Hard Light Productions Forums

General FreeSpace => FreeSpace & FreeSpace Open Support => Topic started by: Jeff Vader on September 07, 2008, 12:35:18 pm

Title: READ THIS BEFORE POSTING! FreeSpace 2 Open Frequently Asked Questions (FSO FAQ)
Post by: Jeff Vader on September 07, 2008, 12:35:18 pm
Before doing anything else, read through this thread! In 9 cases out of 10, the problem/error you've encountered is a known issue and has already been answered here. Not to mention that it is really a lot faster if you read through this thread, find a solution and apply it compared to you asking about your problem and waiting for someone to tell you the same things that are explained in this thread.
The first post contains some useful general tips on what to do with different kinds of problems, as well as a list of the most common known problems, categorized under "General Issues", "Graphical Issues", "Sound Issues" and "Gameplay Issues".
The next four posts contain descriptions and solutions to those categorized problems.
The last post is extremely important if you are experiencing a problem that isn't included in this thread. The post contains instructions on how to create a file called fs2_open.log using the debug version of FSO. That file can be a tremendous help when us tech support lads try to figure out what might be wrong.

Also keep in mind that

If your problem is about FS1, go ahead and start a new thread, as this FAQ deals with only FS2/FSO problems.

Before posting about a problem:
If you're playing FSO and do not have particular hardware limitations, always use either the latest official or the recommended build.
- The latest official and recommended build is currently 3.8.0 Final (https://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=93812.0).
- The latest Launchers are also available from thread above. Using wxLauncher is recommended.

Whenever this FAQ mentions "the recommended build", it means the build above.

Useful links:
Mod Installation Instructions (http://www.hard-light.net/wiki/index.php/Installing_Mods_for_FS2_Open) (also covered in the manual installation instructions stickied on this board)

Multiplayer Instructions (http://www.hard-light.net/wiki/index.php/Portal:Multiplayer)

General Issues (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php/topic,56279.msg1180353.html#msg1180353)

Sound Issues (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php/topic,56279.msg1180355.html#msg1180355)

Graphical Issues (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php/topic,56279.msg1180356.html#msg1180356)

Gameplay Issues (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php/topic,56279.msg1180357.html#msg1180357)

fs2_open.log / debug log (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php/topic,56279.msg1180359.html#msg1180359)

Most of the issues and solutions apply to total conversions such as The Babylon Project and Wing Commander Saga, too.

If you have issues with mods, such as Derelict or Blue Planet, and if the issue isn't listed here,  post in the release thread of the particular mod.

Finally, if you've spotted errors, outright inconsistencies, broken links, or if you have any information which you think may be useful and should be added to this thread, please PM The E about it.[/list]
Title: General Issues
Post by: Jeff Vader on December 19, 2008, 11:20:33 am
General Issues

"Web cursor bitmap not found."

"OpenAL32.dll not found."
More discussion in this thread (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php/topic,48621.0.html).

"The launcher must be in the same directory as the binary you are tying to use."

"IMPORTANT NOTE: There was an error while installing this section. You may need to run the Installer again in order to ensure that this section works correctly."

"ship/texture/etc not found."

"FreeSpace/FRED cannot be run from a root directory."

"FreeSpace was unable to find [n] ship classes while loading this mission."

"Failed to save pilot file."

"Freespace has detected that you only have n MB of free memory. Freespace requires at least 32MB of memory to run."

"When attempting to play a red alert mission, everything is black/the game crashes."

"The cutscenes won't play."

"The cutscenes show up only in the upper-left corner of the screen and won't scale up to fullscreen."

"The game freezes to the splash screen."

"I can't get the mods to work" / "None of the custom campaigns show up in the Campaign Room"
""Can't open model file <S_Rockeye.pof>" when playing FSPort."

"Error: mv_strings-lcl.tbm is corrupt"

"Slowdowns in nebula missions in FS2."

"Error: Could not load in main hall mask 'MainScreen-M'! (This error most likely means that you are missing required 640x480 interface art.)"

"The game crashes on startup, without opening a window"

Launcher gives an error message "Cannot write to registry" (Launcher 5.5g) or "Unhandled error in setting HKLM key" (wxLauncher)
This error can happen on Windows 10. Here's how to fix it:

Code: [Select]
Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00


"Interlaced Movies"=dword:00000000
"Movie Fast Clear"=dword:00000000
"Detect Glide"=dword:00000000
"Detect D3D"=dword:00000001

Title: Sound Issues
Post by: Jeff Vader on December 19, 2008, 11:21:23 am
Sound Issues

No sounds.

Simulated speech doesn't work.

There are no voices in <insert mod name here>.

Not all sounds are played
Title: Graphical Issues
Post by: Jeff Vader on December 19, 2008, 11:21:51 am
Graphical Issues

"Missing models / Missing textures / The game just crashes when trying to start/continue even the main FS2 campaign."

"Game freezes when viewing ships in the Techroom database."

"I have an ATI X1*** graphics card."
The drivers for ATI's X1[somethingoranother] cards after version 7.10 include a ****ed up version of OpenGL. Problems that you may experience when playing FSO with an ATIX1*** graphics card include (but are not limited to) random crashing, persistent crashing, graphical oddities and such and such. But not to worry; there are cures.

"Unable to get proper pixel format for OpenGL W32!"

"Invisible asteroids" / "Missing ship textures."

"Black boxes around effects."

"Severe slowdowns during gameplay."

"The suns and other background elements move in a funny way."

"Ships have black and white stripes all over them / Textures have a chessboard misplacement effect."
More discussion in this thread (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php/topic,53110.0.html).

"Unable to play in OpenGL."

"There are no nebulas in the background, just stars."

"The stars disappear whenever I am not moving."

"No graphical updates, when trying to play the FS2 main campaign."

"Shivan beams look wrong with the 3.6.10 MediaVPs."

"Damage lightning looks weird."
"Models are rendered partially invisible."
"My Desktop is reflected on in-game objects"

"DDS ERROR: Couldn't open 'somefilename' -- DDS is compressed but compression support is not enabled"
Title: Gameplay Issues
Post by: Jeff Vader on December 19, 2008, 11:23:18 am
Gameplay Issues

Some ships/weapons are missing even though I'm told that they'd be available.

No weapons / Only the Ulysses as a usable ship / One or more ships replaced by a Ulysses.

No Interceptor missiles during Advanced Training in FSPort.

"In-game dialogue is missing"
Title: help us help you
Post by: Jeff Vader on December 19, 2008, 11:24:33 am
The help section

Getting a debug log is very easy in knossos:

1: open Knossos and go to the card representing the mod that is giving you trouble:

2: In the drop-down menu, use the "Run Fast Debug" option:

3: Run the game until you hit an error and quit. Then use the "Upload Debug Log" option:

This will give you a link, which you can then post in Discord or the support topic.


If you are facing an issue that isn't listed here and to which you just cannot find a solution, you can and must inform us of it. But, when starting a thread, you must be prepared to provide some information to us. Mainly, your fs2_open.log, dubbed "debug log" by some people, is a file generated by debug builds. It contains all sorts of useful information that we need in order to help you. That is why you should follow the instructions below and provide us with that file when asking for help.

And yes: the name of the file really is "fs2_open.log". The error message you get is not the thing I'm after here. Neither is "errorlog.txt". We want your fs2_open.log!

Creating an fs2_open.log happens like this (click each step for a helpful picture):

Knossos launcher/installer

Windows launcher (aka 5.5g)

wxLauncher (also Diaspora launcher)

If you want to try and figure out the problem by yourself, details on the contents of fs2_open.log can be found here (http://www.hard-light.net/forums/index.php?topic=75899.0).

Your improved fs2_open.log:
Your improved fs2_open.log is not needed by default, but if some helpful HLP member asks you to provide one, here's how you create them:

If you have a problem when using FRED, a similar mechanism can be used to generate the fred2_open.log.