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brianc1327

SimCity 4 on Linux

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I have been playing SC4 on WINE/LINUX recently.  I think all I did was DL the installer from Amazon (or used the installer that was already on my Windows partition, I don't remember), but I don't remember having any particular problem doing so or having to "prepare" the partition in any way.

I had a bit of a problem with SC4 all of a sudden crashing to the desktop.  I added the switch "-CPUcount:1" to the icon for starting the program.  How much it helps remains to be seen, but the articles that gave this suggestion if you have SC4 on a dual-processor (or more) machine, SC4 is still a bit doofy even if you use that switch.  They implied it is still a bit doofy if you have a single-processor machine, and XP, and the latest patches, which is what SC4 was designed for.

I also had a problem with the water.  I would see a building that has the drop on it that indicates it is not watered, but when I look at the pipes, a pipe is watered and goes right by the building (if I it actually goes under the building, everything is OK), and I look at the graph showing water use/water production and I although I cannot remember the exact amounts, the amount produced was probably at least twice as high as the amount used, but the building was still unwatered.  

This problem seemed to be fixed when I successfully got NAM installed on my linux partition.  Unless this problem exists on a "regular" windows installation, I really don't see why it would exist on a WINE/Linux installation, or why installing NAM would solve it, but that is what was happening, but after getting NAM installed it was no longer happening, so it is at least correlated with that.

I also have got other add-ons installed, such as the "infinite money park," the hyperspace garbage dump, and a pack that gives a bit more variety to the 1x1 commercial tiles than Depessies Diner.

Pretty much to only other games I play that I have boot into XP for (or play at all) is "Farm Frenzy" and "Roller Coaster Tycoon 2," which I did not get installed to WINE/Linux successfully, but maybe I will find the motivation to do give it another try someday.

Brian Christiansen.

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3 hours ago, brianc1327 said:

....Pretty much to only other games I play that I have boot into XP for (or play at all) is "Farm Frenzy" and "Roller Coaster Tycoon 2," which I did not get installed to WINE/Linux successfully...

I gave up on Windows 7 last year and have been using Linux Mint since then, as I didn't want to have a dual-boot I set up a virtual desktop and installed Windows XP on it, I've got SimCity3 and 4 running on it and have to say its worked out really well.

:thumb:

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11 hours ago, brianc1327 said:

I had a bit of a problem with SC4 all of a sudden crashing to the desktop.  I added the switch "-CPUcount:1" to the icon for starting the program.  How much it helps remains to be seen, but the articles that gave this suggestion if you have SC4 on a dual-processor (or more) machine, SC4 is still a bit doofy even if you use that switch.  They implied it is still a bit doofy if you have a single-processor machine, and XP, and the latest patches, which is what SC4 was designed for.

I don't understand where you have got this impression from, let me clarify a few facts for you.

  • SC4 running on a single-core machine will NOT suffer issues related to multi-core machines. Then again, in many cases I'd expect to see performance issues, since that means its highly likely you are running on a not very powerful (by todays standards) processor:
    • Pentium 4
      In short dual core became standard for Pentium Class chips with the release of the Pentium D series thereafter.
    • Celeron
      The early ones (before 2007/8) were not particularly good, although that's relative. Some people just want a basic PC, a Celeron can be fine for that. But want to play CPU intensive games? That's like bringing a go kart to an F1 grand prix.
    • Some older AMD chips
      Again some older chips simply don't have the performance needed to run SC4 well today.
  • If the cores are correctly scaled back to just one, there is no reason why you'd have issues.
    Those who do likely either haven't correctly setup this feature or have problems stemming from other causes.
    In the case of a Linux user, you are running SC4 in a non-native environment. So there's a good chance a shortcut switch (designed for Windows) may not be sufficient to invoke this function on your OS. In fact I recall Nonny (RIP) having issues with this under Wine, if memory serves it was eventually solved with a Wine update.
  • Running XP provides for the smoothest experience for many players. But there is nothing in the code of Windows beyond that to stop the game running well either. The most likely cause of problems is more down to the use of new hardware, mainly graphics cards, where driver support for DirectX 7 is limited or simply not working. Sometimes it's as simple as helping SC4 to correctly detect your GPU, other times its necessary to switch to Software Rendering to make things work.

Anyone who thinks SC4 can not run stably, simply doesn't know what they are talking about, it absolutely can and does, fact.

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Nice to see more people are discovering Linux. It can be a bit of a challenge making the switch, but I am very happy I stuck with it. For any problems I have encountered I have found a solution, usually pretty quickly. If you think about the time you spent learning to deal with windoze, it wasn't always easy, but you stuck with it. If you give the same time to learning your flavour of Linux, I think, you will be much more satisfied with the results.

If you have any questions, post them, and I will try to help.

I have been working on scripts to replace some of the lengthy instruction sheets I currently have posted, so I am not on the site much lately, but I do check the forums at least once a day.

Once I worked out the process I currently use, for SimCity etc,  I have not had any major issues that I did not cause myself. If it ran well on windoze it will run well in Wine.

 

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  • Original Poster
  • 7 hours ago, rsc204 said:

    I don't understand where you have got this impression from, let me clarify a few facts for you.

    Oh, I don't know, perhaps partly from actually playing it when logged into XP home (not a virtual machine - but an actual XP installation).

    Brian Christiansen

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    Just now, brianc1327 said:

    Oh, I don't know, perhaps partly from actually playing it when logged into XP home (not a virtual machine - but an actual XP installation).

    Did you read everything I said? Or are you just going to skip over the information provided? Honestly it's a wonder you are having problems when you seem to take issue with people giving you advice to solve them.

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  • Original Poster
  • 4 hours ago, rsc204 said:

    Did you read everything I said?

    Yes, I did, and since I built my computer, I know what hardware is on it, and nothing that was said really has anything to do with my hardware.  Even if I had any of the hardware mentioned, I did not see any suggestions about what to do, except for perhaps upgrading WINE.  

    Pentium 4, Celeron: I don't have either of those.

    Athlon: That is what I have, and I don't know what you consider to be "older," but mine isn't old when measured against SC4, at least, and the CPU/motherboard/graphics card is specifically built for windows XP/7/Vista and DX7 (http://www.asrock.com/mb/nvidia/n68c-s ucc/).  It would probably run windows 8 and 10 as well, but I just don't have any intention of installing those anyway.

    Whether the "-CPUcount:1" switch helps or does not help I do not know since I just have not played enough since adding that switch to the program launcher icon to see if if makes any difference or not, since XP home does not recognize both processors anyway, I am pretty sure it won't have any effect there.  I may look into making sure my installation of Wine is the latest stable release for Ubuntu (my version is 1.9.something, and the latest stable version is 2.0.something)  if the -CPUcount switch does not help.

    I did read your post, I just did not see anything, except perhaps upating WINE, that applied to my system or situation.

    Brian Christiansen

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    Posted (edited)

     

    On 2017-04-19 at 8:12 PM, brianc1327 said:

    I had a bit of a problem with SC4 all of a sudden crashing to the desktop.

    Which Distro and version of Linux are you running?

    I have been running Wine 1.8 for a couple years, with no problems, on UbuntuGnome 14.04 and more recently on UbuntuGnome 16.04.
    The caveats with 14.04 is, you can't run it in windowed mode and you cannot have any other windows open when you run SC4, it simply does not play nice. Also if you have anything that pops under while playing the game, it will crash instantly, this includes the Update Notifier. So make sure to run Updates before starting the game. Also, when you launch SC4, it will start in the background so you have to wait a minute and  ALT+TAB to bring to the foreground.
    You can avoid these issues by installing 16.04, which will run in windowed mode and doesn't mind if other things are opened while playing. The only small issue with this setup is I can't ALT+TAB to another window, but I can use the SUPER key to raise the HUD and choose a window from there.

    Also make sure you have the TELot fix, regardless of the OS version.

    Below is the command from my Desktop shortcut.

    env WINEPREFIX="/home/mike/.wine-SC4D" wine C:\\Program\ Files\\Maxis\\SimCity\ 4\ Deluxe\\Apps\\SimCity\ 4.exe -intro:off -CustomResolution:enabled -r1920x1080x32 -d:hardware -CPUcount:1


      Edited by Handyman  

    Added more info

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    On 4/19/2017 at 9:37 PM, catty-cb said:

    I gave up on Windows 7 last year and have been using Linux Mint since then, as I didn't want to have a dual-boot I set up a virtual desktop and installed Windows XP on it, I've got SimCity3 and 4 running on it and have to say its worked out really well.

    :thumb:

    That's what I do too *:8)  (I also run Mint....  ;) )

    There's a couple things I run on my windows 7 partition, but I don't play them much, so it gets used maybe twice a year. 

     

    I haven't had much luck getting SC4 to run on WINE, but there are those who have.  Handyman's article is highly informative, and will hopefully get you up and running.

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    16 hours ago, Handyman said:

    ...The caveat with 14.04 is you cannot have any other windows open when you run SC4, it simply does not play nice. Also if you have anything that pops under while playing the game, it will crash instantly, this includes the Update Notifier. So make sure to run Updates before starting the game...

    Hmmmmm.... I wonder if this is part of my problem.  I'm running Mint 17.3 (based on Ubuntu 14.04), and I know for a fact that every time I've tried to launch SC4 there have been other windows open... most obvious of all, the terminal window from which I've been calling the script.  I guess I'll be doing a system upgrade (again) soon.  

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