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Author Topic: Very Steamed at Steam  (Read 961 times)
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Zinfan
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« on: August 29, 2011, 08:41:50 AM »

Well I had some free time so I decided to fire up Witcher2 for some game play.  I hadn't played in awhile but the patches up to 1.35 had been downloaded so when I started the game it tried to patch it up but I got a message that the version on the PC was incorrect but the game started and I played it for a few hours.  Of course the game locked up and I had to restart it and this time Steam applied the patch and I got a message that the game was up to date, and then the whole PC BSD'ed.  When I got it restarted Steam no longer recognized my PC as one I use for my Steam account (I don't have any other computer running Steam) so I had to input codes they sent to my email account in order to get it going again.  Once that was done I tried to start the game only to have it fail to start due to being unable to load various .csv files.  A check of the interwebs indicates that you might be able to fix this by validating local files for the game so I did that and now Steam is downloading more data to the tune of another 9 gigs!!  This will make the 4th time that I've had to download the entire game in order to try and play it, I like the game but really I'm never going to buy anything from Steam again, this is just stupid.
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TiLT
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« Reply #1 on: August 29, 2011, 08:58:22 AM »

Quote from: Zinfan on August 29, 2011, 08:41:50 AM

and then the whole PC BSD'ed.

Yeah, you might want to take a closer look at your faulty hardware/drivers before blaming Steam for your problems. Steam won't make your PC BSOD unless there's something wrong with part of your computer that Steam needs to use.
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Harkonis
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« Reply #2 on: August 29, 2011, 10:24:41 AM »

my first thought is bad memory sticks.  That's the cause of non-bug related BSD's more often than not in my experience.  Once the memory is corrupt, it's hard to blame any of the software for not recovering properly.

(still really sucks though)
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rshetts2
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« Reply #3 on: August 29, 2011, 12:36:35 PM »

I recently had almost the same experience with Steam (except for the BSD)  For no reason at all it suddenly didnt recognize my computer and I ended up having to delete Steam and reload it.  When I finally did that I found out that Steam had removed all of my game downloads as well and had to reload any game I wanted to play.
 I wouldnt be so sure that the problem was on Zinfans end.  This issue isnt unique to Zin and I, several customers have experienced this problem.  In the end, everything is now working fine but it cost me over an hour to get it all fixed.  Im not so pissed at Steam that Im going to dump them and I understand that these things happen. At least I didnt have the BSD!
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Razgon
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« Reply #4 on: August 29, 2011, 12:43:47 PM »

Yeah, unfortunately, we're still dealing with a platform that has way too many different configurations/software/hardware to be completely free of stuff like this - But hey, its part of the charm ;-)

I've had Steam believing it wasn't the same computer I used as well, and I think all I did beforehand was remove all cookies from my internet browser.
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MonkeyFinger
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« Reply #5 on: August 29, 2011, 01:20:30 PM »

There's also been discussions around about the Steam patch "debacle"... without Steam you could download a small patcher but for whatever reason (Steam, CDProjekt) you had to get it on Steam by downloading the whole damn game again.
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Calavera
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« Reply #6 on: August 29, 2011, 02:32:44 PM »

Quote from: MonkeyFinger on August 29, 2011, 01:20:30 PM

There's also been discussions around about the Steam patch "debacle"... without Steam you could download a small patcher but for whatever reason (Steam, CDProjekt) you had to get it on Steam by downloading the whole damn game again.

I'm pretty sure they're working on that issue. This update in July made some changes...

The major problem I have is with the way the built-in backup system works. They've got it setup so you can bundle multiple games in a backup. They really need to disable that. If you backup one game at a time using the in client backup it works perfectly fine. If you backup a bundle of games together, it flags the games for download while it prepares the files for all the games in the bundle. You end up downloading a bunch of extra data (especially when you can download from Steam at 3MB/sec). I can't imagine actually burning the backup to DVD, though. It will result in the same problem only worse.

BSOD can be fun to track down, especially with RAM. I bought another 4GB of ram for my computer (Some Corsair XMS2 TwinX) and installed in the two available slots. I didn't realize it put the matched pairs on two separate channels (Stick 1 from Pair 1 and Stick 1 from Pair 2 on one channel) which caused BSOD and memtest86+ failures. Re-ordered the sticks so the matched pairs were on the same channels and the BSOD and memtest86 errors went away.
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TheAtomicKid
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« Reply #7 on: August 29, 2011, 09:08:21 PM »

http://www.memtest.org/

Mod might want to move this to hardware/software hell at this point.

Get a good copy of that (have another computer handy? the steam comp is suspect, but might be able to do it if you get lucky (and have a burner on it, etc etc)

Boot to it, and let it run for awhile. (It's completely automated unless you stop it and adjust things.) A while meaning overnight, if you can. If it finds errors, you have problems with your memory. (or god forbid, the memory controller on your cpu, but that's unlikely. Possible, but unlikely)

If it finds errors... remove all but one memory stick, reboot, let it run til you're satisfied that stick is clean. Remove and replace with next stick. Keep them seperated (little pieces of tape with a, b, c, d are helpful)

Keep going til you find the bad stick. Then keep going and test the remaining to make sure you don't have more than one bad stick.

If no bad sticks found, you can look elsewhere, (hard drive, eek!), but start with memory. It's free to test, barring the cost of the download and the price of an optical media)

Atomic

Rule #1 of hardware diagnostics (well actually rule #1 is backup everything you can't afford to lose, so we'll call this 1.5): Test the memory first. It's free to test, and if you get back a clean test, you don't even have to crack the case.
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Zinfan
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« Reply #8 on: August 29, 2011, 10:16:38 PM »

Thanks for the ideas on troubleshooting the computer.  I'll try that once the 9 gigs finishes downloading which should be in another 2 hours or so, I hate that I have a 14 or so hour download just to try and get this going again, that is my problem with Steam.  I feel they should have some sort of standards on a game they sell on how it patches and such not, requiring multiple 9 gig downloads is not a great system.
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TheAtomicKid
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« Reply #9 on: August 30, 2011, 03:56:32 AM »

Btw, dirty contacts can cause memory problems. The simple act of removing them and reinstalling, has been known to 'fix' things before.

That's interesting about having to re-download the game in its entirety... I've never hit that before. Admittedly my experience with Steam has been relatively trouble-free.

It does have a backup function, once you get it re-setup properly.

Atomic
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Tscott
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« Reply #10 on: August 30, 2011, 04:03:48 AM »

One nice thing about Steam is that after any game downloads to your hard drive it "just works" after a brief first time set-up.  Other download services I've used have you downloading the whole game, then running the installer and going through that whole thing like you're installing from disc.

Then when Steam patches, they only replace the files that are changed and most of the time it's quick and painless.

The problem with the Witcher 2 is they decided to put the whole game into one huge 9gb compressed file.  Thus when it's patched that whole file is what is "changed". even if only a few minimal things inside it have changed, and it all has to download again.  This huge file also caused problems with the dual layer DVDs it was pressed on and caused the game to be uninstallable through many people's DVD drives (including mine. they finally had to give me a GOG.com code for the game.)  Very poor planning on their part to not take into account how that large file would affect both Steam users and people who bought the physical item.

Of course, your situation goes beyond that and is most probably a problem on your end.  
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TheAtomicKid
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« Reply #11 on: August 30, 2011, 04:52:44 AM »

Oh cute. I seem to remember DungeonSiege had similar problems. Large compressed install files, vs them (gas powered games)blaming peoples drive setups at the time... (ata-133). They eventually got it working, but it was a bunch of hogwash. If the drives were the problem, the OS would be on the fritz from go. Well, it was windows, so fritziness is arguable, but I digress...
 
CD Projekt RED to learn what a differential patcher can do, or split the friggen install up into manageable chunks. Or both. Both is nice.

Atomic
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Zinfan
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« Reply #12 on: August 30, 2011, 05:42:02 PM »

I'm sure if I had a decent high speed internet connection that could download the game in a couple of hours then this wouldn't be such an ordeal.  Steam works very well for many but the combination of relatively slow internet and huge file downloads makes this too troublesome for me.  I did find a setting that will prevent Steam from automatically downloading updates and I use that from now on, the first time it patched I had no idea it was doing so and couldn't figure out why my interweb tubes were so slow.  The game did work after the download so I'll be moving onto memory testing to see about the BSD issue.
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