The article about the hotfix says the boot.ini parameter can cause instability in WoW. Have you noticed this to be the case?
I'm thinking of trying all of that stuff for my dual-core system. I already have the AMD drivers installed though.
Yea I noticed the warning, but it was not about the hotfix patch - it was about the /usepmtimer boot.ini parameter which I figured I could easily remove if Wow had trouble with it. I also suspected that Wow wouldn't run into troubles anymore - the article dates back to June 2006 - even though it seems it has been updated, the Wow part may be an old comment. After that we have had processAffinityMask, timingMethod and multi-core support in general for Wow. This also looked like (as I said earlier) similar effect than running WMP in the background which worked for many.
Anyway, based on my 4 hour gaming experience last night - no I didn't have any problems. Wow was working fantastically after these tweaks.
The article is very simple to follow, there are screenshots for every step of the way. There are three things to be done:
1) Download and install a patch which doesn't show in Windows update
2) Add a registry entry
3) Add a directive to boot.ini
After reboot I added the following lines to config.wtf file - found in WTF folder under Wow main folder.
SET processAffinityMask "15"
SET timingmethod "2"
Results: All cores are enabled for Wow, furthermore Windows is forced to use "steady clock" instead of cpu frequency - in combination with SET timingmethod setting those should achieve what people have done with loading WMP or Srcdsfpsboost.exe (mentioned in thread: http://www.wowace.com/forums/index.php?topic=10304.0 on these forums).
Game experience: I did Cot Durnholde instance and occasionally took a peek at how core's were behaving (I had process explorer in the background). Initially when Wow launched cores 1 and 2 shared the bulk of the workload with cores 3 and 4 having some minor activity. At a later time cores 1, 2 and 3 were all doing 60-70 % work and at that time core 4 was almost idling. Low fps was about 55 in the instance, but during combat could have gone occasionally lower (didn't think of lookin then). High end fps was 70-85. Earlier in TB there were cases of over 100 fps but I can't really tell the difference.
Most importantly 55 is good enough for me in any case, there were no cases of stuttering or graphical errors. If you follow through the same procedure I did your experiences may of course be different from mine, I didn't see any ill effects and even OS felt more fluid than before after the patch/registry/boot.ini changes.
About Ram - another friend 'in the tech' I talked to yesterday recommended that now is the right time to purchase DDR2 ram. He said that we are probably at or near the bottom of the price curve for DDR2. Once DDR3 hits the market with volume, DDR2 prices will go up.
He said that this has happened previously with every memory type. So if you are thinking on upgrading from 2GB to 4GB (as I am) for future upgrading to 64-bit OS which can fully utilize the 4GB, now's the cheapest time to do it. WinXp 32 can only use 3 GB though.
It turned out I didn't put everything to the max as you have to untoggle some checkboxes for the fullest details - I also changed multisampling to the highest offered, which was 24x24x8 I believe.
Thunder Bluff - no change really in fps, didn't have time for an AV but Shattrath test did actually lower the fps, I believe I got momentarily as low as 25 fps, but generally moving around, turning kept the fps jumping from 35-50 fps there.
My experience: 30 degrees Celsius cpu temp after initial boot, rises a bit as the temperature in my small office room rises up as well. During game time some 45-47 Celsius. After couple of hours playing and then idling, it goes to 40 and stays there.
Just check your motherboard & box space so that the cooler will fit in. My mobo is MSI p35 Neo2 Fr, box is Antec p180.
I'll have to check on AA/AF settings when I get back home - honestly can't remember now. I just remember tuning every setting to the max from video setup. But I only got the comp up Sunday evening and have been merely on a test drive for couple of hours.
I just built a Q6600 with nvidia 8800GT comp during weekend. Wow is running 60-64 fps on 3200x1200 resolution divided on 2 screens. I'm using aperture to narrow the rendered area to left screen, leaving right screen for chat, omen, map (always open) and other information.
Lowest fps was in Shattrath at Scryer bank where it momentarily went to 47. I haven't raided, but AV keeps at 60 fps even in heavy combat situations. I overclocked the Q6600 from 2.4 Ghz to 3.0 Ghz and I am running WinXp Pro with 2 GB ram. No e-peening here, just pointing out some numbers for references sake.
I'm guessing running chatty add-ons in some raid situations could hurt the fps situation but for me this upgrade was very satisfying and I'm looking forward to having this setup for the next 3-5 years (given nothing breaks). The only forseeable upgrade could be upping memory to 4 GB when/if I will move to Vista-64, but probably I'm going to wait out sp1 and maybe even sp2 before that decision.