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A Nonny Moose

Even the most experienced of us ...

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forget to take checkpoints at times.

 

Growl!

 

I was working on a rather intricate problem today and I lost something like four hours work because I forgot to do saves as I went, then when I wanted to quit, I did a save and exit.  The program hung in the save and did not get an image on to the disk.  I lost around three to four hours work.  Grrrr!

 

Worst of it is, it was my own fault.

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Because we're old school and our command lines are custom tailored to do already what the Launcher does. Besides, the best time to save is when you got something like you want, would suck to not be able to reload my last save because the autosave has kicked in 3 times already... Hehe

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I found with Windows File History to be an awesome feature for this. It works by backing up changes to files in your library on a timed basis. I have it backup the changes every 10 minutes and auto save every 10 so I always can go back to within 10 minutes of any save. This automatically will use disk space on an external drive and is self cleaning when it runs out of space.

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We all make mistakes. Such as when focused on a complex NAM component, time sure does fly. Saving can soon become an afterthought. But although frustrated, it becomes easier to replicate after doing it once over. With prior knowledge, maybe that mega interchange can be built differently, for the better. The same applies to real life disasters - such as earthquakes. If a building collapses, it's later redesigned to be stronger and able to withstand future events.

Backups are gold. But as a personal preference, I'm not in favour of using an autosave program. Unless you've set up File History (or equivalent for non Win 8 users), it can be a bit risky. Anything that automates takes away some aspect of control.

Many modern games now have this option, and can be a real pain. The new SimCity is a prime example of this. Say you've messed up your city and then autosave kicks in. Bang! Without being able to access a recent version, more than a few hours play might be lost. It's also much harder to restore your city from a "disastrous state" than an older but more stable one. Aren't corrupt saves more likely when in the middle of playing - such as plopping a building? If so desired, I like the ease of reverting to the previously saved state, by simply exiting to region.

In any case, it's a personal choice. But I'd still recommend creating regular backups. Or to implement a system of previous versions, as mlibby05 suggested.

For a scheduled reminder, I find Daeley's Save Alarm comes in quite handy. This mod shows a popup window every so often, warning of the time since your last save.

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Been there.......but now I am more experienced (see title of thread) and it does not anymore. ;) I learned and since two years I have always saved safely my works and did not loose anything on a save.

 

What I do? I save all the time......at least at every 10 to 15 minutes or even 5 minutes. It has become a routine by now, even with other games I play. It happened so often to me that I lost important building of my cities that I really got pi***ed off at times ( just like Moose did with his 4 hrs of throwing away his gameplay) and forced myself to think of saving with little tricks here and there. I have sometimes up to 12 Gb's in my plugins, which take a lot of "juice" and it can happen seriously that you loose a save while playing for more than an hour with all that stuff, far more than if you have nothing in the Plugins.

 

I can just feel how you feel, Moose, man, like this we don't even feel like continuing on that map again. But, think of it that way.....the next time you might just get a better city on this specific tile, at least a different one. ;)

 

Fred

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  • Original Poster
  • Because we're old school and our command lines are custom tailored to do already what the Launcher does. Besides, the best time to save is when you got something like you want, would suck to not be able to reload my last save because the autosave has kicked in 3 times already... Hehe

     

    And besides, that launcher is a Windows tool.  I am on Linux.  I had my command line all formatted well before that little toy came into existence.  here is my full launch script:

     

    #!/bin/bash

    date

    env WINEPREFIX="/home/john/.wine" \

    wine "C:/Program Files (x86)/Maxis/SimCity 4 Deluxe/Apps/SimCity 4.exe" \

     -intro:off -CustomResolution:enabled -r1920x1080x32 -d:software \

     -f -CPUcount:1 &>~/sc4.log

    date

     

    It is good that someone has taken the trouble to alleviate the pain of knowing something about your computer, but I've been at this computer game since 1962.  What do I want with a utility that simply hides the reality of getting the game going?

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    My launcher is power shell but it also incorporates the diagonal bridge extender enabler options with auto save. Again this wouldn't help Nonny since its .NET based. :(

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  • Original Poster
  • I wonder if it would run under mono?  Have you ever tried it on a MAC or a Linux box?

     

    BTW, you should be able to write a portable program in .NET as long as you don't fall prey to some of the MS lock-ins.  As long as you stay within the ECMA standard you should be able to run your program anywhere.

     

    Generally Linux can run any Windows .exe either directly with wine or with the Windows version of mono under wine.  The number of layers gets a little tricky and you might have to investigate what libraries you need to load into your wine prefix.

     

    I happen to have a C# development tool (MonoDevelop) that let's me write stuff in C#.  And of course, all other languages including VB are available in various versions.

     

    One of the real problems with programming these days is that MS thinks they have some sort of monopoly.  Nothing could be farther from the truth.

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    In my experience pressing "save and quit" button it's more likely to crash the game than just saving and then exiting the game manually.

     

    That is definitely true.  The same principle applies to exiting to regions as well - save first.

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  • Original Poster
  • Me too, but I've found the ordinary in-game save is just as good if slightly longer.  Maybe I don't feel any time pressure any more since I've been retired for over 10 years now.

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    Me too, but I've found the ordinary in-game save is just as good if slightly longer.  Maybe I don't feel any time pressure any more since I've been retired for over 10 years now.

    Nonny,

     

    Would you be interested in that script?  I could compile it today to an EXE if you wanted and you could give it a shot in Linux.  All the script really does though is triggers a sendkey command to issue a CTRL-S every 10 minutes based on a timer.  I didn't spend too much time on it since it does what I need it to.

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  • Original Poster
  • Actually, no.  I don't want a time-dependent save because I quite often save more often than that depending on what I am doing.  And sometimes, I don't want a save when I am doing something I might not want to keep.  Generally, on my machine, I can run about an hour before the lack of garbage collection crashes the game.

     

    Thanks anyway, but I really am a control freak.

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    When I'm busy with one of my cities I save every time after I finish some editing (like upgrading a road, some new zoning, adding schools or changing funding). It's annoying and costs some time, but at least nothing is lost if the game crashes (which is very rare right now, Haven't experienced a SC4 crash for months).

     

    When I save a city and want to return to the region, I always use save and then exit to region without saving. It's a ritual that comes from the times that SC4 regularly crashed.

     

    If your region is really large, like mine, you should apply the 4GB patch which is part of the latest NAM. If you don't apply that patch the game may crash when you want to save a city.

     

    Also make sure that you use the CPUCount parameter in your SC4 shortcut if you're using a multicore processor.

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    If your region is really large, like mine, you should apply the 4GB patch which is part of the latest NAM. If you don't apply that patch the game may crash when you want to save a city.

     

    The problem with crashing (at least the one that's solved by the 4 GB patch) has nothing to do with the size of the city - it's the size of the NAM controller.  That's why the NAM applies this patch by default when it's installed.

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