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WoW Performance Issues/Tweaks, Etc


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#21 Juravieal

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Posted 05 January 2009 - 07:22 PM

What power supply are you running for that 8800 GTX?

Be as specific as possible with the model number if you have it.




700 Watt Thermaltake W0105RU

#22 Hellfury

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Posted 05 January 2009 - 07:40 PM

WotLK increased the system requirements for the game quite a bit. This was a conscious decision by blizzard as the average computer speccs are quite a bit better than when TBC or original wow was launched.


Yes and no, Naxx is old content so the geometry is the same, also you run with 25ppl instead of 40, the only thing that changed was the DK spell stuff. So its that or they relly messed up the engine.

Anyway about the combat log it holds some true Iam atm raiding and I removed every filter including things "Done by" and "Done to" in self and I saw a significant FPS increase just did Thadius and felt way more responsive.

#23 Mikari

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Posted 05 January 2009 - 08:13 PM

You guys seem to have just a ton of RAM. I just can't imagine having that much RAM, but it could be because I'm still using a 32 bit OS (XP SP2). Would I see an increase in FPS if I went to a 64 bit OS with more RAM, which is dirt cheap these days? I currently get about 20-30fps in combat at full settings (minus high quality shadows) at 1920x1080.

Though I'm thinking that has more to do with running in windowed mode with an appreciable number of mods running, including recount. I only have 2 gigs of DDR2 RAM currently.


WotLK is a pretty big memory hog, at max settings the WoW client can use over a gig on it's own, when you include background apps and the OS, 2GB of RAM really isn't enough.

#24 Silmeria

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Posted 05 January 2009 - 08:15 PM

I'm not convinced this is true. The client does receive all the activity data, but the combat log (which Blizzard implements as an addon) doesn't automatically process that data. It only processes the data for the game events (COMBAT_LOG_EVENT) that the current filter is registered to respond to. So if you have a combat log filter that doesn't respond to any of those events, it won't trigger the code to extract and display the information.

I suspect at the very least, that there's an inherent "peek" operation going on in most mods to at least check the event type (which happens to be the first flag on each combat line as far as I know) and that in itself is likely an intense operation to keep things running at real-time. I doubt there's an underlying engine that "peeks" once and doles out the lines of combat to applicable mods, but at best I'm offering conjecture at this point. Perhaps someone who has written one of these popular mods can comment on the "best practice" vs "commonly used practices" and how performance is impacted as a whole.

Regardless, the strongest correlation that anyone has ever drawn is that if anything depends on combat log data, then culling that particular mod is almost always a performance increase provided you were originally CPU bound. The evidence that everything "gets worse" by an order of magnitude in 25-mans seems to support this, especially in the case of AoEs or any type of multi-target hits multi-target setting. You can control for rendering/graphics performance hits by simply staring at your feet in these cases.

Graphics are usually a "static" problem in so far that every graphic object on the screen detracts from your performance, so logic would state that the more objects on the screen, the worse it gets, however staring at your feet should eliminate these variables and leave you with the raw computational problems. Blizzard used to performance test at customer support by asking players to stare at the sky in the middle of Shattrath and report their FPS.

Also, for those who were not around for the audio problems in TBC, a fair amount of andectotal evidence came up that the audio/sound engine in WoW is also fairly processor intensive (a lot of the performance threads were tracking FPS increases via disabling sound, but audio drivers were not controlled very well at the time of the reports). The off-hand conclusion was that that having on board sound used enough of your raw processor to impact your total performance, but those with audio cards tended to not see performance drops at all from disabling/enabling sound. This makes sense from a hardware point of view, as half the point of a sound card is to use more suitable/dedicated CPUs for audio processing.

#25 Juravieal

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Posted 05 January 2009 - 08:30 PM

A quick question on all this combat log talk, as its not something I had heard/thought of before. I current run the /combatlog for our WWS reports. Possibly this is adversely affecting things? If I were to filter the log as suggested above, would the above logging switch still work for WWS purposes?

#26 Descended

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Posted 05 January 2009 - 08:43 PM

If you are doing the run's /combatlog, then I would suggest turning off antivirus file access scanning of *.txt files, for one.

#27 Silmeria

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Posted 05 January 2009 - 08:55 PM

A quick question on all this combat log talk, as its not something I had heard/thought of before. I current run the /combatlog for our WWS reports. Possibly this is adversely affecting things? If I were to filter the log as suggested above, would the above logging switch still work for WWS purposes?

The /combatlog is an entirely seperate process that's independent of anything you do in WoW. Filtering your log will not interfere with the process. There's really nothing you could do to effect /combatlog in general, and is actually one of the points I failed to mention above which further supports a server->client(s) transmission and then a separate process paradigm.

/Combatlog itself is a somewhat performing task as well, as I believe it writes to the file in chunks, but I'm unaware of when the chunks get dumped to the text file. Thus, there's probably a memory component (but who cares about memory), but more importantly: a periodic disk access component. I'm unaware of the intricacies however, and tend to only see a single digit FPS loss when I run /combatlog with my usually fragmented 7200 RPM drives, and that's only in 25-mans.

#28 Malan

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Posted 05 January 2009 - 09:03 PM

I suspect at the very least, that there's an inherent "peek" operation going on in most mods to at least check the event type (which happens to be the first flag on each combat line as far as I know) and that in itself is likely an intense operation to keep things running at real-time. I doubt there's an underlying engine that "peeks" once and doles out the lines of combat to applicable mods


I could be wrong here as I don't claim to be a LUA expert - Since WoW is event driven, that should pretty much be exactly what's going on under the hood. Functions in addons are registering for notification when events arrive at the client, and then the event parser within the client is notifying everyone that hooked into a particular event. If you have addons that are hooking into tons of shit that they don't need, or that are hooking into events that fire frequently (BAG_SLOT_UPDATED used to fire stupidly often as I recall, which made bag sorting addons perform horribly), then the addons will require additional CPU time to run their event callbacks.

[e] In case I misunderstood what you were saying - the addons themselves shouldn't be inspecting every single event. Rather they register with the client, which keeps track of which callbacks are interested in what event types. When the client reads that event type at arrival, it runs through the list of interested listeners and instructs them to execute their callbacks.

#29 Silmeria

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Posted 05 January 2009 - 09:20 PM

Yeah, I mis-used my lingo and goofed in interpretation. The callbacks are what I was referring to.

If you have addons that are hooking into tons of shit that they don't need, or that are hooking into events that fire frequently (BAG_SLOT_UPDATED used to fire stupidly often as I recall, which made bag sorting addons perform horribly), then the addons will require additional CPU time to run their event callbacks.

This is my concern these days. I wish someone would create a comprehensive profiler at this point, beyond the generic "cpu processor tracker" that's floating around.

#30 Questioner

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Posted 05 January 2009 - 09:26 PM

Ffor me if I have Firefox running (in fullscreen in game) and I am in a raid (ONLY raids...normal world is fine), I get very bad fps and then d/c issues. Some thought it might be many tabs open, but all I had open was EJ or Wowhead. WoW, Firefox and Ventrillo are the only things I ever run on the system. I found closing Firefox helped tremendously. I wouldn't post as I assume most close just about everything running on their system, but a browser is such a common tool these days that I felt it could be overlooked.

Now, as for why the two behave so poorly together for me, I've got no idea.

#31 Malan

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Posted 05 January 2009 - 09:41 PM

Yeah, I mis-used my lingo and goofed in interpretation. The callbacks are what I was referring to.

This is my concern these days. I wish someone would create a comprehensive profiler at this point, beyond the generic "cpu processor tracker" that's floating around.


Of course even if you knew how many hooks were being made by a particular addon you'd then also need to know some information about how often in a given space of time were those events firing on average. At some point you just have to hope that the addon developer knows what he's doing, but it definitely does give weight to getting rid of anything that you don't absolutely need if you aren't positive that its been coded in an efficient manner.

#32 Mideci

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Posted 05 January 2009 - 10:15 PM

Ffor me if I have Firefox running (in fullscreen in game) and I am in a raid (ONLY raids...normal world is fine), I get very bad fps and then d/c issues. Some thought it might be many tabs open, but all I had open was EJ or Wowhead. WoW, Firefox and Ventrillo are the only things I ever run on the system. I found closing Firefox helped tremendously. I wouldn't post as I assume most close just about everything running on their system, but a browser is such a common tool these days that I felt it could be overlooked.

Now, as for why the two behave so poorly together for me, I've got no idea.


Firefox -- and yes, I'm a user -- is a gigantic memory and CPU performance hog, especially as more tabs are opened. In many ways, it's a terrific browser, but memory/CPU performance is not one of them. In fact, I find that when I'm having WoW issues, I can close any browser I'm running (Safari on Mac, IE on Windows) and generally gain a meaningful boost to WoW performance. Your mileage may vary, but it's a good fix to at least try.

#33 PSGarak

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Posted 06 January 2009 - 07:39 AM

It's probably an academic question, but I wonder how much of that is inherent to the browser and how much of it depends on the site. As was mentioned before, flash player is a rather intensive process, and I know I've seen particular flash-ads that are way worse than normal to my system, even without functionality past animation (mostly mom&pop ads on freeforms.org). Of course, with the proliferation of cheap memory and broadband most sites have this so if your browser is open at all it probably has two ads and a dozen buttons per tab.
Software in general seems to be designed under the paradigm that if a program is open at all, it's the most important program the system is running, which is true for less than 10% of what I'm running at any given time. You might want to look into minimalistic replacements for side-processes like music.

I think some plugins also get initialized on first use after a reboot. For example, adobe's .pdf viewer tends to have a start-up process the first time I use it, but not on later uses. Does that mean it leaves something around taking up resources?
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#34 Grimzilla

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Posted 06 January 2009 - 08:28 AM

Im currently running WoW on a fairly new laptop with 3gig RAM, GeForce 8400M 512MB.
I have most graphics on minimal and raid instances have an average fps of 10.
Yesterday we had a 40 man raid to kill the Alliance leaders and when we got to IF i got disconnected due to lagging and when i got back online my fps dropped to 2. I turned off recount and questhelper. Then we went to SW and i saw my fps remaining at the normal 10 fps.

So i can conclude that questhelper while in raids gives lag and fps drops because to communicates with other members in the raid that also have questhelper.
Recount just processes too much data imo, and thus adding more to the already massive calculations WoW sends us.

#35 Infenwe

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Posted 06 January 2009 - 09:01 AM

A lot of people blame Firefox for bad performance, but in my experience it's not really the browser's fault. First of all Flash is a big offender and you really ought to browse with Flashblock + NoScript installed if you like your fps high in WoW (and for security reasons, but that's another matter entirely). For me I lose 10-15 fps if I have even the smallest Flash object loaded in any tab in Firefox/Seamonkey. Regardless of whether that tab has focus or not. In addition to that, NoScript helps with those pages with horribly written JavaScript (and trust me... there's a lot). For the longest time on my laptop WoWhead's talent calculator pages would eat up 20% CPU just sitting there doing nothing for example (I think they have fixed that now though).

#36 Erulisse

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Posted 06 January 2009 - 01:56 PM

I was experiencing similarly awful performance during raids to many of those who have posted here, seeing drops to ~10 FPS during 25 man encounters such as Sartharion +3.

Whilst my hardware is by no means bleeding edge, it's more than sufficient to run a non graphically intensive game such as WoW. Below is a list of tweaks I made to arrive at the more satisfactory result of 45-50 FPS during 25 man Sarth +3.

Raid with the lowest in game settings you can stand. Personally, I raid with all of the video sliders set to minimum except for Spell Detail, which I have on max (due to a bad experience with not being able to see Grobbulus clouds). Setting Sound Channels to minimum can also provide some benefit.

Prune your addons and saved variables. After myself and other guildies had experienced repeated disconnection issues on Four Horsemen (anecdotally caused by Thane's meteor cast) I disabled Omen and Recount, the two biggest memory users in my UI, and solved this particular issue. Post raid I disabled and deleted a load of mods that were just unnecessary for raiding, and cleaned up their associated saved variables. You can do this either with the old WowAceUpdater (File menu > Cleanup WoW Saved Variables) or manually by browsing your WTF folder and removing .lua files associated with mods you no longer use.

Maintain updated hardware drivers. This has already been mentioned several times in this thread, so I won't go into detail. As with any software bug fixes and improvements are released regularly, so it's important to stay up to date.

Close non essential programs while raiding. Again, this has been covered repeatedly, but it's worth mentioning again briefly. Web browsers, Instant Messaging clients, and audio players can all use resources that would otherwise be spent keeping your WoW FPS up.

Disable unnecessary Vista services. If you're a Vista user, you should be aware that there are an incredible amount of unnecessary services being loaded and executed that you can disable for more in-game performance. Many sites offer good tweaking guides; one of the easiest to follow can be found here - Part 1 and here - Part 2

Overclock your CPU. This isn't for everyone, but it's worth noting that your CPU's clock speed is arguably the biggest limiting factor for WoW performance. Many of the current generation of Intel CPU's can easily reach higher than stock clock speeds, so it's definitely worth researching and spending some time testing out different hardware settings. As an example, I was able to overclock my E8400 CPU from 3ghz to 3.6ghz, which is a 20% increase, without purchasing any additional hardware. There are many online guides as to how to do this, but it's probably beyond the scope of this thread to go into too much detail. A good place to start for E8400 owners is here - Legion Hardware.

Tighten your RAM timings. Like the previous point, this falls into the semi-advanced category as it involves changing hardware settings. Many motherboards use slower than necessary settings for your RAM by default, which obviously has a negative impact on performance. Download CPU-Z, which is an excellent tool for examining your hardware configuration, and make a note of the numbers on the Memory tab. This is the speed at which your memory is currently running. Then, click on the SPD tab - this reads your memory's possible settings that the manufacturer has saved to the ROM on your sticks. You might find that an EPP (Enhanced Performance Profile) has been included, which represents a high performance configuration for your memory.

I've been deliberately vague with the last two points, as it's not something I'd encourage everyone to try. However, for those who are willing to spend the time reading hardware sites and forums, and testing their system over and over again, it can provide a nice performance boost for little to no cost.

#37 Gearknight

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Posted 06 January 2009 - 06:40 PM

Here's a tip for Vista users experiencing poor game performance that should always be tried before digging through mods and worrying about hardware:

Disable SuperFetch.

SuperFetch makes programs load faster by guessing what you're going to load next and putting it into memory ahead of time. While you're playing WoW, you aren't going to load any new programs, but SuperFetch finds a way to eat up tons of resources, lagging the game down.

I was experiencing FPS that dropped suddenly down from >30 to 1-2, lasting exactly 60 seconds, then recovering back to high FPS. During this time, vent would lag and stutter, and sometimes I got disconnected (probably because the game was crawling so badly it couldn't keep up with net traffic). I disabled SuperFetch and it was fixed immediately.

If those symptoms sound familiar, and even if they don't, give disabling SuperFetch a try. It's quick and easily reversible.

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#38 Tuftears

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Posted 06 January 2009 - 09:24 PM

This seems related - WoW has been disconnecting me on 25-man fights with lots of AOE, i.e. it used to do this in Hyjal on the trash waves, and does so in Noth (why?) and 4 Horsemen. Even with addons turned off and the WDB folder, I'll still get disconnected while these fights are in progress. As best as I can tell, this is due to a paltry 192kbps up/down SDSL line.

I'll be upgrading to an ADSL line soon but for the interim, has anyone found a way to minimize or eliminate these issues? It looks like it's just sending so much data that the client can't keep up.
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#39 Celandro

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Posted 06 January 2009 - 11:40 PM

This seems related - WoW has been disconnecting me on 25-man fights with lots of AOE, i.e. it used to do this in Hyjal on the trash waves, and does so in Noth (why?) and 4 Horsemen. Even with addons turned off and the WDB folder, I'll still get disconnected while these fights are in progress. As best as I can tell, this is due to a paltry 192kbps up/down SDSL line.

I'll be upgrading to an ADSL line soon but for the interim, has anyone found a way to minimize or eliminate these issues? It looks like it's just sending so much data that the client can't keep up.


I'm on fiber optic (FIOS) in the LA area, very close to Blizzard. I have the same lag issue, especially when there is any sort of server side lag. OS+2 was completely impossible as half the raid lagged for 15s while aoeing down the drakes. OS+1 was barely possible due to shield wall. A week earlier we did not have the problem.

Things I have heard that might cause it
Morbidity talent + DnD with lots of targets- We have 4 dks and they were using death and decay to kill the drakes
Recount - Running this, but some who dont have the lag issue were also running recount
Computer speed/memory - No confirmation on this

Conjecture:
Some sort of buggy programming on the Morbidity talent is causing extra processing for every death knight dot tick on every mob. When the server is not lagging (no queue), this does not cause a problem. When it is lagging, some players get very bursty combat log updates. These updates can cause problems depending on number of addons loaded and cause problems with various addons (especially recount).

#40 Pyros

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Posted 07 January 2009 - 05:58 AM

The morbidity bug should only affect DKs though, and not even all of them. In my guild I think I'm the only DK who lags from specing into morbidity(I'm the only one who AE tanks often though), and I usually don't use it on Sarth, but I've never heard anyone complain about lagging specifically when I was during naxx trash clearing and stuff like that(when I usually freeze for seconds). However we have had a few people chain disconnecting in raids and stuff. Turning "off" combat log didn't seem to fix it for them either, I think it might be more computer/router/ISP specific than actually wow specific.




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