Monday, May 27, 2013

The Great FPS Mystery

A few posts back, I mentioned that something had happened to increase my frame rate, the "smoothness" with which Second Life performs.  My frames per second (fps) had gone way up, from an average of maybe 15-20 to 50, 60, or even more.  The improvement was so significant that it even enabled me to use Shadows for the first time ever (barring the occasional photograph).  Just what it is that caused this, I have no idea.

Now a new factor has reared its head.  In my home region of Masocado, at ground level, I'm seeing some terrible lag...but ONLY when I face a particular direction.  Face one way, fps = 50.  Face the other way, fps = 2.  The problem does not occur if I'm under the water, or high up in the sky.

From that, I suspect that there is some texture out there, or some object, that is really hammering my graphics card.  But where is the darn thing?  I've moved to various parts of the sim, and tried to "triangulate".  The problem seems to be coming from somewhere on the docks, or the condo tower building, or the new beach house by the towers. 

(Although my partner Cindi reports a different result.  She gets a change in fps with the direction she's facing too, but for her it's a different direction!)

I started de-rendering things in the hope of finding the culprit.  When I temporarily erased the boats at the docks from my sight, my fps took a jump up, and I rejoiced briefly.  But then, back it plummeted again.

So far, I have no idea how to find or fix the problem, but it's making life at Masocado less than pleasant.  If anyone reading this has some ideas, please post a comment here or IM me in world.


  1. General improvement in fps likely to be down to the under-the-hood improvements LL are making to SL. These include:

    - Use of HTTP for texture fetching (faster downloading)
    - Improvements to the rendering system itself (faster rendering)
    - More intelligent use of the interest list (faster, more orderly download & rendering of textures and objects, particularly beneficial if you keep DD down reasonably low) PLUS only sending your viewer information it actually needs to process, raher than throwing "everything" around you at it & leaving it to sort out what it needs to do with the information
    - Updates to the GPU table, so that the viewer can more correctly identify the graphics card you're using and adjust itself accordingly.

    More work is still to come in some / all of these areas (interest list work especially needs further refinement and viewer-side work to be effective), but taken together or individually, the above could all be helping you.

  2. The problem it seems is not the high fps rate but the sunndely drop on them when facing a specific direction|
    LL advise or LL lovers 1 is fill a jira!
    Doubt it would help but i can't really say any that would help you more!

    1. I should clarify...the fps drop is not always associated with a specific direction. I mean, it's not like everywhere I go, my frame rate drops if I face South. It happens only in my own sim, and when I am at ground level, and facing...something. I don't know what that something is, but it seems to be somewhere in the docks area. There are a number of large sculpty and mesh boats in that area -- maybe it has something to do with that.