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    Keep SC4 running smoothly; General Tips & Tricks

    In this article, I will give you several options that you can use in keeping SC4 running as smoothly as possible...

    General Overview

    -- Keep your plugins folder organized

    -- Kill processes before running your game

    -- Disable disturbing programs

    Keep your plugins folder organized

    This is a very common method of use by several SC4 gamers... The example I will provide below is just give you an idea on how to structure your plugin folder using several trees/maps... To organize your plugin folder, just move everything to a temporary folder anywhere on your system. SimCity has 2 plugins folder in use:

    • My Documents/SimCity 4/Plugins
    • Program Files/SimCity 4/ Plugins
    Now what you should know is that SimCity 4 uses the "My Documents" folder as your primary folder. This means that when you start the game, every lots/BAT's/props/ texture placed in that folder will override any existing ones that sit in the "program files" folder if you've got duplicated ones sitting in there...

    Now, we can use various methods on how to organize your folder, but it's all up to you on how to do this... I will give the example that I use. It is very easy to understand and with this way you will find the files you are looking for very fast...

    I use only the "My Documents" folder. The "program files" folder is out of use by me... because it is the secondary folder used by SimCity.

    Here's my structured example of the folder:

    =>Simcity 4/Plugins

    • Mods
    • Lots
    • Props

    As you can see, I have divided the map in three general maps, mods, lots, and props...

    With this you can easily divide it into different categories. Now lets go on further, we'll take the Lots map now for example:

    =>Simcity 4/Plugins/Lots

    • ADC
    • Andreas
    • Apathyninja
    • Brenda_xne
    • BRF
    • BSC
    • Buddybud
    In this map I made several submaps with the name of the author of the lots. With this method, you always know from which lots is made by who...

    Now lets take the first one out of the lots maps to see what to do next:

    =>Simcity 4/Plugins/Lots/ADC

    • Rail Signal Bridge

    As you see, I also made another submap with the name of the lot itself! With this you now always know the name of the lot...

    This method is very useful if you are a BAT or lot builder, because you always get to know the name of the author and the name of the lot itself, which will result in finding a certain lot or BAT for editing faster ...

    Now when you've down all this by hand, and the next time you download something from the STEX, you may come across the auto installers (also known as .exe or executable files) that are used by certain authors. You only have to point out where it has to install those files if you use this sorting files system...

    Kill processes before running your game

    Before you start running your game, it can be wise to kill certain processes which are running in the background. This way you save valuable memory that Simcity can use during gameplay...

    I will explain how to approach this...

    First, you'll need to press CTRL + ALT + DELETE just once! Don't press it more than once, because that will trigger an action which will result that your computer rebooting. And we don't want to do that!

    When you've pressed those keys I just mentioned, a small popup window will appear with several Tabs... It's called Windows Task Manager. Click on the Processes Tab page... In this Tab you'll see several processes that are running in the background of Windows... Below I've provided a small list of processes that may not or can not be killed because they are essential for Windows itself... You may also notice that certain processes cannot be killed for what ever the reason may be. But that's not crucial for our goal, so leave those alone...

    • Csrss.exe
    • Explorer.exe
    • Internat.exe
    • Lsass.exe
    • Mstask.exe
    • Smss.exe
    • Spoolsv.exe
    • Svchost.exe
    • Services.exe
    • System.exe
    • System Idle Process
    • Taskmgr.exe
    • Winlogon.exe
    • Winmgmt.exe
    Note: For more information on these default processes, you can visit this Microsoft Knowledge Base article: http://support.micro...b;en-us;Q263201 (windows 2000/XP)

    Disable disturbing programs

    As you may know, certain programs can cause conflicts while running a game or gives an annoying side effect to the game. What I recommend is that you kill/shutdown the programs which are not needed when you run a game. Below I've stated some programs which can cause conflicts with SC4... Please note: not all programs are listed, only the ones that I can think off...

    • Screensavers These are very annoying while playing a game!
    • Internet Connection Kill your Internet connection(s) while running SC4, because you won't need it! (this is not the case when you're on a LAN connection)
    • Antivirus Software These are very memory consuming while running a game!
    • MSN Messenger Don't you hate it when someone is talking to you while playing a game?! ;-)
    • Firewall Software These are very memory consuming while running a game! (see also Internet connection!)

    I think you get my point with all of this: the more programs you shut down, the better. It's just to give you more fun gameplay experience and it will give you more memory to play with, because we all know that SimCity 4 is very memory consuming!

    Now, If this article raises any questions you can contact me anytime by sending me a Private Message.


    Also, feel free to PM STomnibus for questions regarding this article.

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    User Feedback

    One more process that should never be killed: Sched.exe, the windows process scheduler. I also would recommend not to kill any antivirus processes, because disableing any real-time protections should be enough (maybe? Hehe)

    BTW, if you have auto-update on, be mindful of that. :evil:

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