Sims 2 UC Win10 Pink Flashing
#1 06-06-2017 

I have a problem regarding the notorious pink flashing in my custom neighborhood and the lots in it. The problem started happening randomly, but has progressed to be worse all the time and now the game is virtually unplayable. I've tried about everything I can think of without any permanent results which is why I'm posting here as a last resort.

- Sims 2 Ultimate Collection
- Windows 10 Education as operating system
- 54000 custom textures / models totaling at around 11 GB.
- Removed the securom from the game.

Installed mods with altering shaders (at least the ones I know of):
- Gunmod's radiance light system 2.4
- Better Nightlife from Criquette
- Pond and sea water overhaul

Things I have done in order to try to fix the issue:
- Checked that GraphicsRules.sgr is recognizing the GPU properly
- Increased usable ram capacity in the .exe
- Manually increased the texture memory size
- Removed thumbnails
- Removed caches
- Tried to start the game without pond and sea water overhaul mod
- Ran Mootilda's HoodChecker and removed any found issues

Is possible that the issue could simple be that the neighborhood is somehow corrupted? I haven't done anything which usually corrupts neighborhoods eg. removed tombstones or moved occupied lots, however my neighborhood is starting to get quite crowded and it has plenty of gaming hours (the reason I'm pretty desperate to get it working).

.txt  DESKTOP-31C74DR-config-log.txt (Size: 10.42 KB / Downloads: 1856)

.txt  DxDiag.txt (Size: 75.4 KB / Downloads: 2062)

#2 07-06-2017 
The neighborhood is not corrupted - the pink flashing has nothing to do with corruption. It's about running out of texture memory because of the way Sims2 has been programmed.

This is a really good video to look at to understand why pink flashing happens. Do go and look at that if you haven't already.

How you can fix the pink flashing in your game, there are two strategies:

1. Increase your texture memory.
2. Decrease your usage of texture memory.

You've been doing both of these before you got here.

Looking at the list of things you've been doing - this is the only one that stands out significantly to me - you said you increased your texture memory, but your config-log says 2048Mb, which is a lot lower than what your actual display memory is.

You can increase your texture memory significantly - your config-log.txt says you have 2048Mb, but you actually have 11203Mb that you can use. If you've increased your texture memory, then you need to increase it to 11203.

Looking at your config-log.txt it looks like you've got changes in it because of the text message 'Lets set our graphics settings'

So you need to add/change the bolded line in your graphic rules.sgr, this is in the beginning, it needs to be set up before any of the work starts getting done -

# Constants

seti Off 0
seti On 1

seti Low 1
seti Medium 2
seti High 3

seti MediumButDefaultLow 4

seti memoryLevelHigh 512
seti memoryLevelMedium 384
seti memoryLevelLow 256
seti memoryLevelUnknown 0

if ( match("${osVersion}","*NT 6.0*") or match("${osVersion}", "*NT 5.1*"))
seti cpuLevelHigh 3000
seti cpuLevelMedium 2600
seti cpuLevelLow 2000
log $logGroup $logLevelInfo "Setting cpu level for Vista."
seti cpuLevelHigh 2800
seti cpuLevelMedium 2200
seti cpuLevelLow 1450
log $logGroup $logLevelInfo "Setting cpu level for non-Vista."

seti cpuLevelUnsupported 0

# Kiri - manually setting texture memory
seti textureMemory 2048
<-- Change this number to 11203.

Once you've done this, come back with the config-log.txt and let me see what's happening.

#3 07-06-2017 

Thank you for the swift reply! It's good to know that the problem can not be from a corrupted neighborhood.

I increased the memory size to 11203 and this had no effect on the pink flashing. However while watching that video I remembered that I also fiddled with intProp deviceLocalVideoMemorySizeDefault ($textureMemory * 1024 * 1024) which I thought would also help with the video memory. I had set it to $textureMemory * 2048 * 2048 so I reverted that after reasoning that it might just reserve more memory per texture instead of increasing the used memory capacity. After a relatively short test play everything seemed to be working properly and no pink flashing occurred anymore.

As you noticed I had added some debugging loglines in to the GraphicsRules.sgr since I've been removing some of the unnecessary parts of the script to make it clearer (for me).

Did you have any further changes in case the pink flashing returns? In any case I still attached the log file for you to see.

.txt  DESKTOP-31C74DR-config-log.txt (Size: 10.4 KB / Downloads: 1036)

#4 07-06-2017 

Can you upload your graphic rules so I can see what you did? I didn't know that you had fiddled with that figure (that as far as I can see shouldn't be fiddled with) - and I need to see what else you fiddled with to see what else could cause problems.

#5 08-06-2017 
I tested playing some more and got the pink flashing again, but in a smaller scale. Before the whole neighborhood was flashing, but now it was only a single object/sim which started to flash.

I'm a professional programmer myself so I do understand how the script works, even though I don't know what some of the variables are doing. I've mostly just modified the GraphicsRules.sgr to detect my GPU properly which meant to always have $useSoftwareRasterizer as false. I removed a big if-else chunk that was setting the $useSoftwareRasterizer to true under the following headline: Determine if gfx device is supported, force software rendering if not.

.txt  Graphics Rules.txt (Size: 32.95 KB / Downloads: 1313)

#6 10-06-2017 
@Epi7 OK. Good to know. It looks fine what you did, so that won't be impacting it.

#7 10-06-2017 
Good to hear! So, do you have any further ideas how stop the pink flashing from appearing? (Apart from turning the shaders off as that's pretty much the last resort for me). It's still causing problems as I have to restart the game every time when something starts to flash.

#8 11-06-2017 

As I said before - we have two roads -

1. Increase your texture memory.
2. Decrease your usage of texture memory.

Given that you're a programmer and have some technical expertise - we can work on increasing the texture memory. I don't want to do this with people who are not au fait with what they're doing.

So if we look at the DXDiag -

Display Memory: 11203 MB
Dedicated Memory: 3039 MB
Shared Memory: 8163 MB

Dedicated Memory is what's on the GPU itself - (I'd say it's an 4G GPU?) We can't change that figure.
Display Memory is what our texture memory is. Shared Memory is 8163 Mb which is what it shares from the RAM.

Now because RAM processing is made up of RAM, but also paging from a Hard Drive, it should be possible to increase the Shared Memory by increasing the paging.

I don't know if this is the case, but it's worth trying.

I have windows 7, but I suspect that the path is about the same -

Control Panel -> Advanced System Settings -> Performance Settings -> Advanced -> Virtual Memory -> Change
Turn off Automatically manage to activate the settings.

See where it says at the bottom what the paging recommended is - set up both the initial and the maximum. See pic for example (this is my machine)

[Image: Paging.jpg]

My C drive is an SSD drive so that is the one I've got my paging file on, if it's a traditional drive however and you can have your paging file on a separate drive to your game - it will make it go faster.

Now there's no guarantee that that will help - but it's worth a try.

If that doesn't change anything - then the next thing is to change the BIOS - and I'm really loath to do that because it affects more than just your sims game and that could be problematic. Also I don't want to do it with folks who don't have technical computer experience.

It also might be worthwhile to have a look at your NVidia GPU panel and see if there's anything there that can affect the paging.

#9 14-06-2017 

Changing the size of the page file manually up from 2.4 Gb to 8Gb as far as I could see did not have much of an effect. It's rather hard to tell 100% because the symptoms can be occasionally milder, but after playing a while I got the pink flashing again.

Settings in my NVIDIA Control panel (specifically the options that affect games) are all on default which usually means that the system lets the game determine the proper settings used, so I don't think the defaults have an effect for the flashing.

I don't really see how changing settings in the BIOS could have an effect on memory allocation for games, but if you have any specific ideas just tell me the settings that you think might have an effect and I can find them myself because changing BIOS settings is pretty familiar for me.

I'd like to thank you for helping me so far and for the patience to create step by step instructions!

#10 14-06-2017 
@Epi7 It's not so much about increasing the memory allocation for games, as increasing the memory allocation for the GPU - i.e. increasing the Shared Memory part of the equation.

Display Memory: 11203 MB
Dedicated Memory: 3039 MB
Shared Memory: 8163 MB <-- this thing.

Increasing the paging, I was hoping would increase the Shared memory.

Changing the Shared Memory in the BIOS would increase the memory allocation for the GPU, however - that does mean that it reduces the RAM for everything else, because it isn't game-specific. Hence the reason why I'm a little wary of the whole thing. I've seen a lot of wariness in people in changing it as well -

Google search on increased shared memory gpu

It's worthwhile having a read.

The other side of fixing the pink flashing when increasing texture memory is exhausted, is decreasing the usage of texture memory.

Unfortunately that comes under 2 categories -

reducing texture heavy CC - culling.
reducing texture processing - disabling shading, etc.

I would also suggest that
1. How much else is running at the same time has an impact.
2. How long the PC has been running also has an impact.

Both of these because they also use the texture memory and reduce the amount available to the Sims.


Before you post requesting help
Information we need

  1. The -config-log.txt from the Logs folder in the My Documents\EA\The Sims2\ Click "full editor" below to attach a text file.
  2. Your operating System.
  3. What the problem actually is - that will be a picture to show the problem (optional), and accompanying text files that turn up (optional), and a detailed description of what happened, and what you expected to happen.

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