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RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/7/2019 2:14:41 AM   
fastfrank

 

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I've got a 64-bit PC running Win10 Home and 16GB memory> Same result?

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RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/7/2019 8:42:15 AM   
Shadrach


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Yes, I have the same OS. If it's what I think, I doubt the OS will make any difference...

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RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/23/2019 4:53:16 AM   
fastfrank

 

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Just ran another experiment while I await a fix. Ran turn 16 Allied with P/O at a reasonable map scale and tracked Private Bytes. Started at 383.3MB and grew to 1.5GB just before crash. Changed map scale so entire map fit on screen. Map didn't move during play. Started at 351.3MB and never grew. Turn 16 ran to completion. Not sure I always had TOAW4 and MS Project Monitor(?) running simultaneously but clearly consumption of Private Bytes didn't occur on a map scale large enough to fit on display.

Of course this is not a work-around since that map scale only shows red and blue ants running around and no tactical or operational information. Does suggest that map re-centering is consuming some vital memory. Have a vague memory of a switch to invoke automatic map re-centering, but found no reference in the TOAW IV game manual. Perhaps I need to look for a 3M by 4M display.

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RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/23/2019 8:44:38 AM   
cathar1244

 

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Shadrach,

Thanks for the tip re: Process Explorer.

How does one see how much "private bytes" capacity one's PC has?

Cheers

ETA. Sorry for the ? re: Private bytes. I was just reading up on it, and it looks variable. Messing around with PE, I could see TOAW using 400MB but it would increase the amount if required. The upper limit on my PC may be the same as yours. Definitely something inefficient going on with memory management as you pointed out.

< Message edited by cathar1244 -- 7/23/2019 9:06:55 AM >

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Post #: 34
RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/23/2019 5:49:31 PM   
Shadrach


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quote:

ORIGINAL: cathar1244
I was just reading up on it, and it looks variable. Messing around with PE, I could see TOAW using 400MB but it would increase the amount if required. The upper limit on my PC may be the same as yours. Definitely something inefficient going on with memory management as you pointed out.


Basically, like I posted earlier, a 32-bit process, even under a 64-bit OS with plenty of RAM, will always have a hard limit of 2GB, unless a special flag (LARGE_ADDRESS_AWARE) is set. Even then it wouldn't help much for this case, it would still crash (just after a bit more time).

The field being "filled" under the "Private Bytes" in the PE process view is not really relevant, what matters is the total used and how the graph looks.

Figuring out Windows memory management is something akin to Black Magic, but it's certainly interesting to learn about - if you're into that kind of thing
I am nowhere near an expert on the topic but have worked with figuring out plenty of memory leaks before (in Java), so I certainly know what one looks like

Here's a good explanation of the main types of memory available to view in PE:
https://stackoverflow.com/a/1986486/202114

In addition, looking at it a bit more today, I think I got a bit closer to the culprit. The cause of the leak seems to be the text overlay on the map. Which makes sense, as places with a lot of urban tiles also have a lot of place names, at least in these specific scenarios. Which kind of leads me in the direction that this might be related to Windows Fonts, and font smoothing/scaling, possibly only in Windows 10. Just a shot in the dark, I've tried turning off both DPI scaling and font aliasing in Windows and it didn't help. But definitely something with the place names. If I turned off "Windows Fonts" in the game for the Huge fonts, the issue was gone, but the fixed-size fonts are basically unreadable...

So a workaround if you have crashes is to turn off place names (Options > Place Names > Invisible). Scrolling the map will be MUCH smoother, and no memory increase. Just hard to remember to do on every turn...

Frank; this might be something you could update your support case with, that it seems to be related to the place name fonts. Might help the developer nail the leak.

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Post #: 35
RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/23/2019 6:17:08 PM   
cathar1244

 

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Shadrach,

Great comments. Following on your earlier probes, I also scooted around the FITE2 map. Fixed bytes never went much over 260MB or so.

Ditto "Campaign for South Vietnam" -- low fixed bytes usage.

But "Russo-China 2000" (not even a very big map) -- usage really takes off as one scrolls around the map.

I wonder if some fonts are more 'compatible' with TOAW than others.

Cheers

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Post #: 36
RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/23/2019 6:39:50 PM   
sPzAbt653


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quote:

So a workaround if you have crashes is to turn off place names (Options > Place Names > Invisible). Scrolling the map will be MUCH smoother, and no memory increase. Just hard to remember to do on every turn...

Thanks for suggesting this, hopefully those with similar troubles will see this and find it useful.

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Post #: 37
RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/23/2019 7:14:53 PM   
Shadrach


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quote:

ORIGINAL: cathar1244
I wonder if some fonts are more 'compatible' with TOAW than others.


Maybe, but I've tried to change font (to Times New Roman/Consolas), removed drop shadow, added background, nothing changed. Possibly it's the "Huge Placename Font", but this is also the one used most often. The fonts are Windows TrueType fonts, and they are all the same, so I doubt a specific font is causing it.

I think the game might be loading fonts into memory every time a place name is scrolled into view, and then it's never reclaimed, apart from on new turn beginning.

I wish I'd find a way to see what the increased memory contains, it would explain a lot, but I don't have the tools to do that, probably need some serious debugger.

At least we have a workaround, but at this point the only ones who can figure this out is the developer.

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Post #: 38
RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/23/2019 9:04:01 PM   
fastfrank

 

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Just had a reply from the help desk, they have asked the "producer" to try and contact the "developer" to review this string and try to debug. Not sure how this all works, not sure if the developer is also the programmer or whether the developer is the designer and will need to then contact the programmer.... I'm trying to keep the help desk in the loop since they are contactable and seem to accept some ownership to move this process forward. Help desk has asked the developer to contact us via this forum string.

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Post #: 39
RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/23/2019 9:30:25 PM   
fastfrank

 

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Just ran Allied turn 16 with place names invisible. Private Bytes started at 344MB end successfully ended the turn at 385MB. If someone occasionally needs place names, hovering the mouse pointer over the hex will show the place name. Congratulations sir and well done.

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RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/23/2019 9:57:42 PM   
Lobster


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From: Third rock from the Sun.
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quote:

ORIGINAL: fastfrank

Just had a reply from the help desk, they have asked the "producer" to try and contact the "developer" to review this string and try to debug. Not sure how this all works, not sure if the developer is also the programmer or whether the developer is the designer and will need to then contact the programmer.... I'm trying to keep the help desk in the loop since they are contactable and seem to accept some ownership to move this process forward. Help desk has asked the developer to contact us via this forum string.


Good luck with that. Ralph is the developer is a designer is the programmer. Bob is the production manager is a designer and is apparently the only one currently actively doing anything related to programming. That is the entire 'team'. Efforts by the community to expand this team have been fruitless.

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Post #: 41
RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/23/2019 10:22:35 PM   
fastfrank

 

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Just what I feared. When I was young and very junior, I had responsibility to do on the fly s/w maintenance when stuff blew up, started looping, etc. Hated trying to debug someone else's code. I'm relieved Shadrach has identified a useful workaround. Is Matrix starved for human or financial resources, or are available assets drawn to the next project planned for release? I would expect most players would place major importance on reliable games, a buggy game wouldn't be worth much.

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RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/23/2019 10:38:00 PM   
Lobster


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We are hoping a patch will be done soon. It's basically the fault of the developer. We have people willing to help but as far as I know the developer needs to approve anything like that. I sometimes think we are the red headed stepchild.

< Message edited by Lobster -- 7/23/2019 10:39:49 PM >


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RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/23/2019 11:35:41 PM   
fastfrank

 

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I would be happy to volunteer

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RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/24/2019 12:45:06 AM   
Blond_Knight


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Well remember that even if people offer to help there might be more effort involved in that then fixing something themselves. There's NDA's to deal with, then youve got someone looking at the games entire code, which after all these years may look like a mess. Then questions to the developer like "Where's the section you want me to work on?", "How do I compile this to test?", or "Does bool PissOffTheLobster = true; do anything anymore?"
OK so that was just for fun but you get the idea.

On the other hand Ive reach out to Tamas to see if I can do anything and spent the last few days practicing C++.

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Post #: 45
RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/24/2019 6:13:38 AM   
cathar1244

 

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quote:

If I turned off "Windows Fonts" in the game for the Huge fonts, the issue was gone, but the fixed-size fonts are basically unreadable...


Check, I turned those off and also saw the issue gone. You are correct, it is not a fun font to look at.

What bothers me about this is why some maps appear more affected than others. Even FITE and Campaign for South Vietnam have a fair amount of placenames on their maps, yet their memory use seems more bounded.

Cheers

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Post #: 46
RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/24/2019 10:19:56 AM   
Shadrach


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quote:

ORIGINAL: cathar1244
What bothers me about this is why some maps appear more affected than others. Even FITE and Campaign for South Vietnam have a fair amount of placenames on their maps, yet their memory use seems more bounded.


I think maybe it's related to the concentration of place names in one map screen that gets loaded into memory as it scrolls into view. While other scenarios might have a lot of places, they are much farther apart. The France 1944 scenarios, especially the D-Day one, have such a mass of places on the map I'm asking myself why the designer even though it a good idea to have that amount of named urban tiles, even without knowing about any memory issues, it just looks a mess.

In other scenarios the memory growth might be so small as to be negligible, but it's still there. I just tested with "Sicily to Brenner Pass" and on the northern Italian plains with its many cities there was a noticeable rise. Not as big as France'44 of course, that one is special

Also would be interesting to know if anyone can reproduce this on Win7/8 or Vista. There have been big improvements to DPI scaling for instance in Windows 10 and so the problem might be limited to Windows 10 (then again, I doubt it).


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Post #: 47
RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/24/2019 10:34:37 AM   
sPzAbt653


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quote:

would be interesting to know if anyone can reproduce this on Win7/8 or Vista.

I've never had this issue here with W7. I've even run 197 turns of CvC D21 nonstop with no crash.

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Post #: 48
RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/24/2019 10:57:41 AM   
Shadrach


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quote:

ORIGINAL: sPzAbt653
I've never had this issue here with W7. I've even run 197 turns of CvC D21 nonstop with no crash.


OK, would you mind testing with France 1944 D-Day, with running Process Explorer and looking at the process Performance Graph for "Toaw 4.exe"? Just moving the map around the urban areas, you don't need to move units, it should show a huge increase in memory use.

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/downloads/process-explorer

If it doesn't happen in 7 it would explain something, but not sure what

< Message edited by Shadrach -- 7/24/2019 11:02:21 AM >

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RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/24/2019 4:56:09 PM   
sPzAbt653


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Does this little fella show us what we need, or do I have to get the Process Explorer?




Attachment (1)

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RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/24/2019 6:15:25 PM   
Shadrach


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quote:

ORIGINAL: sPzAbt653
Does this little fella show us what we need, or do I have to get the Process Explorer?


Ah the good ol' Windows 7 task manager, simple but powerful

Yeah, I guess - if that graph was made during running the game and moving the map around on the France 1944 D-Day scenario for a couple of minutes or until it crashes, whatever comes first.

If so it doesn't look like there's a leak in Windows 7, which is interesting.

It would be better of course if there was a way to show mem usage specifically for TOAW4 graphed, but it'll do.

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Post #: 51
RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/24/2019 8:11:30 PM   
sPzAbt653


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Ok, I scrolled all over the map with that scenario and never had an issue. The CPU Usage hit 25% a couple times. I finally got tired of scrolling so took this screen shot, if it helps any.




Attachment (1)

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RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/24/2019 8:30:48 PM   
Shadrach


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Thanks! At least it show that Windows 7 doesn't have the leak, not sure how much that's going to help us but might help the developer, if they're even reading this

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Post #: 53
RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/25/2019 2:25:09 AM   
sPzAbt653


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quote:

if they're even reading this

'They' read everything, nothing goes undetected.

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Post #: 54
RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/27/2019 6:00:03 PM   
Curtis Lemay


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Can't the game be run under Win 10 with Win 7 emulation selected?

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Post #: 55
RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/27/2019 7:11:45 PM   
Lobster


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January 14, 2020 Windows 7 individual support ends. Support will only be available at a cost for businesses and that cost will increase annually.

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Post #: 56
RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/28/2019 10:47:08 AM   
Shadrach


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Curtis Lemay
Can't the game be run under Win 10 with Win 7 emulation selected?


I've tried setting "Opart 4.exe" to compatibility mode for Windows 7, and it didn't change anything.

Probably, if I could be bothered to install a virtual machine with Win7 it would work, but that would be kind of besides the point wouldn't it

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RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/28/2019 10:49:14 AM   
larryfulkerson

 

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I'm not having any problems with my WIN10 setup by running it as if it were WIN8.

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Post #: 58
RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/28/2019 12:13:35 PM   
Shadrach


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quote:

ORIGINAL: larryfulkerson
I'm not having any problems with my WIN10 setup by running it as if it were WIN8.


This memory leak followed by a crash issue seems to happens only on certain scenarios where there's a lot of urban tiles, and hence, many place names on the map that gets loaded into memory on map scroll. Usually it will trigger a crash during the PO turn, as the map will move around a lot, and at start of a new turn, memory will be cleared again. So for a lot of cases, the user will never see this crash.

Out of interest, I've tried every single setting under the Compatibility tab. Even Windows '95 compatibility mode - game won't even start.

Are you able to run the same test as others have done above, preferably with Process Explorer (as I'm not sure Task Manager shows enough details)? Scroll around the France '44 map until the game crashes (or a couple of minutes) and paste a screenshot of the Performance Graph tab from the "Opart 4.exe" properties page?

In the end, a developer with Windows 10 needs to recreate this to have any hope of fixing it, anything else will be workarounds until the issue is fixed in code.
Unless of course, the bug is in Windows 10 itself... in which case we just have to wait for a fix from MS. But a developer should be able to answer this as well.


< Message edited by Shadrach -- 7/28/2019 12:14:32 PM >

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Post #: 59
RE: help desk requested post here for developer - 7/28/2019 2:39:15 PM   
Curtis Lemay


Posts: 11490
Joined: 9/17/2004
From: Houston, TX
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quote:

ORIGINAL: Shadrach

In the end, a developer with Windows 10 needs to recreate this to have any hope of fixing it, anything else will be workarounds until the issue is fixed in code.


Not sure if we have one of those.

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Bob Cross's TOAW Site

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