Home Register Arcade Gallery Chatroom Members Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read Log In
Go Back   Inside: SereneScreen Fan Forum > SereneScreen Products > Marine Aquarium 3 for Windows

Thread Tools
Old 10-23-2008, 02:55 PM   #1
Inspector Dryfish
Join Date: May 2005

Posts: 18
pausing MA3 Beta3

This happened on both Beta 2 and Beta 3, so it's not new. Maybe my equipment is just not sufficient.

On a DELL GX280 with nVidia Quadro FX 1300 (128MB of video RAM), running two DELL 20-inch monitors, at 57fps, I get intermittent pausing. I haven't detected any pattern. It can be many minutes between events, or two-or-three within a few seconds. Duration is anywhere from a split second to a few seconds.

To minimize effects from other use of system resources, I just rebooted, so I have only the Windows XP Pro (32-bit) startup stuff. Nothing overt started yet. And the problem is apparent. It just went several minutes without me seeing a pause (though I've been typing at my other PC, so I might have missed some events...), then stuttered two or three times within a few seconds.

I usually have a couple of web browsers with multiple tabs, several Word documents, Madcap Flare (Help Authoring system), OpenOffice (again, usually more than one document open), Acrobat Pro, MKS (a version management system and trouble-ticket/issue tracking system), MS Outlook with ten or twelve e-mails open, four or five instances of Windows Explorer, a screen-cap utility, the GIMP and/or Adobe Illustrator... etc.

The difference between having all those things running or having just come from a fresh reboot is that the MA3 screen might show the freezing/pausing slightly more frequently when the system is working hard. But it's not a tremendous difference. In other words, it's not obviously a linear relationship to competing demands for system resources. BESIDES, I run MA3 only as a screensaver, not while I'm actively using the system. Therefore, all those programs - aside from tying up some system memory - would be mostly idle while MA3 is running. At worst, Outlook would be receiving mail from the server.

Other than that, I've had no problems.

One observation:
Many moons ago, I think I recall a thread where somebody suggested a peculiar fish (something-dragon-something that mimicked tattered seaweed?) and Jim said it was an interesting idea, but even though it might be "real" its very oddity would tend to break the aquarium illusion - people wouldn't believe it was a naturally occuring fish.

I recall that comment when I watch what the rippling light/shadow effect does when it hits that 'globe' of white coral on the left half of the tank. It might be an accurate effect, but somehow it seems kinda unreal. All the rest (aside from lack of coral movement with the current) is convincing... and this is really minor.

Probably just me; pay no attention. :-)

- Kevin (looking forward to that bezel fix)
Inspector Dryfish is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-23-2008, 03:13 PM   #2
Forum Administrator
feldon34's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2000

Location: Rock Hill, SC
Posts: 10,906
Dumb question: Have you got any automatic update programs, especialy Norton Antivirus running?
"Journalism is printing what someone else does not want printed. Everything else is public relations." - George Orwell
"If voting changed anything, they'd make it illegal." - Emma Goldman
feldon34 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-23-2008, 03:20 PM   #3
Jim Sachs
Jim Sachs's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2000

Location: Southern Oregon
Posts: 9,644
It's usually not the overt programs which cause stuttering, it's the covert ones. Those sneaky little clock-cycle-stealers which are running in the background. My main development system is prone to that, too. The Aquarium will start hesitating, and I'll bring up the Task Manager. Nothing obvious running, besides occasional flickers in processes, but the changes only last an instant and are gone before I can even see which process it was. Then after a few minutes, the Aquarium will smooth out, and I'll sometimes get a message like, "Your Norton Antivirus has just been updated".

I'm not sure if it will do any good, but you can bump the Priority of the Aquarium up one notch by pressing the Q key. You can also adjust the program's internal Sleep() time, which determines how many clock cycles to give away, by using the UP and DOWN ARROW keys.
Jim Sachs
Creator of SereneScreen Aquarium
Jim Sachs is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-23-2008, 10:14 PM   #4
Prolific/SereneScreen Developer
Join Date: Mar 2003
1 Highscore

Location: Norwalk, CA
Posts: 513
Other programs that will steal cycles are browsers left open with pages that uses javascripts and some types of plugins. Javascripts will steal cycles if the webpage has set them to run periodically.
There are other plugins in a browser that can still cycles also and cause stuttering on the screensaver.

There are others but just mentioned this in case it wasn't obvious.
Edgar Tolentino
Prolific Developer

Edgar is offline   Reply With Quote
Go Back   Inside: SereneScreen Fan Forum > SereneScreen Products > Marine Aquarium 3 for Windows

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:47 PM.

Powered by vBulletin®
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.