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Issues after installing SC4 Deluxe to new computer

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Hello Everyone.


First I want to apologize as I am very green with computers especially software issues so please be patience with me.

I recently bought a new computer (specs: Intel Core i7-4700MQ processor, Windows 8, 1TB hard drive, 16GB DDR3 memory, NVIDIA GeForce GT 745M 2GB (DDR3), 1920x1080 Panel Resolution)

When I installed SC4 Deluxe and stared the game I noticed the graphics are messed up. There are long lines running through the screen.  Some road tiles were missing, some building had parts missing with purple and black voids. 


I have no files yet in the Plugins folder.  I really appreciate any advice.


Here is a pic:


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Try switching between software and hardware rendering in the graphics options and see if there's any improvement.  Unfortunately your computer is so new and powerful that an old game like SC4 may have a lot of problems.


Also since you re-installed, don't forget to:


- Install the patches (if you have disks)

- Limit the CPU affinity to avoid crashes

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You've taken a sledge hammer to a gnat.  The gnat needs tender, loving care since it is old and hoary.  Some suggestions:


Go into your Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) control panel and set all 3D features to 'application selected' or equivalent wording.


Now, assuming your new machine has a new 16:9 monitor, you need to add options to your icon's target line to tell the game's start-up that you have a better machine than the default.  Also, your i7 processer has multiple cores and this can cause trouble with your operating system with this doggedly single-threaded program, so another option is needed.  This game is not for the faint of heart nor the computer novice with no knowledge of the computer system.  A certain minimum is needed, like understanding the file system.  I suggest spending some time with the help system on the file system.  That 1TB hard drive will need weekly maintenance using tools provided in your operating system.  So now, here are a few particulars:


First, set yourself up to run only one core for the game.  To do this, right click on the game icon and open the properties tab.  On this page you should find a text box with the label 'Target'.  This is actually the system command that starts the game.  You need to add options to the end of this.  Options are like words in a sentence and need spaces in between, so after the last quote mark on your complete pathname add one space then




This tells your operating system not to try to multitask this program.


Now, for your 16:9 (HD) screen, you need to get out your manual and find our what the dimensions of your screen are in picture elements (pixels).  Mine, for example, is 1920 x 1080.


The options to add that overrides the games default 4:3 screen formats are:


-CustomResolution:enabled -rhhhxvvvx32

where hhh is the horizontal pitch of the screen in pixels and vvv is the vertical pitch.  The 32 is a magic number (trust me).


These are the critical care options, and don't forget that you need a space before each hyphen.  Here is a link to a list of all the options.  And finally, here is my command line which gives you something to look up to see what else I am up to.


"C:/Program Files (x86)/Maxis/SimCity 4 Deluxe/Apps/SimCity 4.exe"  -intro:off -CustomResolution:enabled -r1920x1080x32 -d:directx  -f -CPUcount:1


When you have made changes to the Target line don't forget to push the Apply button before closing this window.


Now, about your disk.  From your desktop, open "My Computer".  On this window you'll see an image of your disk drive.  Right click it.


You now see some information about your disk and some buttons. 


The Disk Cleanup button opens a program that goes through your files and chooses those that are candidates for scrubbing.  Many ill-behaved apps leave temporary junk lying about after they have finished.  You need to find and delete these.  Disk Cleanup will help.  When it finishes, you get to choose what files are no longer of any use on your machine and you can delete them permanently.


The Disk Defragmenter button opens a program that looks after deficiencies in the NTFS file system.  When a program requests a write (save) on a file, if there isn't enough room in the old space, NTFS finds a new area and writes the balance of the file there.  This make the file into a multi-extent (piece) file and it is possible that the second extent is not on the same track as the original file.  This doubles the number of seeks necessary to access the file.  SC4 City files in particular are subject to this, and may even have several extents.  This slows the system down considerably when loading a city.  The defragment program reorganizes these multi-extent files to be in one big chunk instead of scattered around on the disk and thus speeds up your machine.


A word of caution about the defragmenter:  it may take a very long time, and nothing else should be running while it is doing its job.  It is messing with your files and your file access tables and should be left to hum along in peace.  Overnight is a good time for this.


{End of computers 101 and SC4 operations 101}

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  • Original Poster
  • Thank you for your detailed advice...very much appreciated.  Just want to confirm a few things...


    #1 3D Features

    Is this the Graphics Processing Unit setting you are referring to? (see pic below)

    I set it to "Use Global Setting-Auto Select Integrated"  It had 2 other options (Integrated Graphics or High Performance NVIDIA Processor)





    #2 Core 1 & Resolution Settings

    My resolution is the same as yours, 1920 x 1080 so I used the same path you showed.  Only question is I am not sure what -d:directx & -f are for.  I checked your link but could not understand their purpose.


    "C:/Program Files (x86)/Maxis/SimCity 4 Deluxe/Apps/SimCity 4.exe"  -intro:off -CustomResolution:enabled -r1920x1080x32 -d:directx  -f -CPUcount:1


    Thank you for your 101 lesson.  It was extremely helpful :)

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  • Original Poster
  • Thank you, Thank you Thank you to you both (A Nonny Moose & Indiana Joe) :rofl: :rofl:  :rofl:  

    After following all of your advice and following them slowly and carefully the issues are now resolved!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I can now go back enjoying this wonderful game and outstanding website.


    With much appreciation,


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