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  #1  
Old April 5th, 2006, 05:50 AM
vejoaronda vejoaronda is offline
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Half-Life 2

Hi everyone, my first post here, I am just very frustrated and I'm not sure if this is the proper forum to post this to, but here goes. First, my system:

Dell Inspiron 9100
Intel Pentium 4 2.8 Ghz
512 MB RAM
Windows XP
ATI MOBILITY RADEON 9800 256 MB
DirectX 9
SigmaTel C-Major Audio
37.0 GB free disk space

I used the System Requirements Lab thing and it says I easily pass the recommended hardware. When I first got HL2 it ran pretty well, but not great, in single player stutters every once in a while when things got really hectic, and I was never able to jack up the graphics all the way. But things have just been getting worse and worse, I haven't been able to play it for months things have gotten so bad. Now on avg I'm probably getting a frame a second or less. I suspect that the problem isn't just HL2, as there are other problems with my comp - mp3s will stutter sometimes even if I'm just running Microsoft Word or Firefox along with iTunes, which didn't used to happen.

I've run virusscan, as well as Spybot, Ad-aware, and Ccleaner, and everything seems fine. I've even deleted a bunch of my other games and generally tried to clean things up to maybe open up space. My drivers are up to date. I think something is definitely the matter, I just can't figure out what. I noticed that right after running HL2 (and Steam), my CPU usage was up near 100%. Is this normal? I mean, even with all the graphics turned way down and everything (which I didn't used to have to do)? I'd be really appreciative if somebody could help me out. If this seems to be less a gaming problem and more a Windows problem or something, I'll post over in those forums. Thanks again.
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  #2  
Old April 5th, 2006, 09:29 AM
G_Dem G_Dem is offline
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Sounds like a RAM problem to me. Has HL2 ever worked well? 512 RAM is minimum really so i would reccomend 1gb. But if the prob has got worse recently it may be a prob with your current RAM. Try running memtest.
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  #3  
Old April 5th, 2006, 08:32 PM
vejoaronda vejoaronda is offline
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It used to work a lot better, as I said it used to get a little jumpy at really hectic parts etc, but that was with the graphics pretty high (but never at max). But now with graphics all the way down it barely moves. Also, it takes like 20 minutes for the game to load in the first place, which it never used to do. I might upgrade to a gig of RAM, but I'm positive something else is going on here. I've defragged, virusscanned, cleaned out most of my hard drive, and it's still running like this.

I dled memtest but I can't figure out how to work it. I burned the image file onto a cd, then tried to boot directly from the dvd drive but that didn't work, it just went to windows. Then I tried running "rawrite" and when it asked for filename I wrote d:\memtest.img, and then when it asked for target diskette drive I wrote d (my dvd drive). Any ideas? I know this is probably really simple but I can't figure it out. Thanks again.

Last edited by vejoaronda; April 5th, 2006 at 09:20 PM.
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  #4  
Old April 6th, 2006, 11:28 AM
G_Dem G_Dem is offline
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How did you put the img file on the disk? What program did you use? It sounds like you just dumped it on there. You will need a program that can write img files.

With the high loading times that you are getting too im thinking either a RAM or hard drive prob. How are your other games running by the way?
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  #5  
Old May 14th, 2006, 11:36 PM
CyberDonkey CyberDonkey is offline
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I have the exact same problem, which was solved by upgrading my RAM from 512K to 1256K. Now it runs perfect.
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  #6  
Old May 20th, 2006, 07:09 AM
vejoaronda vejoaronda is offline
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Thanks for your help everyone, I think I'm just going to upgrade my RAM. Right now I've got 512MB, I've read that the Inspiron 9100 can go up to 2GB? Is this true? I'll probably just end up getting 1GB. What are some good online retailers? I know it's always more expensive at circuit city etc. Thanks again.
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  #7  
Old May 20th, 2006, 08:34 AM
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oracle128 oracle128 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vejoaronda
I've read that the Inspiron 9100 can go up to 2GB? Is this true?
Go here and enter your system details, it will tell you what type of RAM and how much is compatible with your system.
Quote:
Originally Posted by vejoaronda
What are some good online retailers?
Assuming you're in the US, alot of people seem to like NewEgg or TigerDirect.
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  #8  
Old May 20th, 2006, 11:34 PM
vejoaronda vejoaronda is offline
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Alright, so I upgraded my RAM, replaced one of the 256mb with a 1gb, but now when I try to play Half-Life I get this:

failed to lock index buffer in CMeshDx8::LockIndexBuffer

Any ideas? I guess I'll reinstall the drivers, but I've tried that before and it didn't help. Oh well. Thanks again.
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  #9  
Old May 21st, 2006, 06:40 PM
vejoaronda vejoaronda is offline
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Okay, that error isn't happening anymore, apparently it's a common HL2 bug with ati cards, but the game is still playing VERY slowly, oftentimes a frame every 2 or 3 seconds, even with all the settings turned down. I know this should definitely not happen on my machine. I put in Prince of Persia III just to be sure that it wasn't just HL2, and that ran really slow, too.

I am stuck. Again, I've run virusscan and spybot and ad-aware etc, and I've uninstalled most everything that isn't essential. On the plus side, since I upgraded my RAM my other haps have been running much more smoothly.
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  #10  
Old May 22nd, 2006, 06:14 AM
CyberDonkey CyberDonkey is offline
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Sounds like a faulty Graphics card. I actually have an older ATI 9550 256mb graphics card, an even though it doesn't run super smooth, I can still get good gameplay out of it.
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  #11  
Old May 22nd, 2006, 02:26 PM
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oracle128 oracle128 is offline
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Try taking out the other 256MB stick, leaving just the 1GB, they may be having conflicts.
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  #12  
Old June 10th, 2006, 10:46 PM
vejoaronda vejoaronda is offline
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So, it's a faulty graphics card? If that's so, I don't understand why HL2 used to play so well. And if it's a graphics card problem, then why is everything else so slow? Yesterday I got city of villains and it took 20 minutes just to load. I tried taking out the 256mb ram and that didn't do anything. I am still having problems with stuttering mp3s etc - just now, when I was running spybot, virusscan, and firefox, windows task manager said I was using 100% of my system resources...does that make any sense? Are there maybe other programs running in the background which are taking up huge amounts of ram? I tried playing city of villains, the character creation stuff went fairly smoothly but when I start playing it's like a frame every three seconds. Any more ideas? Thanks again.
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  #13  
Old June 11th, 2006, 01:41 PM
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Metr01973 Metr01973 is offline
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You could go to the task manager (ctrl/alt/delete) and start shutting down nonessential programs one by one and see if that makes a difference. If you do that be careful!! if your unsure what they do Google the name and find a description, I know that you shouldn't shut down any SYSTEM processes.
Have a look at this - http://www.updatexp.com/windows-xp-task-manager.html
it tells you a little bit about the task manager and how to use it. But please be careful, I will not be held responsible if anything goes wrong,GOOGLE IF YOUR ARE UNSURE WHAT THE PROCESS DOES.

Last edited by Metr01973; June 11th, 2006 at 01:43 PM.
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