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Thread: Rebuilt computer - advice please

  1. #1
    Member
    Registered: May 2003

    Rebuilt computer - advice please

    My computer was fried in a thunderstorm last week and has been rebuilt: Pentuim (duoCore) 3.40, 1G Ram, GeForce 7900GS and the same Soundblaster card. I refused Vista for XP. Which is all very nice I guess. Or will be when I find the stuff that has been lost or misplaced.

    But - for the first time ever I can't have a W98 partition just for Thief. My trusted technician just couldn't work out how to do it (or why I would want it!)

    I just loathe the whole install process (install TG, TMA, patch, no CD, Darkloader, FMs, scripts, savegames etc etc.) It takes absolutely hours. With no guarantee that it will work. I just want TG, TMA and FMs, not T3.

    Please, can anyone tell me if it will install before I waste so much time trying? Can I use emulation mode in XP, and what fiddles will I need to do?

    If it is impossible I will just have to buy an older computer for Thief. After all these years I can't imagine not having Thief to play just because my computer is now too bloody superior to run it.

    Any helpful, simple advice from anyone who has tried will be so greatfully received.

  2. #2
    Member
    Registered: Jul 2003
    Location: Southquarter
    As far as I know, Thief games work fine on Win XP. While it may need a few tweaks to run properly for some people, just read the Thief Series FAQ and you shouldn't have problems.

  3. #3
    Clearinghouse
    Registered: Aug 2002
    Location: Siberia, Russia
    Agree. May need 30 minutes, not more...

  4. #4
    Member
    Registered: Jan 2004
    Location: Prince Edward Island, Canada
    Quote Originally Posted by Lyril View Post
    My trusted technician just couldn't work out how to do it (or why I would want it!)
    No offense, find a new tech. It's as simple as setting up a separate partition, basic..basic...stuff for anyone working with computers. If you wish, run fdisk from a 98 boot disk and create two partitions...size them to what you want and install 98 first, then XP. There are other options, but that's fairly straight forward.

  5. #5
    Member
    Registered: May 2003

    Next problem.....

    Well I have installed TG on XP (after fighting lots of problems).
    It works.

    But - I can't open the 'install cfg' file to edit it for the no-cd fix. Previously it opened in Notepad, where I could edit it. Now Windows says it can't open the -cfg extension 'cos it can't recognise it.

    I remember ages ago there was a program that allowed you to handle most types of extensions, but I can't remember what it was. That was quite a few computer upgrades/reinstalls ago and I have lost it.

    Please, can anyone help?

    I haven't even started on TMA and the rest of it yet. More joy.

  6. #6
    Member
    Registered: Jun 2000
    Location: Finland, Earth
    Right-click on the CFG file and choose "Open with..." followed by "Select the program from a list". This will bring up a list of common applications, including Notepad, and will also allow you to designate the selected application as the default handler for files of that type.

  7. #7
    Member
    Registered: May 2003
    I think my brain has turned to sludge-coloured jelly.

    I should have tried that.

    I just gave up.

    Many, many thanks.

  8. #8
    Member
    Registered: May 2003

    T2 install problem

    Yet another one. Life was so much easier with W98.

    T2 (with the lgnt force command) won't install. It gets as far as the InstallShield screen then stops. The FAQ, which I've reread zillions of times, suggest that 'some XP installations can take up to an hour to start'. I'm up to 3 hours so far and nothing is happening.

    I don't know what to do now.

    Well it started, only after I reloaded the cd and just went to 'install' not thinking it would work.
    Very slow but steady until it got to mission 11 then refused to go on. The cd has seldom been used, in apparently perfect condition,but I cleaned it again. No luck. Does this mean I've got to try to find a new T2?

    If ONLY the best game ever made was easier to install.
    Last edited by Lyril; 18th Mar 2007 at 00:32. Reason: adding info

  9. #9
    Member
    Registered: Feb 2003
    Location: Finland
    If I remember correctly, you can do manual installation. You need to copy all necessary files to correct places. After that you need to create install.cfg in your favourite text editor. Other way is to boot in safe mode and start installation from there.

  10. #10
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2005
    Location: Pittsburgh, PA, USA
    going into safe mode is a good idea. When you reboot just start whacking on the F8 button, like a mad woodpecker.

    A new environment is always a nervous thing. I myself have always enjoyed the XP experience, much more than any other windows install. I am dreading Vista.

  11. #11
    Member
    Registered: Jun 2000
    Location: Finland, Earth
    Quote Originally Posted by Lyril View Post
    Well it started, only after I reloaded the cd and just went to 'install' not thinking it would work.
    Very slow but steady until it got to mission 11 then refused to go on. The cd has seldom been used, in apparently perfect condition,but I cleaned it again. No luck. Does this mean I've got to try to find a new T2?

    If ONLY the best game ever made was easier to install.
    What was the error message it produced when it stopped? Or did it just get to copying miss11.mis (or whatever) and then show no progress for ages?

    One solution is to copy the entire contents of the CDs to directories on your desktop and run the install from there (just in case, remove the actual CDs from your CD drive when you install). If you get a disc-read error while trying to copy the files off the CD, then the culprit is either your Thief 2 CD being damaged or (more likely) your CD drive being oversensitive.
    Last edited by Vigil; 18th Mar 2007 at 09:55.

  12. #12
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2006
    Quote Originally Posted by Lyril View Post
    My computer was fried in a thunderstorm last week and has been rebuilt: Pentuim (duoCore) 3.40, 1G Ram, GeForce 7900GS and the same Soundblaster card. I refused Vista for XP. Which is all very nice I guess. Or will be when I find the stuff that has been lost or misplaced.
    There are two things to take care of:

    The DarkEngine uses the Monitor VSync for timing. So you should enable VSync in the driver settings. The NVidia drivers allow for fine grained control on a per application basis. Without forcing VSync on the DarkEngine all animations are played with incredible speed. For a GF7900 this is probably an increase by the factor 10 or so - when I first started TDP on my GF7800 in the level "A keepers training" the keeper circling the entrance rotunda above made 3 laps a second . Eventually I make a video of that at some time. I still have to try out with my new GF8800.

    The other thing is, that you got a Dual Core CPU, which means you have a SMP machine. All Thief games have problems with that and will sooner or later crash. Either you set the CPU affinity to a single CPU for explorer.exe with the Task Manager, before starting a Thief game with the Start-Menu or Explorer. Or you use the ImgCFG Tool, found here
    http://www.robpol86.com/Pages/imagecfg.php
    to set the CPU affinity for the Thief executables once and for all.

  13. #13
    Member
    Registered: Sep 2006
    Quote Originally Posted by New Horizon View Post
    No offense, find a new tech. It's as simple as setting up a separate partition, basic..basic...stuff for anyone working with computers. If you wish, run fdisk from a 98 boot disk and create two partitions...size them to what you want and install 98 first, then XP. There are other options, but that's fairly straight forward.

    hmm i agree with that o.o get a new tech, install 2 OS in a comp is not soooo hard thats something my 13 years old cousin can do XD, anyway, i have Thief Gold, and Thief the Metal Age on XP and it works fine

  14. #14
    Member
    Registered: May 2003
    I didn't realize it was going to get more complicated!

    Thanks for all the advice. The computer said it couldn't read Miss11. So I've assumed that there is a problem with the original T2 game disc and binned it and paid for the newer version - a dvd with TDP and T2, described as being xp friendly. (I wonder why T2 is bundled with DP rather than Gold?). That should come in a week or so.

    Hexarith, I had read earlier about the duo-core problem, thanks for the solution. How do I alter the settings for the NVidia driver?

    This just gets better all the time. Many thanks for all the help, - without it I would be totally lost.

  15. #15
    Member
    Registered: Feb 2003
    Location: Finland
    Uhh, I hope that you just put it aside rather than in trash bin because I was just about to tell you how to copy those files from both cd's and make them to work.

    Anyway, for future reference for rest of you, put your Installation cd in cd drive and copy all files from THIEF2 directory to your hard drive. Take first one out and put Game cd in it and repeat that what you did first cd. Now you need to create file called install.cfg and put these lines in it:
    Code:
    cd_path y:\
    install_path .
    language english
    resname_base .\res+y:\thief2
    load_path .+y:\thief2
    script_module_path .+y:\thief2
    movie_path .\movies+y:\thief2\movies
    Replace all references to Y with your cd rom drive letter. Now save it to that directory where you did copy all those files in previous task.

    Dot (.) means that directory where THIEF2.EXE-file lies.

    If you want to install patch then you must create file named thief2.reg and put these lines in it:
    Code:
    Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
    
    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\App Paths\thief2.exe]
    "Path"="e:\\games\\Thief 2"
    @="E:\\games\\Thief 2\\THIEF2.EXE"
    Remember to change "e:\\games\\Thief 2" to point to that directory where you did copy all those files. There must have double backslashes on path name if you want patch-program to find your executable.

    Save it and then doubleclick on it. You should see now Yes/No - dialog. Choose Yes. Then choose Ok. Now you can run patcher.

    After that game should start and run fine.

  16. #16
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2006
    Quote Originally Posted by Lyril View Post
    Hexarith, I had read earlier about the duo-core problem, thanks for the solution. How do I alter the settings for the NVidia driver?
    This depends on the version you have installed. The general pattern is, to open the advanced graphics settings control panel. This should contain a "3D settings" section. The setting you're looking for is named "Vertical synchronisation", "Swap synchronisation" or "VSync". You should force this to be always "On" for DarkEngine executables.

    Actually VSync should be enabled anyway, as disabling causes tearing artifacts in horizontally moving images to appear. The only reason to switch of VSync is, if you want to benchmark your system or got an application that reaches less than 60FPS in 3D rendering, in the latter case switching of VSync can improve performance,.

  17. #17
    Member
    Registered: May 2003
    No more. I surrender.

    After struggling for what seemed eons I decided to have a therapeutic session of Thief Gold, which had installed successfully and accepted the nocd fix. Lovely intro then black screen.

    There are suggestions about this problem on the Eidos forum, but I can't be bothered anymore. I don't know enough about how not to screw up my nice new setup, which is just so much faster than the old pre-thunderstorm-Thief-enabled one was.

    So....as it's my birthday, I am buying myself an old computer just for Thief. Plenty on eBay with reasonable specs for reasonable prices. Maybe a better sound card will be needed, but - at least I will have Thief!

    After 10 years of playing I can't imagine not having it.

    Thanks for all the suggestions, but I have had enough of this.

  18. #18
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2006
    Quote Originally Posted by Lyril View Post
    After struggling for what seemed eons I decided to have a therapeutic session of Thief Gold, which had installed successfully and accepted the nocd fix. Lovely intro then black screen.
    About the video problem. The DarkEngine uses DirectShow to play the videos, which are originally encoded with the Indeo5 Codec. Unfortunately this codec has some issues with current Windows Versions. However DirectShot will play any other codec just fine. The workaround I did was to recode the videos into another codec, that is supported out of the box by Windows. For example MPEG4 aka DivX aka XviD. For some reasons I had to flip the videos vertically in the recoding process, but afterwards they made no more trouble.

    BTW videos: The resolution of the videos is quite low and on a modern system you can easily play TDP, TG and TMA with the highest resolution the system supports. Has anyone considered a project in which the videos are remade at a higher resolution. All sound could be directly taken from the originals, but I always whished to have the videos in a better quality.

    The most difficult would be probably animating Victoria "sprouting".

  19. #19
    Member
    Registered: Dec 2004
    Location: Topeka, KS
    Quote Originally Posted by Lyril View Post
    Life was so much easier with W98.
    Hmmm, I dunno 'bout that...

  20. #20
    Voice Actor
    Registered: Nov 2004
    Location: South Korea
    Quote Originally Posted by hexarith View Post
    There are two things to take care of:
    No joy for me. I just got a nVidia 7600 GT so I could use two monitors on my desktop (3 GHz P4, 2.5 GB RAM), and of course T2 gave me a Crash To Desktop with error message. The info in the Technical thread did not help, the screen depth change resulted in freezing on the "Loading..." screen with no error message, and the older nVidia 8x.xxx drivers refused to install even after removing the 9x.xxx drivers. I also tried the VSynch setting but that didn't help either. If anyone knows any other tricks, I'd like to hear them. I still have a laptop that plays T2, so it's not all bad.

    Don

  21. #21
    Member
    Registered: Jul 2001
    Location: Texas

    I'll be moving this to the new tech help forum for these kinds of questions.

  22. #22
    Member
    Registered: Jul 2004
    Location: Reykjavík, Iceland
    Quote Originally Posted by dlw6 View Post
    No joy for me. I just got a nVidia 7600 GT so I could use two monitors on my desktop (3 GHz P4, 2.5 GB RAM), and of course T2 gave me a Crash To Desktop with error message. The info in the Technical thread did not help, the screen depth change resulted in freezing on the "Loading..." screen with no error message, and the older nVidia 8x.xxx drivers refused to install even after removing the 9x.xxx drivers. I also tried the VSynch setting but that didn't help either. If anyone knows any other tricks, I'd like to hear them. I still have a laptop that plays T2, so it's not all bad.

    Don
    Did you try disable the dual-monitor setup?

  23. #23
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2001
    I am buying myself an old computer just for Thief.
    Wow, that seems like a shame as a dual-boot machine isn't that hard to set up.

    I got the Thief Gold Demo to install and run fine on XP using that switch on the run line. It did take a while for it to kick off though. Afterwards, I bought the download version of Thief Gold and it must have been tweaked to run on XP because I didn't have to do anything for it to run just fine.

    I recently ordered a Thief 1/2 jewel box combo and both games say "optimized for WinXP" or something to that effect.

    OT: Believe it or not there's a piece of software out there (I forget what it's called) you can get from some guy on the net which allows you to run the original Tomb Raider on WindowsXP. I bought it and it worked. I even downloaded enhanced textures for the game! I'd think that getting Thief 1/Gold to run on XP would be a cakewalk in comparison.

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