Read me first before submitting a bug report!

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Read me first before submitting a bug report!

Postby NeoThermic » Wed Jan 17, 2007 2:20 am

Read me first before submitting a bug report!

Some information on how to really give a good bug report.

Ok, you've got Defcon to crash, not work on you, slow performance from it, or Defcon managed to kill your siblings (Yay?). Before you start posting about it here in the bug forums, please take a second to consider the following information..

The information in this post applies only to Windows operating systems. If you are having problems with Defcon on a Linux or Mac systems, then you're in the wrong forum ;)


Before we go anywhere, update Defcon!
First and foremost, get the 1.42 patch:
Defcon 1.42 Windows patch.

Demo users are able to patch as well, since the demo and the full game run from the same executable.
If you're running Defcon via Steam, then you are automatically up to date. You do not need to install the above patch.


Now, if the patch doesn't solve your problems, you'll need to check a few things:

Before we go anywhere again, Read this!
The Support section of the Defcon site contains common problems and possible solutions, and should be read before you get here. So, if you haven't done, have a read!


For all types of crashes, non-starting Defcon, and performance issues:

  1. Update your graphics card driver!

    This is very important, and a lot of people forget this step.

    If you need to check what card you have, and what drivers you need, Go to Start and click 'Run'.
    Type in: dxdiag

    When that loads, Go to the Display tab.

    On the left hand side of the Display tab, in the box labelled Device will be your graphics card name. On the right hand side, in the box labelled Driver will be your driver version. Follow the next step to see if you are in date or not.

    If your card is:
    • ATi:
      The current version of ATi's Catalyst drivers is 7.4.
      In dxdiag, this shows up as:
      Version: 6.14.0010.6683
      Date: 15/03/2007 02:57:44

      You can get the updated ATi driver here:
      http://ati.amd.com/support/drivers/xp/radeonx-xp.html
    • nVidia:
      The current version of nVidia's ForceWare drivers is 93.71.
      In dxdiag, this shows up as:
      Version: 6.14.0010.9371
      Date: 10/22/2006 12:22:00

      You can get the updated nVidia driver here:
      http://www.nvidia.com/object/winxp_2k_93.71.html
    • Intel, Matrox, SIS, S3, other
      These cards might not be able to play Defcon. You are more than welcome to try though.
      To get the latest driver for these cards, run Windows Update, and see if there are newer drivers for your card.
      You can also Google, and see if you can find a new driver for it.
      • Note: if you have Defcon running fine under the above mentioned card types, please PM Me the info about it :)
      If Defcon still doesn't run, please read the section entitled 'How to make a good report'
  2. Update your DirectX version!

    Defcon requires DirectX 9. Latest version is 9c. If you are unsure as to which version you have, Go to Start and click 'Run'.
    Type in: dxdiag

    On the System tab, the last item in the System information box will be 'DirectX Version'
    It should say DirectX 9.0c, if it doesn't say that, update your DirectX install. You can get it here:
    DirectX 9 install

  3. Update your sound card driver!

    Sometimes your driver for you sound card can be outdated. Since there's a huge range of drivers and software for them, the best advice I can give you is to find out what card you have by going to Start and click 'Run', and typing in: dxdiag.
    Select the Sound 1 tab. The name of your device will be listed on the left hand side, in the box labeled Device.

    Take the device name to Google, and see if you can find a new driver for it.

For performance issues

Defcon needs a sufficient system to play well. You will need a good graphics card, and a fast processor to get the most out of Defcon. However, there are quicker ways to gain a few FPS in Defcon:

ScreenWidth and ScreenHeight also play a role in how hard your computer has to work. Setting these to 800 and 600 respectively on older hardware can increase your frame rate.

Believe it or not, the sound subsystem is also a huge drain. Setting SoundHW3D to 0 and SoundDSP to 0 will help frame rates.


If that still doesn't solve your problem, you need to make a report. That brings us on to the section entitled:
How to make a good report!

The key to making a good report is including enough information for the people who can help to solve it. The most important thing you can give us is the information from your blackbox.txt file. Defcon might create one of these in the same directory as where Defcon is installed. (For Steam users, this'll be [Steam installation path]\SteamApps\common\defcon )

Here's an example of a blackbox.txt file:

Code: Select all

=========================
=   BLACK BOX REPORT    =
=========================

ERROR : 'Assertion failed : 'g_app->GetClientToServer()->m_clientId == clientId'

..\..\source\defcon.cpp
line number 297'

=========================
=      STACKTRACE       =
=========================

retAddress = 0040DE5F
retAddress = 00000001


In most cases, a blackbox file will allow us to track down the problem faster. However, this is not all you should give us.

You should also paste a copy of the debug.txt file. Keys will automatically be censored in your post if you accidently post them, but you're welcome to remove the keys manually if you want to.

You should also tell us what you were doing just before it crashed (Launching nukes from a sub, switching to AA mode, etc), if you can reproduce it (if you can, list what to do), and finally if you were either modding or using a mod.

After that we need to know your system specs. You can find all these by running dxdiag (see above for how). The System tab lists what information we need; here's a list of what is best to add:

  • Defcon type (Steam or standalone)
  • Operating System
  • Processor
  • Memory
  • DirectX version

On the Display tab lists other information that you should include:
  • Under Device:
    • Chip Type
    • Approx. Total Memory
  • Under Drivers:
    • Main Driver
    • Version
    • Date

On the Sound 1 tab lists the final bits of information you should include:
  • Under Device
    • Name
  • Under Drivers
    • Name
    • Version
    • Date


If you are not sure, include the whole dxdiag output (Click the Save All Information, and open the created file, and paste it in your post)

Once you've included this information, you may post a new topic.

Final notes:

Don't be discouraged by the lack of replies, or what the replies that you do get might say. Co-operation with those helping you will solve the problem faster than just shouting at someone to fix it, or whining at how broken Defcon appears to be (its not, honest!).

If you can think of any other tips or tricks that help Defcon run and are not covered in this guide or on the website, please PM Me, and I'll strive to include it, and credit you.

NeoThermic

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