Project Blackout

Tips for a Faster PC & Better Gaming Performance (PB Guide)

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This post has 27 Replies | 3 Followers



Posted: 11-14-2011 20:21

*I have decided to post this in Off-Topic Discussion instead of Tips & Tricks as some of it is not directly related to Project Blackout.*

*EDIT* This thread is now posted in Tips & Tricks. ENJOY!

**Warning** Windows 8 users may not find some or any of this information helpful. Windows 8 is not very well designed to be a gaming OS (Operating System). I would suggest reverting back to Windows XP/Vista/7 to be able to play Project Blackout without the problems that come with Windows 8. More about Windows 8 and issues with Project Blackout can be found on these very Forums. Or, you could Google search Windows 8 and gaming issues.

*****Before you continue reading please make sure your computer meets Project Blackout's System Requirements*****

The system requirements for this game can be found at the bottom of the Client Download page. Please make sure your computer's hardware meets the minimum system requirements at the very least. Right click My Computer > Properties to compare specifications. Direct X, all you need to know.

You may choose to skip Any and/or All steps that you see fit. This guide is here to set you in the right direction and give you better ideas on how to maintain your computer's best possible performance for playing Project Blackout.

New programs are always coming out, and there are usually newer versions and updates to most programs, so if you don't like any of the programs I suggest in this guide, or you already use a similar program and are used to what you have, then by all means, stick to what you are used to working with. However I strongly urge you to at least try the many programs linked in this guide.

The following are a list of programs that may make your PC run faster and give you better game play performance and help run Project Blackout's website and other websites more efficiently. It may be best to attempt all steps using FireFox or Google Chrome rather than Internet Explorer, whichever you prefer though.

1. Download & Install

Flash Player

Java

CCleaner

FileHippo Update Checker

GameBooster

2. Background & Running Programs

The first program we have is Flash Player.
"
The Adobe Flash Player is software for viewing multimedia, Rich Internet Applications and streaming video and audio, on a computer web browser or on supported mobile devices." Source: Wikipedia

Simply download, double click the installer (or Run as Administrator) and install it.

The next program is Java. You can read about it here if you wish.

Before installing Java, make sure you don't have any previous versions of Java installed. Go to Control Panel, Add/Remove Programs (or Uninstall a Program) and remove any versions of Java you see here. Next, simply download, double click the installer (or Run as Administrator) and install it. Remember Java may take awhile to install so be patient.

Now moving on to the more nifty programs!

CCleaner which you can read about here, is an amazing tool that I recommend everyone to use. It stands for Crap Cleaner which it does just that. Download, double click the installer (or Run as Administrator) and when CCleaner is done installing you will be given many options at the left side of your screen. Check off all the boxes in the Windows and Applications tab (except for Wipe Free Space which is basically like defragging your computer and may take several hours to complete) and click Run Cleaner. It may take some time to complete so be patient. Once it is done, go to Registry tab and click Scan for Issues, once it's done scanning (which doesn't take long at all) click Fix All Selected Issues and you should now notice an increase in speed on your computer immediately.

There are other options under Tools such as; Uninstall (programs) Startup (msconfig) System Restore (deletes restore points which can take up a massive amount of space on your computer) etc. USE THESE AT YOUR OWN RISK.

The next program is one of my favorites! FileHippo Update Checker which you can read about here, is a neat little program that checks for updates to out-dated software. It can even update Graphics Card Drivers instead of manually going to AMD Drivers or nVidia Drivers. (You can also go to Project Blackout's website for a list of minimum and maximum requirements to play this game along with downloads for Direct X and Graphic Card Drivers here). Simply download, double click the installer (or Run as Administrator) and let the happy little Hippo start searching for you (it finishes searching very quickly). Once it is done it will open your web browser with all of your out-dated software. I recommend clicking "Show beta versions" in the top right corner so there's a big red X beside it (so it DOESN'T show any beta versions). Alternatively, if you plan on using this program regularly, you can open up FileHippo Update Checker, click Settings, click Results and finally check off the box beside "Hide beta versions". It automatically shows beta versions to your programs (unless you tell it not to) and I find beta versions to be very bugged in most software so download beta versions at your own risk.

Download the programs that you wish to update and install them. Easy as 1,2,3.

Alternatively to FileHippo Update Checker, you can download Secunia Personal Software Inspector or run an online scan with Secunia Online Software Inspector. Another great, easy to use software.

*NOTE* It is also best to check for updates to out-dated software regularly. I check a minimum of once a week as many programs and software come out with updates frequently.

Lastly if you wish to rely on "GameBooster" to enhance your game play, it will shut down any unnecessary processes running in the background. I'm pretty sure you can't even run hacks while using GameBooster so that's an excellent way to say, "I don't hack, I use GameBooster!" but I'm really not sure. Anyway it's a good tool that you can read about here. Download and double click the installer (or Run as Administrator) and when you go to run Project Blackout all you need to do is right click the Project Blackout launcher and click "Run with GameBooster".

3. Other Goodies

Defraggler - from the makers of CCleaner gives us Defraggler which you can read about here, is in my opinion the best defragging tool (much better than the one that comes with Windows) but is completely optional to your taste. Simply download, double click the installer (or Run as Administrator) and once it finishes installing, click Defrag. It may (and probably will) take several hours to complete scanning but is much worth it once it's done. Run this program before you go to sleep or when you're not going to be using the computer for some time. You can choose from this List of Defragmenter Software if you would like to choose your own defragmenter.

*URGENT NOTE* Please do NOT use any disk defragmenting software if you are using a SSD (Solid State Drive). Using disk defragmenting software will reduce the life span of a Solid State Drive drastically. To check whether or not you have a SSD or a HDD, click Start > Run > msinfo32 > Components > Storage > Disks. Alternatively, you could open up your case and look inside for your hard drive manually.

Windows Update - Windows Updates may be time consuming but getting the latest updates will help keep your computer up to date. Pretty self explanatory since most people usually do this.

Microsoft .NET Framework 4.5 and Microsoft Visual C++ 2008/2010/2012 are also required for playing Project Blackout. Make sure you download the newest versions which may have already been available to you through Windows Update.

4. Antivirus Software

AntiVirus Software - AntiVirus Software keeps our computers safe from Viruses, Malware, Spyware, Trojans, etc. It may cause your PC to go really slowly especially during game play. It might be beneficial to disable all AntiVirus Software while playing Project Blackout. Possibly even exiting the AntiVirus completely. Same goes for Windows Firewall or any other Firewalls you may have running. While disabled/shut down they shouldn't slow down your game. Just remember to turn them back on/start them back up after you're finished playing.

If you're having any difficulties with logging in to Project Blackout or any other issues with Project Blackout it might be best to disable your AntiVirus Software and trying to log in or update again. You might even have to uninstall your AntiVirus Software and reinstall again after successfully overcoming the issue you might be facing. AntiVirus Software interferes with many programs and online browsing, as it should, but can cause problems where you don't want them to, so just remember to disable/shut down or uninstall/reinstall your AntiVirus Software if you are experiencing any issues.

A very nice website and guide for AntiVirus Software and how to use them appropriately to clean your computer can be found at the Major Geek's Read & Run Me Guide. Please be sure to read through all the steps carefully.

5. Manual Maintenance

Manual maintenance is fairly simple and the common user much likely already does this. Go through your programs and delete any unwanted programs. Go through all of your folders and delete any unwanted pictures, videos, media, music, or anything that you don't want, need or desire anymore. There are other places to store these files such as iPods, iPads, CDs, DVDs, Flash Drives, an external hard drive, or even extra internal hard drives for storing things to free up PC space. The less space that is used on your PC's hard drive the better it will run. I recommend trying to stay over 50% Free Space (example, 300GB/500GB Free Space) as it is easier to recover your hard drive should anything happen to fail with your PC. After your manual maintenance cleaning you should run CCleaner and Defraggler (HDDs only) for the extra boost. Remember a clean PC is a happy PC! :)

Often programs can leave behind obsolete registry keys. If you are insistent on removing software completely you can open regedit to fully delete these keys. Click Start > Run > Regedit.exe. Once it is open click Ctrl + F and type the name of the software you wish to search for. For example, if you wanted to remove iTunes, you would type iTunes in the search box, click delete or right click > delete on the key that first appears that you wish to remove. Press F3 to continue searching for the next available key. Continue going through and deleting all necessary keys until Regedit has finished searching. Sometimes software can go under other names, again I'll use iTunes as the example. You will have to search for iTunes, Quicktime, iPod, Apple, etc. Searching for Apple will give other registry keys such as Applets, which you don't want to delete. So you have to be very careful. Take caution with using Regedit and be aware of the risks. Searching for obsolete programs can take hours if you're really keen on removing unwanted keys, however it isn't necessary. Registry keys are the brains of your computer. Deleting one wrong key and you can do some serious damage to your computer. Use Regedit at your own risk!!

Never use a Registry Cleaning Tool to clean your registry. A lot of free tools offered online are most likely Malware and can do serious damage to your computer. The only real way to rid your registry of obsolete keys is to reformat back to factory default. You can read these guides on how to reformat your computer if you feel it is necessary. This should be a last resort method on a slow computer. Remember to back up any important files or documents you want to keep onto that external hard drive we were talking about.

How to reformat your computer for Windows XP

How to reformat your computer for Windows Vista

How to reformat your computer for Windows 7

6. In-Game Performance Boosting

Now we finally have reached the part where we can boost our in-game performance!

If you don't already know, the Options section (the gear symbol in the top right) has many options that may make ALL the difference to a person with a slower PC.

The first tab is labelled Game Play where you can choose to Display Blood and Crosshair Hit Effect. These options won't make you lag so I'd say keep them checked (or check them if they are unchecked). Choose your crosshair and weapon hand.

Second tab is Video where you can set your Resolution, Screen Refresh Rate, and Video Color. Two new options appeared recently in the new update and they are Disable Anti-Aliasing and Video Resolution. (Anti-Aliasing was around during beta but I believe it got removed due to bug issues.) If you don't know what Anti-Aliasing is you should just leave it set to "(None Value)" which is the best option for it anyway since it is disabling Anti-Aliasing. It basically allows for smoother recording (when using the in-game Scroll Lock [default] recording option.) Video Resolution is also intertwined for use with the in-game Scroll Lock [default] recording option. You can set it to Low Resolution, Default Resolution and High Resolution. If your computer can handle it I would set it to High Resolution. Otherwise, just leave it at Default Resolution and it will choose what is best recommended for your computer. Also note that if you choose High Resolution, the recorded files will be larger in size compared to lower resolutions. "You can turn on/off Movie Recording Function with "Scroll Lock" key, and sufficient storage in HDD is required when recording." is a direct quote you get when hovering the mouse over the Video Resolution option. You can also choose whether or not you want to play in Windowed Mode (which allows you to have your desktop visible while you play). Video Sync and Soft Perspective will show the graphics smoother and not so "blocky" I believe, but it is optional so it can also remain unchecked if you wish. I would turn them on if you record your games with the in-game Scroll Lock [default] recording option. Lastly, you can set your screen brightness.

Third tab is Interface which you can leave all boxes checked if you wish as they won't effect your performance. There are some neat options though, so you should definitely play around with them and see what you like.

Fourth tab is Sound, I personally turn off the BGM and turn SFX up high. You can play with these settings until you feel comfortable with your volume levels.

Fifth tab is Control, where you can set all of your in-game controls and adjust Mouse Sensitivity and Field of View. You can also choose to invert the mouse if you wish.

Sixth tab is Performance. Now this is the tab we really need to focus on. While many of these options can have a severe difference and/or advantage in many ways, it might be best to not have any of these boxes checked at all. The less boxes you have checked, the faster your game will run. So it's a tit-for-tat kind of trade. Tracer Bullets will allow you to see bullets flying in mid air. Tracer Bullet Effect will allow you to see bullet holes wherever the bullets may hit. For example, in the floor, in the walls, etc. Light effect, Normal Map and Terrain Effect will have different purposes varied by map. For example in Luxville the bookcases will have letters on them. In Bomb Mode, Terrain Effect will give the bomb an emanating glow, which could be useful, but if you're playing by sound, it's not required. Not necessary if you don't want it, neat features but could cause you to lag. Not too sure on any other purpose(s) for these options if anyone wants to clarify? Physics Effect is a major one. It changes the game completely with or without it. When you kill someone without it they sort of just fall into place without any real graphical movements. With the Physics Effect on however, they will fall into different positions, fly all over the place, crazy strung out legs and arms everywhere, helmets flopping around, etc. Very funny deaths if you can use it. I recommend leaving it unchecked if your PC can't handle it. Texture Quality should be on High even for a slower PC as it will give the game and terrain a smoother look. However if you feel it will help, turn Texture Quality to Low Quality just for reassurance. Shadow Effect should remain NONE if you can't handle it. Being able to see people walking above you or close by is very advantageous but it can cause you to lag majorly. Light Reflection and Effect Quality should be LOW also. Not 100% sure what Light Reflection does, I think it makes everything more vibrant. Effect Quality appears to give definition to various objects. For example, a mask with the Effect Quality on LOW might appear plain, round and white, however with the Effect Quality on HIGH, the mask will have lines and indents, giving the mask more character. Pretty cool if you want to try it out, it's not needed though. If your computer is slow and has trouble running Project Blackout, you should play with most options set to LOW/NONE/Unchecked to reassure little to no lag in game. Tracer Bullets is the only option I recommend, even for slower computers, because seeing bullets flying by you gives you a better idea on where someone is shooting at you from. You can play around with these options though and use whatever you think is best.

The last 2 tabs are Community and Macro. Community will allow you to alternate between Chatting, Whispers and Invite Messages. Whether you want to leave them on, friends and clan only or turn them off is completely up to you. Macro, the last tab, is a neat option that allows you to set a certain sentence, or commonly used phrase that you don't have to type out all the time. To use your macros press Alt + 1-6 in game. You can set it to be heard by All players or just your own Team, respectively. These tabs also don't effect game play performance so do as you wish with them.

I'd also like to note that it may help to go into your Graphics Card Control Panel and find a screen such as "Adjust Image Settings." Find the sliding bar that has the options "Performance - Balanced - Quality" and set it to Performance. It will take away from the graphics slightly, but it might allow for less lag in game.

Another little tip is every time after you run the Project Blackout launcher, before you enter a game, open your Task Manager (Ctrl + Shift + ESC) and click "Show processes from all users" at the bottom left. Search for PBlackout.exe, right click, Set Priority > Realtime. This way your PC will focus most of its attention towards Project Blackout! Additionally, you can try setting the priority to High if you don't want to use Realtime. Only do this if you have an excellent computer such as a Quad Core or better. This is NOT advised for the average user!

Side Note: If you don't wish to change your Priorities every time you load a game, you can try Process Lasso which has an option for "Automatically enter gaming mode." Which will set your Priorities based off your computer's recommended settings. After installing Process Lasso, load Project Blackout, and you will see PBlackout.exe in the processes list. You can right click PBlackout.exe to "Classify this process as a Game" and much, much more! I recommend clicking Main, top left, and make sure ProBalance enabled and Gaming Mode - Now Automatically ON is checked. GameBooster keeps as little processes running during gaming as possible and Process Lasso keeps the processes that are running down to a minimum of CPU/RAM usage. They can go hand in hand, however Process Lasso is more-so necessary if you're playing Project Blackout on a very old computer. Simply give it a try and see if it helps, if it doesn't then don't use it.

7. Internet Service Provider

Your ISP (or Internet Service Provider) will also have an effect in game. My ISP allows me to have up to 50 Mbps download speed and up to 3 Mbps upload speed. Since there are now Dedicated Servers I am removing all old text about Operators connecting to the host and replacing it with this sentence. Remember that no one connects to the host anymore now that there are DEDICATED SERVERS! A good way to test your speeds is SpeedTest.net. Wait for the page to load and once it's finished click "Begin Test". Alternatively, you can choose any location that has a server on the grid to test your speeds to that specific location. Otherwise it chooses a recommended server closest to you. PingTest.net is another good testing site, testing whether or not you have packet loss data and testing your ping and jitter. In voice over IP (VoIP), jitter is the variation in the time between packets arriving, caused by network congestion, timing drift, or route changes. PingTest works very much like SpeedTest does. Wait for the page to load and once it's finished click "Begin Test". Alternatively, you can select any location that has a server on the grid to test your ping to that specific location. Project Blackout's login server has been moved from Washington, DC to Los Angeles, California. You should run your SpeedTest/PingTest to Los Angeles, California's server to find out how well you really connect to the game.

Note: Don't worry if PingTest tells you "Packet Loss Test Failed!" because sometimes it requires an older version of Java to run this test. If you wish to download this older version of Java to test it, click the warning link about "PingTest requires Java to test packet loss data, click here for assistance" at the bottom of your screen. You will most definitely receive a satisfactory result, however not necessary at all.

I will now show you a sample of my internet speeds and how I connect to Project Blackout's servers. I will test the server closest to me first, then to Los Angeles, California. My results are as follows;

SpeedTest - Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada (Server closest to me) - 

SpeedTest - Los Angeles, California, USA (Project Blackout's login server) - 

PingTest - Recommended Server after clicking Begin Test -

PingTest - Los Angeles, California, USA (Project Blackout's login server) -

All the results above were done after one test. Remember that the higher the numbers on SpeedTest the better your connection is and the lower the numbers on PingTest the better your connection is. Primarily you want fast Download and Upload speeds with a collaboration of low pings. Check your speeds and compare results. If your tests are showing results that aren't quite up to par with the results I have shared with you above, then you might lag in the game. Don't worry if it's not the same or better as mine, which if it is then great for you, just see how it works for you. You can run multiple tests with these websites to get an average result of what your current speeds are. If you feel that your speeds are too slow and you lag in-game, call your ISP and ask for a faster service bundle at a discounted rate over "x" months. I bet they like it when the customer haggles out a better deal haha! :) Either way, get an upgrade to your internet speeds, it's well worth it! ;)

Always remember to browse the internet safely. Going to certain sites that are riddled with advertisements and malware can really take a toll on your computer over time. You might want to try using Web of Trust FireFox Add-On for safer browsing experiences. Or just using simple common sense is really the key to keeping your computer safe. If you believe your browsing is the issue, CCleaner will help speed up your computer greatly, as previously stated, by clearing all of your browser's cache, cookies, etc. Otherwise, if you're having troubles browsing the internet and sites are loading slowly, it is most likely your internet service going slowly.

Even the fastest internet speeds can be slow sometimes, if you feel your internet isn't going as fast as it should, try unplugging the power source on the back of your modem, leave it out for one minute and plug it back in. Check to make sure all of your cables are properly connected via the modem, the power source to the wall outlet or power bar, and the cable to the computer's port, respectively. If you use a router make sure that it is configured properly and all cords are correctly connected as well. It would be too difficult to write up on how to properly configure your router since there are so many different kinds of routers with a plethora of options, so I will not be covering any of that. Contact the manufacturer of your router for assistance. Your ISP could possibly help with your router too depending on the issue you might be having. If all the cables and cords are tight and secure and you are still experiencing any difficulties with your internet speeds beyond anything I have covered in this guide, you can consult your ISP to try and resolve the issue.

8. Manual Tower Cleaning (Experienced Users)

This section is for Experienced Users Only Do NOT perform this step if you don't know how.

Keeping your tower clean and dust free is a MUST for any PC gamer. For the less experienced users I suggest to make sure your tower is kept out in the open, not locked away in a desk cupboard. Overheated PC's/Graphics Cards can cause you to LAG immensely. Make sure your room temperature is very moderate, not too cold, not too hot. Clean off the ventilation holes on your tower with a napkin/tissue. When dust gets into these vents it causes minimal air flow which is very bad for any PC. For the more experienced users I would suggest opening up your tower case and dusting off your graphics card or even just blowing into your PC could help rid of dust. Make sure the fans you are running are also clean, dust free, and suitable for your graphics card. The more fans you have, and the more powerful they are, the less likely your PC will overheat. When you're putting your hardware back together try to make it appear as though you just bought it. If you're the type of person who custom built their own computer by buying parts online, then this should be easy for you. Double check that all cables and cords are placed in the proper ports, that they are firm, and as tangle-free as possible. If you have any warranties on your PC or just don't want to take the risk of opening your case, bring your PC into any PC expert who can clean your PC for you. If you're going to be upgrading any parts in your computer this is when you'll want to either clean it yourself or you might want to ask a PC expert about cleaning it for you. It will be costly (unless under warranty), so that's the downside. It's always good to learn what's inside your PC for anyone who spends a lengthy time on their computer. A clean PC is a happy PC! :)

I just want to note that I will NOT be held responsible for any actions taken upon your own risk of cleaning your tower case.

9. Additional Information

After researching a bit more on improving gaming performance, I have come across some additional information that I'd like to implement to this guide.

First of all, bundled with GameBooster comes Advanced System Care, Malware Fighter and Smart Defrag which are the equivalents of CCleaner, Anti-Malware Software and Defraggler. Secondly, you can pick and choose what software you want to use, but I don't recommend having more than one of any one type of software together. For example, you don't want to have CCleaner and Advanced System Care both installed as it is unnecessary. You don't want Defraggler and Smart Defrag both installed especially if you're just going to use Windows Disk Defragmenter, then you wouldn't want either of them. The point being, install programs wisely. Lastly, GameBooster also has other options that you can manually look into, such as Tools > Tweaks which can provide changes to anything on your system that might be slowing down your game play. Just check off the boxes and click Optimize. Tools > Defrag which can perform a mini-defrag on any game that you choose. Tools > Drivers which will look for any out-dated drivers, and may be a faster method than manually searching for drivers or even using FileHippo Update Checker. Once you are finished optimizing with GameBooster you should restart your computer for any changes to take effect.

Okay, enough about programs that we already know about, let's get into the more interesting information.

TCP Optimizer is a neat little tool that may boost your internet connection. There is no install just simply download, double click the installer (or Run as Administrator) and once the program is open just click Optimal at the bottom right, Apply Changes and restart your PC. That's it, you don't even need to keep this tool on your computer. You can delete it now if you wish, since the changes in the registry have already been made. If you're comfortable making some additional improvements manually you can go to the TCP analyzer page and it will tell you what you need to change or fine tune within your connection. If you'd like more information on TCP Optimizer you can read about it here, or simply Google it. You also may want to proceed with caution if you are using a wireless connection. This tool does make a backup of all settings before changing them just in case you wish to revert back. For more information you may visit their forum with any questions you may have, otherwise just leave the settings on Optimal as suggested as they are trusted by over 1 million users.

RamDisk is a program recommended for experienced users and users with a tremendous amount of RAM on their PC. (6 GB MINIMUM) This program causes your game to run purely off RAM as opposed to off your Hard Drive. As it is much faster, but ultimately may not enhance your game play performance. Download and use AT YOUR OWN RISK! Also note that Windows 7 already basically does this automatically.

PCDecrapifier is a nice little tool that can automatically detect bloatware that came with your PC that can be safely removed (whether you know it's there or not) and a second part that can remove programs manually. Unlike the Control Panel way to remove these programs, you can check off multiple programs to delete at the same time! Pretty neat. It also doesn't require any installation, just double click the .exe file (or Run as Administrator) and it will ask if you want to check for updates and if you want to create a system restore point. Just continue through and remove unwanted software at your leisure. Delete software at your own risk!

Some people have asked me if they should Overclock their PC to improve their gaming performance. I figured I should cover this somewhere on here. My basic recommendation is no, especially for slow computers and inexperienced users. Unless you know how to Overclock your PC, and are aware of the risks, then go for it. I will not be providing much information on this subject because in my opinion it isn't necessary and might not help as much as you think, but who knows? If your components can handle it, then test it out. Take it slowly, for example, 3.4GHz to 3.6GHz to 3.8GHz and so on, until you find a comfortable and stable speed. If you would like to read more about Overclocking and how to do it then I recommend going to this page or just using Google. More on Overclocking here and here.

I found a neat little registry tweak that you can try which was stated on another forum to "improve smoother game play and increase FPS (Frames Per Second)"

Open Notepad and copy and paste the text below EXACTLY as is

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Multimedia\SystemProfile]
"NetworkThrottlingIndex"=dword:ffffffff
"SystemResponsiveness"=dword:00000000

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Multimedia\SystemProfile\Tasks\Games]
"Scheduling Category"="High"
"SFIO Priority"="High"
"Background Only"="False"
"Priority"=dword:00000001
"Clock Rate"=dword:00002710
"GPU Priority"=dword:00000001
"Affinity"=dword:00000000

After copying and pasting click File, Save As and name it registrytweak.reg instead of .txt! After saving it as a .reg file locate where you saved it, double click on it and it will automatically edit your registry to the optimized settings as a script.

If you're using Windows Vista or Windows 7 make sure you're in "High Performance" mode. To check and/or change this go to Start > Control Panel > Power Options (alternatively you can just type Power Options into the search function) and click High Performance. It automatically saves so just exit out when you're done.

Also if you're on a really old computer or have an old or cheap graphics card it wouldn't hurt to try switching from 32-bit to 16-bit color depths. If you're using Windows XP right click your desktop, click Properties, click on the Settings tab, and in the color quality box choose "Medium (16-bit)" as opposed to "Highest (32-bit)". Click Apply then click OK. If you're using Windows Vista or Windows 7 open Screen Resolution by clicking the Start button, click Control Panel, and then under Appearance and Personalization, click Adjust Screen Resolution under Display. Click Advanced Settings and then click the Monitor tab. Under Colors select "High Color (16-bit)" as opposed to "True Color (32-bit)" click Apply and click OK. You're done, now try testing it out. If you feel it hasn't made a difference you may revert back to 32-bit color if you wish.

*NOTE* If you change your PC's color depth to 16-bit I recommend going into Project Blackout's Settings, choose Video tab and under Video Colors, change it to 16-bit as well.

I am not a big fan of System Restore. I covered reformatting earlier, and in any rare case that I needed to use the System Restore feature, I would most likely just reformat my computer instead. Whether or not you agree or disagree is obviously up to you. However, if you'd like to disable System Restore to save space and not have to worry about every program creating a System Restore point before proceeding with whatever it is you're trying to do, then follow these easy guides on toggling System Restore on and off.

Disabling System Restore for Windows XP

Disabling System Restore for Windows Vista/Windows 7

Turn System Restore Off At Your Own Risk!

I recently came across some optimization guides that are very useful for any Windows users. These guides provide great information for speeding up your Windows manually. Just follow the simple on screen instructions and you should notice immediate improvements after restarting your system.

Windows Optimization Guide for Windows XP

Windows Optimization Guide for Windows Vista

Windows Optimization Guide for Windows 7

You don't have to follow the guide for every step if you don't want to. They are just guidelines. Customize your Windows however you would like to. I have personally used those guides for all three versions of Windows and have had satisfactory results every time. Especially dealing with Services.msc manually. It's great as some services can cause huge lag issues for some older computers.

If you are interested in recording game play of yourself, just remember that video recording programs will cause you to lag. However, if you think your computer can handle it, or this guide has helped you enough that you don't lag as bad anymore ;) and you want to try a video recording program out, then head on over to this thread by BALLY. How To: Make And Edit Your Videos (programs). Note that Project Blackout has its own video recording option which is set to the Scroll Lock key by default. You may change the key function to whatever you want by clicking Options (the gear symbol at the top right) > Control > Video Capture. Your recordings can be found in My Documents > PBlackout > Movie. Screenshots (F8 [default] in game) are saved to My Documents > PBlackout > ScreenShot. Also note that the quality of the Scroll Lock [default] recordings can now be set to High Resolution in Options > Video > Video Resolution. If the quality of the recordings are still not adequate to your liking then I would suggest choosing a program from BALLY's thread.

This last part should be common sense to any avid gamer, but maybe not as much for new gamers.

Don't download anything, or watch YouTube videos, et cetera while playing Project Blackout then turn around and complain about the game being laggy. The lag in that scenario is your fault!

10. Ending Notes

Well I'd just like to say thank you for reading my "performance guide" I guess you could call it. I have never really made a guide before and I wrote this all up on the spot fairly quickly. I have added some major edits since the original post and I have ensured to create links to dealing with the newer information I have implemented. This guide is already long enough without me having to write up everything that I've linked you to :P. I hope this is in the right section, and I hope it won't go completely unnoticed! :P I also want to point out that many people will have already known some, if not, all of this knowledge and won't bother reading but I verily believe it might help someone somewhere somehow! I could have rambled on much longer about many unrelated things like how good the FireFox Add-On AdBlock is or how awesome WinRar really is, but I understand that this is probably sufficient and long enough to read as is, as previously stated. If there is anything I have forgotten to mention, anything you believe I am wrong about or any questions you'd like to ask me, please feel free to leave a reply with your questions, comments, suggestions and criticism.

Again, I know this guide is very long, but please try to read everything in this guide before replying.

I would also like to apologize to any Laptop, Linux & MAC users who don't find any of this information useful to them. I have always used a desktop Windows oriented PC. Therefore, all of my information is based solely from that. I would also like to apologize to any Windows 8 users who don't find any of this information useful to them. I'm hoping most of the information is still useful though, at least to someone! :)

Got any other cool, interesting and helpful software, tools or opinions? Please share them! Sharing is caring!

Thanks again. :) Happy Gaming Everyone! :)

Shout-outs to all my friends in game (you know who you are ;)), all my former, present and future clan members and especially to <3 Pinkman! <3 I love you baby. Shout-out to all the new players and new members on the forums here. I wouldn't have wrote this if it weren't for you guys! :D

*This post was edited/updated to better suit the new GUI (Graphical User Interface) on April 15, 2012*



Top 10 Contributor
Posts 711

Great Info! +1 Stacie ^_^

IGN: BLiTzR

Member Since: January 2011

 

 



Top 500 Contributor
Male
Posts 30

Honestly Stacie, I am so glad you took the time to type this all out.  Every time you"re at my house, fixing up my computer, I'm trying very hard to follow along and remember all the 'steps'. 

Over 9000+ internetz for you!!! <3

"I suggest you stop whining like a little Headshot! and do what I say!"



Top 10 Contributor
Posts 743

Fixing computers is a very easy process.



Top 10 Contributor
Posts 711

xFerocious:

Fixing computers is a very easy process.

Tell me about it. Piece of cake. :}

 

IGN: BLiTzR

Member Since: January 2011

 

 



Top 500 Contributor
Male
Posts 30

Well, thats very nice for you guys LOL.  Its not as easy for everyone, some of us aren't that savvy.  Your post is very helpful Stacie, much appreciated :)

"I suggest you stop whining like a little Headshot! and do what I say!"



Top 10 Contributor
Posts 743

Khaos323:

xFerocious:

Fixing computers is a very easy process.

Tell me about it. Piece of cake. :}

 

That depends on what needs to be fix.

 

Anyway, how come gamebooster lags me and boost for you guys?



Top 25 Contributor
Male
Posts 308

Personally I need to use Game Booster -.- A lot of players complain about there weapons lagging, and mine does. (Don't see why :\) But running GB makes it work 100% better.

 

Personally to update programs, I use secunia PSI which is run by a company that is HUGE on security issues, and well they notice a lot of security problems a lot quicker than the products company itself.  Link: http://secunia.com/vulnerability_scanning/personal/ 

 

Also theres one thing I don't recommend. Never ever ever run a program as Realtime unless the program does that itself since it most likely uses MMCSS, because imagine if PB "crashes" but doesn't and takes up 100% CPU? setting it at realtime would cause just a ticking timebomb for a overload causing nothing to respond because the CPU is having PB prioritize it for everything it has.  Just keep it at normal unless you have a quad core or more.



Thank you Khaos.

Pinkman <3 any time hun. You're welcome! :)

xFerocious, I have no idea why GameBooster lags your PC, it (usually) always does the exact opposite of that. It enhances my performance quite a bit.

Thanks for the feedback Hitakashi. I will edit the Realtime part. Also I remember Secunia, lol, thanks for the reminder. P.S. your link is 404'd is this what you wanted to post? http://secunia.com/vulnerability_scanning/online/

Only thing I don't like is that it doesn't give you a direct download to what needs updating. I mean it does bring you to the site and it's not hard to search for, just a longer process lol.



Top 25 Contributor
Male
Posts 308

Stupid HTML editing, I MEANT this  http://secunia.com/vulnerability_scanning/personal/

 

Yea that's the only thing I don't like, on SOME programs like Flash or Firefox, you could click Install Solution and it usually goes straight to the download, but some unknown program, you could always check the program for a "check for update" button :P



Top 500 Contributor
Male
Posts 30

Stacie69:

Pinkman <3 any time hun. You're welcome! :)

 

Just saw this, glad to see you say 'anytime', lol.  Because I see you've added much more for me to understand :P 

Stacie  = computer queen :} <<<-----it's the smiley version of a bow, lol

 

"I suggest you stop whining like a little Headshot! and do what I say!"



Top 10 Contributor
Posts 743

Stacie69:

Thank you Khaos.

Pinkman <3 any time hun. You're welcome! :)

xFerocious, I have no idea why GameBooster lags your PC, it (usually) always does the exact opposite of that. It enhances my performance quite a bit.

Thanks for the feedback Hitakashi. I will edit the Realtime part. Also I remember Secunia, lol, thanks for the reminder. P.S. your link is 404'd is this what you wanted to post? http://secunia.com/vulnerability_scanning/online/

Only thing I don't like is that it doesn't give you a direct download to what needs updating. I mean it does bring you to the site and it's not hard to search for, just a longer process lol.

Man Gamebooster lags my PC so much I had to reformat because removing it didn't seem to solve the problem. It really lags, even my browser or Office Word.



Not Ranked
Posts 9

Hey Stacie, good job you did there. +1! I knewed 70% of there tips and tricks, but some tips helped me. Such as PB tab of performance etc., I didn't even know what the tab Macro is for. Anyways, to help others, I'm gonna make a list of what I use to reduce lag.

I use:

Advanced System Care v5.0 PRO:

It's a pretty good tool. Excellent. In your guide you say it's not really necessary to have Advanced System Care and CCleaner together, but I still have them together. If you want to choose between, choose Advanced System Care. It has the tool of CCleaner and many other more! More than 20 useful tools. Such as Smart Ram, etc.

Game Booster:

Obviously. Before I start to play I defrag the game PB then start it.

 

Iobit Malware Figther:

Another program of Iobit, the company that made this two programs up, it's sort of Antivirus. Well I don't use it, and I don't think it would affect on the lag by reducing it, but it keeps the computer clean.

And last but not least, Smart Defrag 2:

Same company, Iobit, it defrags the registry. It can take to 20 seconds to 1 hour. Depends on how much he has to "clean".

 

So yeah, this are the software I use, and also, before I launch Gamebooster to play PB I make sure I shut off down applications such of Skype, desactive my antivirus and firewall and such of "junk" for PB.

Hope I helped, and by the way, @ Stacie: I think this guide would be good if it was on Tips and Tricks, it has to do something with PB (lag), so it's not off-topic. And, if you want you can implent those extra-info on your guide.

 

Good Job again!

 



Thank you GoDxRatio.

Software programs come and go, and IObit has definitely made some nice programs. I only deemed having two types of the same program unnecessary as you are likely to only use one of them. If you use both, however, then that's up to you. That's your preference. This guide is really a guideline of what to do to get an idea of how to maintain your computer's upkeep. You can use any program(s) you want to. Think of the programs I posted as examples, if you can find a better program or example, then by all means use it! :)

Also, if someone wants to move this guide to Tips & Tricks then I'll be glad to accept it. Otherwise, at the time of posting this guide, I wasn't exactly sure where to put it, so it ended up in the one place it couldn't be wrong. Off-Topic Discussion.



Top 500 Contributor
Male
Posts 17

o.o I dont have any anti-virus. o.O sob

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