Maybe not yet, but commments like "its the fact that you should support" are designed to make demo users feel guilty about using the demo for too long. Predictably, demo users will respond to this attack on their morality and presto, here's your flame war. Its almost inevitable.
In the past, it has been clearly spelled out why the demo is the way it is. By the people who made it so. At the time, there were plenty of people voicing their opinion, those opinions pretty much covered the spectrum of all possible opinions, from "I don't care" to ... ah well, nevermind.
Why anyone would want to dig up this old hat is beyond me, the only possible results will be the fizzle of tired responses you got already, or exactly what you are trying so hard to avoid, namely a demo flame war. In any case, a reasonable effort at forum search should give more than enough opinions, the whole range of it, up and down several times over.
Lag has never been an issue for me. Pings of 320ms - 360ms are acceptable, above that it can get difficult to race close. Good quality European servers are in that range.
Anyway, lag and high ping are two different problems. Lag is more like a bad connection where you don't send and/or receive regular updates, regardless of ping time. Sure, going across the world there is more scope for bad connections but usually its just fine.
Wheel to wheel racing is maybe a bit more risky, but only a bit. I've had hundreds of races on European servers, often very close racing, and its not been a problem at all.
When I have been told that I lag it was because I actually lagged (either not receiving or sending regular updates, usually both), not because I had pings of 330ms.
The file you're attaching does not really help much to trouble-shoot your problem.
Try to find other information from the crash dialog, as mentioned by an earlier poster. Or find an Application Error event in your Application Log. Take a screenshot of that and send it to the devs. You're looking specifically for a "crash address" or "fault address".
Anyway, I wouldn't just yet exclude an overheating problem, or other hardware problem.
The playing field IS equal. You have the same tools available to produce the next super-uber-setup as everbody else.
How much the setup influences your performance is variable. Depends on car/track combo. You can mess up a setup really badly if you tweak it the wrong way. You should be able to be reasonably competitive with one of the default sets supplied. Its called race_s, I think... or something like that.
There are plenty of sources for car setups, download some from other racers or appropriate websites. Discuss setups with other drivers (iow: learn from those in the know).
Eventually, you will have to learn how to at least tweak downloaded setups to suit your driving style. On the other hand, you could learn to adapt your driving to suit the setup. It makes more sense to me to adapt the setup.
In any case, the playing field is equal. And no, the "best" setup doesn't always win, its usually the quickest driver.
To my knowledge, there aren't any LFS servers that enforce a standard setup. Maybe some leagues? Dunno...
But I know of other racing simulators that enforce standard setups. But only for rookies.
How quick you can go, and how well you can tweak setups is usually directly related to the amount of hours you are willing to practice and experiment.
Anyone is free to create an InSim application, and anyone is free to join a server running that application. If there are more cruising applications than racing applications, then that is probably reflecting some trends in the current LFS users population.
Trying to impose your will and inciting fracture in the LFS community aren't going to reverse that trend I expect.
Maybe you could try to work up the smarts to create the next killer racing app instead...
I just got my iRacing invitation so by tonight I'll know what ye all are talking about. Hmm, I guess this is a little bit off topic but here goes anyway, maybe I'll find a way to tie it in somehow.
Its probably at bit premature to put crap on the iRacing community as its only just building, dontcha think? Sure, LFS has a great community but it had a lot of time to get to where it is now.
Regarding the relative costs, my using LFS over the last 4 or so years has cost me maybe $50 AUD or so, thats incredibly good value, and quite a difference to the $160 or so AUD I would have to shell out to play iRacing for just one year. Well, I probably will just because 1 month is not enough for me to get a good feel for the sim and the online racing it provides. So, no wonder some will put up their nose at it. It IS expensive. Some will feel excluded because they can't afford it, some will not pay out of principle. Think about the kind of community this setup may give rise to...
Anyway, the moaning about updates (on topic now), I just don't subscribe to that myself, there are so many track/car combinations in LFS, its got plenty of interest left in it for me. And, really, what counts for me is the online racing action, exhilarating, edge of your seat kind of racing, with a bunch of like minded others for the sheer fun of it. I had lots of that in LFS. LOTS!
I'm happy to try any combo, the only thing I need to join a server is a lot of competition, I give servers with 3, 4, 5, or 6 drivers usually a miss. I like a big field.
So, where am I going with this? Ah yeah, the moaning about updates. I don't. Thats all there is to it. If I get bored with it (and I do from time to time) I do something else. When S3 comes out I WILL buy it, not because I'm dying for new content, but because I've received such good value with S1 and S2, I feel I owe them... And If it never happens, I won't be upset, because, really, I underpaid, they over-delivered. That addresses the ethos question too, I think. Nothing controversial there. Not at all.
iRacing on the other hand, has to prove itself first. They turned up expectations pretty high with their marketing bling, and, given their price structure, they are under considerable pressure to deliver something exceptional. Anyway, I'm looking forward to trying iRacing, only a few hours to go now...
I'm sure there are things that could be done better but I don't get into drag racing myself so don't really know how it could be improved. You may receive more relevant responses in the "improvement suggestions" forum.
What, you never have this issue when racing AI in single player mode? Or normally its fine and you have the issue only occasionally when racing AI in single player? But you always have the issue in multiplayer?
Try to find answers to these questions, maybe we can narrow it down to a particular set of conditions:
Try connecting to an unpopulated server, see if that makes a difference.
Do you play any other games online? If so, any problems with those?
If this issue only occurs in multiplayer I would point the finger at some software issue. Some rogue program that steals some resource at regular intervals.
One often suggested remedy, and often successful, is to re-install LFS. Backup your car setups, scripts, and other stuff you want to keep. Download the latest LFS from www.lfs.net and install. Test before restoring your backups and addons. Any difference?
Or, if you're comfortable getting technical, download tcpview and processexplorer from sysinternals (google: sysinternals), then run one of these tools while running LFS in a window while connected to a (preferably empty) LFS server. Arrange your windows so you can see both. Keep the focus on LFS and drive, watch the tools window, there may be something there that stands out. Lookout for new programs/connections appearing for a short time and then disappearing again.
tcpview tells you which programs have network connections, and in which state these connections are in. Processexplorer tells you what programs are running on your computer. It'll be difficult to work out if there is something there that shouldn't be there, without knowing what you're looking for, but such is the nature of trouble shooting.
Your computer specs are fine. No, its not the firewall. Your Internet is way fast enough. Router settings is unlikely also. Timers running fast? Thats weird, no, dismiss that. For now, anyway. Eliminate more likely targets first.
You got any legacy controllers connected? To a legacy soundcard? You know, the old joystick port. I've had a MS Joystick connected to an older soundcard for flight sim. LFS was so bad I didn't even try to go online. As soon as I disconnected it all was well.
Just disconnect everything, web cam, card readers, controllers, usb microphone, etc. etc. Leave mouse and keyboard as is. See how you go with that.
Does this only happen when you go online? What about single player or hotlapping?
Regarding your hijackthis log: I would investigate the process called C:\WINDOWS\explorer222.exe
Normally, you would have a program called explorer.exe in that folder. Check if that one is there. If it is, compare the two (binary, checksum). There could be good reason for the explorer222.exe program to be there, but at least you should try to find out why it is there and how it got there.
There is a newer version of AVG available. I have had a virus on a Win 2000 server about 6 months ago. AVG didn't recognise it, presumably because the virus had only been in the wild a couple of days.
The virus replaced the regular explorer.exe shell with its own. It then proceeded to run a couple of window-less internet explorers every other minute, evidently to bump up some websites visitors statistics. It was also logging keyboard keystrokes, apparently it was looking for usernames/passwords for some mainstream MMORPGs.
It created itself multiple startup points, in all the well known locations, and in some less known locations as well. Everytime the machine was restarted it created several copies of itself with random names and set itself up to start at least one of them at the next restart.
It was discovered because the machine would randomly slow down or spontaneously restart.
Cleaning the virus out of the machine was a big bad pain in the arse job that took almost all day. Don't ask about the rest of the network...
Anyway, I don't want to press the panic button ( I guess I made a good job of doing just that ), just trying to illustrate that there could be a number of different causes for your problem.
So why don't you open your box, start it up and check that the CPU and graphics card cooling fans are in good working order. And while you're at it, take a brush to them and clean out all the accumulated dust from the fins of the fans and the heat sinks (switch off and unplug first). That shouldn't take more than 10 mins and may just solve your problem.
In my experience, LFS is very stable and does not crash for me. Well, it hasn't since the last official update, not that it crashed with any frequency before that. Maybe once or twice a year... hmm.. at most.
You say other games crash too, sometimes. But there is something in the way LFS does it that suggests to you... what? I tell you, LFS handles anything that happens on track without crashing.
I would tend to doubt the hardware in your computer, especially if you have other games crash as well. Overheating parts can cause this sort of thing. Check all your cooling fans for malfunction. If so, clean and test, or replace. Get some monitoring software to check GPU and CPU temps. Research what are acceptable temp ranges for your hardware. Get RAM tester software, ensure your RAM is fine, hot and cold. Etc. etc.
Concentrate on hardware trouble-shooting. LFS is stable. My money is on a faulty cooling fan on your graphics card. That would be relatively lucky...
You have received a lot of valuable advice already in this post. I like the advice from stigpt (go for really long runs, try doing 30 laps without crashing) and make sure you heed the warnings about WR setups.
A possible strategy to shave off thenths (sometimes half seconds): Use the Replay Analyser (by Wsinda, I think), load the WR lap and also load your best lap. Make sure that on a long straight your top speed is near the WR top speed (within 2 or 3 km/h). This is just to ensure your wings settings are not wildly off. Then, in the Analyser graphs, use the time view, so that the WR time is flat, and yours is not, then find the first substantial loss of time (will probably be entry to first corner). Check how much time you lost by the time you exit that corner (lets say 2 seconds), now get back on the track and try to concentrate on that corner.
Fuel up for 3 or 4 laps then extract and load your fastest lap into the Analyser, compare again with WR. If you lost 2 secs in that corner you will want to be looking for a 0.2 to 0.4 sec improvement. If improvement doesn't happen, start checking out the WR braking and throttle points, and compare with yours. Look at the amount of breaking done as well, not just the point where breaking starts.
The aim is to loose less time on just that one corner. Analyse it to death. Make sure you succeed, don't give up. What you learn on this one corner you'll be able to transfer to all the others in much less time.
Also, make sure your setup is somewhat appropriate for the track. Maybe your breaking force is too much? Maybe your break balance is too far back?
All the performance indicators you see in the Analyser software show a picture of how a quick lap was done. You may not be able to transfer this to the way YOU drive a car, for example you can't necessarily match the breaking and throttle points if your setup parameters don't match sufficiently, but the aim really is to learn to understand how setup parameters and driver inputs inter depend and what effects they have on your performance (indicators).
Lastly, the Replay Analyser gives you a lot of setup details that you may like to compare with your own setup.
It takes a fair bit of practice and work to try to get close to a WR time. If this analytical method is not for you, give stigpt's advice a go.
As others say, try not to get hung up about WR times.... hmm, then again, you'd wanna be well inside the 103% bracket if you want to clock up regular wins on CTRA, for example...
Anyway, good luck
Hey, long rant, I know, just at work procrastinating over an unloved project... :sleep1: