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Skyrim RAM Usage

ram stability

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#1
Blackjohnbird

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Hello fellow modders!

 

Before I begin I want to say that this isn't a topic about a problem that I have but more of a problem that I used to have and I think I found a solution. I posted it in this forum because people that need help with a problem may come here to find a solution and this topic may be of help.

 

Also I'm not sure if the RAM usage has been adressed before but I've searched in google and I haven't seem to find anything relevant.

 

So here's how it goes. I first started playing Skyrim on PC on my Laptop. It had a quad i7x64, 8GB of DDR3 RAM at 1600Mhz, a very low end GPU and Skyrim was installed on my 5400rpm disk. I had pretty large mod list with many script heavy mods (Frostfall, RND, Footprints and such). I also used mods that made Skyrim more stable and of course ENB without graphical modification so I had extended memory and all the other things that an ENB offers. Still Skyrim was unstable and I don't mean my framerate. I'm talking about CTDs while walikng, fighting, activating things and pretty much in any situation. The CTDs wern't always on the same things but they were very very often (10-20 minutes max). I concluded that it was a problem with the heavy scripting but I didn't change my load order.

 

About a year ago I build a custom gaming PC which was pretty powerful. i7-4790K x64, 8GBs of DDR3 RAM at 2400Mhz and a GTX 970 overclocked at 1216Mhz. Also I installed Skyrim at my 850EVO SSD. Please note that while everything was upgraded, my RAM (besides the clock speed) was pretty much the same (8GB DDR3). So I installed the same modlist I had on my laptop and because I had more power to spare I added many textures and an ENB preset. But besides that big upgrade I only noticed a big change in my framerate. Skyrim still wasn't stable and in many cases was unplayable (CTDs seconds after loading a save that was fixed only after fast traveling at a different location). A couple of days ago I made some changes to the .ini files (lowered the shadows), deleted most of my new textures (left only a few 2K textures) and I installed a new performace friendly ENB. That way I tried to reduce the load of my GPU so it almost never exceeds it's limits and Skyrim was running at 90% of the time at more than 60fps. That way I had a very stable framerate and I diminished most of the CTDs caused by the GPU load.

 

So far so good. That's not anything new and it was expected. Still most of my CTDs persisted and it was now clear that my crashes were caused by the scripts. Here I want to add that there weren't any gamebreaking mod conflicts. My load order had many script heavy mods but they didn't conlict with each other. Also most of my CTDs happend when I quicksaved, loaded a save, opened a menu (inventory etc) and when loading a cell while walking. They CTDs didn't happend always in these situations but since these are very used things the CTDs where very often. Also a few days ago when I entered a city or some other intensive area I got a Windows warning about my RAM beeing depleted. It didn't crash my game but it got me thinking. 

 

So today I bought another 8GB of RAM and installed on my PC. So now I have 16GB of DDR3 RAM at 2400Mhz. I opend Skyrim and I was amazed. Besides not getting the RAM Warning (kind of obvious) I didn't experience any CTDs! The cell loading while running around was also improved with much smother loading than before. 

 

I still haven't tested Skyrim extensively but I played for over one hour without a single CTD greater loading performance and also the scripts where running faster and better. Skyrim still doesn't use more RAM than before (about 3 to 3.5 GB) but it looks like having the extra RAM makes it more stable since at any given time it has access to more.

 

I wasn't expecting this outcome (or at least not in that scale) so if anyone can confirm it or knows anything about this matter I would be happy learn it. Also in the case that this observation is right I'm glad it may help some people. 

 

Finaly I'm sorry about the long and maybe badly written and boring post but I think that giving you all this information about the history of my CTDs may help you understand better my case.

Thanks for your time! :smile:



#2
Escoffier

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This is helpful to me as I just purchased another 8gigs of RAM today and also have a gtx 970. I was wondering if I;d notice any sort of difference. 



#3
Blackjohnbird

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I believe you will and i'm glad it could be of use! Happy modding! :)



#4
Escoffier

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Now if I could just figure out how much memory to allocate for enblocal.ini. I get two different results from Boris' detect tool and my display adapter properties in windows 10, and now I'm reading on the STEP guide that windows 10 can only allocate a max of 4096 in DX9 games like Skyrim. Stupid Windows 10. I am disappoint. 



#5
Blackjohnbird

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Well i think that the right amount your RAM+VRAM-2048 so if you have 16GBs of RAM and a GTX 970 you should allocate 18432GBs. But when I did this Skyrim couldn't even start. So I sticked with allocating 4096 (only my VRAM). It can work with more (like 10240GBs) but with 18432GBs it never worked. As for Windows 10 I had to roll back to Windows 7 because stuff like SweatFX dindn't work at all making most ENBs completely useless. So if you want to mod Skyrim you might have to use some other version of Windows. 



#6
Gazz43

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Now if I could just figure out how much memory to allocate for enblocal.ini. I get two different results from Boris' detect tool and my display adapter properties in windows 10, and now I'm reading on the STEP guide that windows 10 can only allocate a max of 4096 in DX9 games like Skyrim. Stupid Windows 10. I am disappoint. 

skyrim's memory cap is 3.1 GB ram if mods are added your game you will be looking at an extra 2 GB maybe 3 GB this is why people with a CPU that's only 4 GB get CTDs People need to know that some of the CPU Memory is used for the software to run the PCs programs in other words the Computers brain. 







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