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Games Moving Too Fast - Hardware or Software Problem?

Sorry to have to cross-post from the Games/General board, but this seems to be more major than a simple gaming problem.

Whenever playing any game (using either OpenGL or DirectX), there is a significant boost in any movement. The characters, surroundings, etc move at a rapid rate. The sounds are played in-sync with the graphics but at the same rate, so the dialogue may suddenly stop and move on to the next one, just to keep up with the graphics.

The annoying side effect of this is that many games, particularly those played online, have a limitation to block cheating. So I either keep getting stuck, or suddenly "jump forward" to stay synced.

Current problems:
- Half-Life/CounterStrike: Online games are difficult due to cheat prevention; on single-player games, I move fast and suddenly appear elsewhere

- Neverwinter Nights: Similar to above.

- Unreal Tournament: There are no skips, but the game runs extremely fast.

Computer specs:
Windows XP Professional
AMD Athlon K6-2 400Mhz
224MB of RAM
VisionTek GeForce4 MX420 64MB Video Card

As you can see, although the performance seems bad, it has a problem on lighter games such as Half-Life. I haven't overclocked my video card manually; any ideas on what can cause this extreme case of speed-up?

Currently it seems to only appear with games, which is odd. However, I'm not sure if this affects the entire system, so I cross-posted here. 600 points to anyone who gives a valid solution.
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CBNobi
Asked:
CBNobi
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1 Solution
 
WakeupSpecialist 1Commented:
it doesnt sound like a "speedup" issue....like you said, "So I either keep getting stuck, or suddenly "jump forward" to stay synced."

that leads me to believe that your processor is a bit slow.  I used to have the same issue on my Celeron 333 mhz cpu.  I used to play all those games....and if I turn the settings down on the graphics and sacrifice quality.  I would get better response.  So try turning down the quality and resolutions and colors down to a minimum and see if the situation still occurs.

On occasion even on my XP Athlon 1800, I get a hickupping affect when I play online games because the ping may be bad.  Which reminds me to ask, are you using cable? or DSL? or Dialup?  Dialup will do that to you.  Speed is soooo horrible on dialup.

Let me know.


     
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CBNobiAuthor Commented:
Things to note, showing that it probably isn't much of a processor issue:

- Unreal Tournament moves significantly faster, while maintaining its smoothness.

- The snap-back only occurs on multiplayer games, while the sudden speedups occur on both single-player and multi-player, which implies that the anticheating mechanism is in effect.

- I'm currently on a DSL connection.
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fracheCommented:
AMD Athlon K6-2 400Mhz -> it's not an Athlon processor ... just a K6-2 ... at 400Mhz with a Fsb at 100Mhz.
It's a very old processor now ! Pentium MMX generation ... or first PII ...
Follow Wakeup's comment ...

Moreover your OS is WinXP pro ... I'm not sure it's the right choice for a gamer !

Good graphic card.
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WakeupSpecialist 1Commented:
UT (unreal)  generally is a faster paced game compared to CS.  But that is my opinion.  I am not much of a CS fan.  Have you tried lowering the quality of the graphics?
Have you tested to see if your DSL connection is comming on strong?  a bad ping can cause alot of jerkyness and not being able to move where you want it etc.

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Asta CuCommented:
Unclear about your versions, but see recently released patches, some of which apply to your games; perhaps some help.

http://fileforum.betanews.com/browse.php3?setcategory=Gaming%60Patches
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Asta CuCommented:
Are you sure you're using the right openGL driver for your environment?  Also found this interesting about XP and refresh rate limitations.
http://www.xp-refresh.net/
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CBNobiAuthor Commented:
astaec: I'm fully patched and updated; also, the same symptoms occur through different games, so it may not be the problem.

frache: Err.. good to know.

Wakeup: I'm aware of the speed differences between UT and CS, but since I've played both without the problem in the past, I know that the current speed is abnormal.
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WakeupSpecialist 1Commented:
ok...how much hard drive space do you have total?  and how much of it is free?  Your virtual memory may be full...and the games may not be able to cache itself fully.  
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CBNobiAuthor Commented:
About 7 gigs, with half of it in my primary (C) drive. I have virtual memory set to 350 megs.
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WakeupSpecialist 1Commented:
So half of the 7gig drive is free?  meaning your C: drive is 7 gig with 3 gigs or so free?
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Asta CuCommented:
Interesting benchmark for your environment video card
http://www.upgradesource.com/Comparison-VideoCards.htm
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CBNobiAuthor Commented:
Sorry, missed the total space portion of the question.

Primary Partition: 25GB (4GB empty)
Secondary Partition: 15GB (3.5GB empty)
Total: 40GB (7.5GB empty)
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WakeupSpecialist 1Commented:
hmm.......scan for viruses?  Try a clean install of your OS.  Maybe some drivers got corrupted, or the game got corrupted. (in which case uninstall the games)  and reinstall them to see if that solves your problem.  If your programs/games were working fine before, and are not now.  Something must have changed since.  So I am not sure what else you can do.  Let us know what you have tried and what kind of success or unsuccess has happened.
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Asta CuCommented:
Have you cleared your Browser's cache (temporary internet files including offline content, history files) and run cleanup/scandisk/defrag?

What is your internet connection type and line speed?

Have you run all the diagnostics for DirectX?  Which version of DirectX are you using?

When you said you applied all patches/fixes, does this include the Games in question as well as the Operating System and Browser from WindowsUpdate?

Are all your video and sound drivers compatible with your Operating System and current?

Perhaps also your BIOS for the MB needs an update.

Have you tried changing the hardware acceleration to see if this helps?

Asta
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Asta CuCommented:
Rather than scandisk for XP, run cleanup and chkdsk /f for each hard drive.
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Asta CuCommented:
for Half/Life Counter STrike, sure found a lot of potentially similar problems in XP here (though the site has annoying pop ups):
http://cs.helpandsupport.net/?a=articles
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Asta CuCommented:
for Half/Life Counter STrike, sure found a lot of potentially similar problems in XP here (though the site has annoying pop ups):
http://cs.helpandsupport.net/?a=articles
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CBNobiAuthor Commented:
I've ended up purchasing a new computer, as there were more major problems in addition to this one.

I'll give astaec the points, since the suggestions were most relevant.
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Asta CuCommented:
Thank you for the fine grade.  I'm pleased to have been of some help to you and wish you the best of luck with your new computer and environment.  Sure wish we could have resolved this for you, though.

":0) Asta
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