[Solution/Workaround] Battlefield: Bad Company 2 Locking up/Freezing/Crashing

Discussion in 'MSI AfterBurner Application Development Forum' started by king-dubs, Apr 22, 2011.

  1. king-dubs

    king-dubs Ancient Guru

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    Hey guys,

    I've seen way too many posts about this over and over.

    I wanted to consolidate everything into one thread.

    As you may know, the hard-locking/freezing/crashing/BSoDing in Battlefield: Bad Company 2 is caused by Punkbuster.

    The reason is, Punkbuster is accessing restricted memory locations reserved for hardware (particularly the GPU). (As revealed by Unwinder)

    The result is, just about any hardware monitoring program will cause the game to lock up if you are playing in a Punkbuster-protected server on BFBC2 Multiplayer with the software(s) running. (e.g. MSI Afterburner, SAPPHIRE TRIXX, GPU-Z, ASUS iTracker, ASUS SmartDoctor)

    Software that comes with your motherboard (like the ASUS overclocking tools) can also cause the BSoD/crash. And many of them can be running in the background without being obvious. For example, ASUS SmartDoctor is still running even after "Exiting". It runs a service called ASDR. Stop it, and stop crashing. I learned this after flashed my 6950 with an ASUS BIOS to use SmartDoctor to extend overclock range (to prevent having to use UnofficialOC Mode in Afterburner).

    Solutions/Workarounds:
    1. The best solution is to have everyone open EA/Evenbalance support tickets about this very issue. Once there's a large amount of people, they are sure to listen, as hopeless as it may seem at first.

    2. The best workaround in my opinion is one provided by Unwinder himself. That is, to stop MSI Afterburner from accessing certain low-level functions of the GPU by neutering it. To do so, all you have to do is navigate to the Afterburner folder and then rename "RTCore.cfg" to anything else (or delete it, but that's not recommended). Do this BEFORE running Afterburner of course. If you already have it running, you'll need to restart Afterburner. This will stop the freezing/crashing in BFBC2 while having Afterburner running, and will preserve your user-defined fan profiles. However, certain features may no longer work (like fan RPM monitoring, which is all I've noticed different other than a much more stable BFBC2 MP gameplay).

    TL;DR version: Rename RTCore.cfg

    3. Popular, but not recommended workaround: use an older version like v2.0.0. The problem is, these older versions may not be completely compatible with your shiny new GPU. I suggest using workaround #2.

    4. Pause monitoring in MSI Afterburner. This was the first working workaround I've found. However, this won't do anything if you have user-defined fan profile as the program continues to monitor and will cause a BSoD if PB tries to scan.

    5. The most unwanted workaround: don't use Afterburner or any other monitoring software. This works, but I'm sure most of you here WANT to use Afterburner.

    Hope this has helped you all!

    Please do consider solution #1 first!


    Sources cited:
    Unwinder on Afterburner neutering

    Unwinder on Punkbuster scanning flaw causing crashes
     
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2011
  2. pphx459

    pphx459 Member

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    Looks like there is a new bc2 punkbuster update today. Anyone try this yet with AB?
     
  3. king-dubs

    king-dubs Ancient Guru

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    According to some other people, there's no fix yet.
     
  4. king-dubs

    king-dubs Ancient Guru

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    BAD news:
    I removed my workaround temporarily and used Afterburner. The new PB update made it crash sooner. WAY sooner.

    Put my workaround back, working perfectly fine again.

    Looks like the new PB update is still a fail.
     

  5. k10ck3r

    k10ck3r New Member

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    Until PB is fixed (not holding my breath), some of you may find this to be useful:

    I have created two batch files in the afterburner directory. One is called LaunchForPb.bat, and the other is called LaunchNormal.bat. They shut down the active afterburner processes and relaunch afterburner with the selected mode. This way, I can run afterburner normally until I want to play BC2, at which point I invoke the LaunchForPb batch file. When I am done playing, I invoke the LaunchNormal batch file.

    Here are the contents of the batch files:

    LaunchForPb.bat:
    @echo off
    taskkill /f /im RTSS.exe
    taskkill /f /im MSIAfterburner.exe
    if EXIST RTCore.cfg move RTCore.cfg RTCore.cfg.bak
    start MSIAfterburner

    LaunchNormal.bat:
    @echo off
    taskkill /f /im RTSS.exe
    taskkill /f /im MSIAfterburner.exe
    if EXIST RTCore.cfg.bak move RTCore.cfg.bak RTCore.cfg
    start MSIAfterburner
     
  6. Dublin_Gunner

    Dublin_Gunner Ancient Guru

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    Could you not add a start for bc2 into the config file also?

    Means you could essentially use the 1 file for your workaround and 'shortcut' for bc2... (to save having to click 2 things, and having to remember to click the bat file separately).


    Is this issue only on AMD cards? I've never noticed it on my 570, 8800gts 320 or gtx460.

    Saying that, I never noticed it on my 4870 either... (and I've been using Afterburner for donkeys, with the OSD).
     
  7. king-dubs

    king-dubs Ancient Guru

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    But do you play BFBC2 on MP on PB-protected servers for > 10 minutes with Afterburner / GPU-Z running in the background?
     
  8. Dublin_Gunner

    Dublin_Gunner Ancient Guru

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    Yep, nearly every night.

    Usually play on 1000 ticket servers, so you could be talking 40 mins per round. I've honestly never had this issue.

    I never play on non-pb servers, and always have afterburner running, with the OSD on (I like to see my cards load and temps etc).

    Very odd issue. Have people with NV cards reported having this issue? (though as I said, never happened with my HD 4870, which I had up until just before christmas).

    Is there anything you'd like me to test / check that might help?
     
  9. king-dubs

    king-dubs Ancient Guru

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    Use PBSetup to update PunkBuster.

    Older PunkBuster does NOT cause the issues mentioned in OP.

    You may be one of the lucky few who was not updated to the new, bugged Punkbuster.
     
  10. cesthree

    cesthree Member

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    Thanks for both of these posts and all of your solutions.

    Currently, I am using your batch file workaround; they are working great. Thanks!

    I have updated my PB to 2.267 and today to 2.269. Both of those versions still have the same problem.

    Sigh...submitted EA and PB troubleshooting tickets and have not had a reply from either of them, for over 3 weeks.

    Purchased ARMA II at Steam on sale because BC2 has lost my attention, mostly because of these Punkbuster + AB + HD 6xxx problems. BF3 is definitely not on my wishlist.

    Getting really bored of Battlefield/EA/Dice games; Crysis 2 was a huge waste of time and I'm glad I played it on a friend's system instead of buying it.

    Playing mostly DCS: A-10C and IL-2 Sturmovik these days as shooters are just retarded anymore. If I didn't use my PC for flight simulators, work, and pron, I probably wouldn't even own one. Funny, because that's why I purchased a high end system to begin with - shooters - starting with BF2 in 2005. /soapbox.

    Anyways, thanks for all of your help with these solutions/workarounds.
     

  11. mikami

    mikami Active Member

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    Guys I'm new at using afterburner so sorry if i sound ignorant. But the afterburner exe does not need to run just to apply the clocks right? Because I only checked "apply overclock at start up" and the afterburner exe did not run after boot but according to gpu z my overclock was applied.
     
  12. wuyanxu

    wuyanxu Member

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    this issue apparently have been solved run PBsetup here:
    http://www.evenbalance.com/index.php?page=pbsetup.php

    and then it should update to v2.272, with that version, i was able to FRAPs record for over 3 hours without crashing. haven't restore RTCore.cfg yet, but seeing i only use Afterburner to change fan speed, don't think i need low level stuff.
     
  13. mikami

    mikami Active Member

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    wuyanxu when exactly was it fixed because i had a freeze 2 days ago and i updated the pbsetup 2 days ago.



    by the way can anyone answer my question? Afterburner doesn't need to run the exe to apply clocks at start up? Theres no afterburner.exe in the task manager or system tray. But every reboot it keeps the overclock according to gpu z. I'm not complaining just wondering if gpu z is correct and the overclock has been applied without the afterburner app running. Which is amazing if it's true.
     
  14. k10ck3r

    k10ck3r New Member

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    I need to run the exe at startup to apply the fan profiles. I don't overclock my card, so I can't speak to the clock settings.
     
  15. mikami

    mikami Active Member

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    ok for anyone that cares i got a reply on the matter
    "It runs, sets the clocks and shuts down again. There's a task in the scheduler which runs MSIAfterburner.exe /s, which I'm guessing is silent mode, at startup. But if you turn off admin privileges for the task, you'll still see the UAC prompt."
     
    Last edited: May 7, 2011

  16. king-dubs

    king-dubs Ancient Guru

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    Yes it'll be fine for those who just want to overclock. But it does not help people who want to use the user-defined fan profile feature, which does require Afterburner to be running.
     
  17. lmimmfn

    lmimmfn Ancient Guru

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    this has been driving me nuts tonight, can i just overclock in afterburner, set fan control, quit and run the game and not expect it to crash?
     
  18. Martinx71

    Martinx71 New Member

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    Hey, I recently had precisely the same problem. I got sick of the fans getting maxed out at startup and sometimes afterburner not being able to launch on startup. so, I created a bat file that renames the RTCore.dll and launches the game. It also renames RTCore.dll back to original when the game is closed and a button is pressed. This works with the steam version of the game, and with the cd version of the game.
    ***Steam Version***

    @echo off
    cd "C:\Program Files (x86)\MSI Afterburner"
    Ren "RTCore.dll" "RTCore1.dll"
    cd "C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\battlefield bad company 2"
    start BFBC2Game.exe
    pause
    cd "C:\Program Files (x86)\MSI Afterburner"
    Ren "RTCore1.dll" "RTCore.dll"

    ***CD Version*** REPLACE PATH WITH PATH TO GAME FOLDER
    @echo off
    cd "C:\Program Files (x86)\MSI Afterburner"
    Ren "RTCore.dll" "RTCore1.dll"
    cd "PLACE PATH HERE"
    start BFBC2Game.exe
    pause
    cd "C:\Program Files (x86)\MSI Afterburner"
    Ren "RTCore1.dll" "RTCore.dll"
     
  19. phatbx133

    phatbx133 Master Guru

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    Just bought Asus 6870 for 140 bucks last week.

    I use 11.7 whql for my 6870 and install Asus smartdoctor (newest version).

    Here what I findings below.

    Fps range 75-120 with all max setting, 1680x1050, sync off, 8x AA, 16x AF and updated PB.

    short word ( AB=afterburner, SD=smartdoctor, PC=playclaw )

    BFBC2 =no hard lock up

    BFBC2 +AB+SD=hard lock up

    BFBC2 +AB=hard lock up

    BFBC2 +SD+PC=no hard lock up

    ( I am currently use it both SD and PC no plm with BFBC2 for last over 2 hours played straight for purpose testing.)

    I have no choice but dump AB for Playclaw I like it for now.

    just my 2 cents.
     
  20. krishnarama108

    krishnarama108 Master Guru

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    i have occasionaly problems too, like CTD ..i use msi AB with fan curve..latest beta 2.2.5 and now i have no crashes...
    its something with msi AB -pb issue or server / PB server/ maintance issues...i read that this game crash a lot on ps3 and xbox too... hm?
     

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