WitP AE Launcher and the lastest AE patch (Full Version)

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jamesm -> WitP AE Launcher and the lastest AE patch (2/10/2012 9:12:00 AM)

Is Dave Bradley excellent WitP AE Launcher and the latest WitP AE version compatible?




dwbradley -> RE: WitP AE Launcher and the lastest AE patch (2/10/2012 4:07:42 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: jamesm

Is Dave Bradley excellent WitP AE Launcher and the latest WitP AE version compatible?


A good question and, unfortunately, one for which I do not know the answer. The question itself show that there is at least one person interested in using the Launcher. And such a nice adjective too. Thanks for the kind words.

Way back when, I told myself that the Launcher should be revisited when AE received its "final" patch. I have noted but not yet even downloaded the aforesaid patch. So there is work to do before the question can be addressed. To me, it seems as though this thing has layers.

Layer 1. Will the launcher work at all with the new release or as a fallback work with some caveats such as functions you shouldn't use or minor errors that crop up that are somehow OK?

Layer 2. The Launcher itself was patched to keep up with previous AE patches and no doubt would benefit from a re-packaging even if it functions just fine with the latest AE.

Layer 3. Does the Launcher have a future? That is, does it make sense for me to think about a Launcher follow-on? Much has happened in AE land (and in Dave Bradley land) since the original Launcher was created. It is possible to think of an upgraded Launcher that takes into account the changes made in AE and the experience gained in using the Launcher. The effort to do this would have to be justified somehow. How much better would it be? How many folks would use such a thing? As usual, asking questions seems to devolve into even more questions. :)


At a minimum, I will do layer 1 and assess the work for Layer 2. This could be a few days or maybe more before I can get this done. Layer 3 could only go forward after some discussion here and perhaps by PM. As always, feedback (good and bad) is a necessary ingredient. So please let me know what you think about these issues.

Thanks
Dave Bradley




bk19@mweb.co.za -> RE: WitP AE Launcher and the lastest AE patch (2/11/2012 5:16:23 PM)

What launcher....

Where does one find this....




dwbradley -> RE: WitP AE Launcher and the lastest AE patch (2/11/2012 5:44:14 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: bk19@mweb.co.za

What launcher....

Where does one find this....


The Launcher is a utility I created for AE that provides a number of functions. Its main job is to generate a quasi-dynamic map.

If you start here:

http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=2539952&mpage=1&key=�

and read through this and previous threads (maybe do some searching on dwbradley to find the threads) you can get a sense of what it does and how well it works and how to download the utility.

The question that was asked was, "Does it still work with the latest release?".

To answer that question I may have to stick my head way deep into some code I haven't looked at for several years. This is not something I can do casually, a minute here and a minute there. I will get to it, soon I hope, and I will report back here what I find.

Dave Bradley




Sardaukar -> RE: WitP AE Launcher and the lastest AE patch (2/12/2012 2:54:22 AM)

Good stuff, Dave! Thanks!




dwbradley -> RE: WitP AE Launcher and the lastest AE patch (2/16/2012 8:19:02 PM)

So the question was:

Will the Launcher work with the latest comprehensive patch?

The answer is yes with a caveat or three.

So now for the caveats (don't you just hate them?)

1. I have built a new version of the Launcher (1.23) which you can get here:

http://sites.google.com/site/dbpagegroup/home/downloads

This version is functionally unchanged from the 1.2 version - a few minor errors are addressed and now you don't have to install 1.0 and then upgrade to 1.2. Use this version to start new games with Launcher.

2. If you are currently using Launcher 1.2 and are in the middle of a game it may be a bit more dicey. I think you will be all right with installing the new AE revision and then resuming the game using the Launcher (version 1.2 or higher) but WITP has always been a bit fragile when you upgrade in the middle of a game (think for example of the sync bug). That's not a knock on AE. Many games in this world would not be able to absorb this kind of change at all. So it would be prudent to back up your current game. If you have the disk space I would just make a copy of the entire install where you are currently running the game so that you can revert to it if necessary.

3. I have encountered an anomaly on my system that you may or may not see. With the latest release I cannot easily go to the desktop using alt-TAB (yes I know this has been a long term issue on and off for some users). After quite a bit of experimentation it appears to me that this is somehow related to the new release. With prior releases I can go from the game to the dektop and back (with the Launcher or without the Launcher). With this new release when I try to go back the context switching is somehow incomplete and I am left staring at the desktop with the AE music playing. I did find that running in windowed mode solves the problem, although that may not be preferable for you. I also found that playing with the Windows key and then Windows + the m key (minimize) can get me past the situation. I am running a quad-core AMD system and Windows 7 Home Premiun 64-bit OS. I tried fiddling with various combinations of the AE cmd-line switches as well with Windows permissions and compatibiltiy modes to no avail. I certainly did not exhaust all of the combinations thereof, since that is a big number. None of this fiddling seemed to do any good. The ability to go back and forth from the desktop during a game is important, I think. Order entry can take hours (at least for me, I am slow and admit it). I also sometimes like to look at the manual or other references such as Tracker. I would be interested to hear the experience of others with the new release and alt-TAB. It may help me sort out if I am doing something wrong.

So, I will tentatively say I have addressed the Level 1 and 2 issues I note in my earlier post. Any problems just give a shout here or by PM and I will try to help.

Thanks

Dave Bradley




dwbradley -> RE: WitP AE Launcher and the lastest AE patch (2/16/2012 9:35:29 PM)

Upon further reflection I would add a couple more caveats:

4. It may be obvious but perhaps worth saying that the present Launcher will work only with the stock map. That is, with stock scenarios and user-generated scenarios that use the stock map. There has been a lot of very interesting work with alternative maps over the last couple of years and I think the potential for some very worthwhile improvements to AE functionality (and fun!). But sadly, the very nature of how the Launcher is built precludes the combination of Launcher + custom map from working.

5. Another obvious caveat but also perhaps worth mentioning is the sheer magnitude of the changes incorporated in the latest AE release. This means that I have no way of knowing that there is not some obscure combination of events (or maybe not even obscure) that will cause a problem when using AE in conjunction with the Launcher.

All of this should not be construed to look as though I expect the Launcher to be buggy, or unstable. I have used it for several long-term PBEM games and it worked well for me. I have no way of knowing how many Launcher users there are but I think the number is quite small. This means that the testing space enveloped by their experience compared to the possible total testing space is likely to be a small percentage. This should not be a cause for worry. It simply says that for someone to stumble across a new bug would not be surprising.

Cheers!

Dave




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