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War Games coder
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1,927 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Looking around on google, I have been noticing that ATI drivers seem to have serious SMP stability issues (at least under linux). I have yet to see many discussions talking about this under windows, but I'm wondering if that's what has been causing the problems I've been seeing for the past couple of years.

I'd like to run a test by temporarily making the machine disable SMP support and seeing if I still see these issues (run any game - graphic glitches everywhere where there's a framebuffer effect (in-game movie in a sub-window) or shader effect other than water)... yet I don't think I have a BIOS option to disable it.

I can physically remove 1 CPU and the mainboard manufacturer claims that the board can run off of 1 CPU, but I'd rather not mess around with that.

Another possibility may be if I can disable SMP support in Windows (I run XP Pro). I'm not sure how to do that.

Under linux, I can simply disable SMP support in the kernel and run with that, but I need a windows solution.

This matters a lot to me not only to fix my current issues with my Radeon, but to decide which vendor to go with next when I jump to an Athlon64 X2 CPU (which would also suffer all SMP issues).

Thus far, as nvidia is the only vendor offering stable linux drivers (which are verified SMP safe under linux), I'm already heavily leaning towards getting an nvidia-based card.
 

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PCSX2 Coder
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11,343 Posts
your best bet to let them know, sign up for the forums on www.driverheaven.net Terry from ATi who is one of the Catalyst software team goes on there quite a lot, so if you post a message on there, see if any others are having the problem, maybe post it in the driver feedback thread what is usually a sticky in the radeon forum :)
 

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War Games coder
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1,927 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Honestly, I'd be hesitant to post it in something labelled "driver feedback" if I am not 100% certain that the problem is not a defective card (which I'm not). That's why I'm trying to test for specific problems, now. I did, however, post a new thread over there detailing my problems along with specific hardware specs and settings that I can recall off the top of my head 100% accurately.

I also had to smack myself in the forehead for not seeing another possible way to test for this: I still have a Windows 98 partition on my hard drive with a functioning copy of Win '98 installed... I just have a completely different set of hardware now (which will certainly make things interesting). As you probably know, Win '98 is not in the least capable of even attempting SMP, and stays reliably on 1 CPU (until it crashes, at least... at that point, it's on 0 CPUs :)). I think what I'll do is attempt to re-install all my drivers under '98, install a couple of problematic games, and see if I'm still seeing the same issues. If so, it's not an SMP issue. If not, it's either a Win XP issue or an SMP issue. At any rate, though... even if it works flawlessly under '98, that's not a valid solution, as there are no '98 drivers for my sound card... and no audio = no fun.
 

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Registered
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Um, yes it does n_w.
 

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War Games coder
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1,927 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Actually, no it doesn't. It supports hyperthreading, but not dual CPUs. Anyways, I don't want to install another operating system to narrow this down - it's either WinXP Pro or Win98.
 

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AKA snkmad
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4,063 Posts
I knew where to set the SMP features under win2k, gonna take a look, as im almost sure you can set XP to use only 1 processor...

EDIT: Just found it, i hope you can find it using my screens...

Actually, im not 100% sure if it will work, i used this settings like 5 years ago, but as it cant harm, just try it.

I used those settings to restrict the number of processors and memory Win2k should have acess... for testing purposes.
But what machine did i had? A Compaq Proliant 8000, 8 processors, 1gb ram... good ´ol times...
 

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War Games coder
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1,927 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Hmm... I'll look around for something like that. Wish I could read it, but I'll settle for just rummaging around in the control panel until I find a form with the same basic flow (that shouldn't change). Thanks.
 

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War Games coder
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Wow... I don't think I would have thought to find it in the environment variables section. Thanks. you probably saved me a lot of time :)
 

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War Games coder
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Result of XP test: No effect. All defects still present. This tells me it's not SMP related. Thanks...
 
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