The Ultimate Guide to Running TF2 Smoothly + Other Options (unfinished)

Discussion in 'Team Fortress 2' started by Ninja_DC, Mar 18, 2012.

  1. Ninja_DC

    Ninja_DC Totally Ordinary Human

    Steam:

    The Ultimate Guide for Running TF2 Smoothly

    So you may be reading this in the hope of getting better FPS (frames per second) in TF2, fear not you've come to the right guide. After getting my 10 year old pc to play tf2 at a high of 100fps from 25fps, you should not worry that you're pc won't cut the chase.

    For those with newer computers hopefully your FPS will have increased; but if not read through the Nitty-Gritty Section as well for some drastic quality measures which really lighten up resources.

    Old Computer: Pentium 4, Socket 775, ATI Radeon 9200, 1.5GBs RAM
    Current Computer: Intel Core-i5-2500k @4.5Ghz, 8Gbs 1600Mhz RAM, AMD Radeon HD6850 OC

    'Da Guide

    TF2 Options
    In Game Video Options
    The easiest way to improve performance. Open up options from the main menu and head over to video. The first thing you can do is lowering your resolution for a 10fps+ buff. Next head open the advanced dialog and set options to the lowest or lower than they already are. If you have a multi-core processor enable multi-core rendering

    Full Screen Mode
    Another easy way to improve FPS is my running tf2 in full screen to make sure you are open your steam library, right click Team Fortress 2 and select properties. Then select launch options and remove anything that says "-windowed, -noborder, -border" and replace it with "-full". Only run in windowed mode if you really need it for Alt-Tab 'ing for example.

    TIP: If "-novid" isn't in your options then then add it to remove the Valve and Source intro videos when you open tf2.

    Download a FPS Config
    There are a lot of FPS Configs made to improve your FPS in TF2 at the cost of lower graphics settings. These configs normally do a better job than simply turning down the quality in TF2 options.

    The most popular are Chris' fps configs and m0re's fps configs. To find them go here http://clugu.com/tf2mate/ . High FPS config obviously gives better quality than a Max FPS at the cost of more frames per second. I recommend Chris' High and Max FPS if you only have some difficultly playing tf2 reasonably and m0re's fps configs if tf2 runs nearly unbearably; especially if you have an older computer.

    The website posted also holds other options such as customizable crosshairs and network settings, I recommend you read through these before you download the config. When you download the config it'll come with a read-me file with instructions on how to install it, don't hesitate to ask if you don't understand it.

    (If you only want to use one of Chris' configs: http://fakkelbrigade.eu/chris/configs/)

    TIP: If you like to play 32 player servers it might be an idea to go for an max rather than a high fps config at the cost of visual quality.

    TIP2: I highly recommend using a hitsound with the config, search here for non-intrusive hitsounds (Search: Quake 3 and Quake 4)

    mat_viewportscale
    This cvar added to the game in the 3rd annual Halloween update reduces the distance of rendering

    You can enter values between 0.1 to 1. Try starting with mat_viewportscale 0.5 first.


    Disable Windows Visual Effects when Running TF2
    You should want to disable transparency in Windows 7 / Vista when you're running tf2. To do this in Windows 7 go to your steam installation folder i.e;

    C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\"Your steam username"\team fortress 2

    right click on hl2.exe and select properties, then enable "disable desktop composition" and click OK to apply settings and close.

    For Windows Vista settings should be similar albeit named slightly different. For Windows XP select "Disable Visual Themes" which should put XP in Windows Classic visuals when running tf2.

    TIP: for overall better performance of your pc disable transparency completely unless you like it.

    Defragment Your Computer & Game Files
    Most of you will know how to do this but if you don't:
    Search "defragment" without quotes in the start menu search bar open the Defragmenter tool up and analyse if your PC needs defragging. (Accessories/system tools/Defragmenter

    It's also wise to clear your pc of unnecessary junk, search "cleanup" 7 / Vista and accessories/system tools/disk cleanup for XP

    After defragging your computer open up tf2 properties, select the local files tab and defragment your game cache files. When this is complete also select 'verify integrity of game files'.
    Even if your fragmented files are 1% you'll see improvement on areas where you're computer slowed down before.

    Try downloading these "better" programs to enhance the job of default windows ultilities
    http://www.piriform.com/ccleaner - Disk Cleanup
    http://www.piriform.com/defraggler - Defragmentation


    TIP: Wiki Page on Defragmenting: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Defragmentation

    Disable Unnecessary Background Services + Advanced
    This may sound like another obvious one to you but disable stuff you don't need when you use your computer. If you have things running in your windows tray which you don't need to have running then close it. Namely the only thing you'll want running in in TF2 is Windows, Steam and your Antivirus software. Type msconfig in start, search and under the start-up tab see what you don't need. You'll probably reconise some names so unless you print a lot disable printing software from start-up. If you are unsure Google is your friend and search the full name of the item.

    You can also disable unnecessary windows services that run in the background which use resources on your pc. Go here for a list of services that can be safely turned off, or set to manual.

    TIP: In msconfig, under the boot tab select nogui boot to decrease about 5 seconds from your start-up. Also change the timeout to 3 seconds if you only have windows installed.

    GameBooster
    A program that does some of the things i've mentioned here already when you boot a game, the downside is it's using resources running in the background, older machines are defiantly going to notice it.
    For those interested: http://www.iobit.com/gamebooster.html


    Advanced Options to speed up windows: http://www.askvg.com/master-tutorial-to-make-your-windows-7-super-fast/
    Disable Unnecessary Services: http://www.askvg.com/windows-7-services-that-can-be-safely-set-to-manual/

    Intel Integrated Graphics Options
    If your computer has integrated graphics there are a couple of settings which will aid your FPS config which will give you more fps. Even i don't have a computer with integrated graphics as of right now, if you right-click your desktop look through the options you'll should find a option which opens your graphics software. If you have a intel pentium, or core i'X' you'll find some settings and sliders which give more performance over quality - you will unlikely see much difference if you select performance options when using windows normally or playing videos.

    Here are some links give more detail on how to improve your graphics here:
    - http://www.intel.com/support/graphics/sb/cs-012644.htm (Most of this is explained in the nitty-gritty section)
    - http://software.intel.com/en-us/articles/vcsource-tools-intel-gpa/ - Performance Analyzer

    TIP: Whatever graphics card you have make you have the latest drivers, visit the manufacturer's website to find out i.e. AMD, Intel, Nvidia

    (Will re-write this part soon and put some more information out)

    THE NITTY_GRITTY - For the Oldest, Worst Computers

    quick links


    http://downloads.guru3d.com/download.php?det=733 -ati tray tools
    http://www.guru3d.com/category/rivatuner/ - rivatuner
    These two links can show you how to have a low LOD (level of detail) that your graphic card displays and results in simplistic textures. On newer machines this won't help much if at all but on older machines it can help a lot.

    More info http://tf2scout.blogspot.co.uk/2009/07/high-lod-picmip-hack-for-tf2.html



    (more to come here, fear not)
    • Informative Informative x 20
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    • Useful Useful x 1
  2. Ruelel

    Ruelel Moderator Staff Member Contributor

    Steam:

  3. Giildy

    Giildy Gaben's Own Aimbot Contributor

    Steam:

    YAY
  4. Damson

    Damson Uncharitable Spy

    Steam:

    Thank you for the info
    Been wondering why TF2 has been laggy for me lately and this may just solve it
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  5. =ECC=probex57

    =ECC=probex57 Gaben's Own Aimbot Contributor

    Steam:

    How about just having a modern PC with a real graphics card? TF2 is a 5 year old game and recommends a single core processor running at 3.0 ghz. But for the people who are reluctant to do this, its useful info *Dr.Ruelel COUGH*
  6. Ninja_DC

    Ninja_DC Totally Ordinary Human

    Steam:

    Gonna add it to nitty gritty section

    Not everyone has at least $600 bucks at a time, just thought it'll be helpful.
  7. Xel'Naga

    Xel'Naga Moderator Staff Member Contributor

    Steam:

    I just wanted to point out that in the video options, you have the option to increase your field of view up to 90 degrees, even in 4:3 format.
  8. Lord Killington

    Lord Killington Legendary Skial King

    Steam:

    tl;dr
    • Agree Agree x 3
  9. Ozone

    Ozone Server-Clearing Cynic

    Steam:

    Gamebooster also helps by stopping unnecessary processes and programs while gaming and turns them back on when you're finished playing.
  10. Maddo

    Maddo Forum Admin Staff Member Contributor

    Steam:

    could add in that shadows and reflections are processor consuming, and for those looking to have performance over graphics are a good idea to have at min specs. same goes for antialiasing etc.
    also, if you have dual core, check in processes, right click any running process and set affinity here, and you can also set priority of that process at the same time. you will know what i mean, but can word it better if you wanna stick it in your guide.
    another good tip, is shut your antivirus down while playing, some av programs especialy shit like norton will comsume large amounts of resources. you wont get a virus while playing tf2 so you dont need it running.
  11. Lord Killington

    Lord Killington Legendary Skial King

    Steam:

    Avast! Antivirus has a "gaming" mode that keeps it, if not off, at least quiet.
  12. Ninja_DC

    Ninja_DC Totally Ordinary Human

    Steam:

    Haven't finished it yet ;D - wrote most of it at 3am due to insomnia and boredom
  13. Maddo

    Maddo Forum Admin Staff Member Contributor

    Steam:

    Its good work would try and condense it a little though as many will find it tldr
  14. =ECC=probex57

    =ECC=probex57 Gaben's Own Aimbot Contributor

    Steam:

    You don't need to drop $600 dollars at a time, my Nvidia 450 GTS only cost me $123 it's small things over a period of time.
  15. lpN

    lpN Australian Skial God Contributor

    Steam:

    Thanks for the tips! havent really tried using these cuz my comp is pretty beefy but for those out of town tf2 cravings, i might just use this on my laptop :D
    • Agree Agree x 1
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  16. Ninja_DC

    Ninja_DC Totally Ordinary Human

    Steam:

    update: rewrote a lot of it to reduce tl;dr and moved sections around in degree with what people should try first to help fps.
  17. Ruelel

    Ruelel Moderator Staff Member Contributor

    Steam:

    some people have more important things to buy then pc parts
    • Agree Agree x 1
  18. ]t4s[robojezas

    ]t4s[robojezas Notably Dangerous Demo-Knight

    Steam:

    i get 14 fps in ctf_2fort spawn when i leave and walk around about 6 any other map maybe 3 fps if its liek 2 ppl lol any thing else idc about graphics at this point ^_^
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  19. DJ Über Space Whale!

    DJ Über Space Whale! Epic Skial Regular

    Steam:

    Good thing i have an i7 ^_^
    • Agree Agree x 1
  20. SgtGiraffe

    SgtGiraffe Gaben's Own Aimbot

    Steam:

    I thought running. Tf2 windowed would. Increase. Fps: (

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