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PHNL Crashes the Game


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I recently purchased PHNL and for a short while all was well.  Then after a few sessions PHNL started to crash the game when I tried to “Start” it after I initially brought the game (T!3DP) up.  However, the crash only occurs when PHNL is the first airport I try to load after bringing T!3DP up.  If I start another airport first then exit back to the main menu and then try PHNL it will usually start (load up) and run fine.  I do not have this problem with any of my other seven airports (KDFW, KLAX, KLAS, KPHL, KPHX, KSEA and TIST).  I also purchased KSEA at the same time as PHNL and have had no problems with it.

I tried several scenarios to see where the problem might be.  First I tried re-installing PHNL, RT, and RC for both PHNL and KSEA.  I also used the “tower3D Remove Settings.reg” file that @WildCard suggested I use for an earlier dual monitor issue to reset all the game settings back to a first time use configuration.  That didn’t fix the issue.  Next, I removed the existing T!3DP folders from the FeelThere folder and then downloaded and reinstalled the T!3DP base game and all of my airport DLCs.  However, I didn’t reinstall Real Traffic, any Real Color files, custom schedules or any of my modified airport specific text files. That didn’t fix the issue either.  My latest scenario was to create another basic game just using the basic T!3DP game and the PHNL DLC.  I still got the same results.  I’ve also not added any new software programs or hardware in the last few months and tried the latest scenario with my Avast anti-virus disabled.  The real head scratcher for me (one with somewhat limited software knowledge) is that all was working well for the first few PHNL sessions and also that PHNL is my only DLC with this issue.

I have attached the following files from a crash using only the basic T!3DP game and the PHNL DLC:  the crash.dmp, the error.log, the (crash) output_log.txt, the game’s actual output log from the crashed session and the output log from the next time that PHNL was loaded up and worked after I had already loaded and exited out of a different airport (KPHL).   Any help/ideas in resolving this very irritating crashing issue would be greatly appreciated.

crash.dmp error.log (Crash) output_log.txt PHNL No Start (Crashed Game) output_log.txt PHNL Good Start output_log.txt

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This looks like it is most likely a graphics card driver bug or a lack of available memory on the computer.
The unity game engine is trying to allocate 4GB of memory for the graphics, which fails and returns a null pointer. The unity game engine then tries to access the memory using the null pointer, which causes an Access Violation and the game crashes.

You might be able to fix this by upgrading your graphics drivers to the latest version (it sometimes helps) https://drivers.amd.com/drivers/installer/20.45/beta/radeon-software-adrenalin-2020-20.12.1-minimalsetup-201207_web.exe

Another possible fix is installing more memory in your pc, in a previous post you said you had 8GB of ram. That makes it pretty hard for the game to allocate 4GB of contiguous memory as the operating system will already have taken a large chunk and opening and closing other programs will quickly fragment what is left. So even tho you may have more than 4GB of free memory, that 4GB could be chopped up into smaller pieces and the game needs them to be in one solid chunk to use it.

The reason why loading another airport first can make it more likely that PHNL will load successfully is that as the game starts requesting lots of smaller bits of memory when loading the other airport, the operation system starts swapping out the other programs to disk to make room. Then when you exit the airport the game frees up all of that memory, making the chance that there is a 4GB chunk available much more likely. However, if you leave your computer running for about half an hour before trying to load PHNL, it will most likely now fail as the operating system will have reloaded those other programs back into memory.

Why does PHNL need a 4GB chunk of memory when the other airports don't? I'm not 100% sure, but most likely due to the unique graphic models in the airport itself, like the military aircraft and cargo ships.

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On 12/10/2020 at 5:47 AM, WildCard said:

This looks like it is most likely a graphics card driver bug or a lack of available memory on the computer.

I updated my video card driver but no change (that was probably a long shot anyway).  

I pretty well understand what you are saying about the RAM usage and how that could be the problem.  However, I don’t totally understand why no one else with 8 GB of RAM (which I’m sure other users do have) is not having (or reported) this problem or why PHNL loaded on the first try for the first couple of sessions after I got it.  I meet the game’s recommended requirements, except for my older 2.8 GHz (vs 3.0 GHz) AMD Phenom II X6 1055T processor.  Could that be the problem or some other related factors that I may not be aware of due to my somewhat limited hardware/software knowledge?

On 12/10/2020 at 5:47 AM, WildCard said:

However, if you leave your computer running for about half an hour before trying to load PHNL, it will most likely now fail as the operating system will have reloaded those other programs back into memory.

 I also tested that aspect.  I got PHNL loaded up and running after loading up another airport session first and then exited out of PHNL and let the game sit idling at the Main Menu for an hour.  I then tried starting PHNL again and it did load up and run.  

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When I was still creating custom schedules, after a certain point, I often had to deal with graphic errors and crashes.
I have the impression that especially when many different schedules are used, regardless of the airport that causes problems, that the game produces quite a few temporary files that remain on the system and eventually lead to problems. At least that was the issue for me. After cleaning up the system and reinstalling RT, the problems were fixed every time.
One exception: KLGA; this airport tries to burn my CPU! With the stock cooler I was using at the time, it caused a bluescreen and safety shutdown of the system after a few minutes. With new cooling now, a 1 to 2 hour session would probably be possible, but I don't do that to my CPU.

Have you tried uninstalling the airport, cleaning your system and then reinstalling airport and RT?
There are a few free programs that can do the cleanup, like Ashampoo WinOptimizer Free (Win 7/8/10, app will probably show promotional offers from the company) or Total PC Cleaner (Win 10 only). There are other free alternatives, but some of them seem to install malware, adware or toolbars. (I would like to add that I am not familiar with either of the programs mentioned. For regular basic cleanup, I use WashAndGo.)

If that doesn't solve the problem, it could be, which I hope it doesn't, that you experience a similar phenomenon as I do with KLGA. Here, too, I seem to be the only one who has problems with the airport.

Of course, it is possible that the problem may be elsewhere entirely. I am only making assumptions here!

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@EliGrim Thank you for your response.  Unfortunately (for me), I have already tried your suggestions as mentioned in my previous posts on this subject plus restarting my computer.  Sorry to say that none of those actions have resolved the issue.  I tried it again this morning using just a new basic game with its default fictional airlines and a new PHNL DLC and still got the same results.  The cleaner I'm currently using is CCleaner. 

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GfxDevice: creating device client; threaded=1
d3d11: failed to lock vertex buffer 000000000D562DF8 of size 4194304 [0x8007000E].
d3d11: failed to lock index buffer 000000001087DBF8 of size 65536 [0x8007000E].
Crash!!!

This is the crash from your logs. The crash is due to failing to allocate 4GB of memory. This memory must be a single, solid chunk. If the memory is not available and the graphics driver doesn't wait for the operating system to free up some memory and then try again, then it will crash. A quick search shows that Radeon cards have been having this issue with games made in Unity for the last 8 years or so. So unless AMD fix the issue in the driver, then it will be hit and miss as to whether it works.

On 12/12/2020 at 1:50 PM, Ron C said:

 I also tested that aspect.  I got PHNL loaded up and running after loading up another airport session first and then exited out of PHNL and let the game sit idling at the Main Menu for an hour.  I then tried starting PHNL again and it did load up and run.  

The operating system won't reclaim and use the memory until the game is fully shut down. It's only when the game fully exits that any memory allocations are returned back to the operating system for use. Sorry, I was trying not to make the post too technical and glossed over the details of exactly how and when the operating system will use the memory, and even this post is still simplified. For more detail I would have to explain how Hierarchical Page Tables, TLBs (Translation Look-aside Buffers) and other bits work, and it takes a University about 2 months out of a 6 month subject to do that. 🙂

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@WildCard Thank you for the explanation and clearing that up for me.  Too bad I didn’t know about the Radeon card’s issue with Unity before I purchased my new Radeon card (of course also I had never heard of Unity until a very recent forum post and your post on this topic).

On 12/14/2020 at 2:38 AM, WildCard said:

For more detail I would have to explain how Hierarchical Page Tables, TLBs (Translation Look-aside Buffers) and other bits work, and it takes a University about 2 months out of a 6 month subject to do that. 🙂

 No further explanation is needed and I sure don’t feel like going back to school. 

So question:  if I decide to boost my RAM from 8GB to 12GB would PHNL then load up the first time like my other DLCs do now or would the Radeon card and Unity issue still persist?

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