggers things up after that date, parts of your machine will no longer work correctly thereafter, which is a hugely annoying when you want to keep the machine going a few more years ), to me this is the biggest downside to laptops when you cant exchange internal modules like you can a full blown PC. In my apps, the one that is named MSI SCM comes without any documentation, but actually provides a shortcut interface to switching off completely the machine Bluetooth device, Webcam in the lid, Wifi .. among other random features. I do appreciate being able to disable Bluetooth though when travelling so it is not broadcasting to anyone sniffing laptops at airports for example. Edit: Ha, speaking of checking, I just had another check of all my drivers and apps and found I am a bit behind with a new BIOS firmware update, and a newer version of the Audio ( Realtek and Nahimic drivers ) which are newer than the ones I grabbed a few days ago, and specifically mention they are for the Win 10 x64 bit Creators Update.
  12. navmesh

    Hurrah!, managed to get myself logged in to the new bugtracker and posted a new issue ..
  13. Windows 10 Creators Update : I used the downloadable Update Assistant to get it going a bit quicker than waiting for normal updates to bring it down .. .. And I actually like this update. Anyone with NVidia drivers - I didnt experience any glitches with this update affecting them (unlike previous major overhauls of the OS). I pre-empted the update and grabbed the newest drivers ready to install anyway after Win 10 updated, but really I could have carried on with the previous version. Not so good on the Sound drivers though in my experience, they sounded awful afterwards, and I already had the newest drivers installed for those prior to the update - But after windows update, an uninstall and reinstall of sound drivers solved that problem. Out of four different laptops in our house, that one sound driver problem on one machine was the only glitch we had, all the other machines had a very smooth transition to this update. Oh one other little quirk - Two machines had CCleaner completely removed from being installed by windows. Downloaded the latest build and installed it again afterwards and it was fine .. So possibly on the two machine where it became uninstalled it could have been an older version which microsoft has determined to be potentially harmful in doing what it does, when applied to the newer OS - Or the cynical me thinks MS does not like having a tool installed which comprehensively wipes out a huge amount of history and tracking data. The newest version when re-installed though is working fine and not being blocked by windows from being installed. Another plus, they now behave with the main privacy settings and present the switches up front as part of finalising the update and not hidden away as options you have to look for .. They are still all on by default no matter what you had previously set, so just needed to switch them all off again. You are also not railroaded into having a microsoft account anymore, it will just update your local user account as you would expect. And there's a new Game Bar thing, press the windows key plus G during a game and the game bar pops up, click settings and check the box near the top to get windows to recognise that you are playing a game and it ought to cut down on background processes. Not sure if it helps any, with my newest machine I dont have anything that stresses it enough to be able to tell any difference in performance, so its probably something that will help with future more demanding games. After it has settled down, and updated a few more bits and pieces post installation, got my wifi linked printer recognised and setup again .. it feels a bit more reliable / stable than the previous Win 10 installations. And I think I now prefer this to Win 7.
  14. Has anyone investigated the UFO Crash site with a follower / companion of the two legged human variety, and experienced odd behaviour of the companion ? In the following screenshot I have llamaRCA's new companion Heather in company. She avoids the "bowl" of the crater which is just before where the ship is (behind me in the screenshot) And occasionally when she sandboxes away to the other side of the crater bowl, she will launch into the air and then drop back to earth I am guessing that after the crash maybe the game is supposed to set a new navmesh for the changed landscape, and its a bit buggy.
  15. I just found out a few days ago that the powers that be on are not going to allow sticky topics produced by community members. Only official topics created by moderators / admin. So old sticky topics such as OBLIVION MODS FAQ will never be a thing on the new site, which is a damned shame. I was asking if the Manual Cleaning guides could be stickied while trying to get a duplicate of it moved back to where it should be before a moderator moved it, and thats how I found out about it. Apparently one of the moderators is lobbying to get that changed, but no idea what the outcome will be. So aswell as being goddamned awful for editing, navigating, and viewing in its default all white, it will also be less informative for newbies to modding. I have tried getting used to it, but its seriously arse imho. Really needs Code boxes and Spoilers at least. I loved Wrinkly's recent comment, WYSIWTF made me chuckle lots :). It has got better in little ways as time goes on, but its taken an awful long time for not much improvement, and is still crap after all that, so even though I wish it does get better in the future I think it will be a loooong time before it does. Edit : If Utumno is reading - I changed my password to something ridiculous and gave a bogus email so that my wonkydonky account will now go into permanently waiting for me to validate it .. Which will never happen obviously. Just in case you were wondering if I would be participating on the old forum again, with the closure now imminent I did the closest thing to deleting my own account you can do so that site is no longer an option for me to participate in. If you do try BethNet for a dev topic for Wrye Bash, good luck with the initial post, its going to be a frustrating experience at least. Oh and beware noob moderators moving you somewhere they think is more appropriate, even though historically you think your given subject should be in a similar place on the new forum as the old, and expect a wait of a few weeks before your chat to the same moderator is answered negatively ..