Jump to content
LaptopVideo2Go Forums
LSudlow

Larry's INFs for Dell 5150/5160

Recommended Posts

Guest dlpriest

What you are experiencing cannot be blamed just on your video card, you are experiencing what most 5150 owners go through after a certain period of time.

The cooling system within the DELL Inspiron 5150 is laughable at best, I've used one for quite some time and I've traced this problem to Speedstep and heat.

Basically your machine is throttling up and down in response to the major heat output from your CPU.

If you track the data being output from your system via monitoring software you can see these stutters are caused by Speedstep throttling your system when things are getting too hot.

The solution itself is quite simple.

Download SpeedswitchXP, install it.

Run Speedswitch XP and set it to "Battery optimized" when on AC power.

Reboot, press F2 to enter your BIOS settings, ALT+P until you find the page that has the speedstep enable/disable option, disable it.

Save and exit the BIOS settings, your CPU will now be clocked at half it's normal frequency, next step is to download I8K which will allow you to force the highest fan setting possible at all times on your laptop, this will allow for better cooling but will also lower the fans expected life (The fan will outlast your motherboard in an Inspiron 5150 anyways)

Force the cooling fan to it's fastest speed at all times, this will be noisy.

To take some strain off the video card find out how you can set the number of pre-rendered frames to 0, so the GPU doesn't have to work overtime rendering frames you have not seen yet.

You can enable Speedswitch XP to pump out your maximum CPU speed once again if so be your wish but I'm sure you will find all your games run just fine on the half-clock setting.

This is a common problem referred to as "matrix lag".

Anyone who disagrees with this solution is a fool and should never speak again about hardware/software.

At some point you're also going to have to bite the bullet and remove the horrible stock thermal compound that DELL decided to slather all over your CPU, get a good non conductive silver thermal paste and apply only a VERY small amount to the top of the CPU. Make sure to remove the old crap using rubbing alcohol.

Spread the word, I'm seeing way too many posts about this stutter problem and people barking up the wrong tree thinking it is a driver issue.

Stop ignorance where it starts folks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
LSudlow

October 24, 2006 update:

- At the request of (quite a few) people needing more performance, I've optimized all default settings to the highest performance available. If you're a tweaker who is comfortable adjusting your own settings, you don't need these new infs. This update is for those who prefer to use default settings, but need more performance.

- Also, by request, I've added a 90 series inf. But be warned - it fails miserably on my 5150. Games, in particular, are stretched horizontally and extend off the right edge of the screen. This happens with all 90 series drivers I've tried, and happens with Pieter's inf as well as my own. It may be a glitch in my hardware or one of my other system settings. I'll keep researching this, but in the meantime you can try NV_90_Disp.inf if you want to experiment.

As always, please let me know if anything doesn't work correctly. And please let me know if you find a solution to the Series 90 driver problem.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
trugamer23

Hello I'm tryin to play games like marvel ultimate alliance and scarface on my laptop and these games move very choppy with low fps. Can you recommend to me some good drivers that can handle these games at a decent framrate?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
LSudlow

Decent framerates are a relative thing with the Go5200. It will never be a good gaming card no matter what we do with drivers. The fastest driver available that's compatible with DX9c is 67.66, which you can use with my nv4_disp.inf. (I've got all the defaults set to the fastest settings.)

That may help a bit, but you'll probably also have to reduce your game settings too, to achieve better framerates. Choosing a lower resolution and turning off shadows can really help a lot.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
coyote

Thanks for the info dlpriest.

I have done all the things you sugested .Will see if things improve.

LSudlow have installed your latest 90's inf . in the 91.47 .Shuts down sometimes with error message nv4_disp.inf is locked in infinite loop.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
LSudlow

I haven't run into that particular problem, but it seems the 9x drivers aren't too compatible with our machines.

On a separate note, I've been running 84.25 for a couple of weeks now and it seems like a pretty good driver for those who don't need PowerMizer. It's not quite as fast as 67.66 or 71.44, but does seem to solve some problems with more recent games.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
coyote

I think its a problem with my machine as i have reformatted a # of times over the last year and installed each and every nevidia driver we have access to and eventually the error message pops up. the only driver which does not get the error is the original dell 5200 driver.

Right now i'm using the latest 91.47 driver with your fix and dlpriest's suggestions.So far in playing C.S it seems to run smoother but takes longer to load at 1/2 cpu speed. I will know more when my son plays the game. I do the tweaking he does the playing.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
coyote

update to Oct 28 06

My son tried CS after all the tweaks and was happy with the results.No more lagging behind and runs smooth.Also the heat issuse is under control and I have not had the error messages I used to get. Problem Solved!!!

Thanks Guys for all the info and Help.

Ian

PS: I think the info dlpriest provided should be pinned so as to not loose it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
LSudlow

November 29, 2006 update:

- I believe I've solved the problem where an initial install (not an upgrade) would default to either Dual-View or Clone mode instead of Single Display on the 5150/5160's LCD. This has the unexpected bonus of being much more stable on Vista as well. After a number of changes, I think we're back to having a pretty polished inf that should work for most Inspiron 5150/5160 users under most situations, including those who want to use XP drivers with Vista.

If you find any problems with installation, particiuarly with it defaulting to Dual-View or Clone mode, please let me know. And of course let me know if these changes have messed up anything else.

If not, I believe we have a pretty solid set of infs here, with the exception of the NV4_90_disp.inf, which I still can't run on my machine. Others seem to be fine with it, though, so you are free to try it if you like.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
LSudlow

December 22, 2006 update:

- Changed StartType to 3 to conform with current Windows P&P driver requirements and improve compatibility with Vista.

- Fixed a problem where non-default resolutions were lost when restarting the laptop.

- Disabled Texture Precaching, since the FX Go5200 doesn't have enough memory to do it.

- Enabled overclocking in all infs. (Though overclocking is definitely not a good idea with the 5150/5160.)

- Removed obsolete custom infs.

- Created a custom inf for (excellent) driver version 97.44. It doesn't use the new control panel, though. This should work with other 97 series drivers as well. Just modify the version number.

NOTE: You may need to uninstall your previous driver before installing drivers in the 97 series. Upgrades seem to fail for some reason, but clean installs should work fine.

As always, let me know if anything doesn't work correctly.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Ultima

Thanks LSudlow :)

I was just wondering... how does 97.44 compare with 67.66 or 71.44?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
LSudlow

Ultima, I apologize for not responding earlier. I haven't benchmarked 97.44, but my framerate in Oblivion is just as high as with the earlier drivers. (Not that 12 fps is very high in any case.) It doesn't have the screen-stretching effect that earlier 90-series drivers had on the 5150.

It doesn't have PowerMizer, of course, but I now accept that and have moved on. :)

The only flaw I see is that if you prefer a screen resolution lower than your LCD's max, you're out of luck. It seems to reboot to max resolution no matter what you were using when you shut down your machine.

Also, upgrading from earlier drivers is a problem and causes a crash when you first reboot after installing. If you uninstall your previous driver first and do a clean install, it works fine. Likewise, you need to uninstall the 97 series driver before downgrading to earlier drivers. There must be a fairly major architecture change causing this.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Ultima

That's alright, nothing to apologize over :)

To bug you some more... Can these drivers be installed with the .inf method, or is the installer absolutely required? If the answer is "no" to the first question, then have you any idea which files are unnecessary? NVLite isn't doing that great a job clearing the drivers out, and I can only assume it's because of the extra junk files added for the new control panel, which I don't fancy all too much anyway ;o

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
LSudlow

You can use the .inf method. In fact, I agree with you about the new control panel so my inf just uses the old control panel and doesn't load those files. :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Xragon

Larry I don't have question right now but I just wanted to thank you very much for all the hard work you've done here, I've been coming here for almost a year now and every suggest you've made about the 5200 has just been great, your drivers are a major improvement, and while the Inspiron 5160 is hardly a gaming machine your driver infs have made it almost bearable.

So thank you for all the time you've sunk into this. :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
LSudlow

Thanks for the good words - I really appreciate it. The 5150/5160s were tolerable gaming machines when they first appeared, but quickly lost ground. They still meet the minimum requirements for most current games, but usually only with all graphics options at their lowest quality, and usually with a barely acceptable framerate. (I've grown accustomed to playing Oblivion at between 3 and 12 fps.)

Sadly, they're hampered by having only 32 or 64MB of VRAM in a gaming world that requires a minimum of 128. And the choice of the P4M over the Centrino was a mistake since there's no good way to disperse so much heat. Still, if we could just get our hands on some 128 or 256MB Go5200s (or better), it would help enormously since the rest of the machine is still pretty good.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
DarthCake

Hi,

I'm using the 71.44 driver with your .inf files for a long time now. Its seems the 97.44 driver is doing well, do you have a little comparison with the 71.44?

Also i have been testing and looking for fixing the known heat trouble. Using SpeedswitchXP can help a lot. By running the cpu at 1600MHz (P4 3.06) instead of switching between 3.06GHz and 1600MHz when it gets to hot, u can work away the irritating cpu lag. The cpu get only 55°C stable (in my case) instead of 60-62°C where the cpu normal switch the speed to 1600MHz to lose heat.

I'm now waiting on some Arctic Silver 5 to replace it with the default thermal compound, hoping to reduce the temperature with a few degrees so i can run the cpu on full speed in games.

If that don't help, i probably will try to clock the cpu at 2500MHz or something of that is possible. Not that i really need the cpu power to play games, because the gpu can't handle the games at all.

I also have noticed some problems with particle's or something. If there is some smoke or snow in a game for example, the frames drops drastic.

Also running 2D games with particles like snow makes the game run very slowly, while on any other pc it goes fine.

I don't know if the 3D "issue" is related with the 2D or not, maybe u know what is causing it?

I have an example of such a 2D game, its made by a nephew with "Game Maker", but its bigger then 1000k ...

Excuse me for my English :) .

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
LSudlow

Hi, DarthCake - Your english is fine!

Although I haven't benchmarked it, 97.44 seems just as fast as 71.44, which is an improvement over the 8x series, and a BIG improvement over earlier 9x derivers. The biggest problem is that it has no PowerMizer. If you need that, I'd stick with 71.44.

If you do decide to go with the 97 series, be sure to uninstall 71.44 first, then do a clean install of the new driver.

The reason people are having such success with running the CPU at half-speed, is because the Go5200 is the system's bottleneck. The CPU spends so much time waiting for the GPU that running it at half speed makes no noticable difference and definitely keeps things much cooler. I'm not quite ready to recommend this for all 5150/5160 users, but people are definitely having good luck with this approach.

I'm not sure what you mean about 2D particles, but 3D particle effects are a real challenge for the Go5200 and can really bog things down, especailly when using shader model 2.0.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
zipper
The biggest problem is that it has no PowerMizer. If you need that, I'd stick with 71.44.

I have been installing on older 9.x drivers without using driver cleaner, so I still have a working

PowerMizer with 91.44.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
LSudlow

Unfortunately, it doesn't work on machines that have a FX G05200.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Xragon

Hey again, I'm having a bit of a problem with the new 97.44 driver, it seems the the screen keeps getting set to dual view when I reboot the computer instead of saving the Single Display I set... tis a small problem I agree but can anything be done about it?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
LSudlow

I haven't had the problem you're reporting, but it's probably related to a similar problem with this driver. 97.44 always jumps to the highest resolution available when you reboot, rather than staying with your chosen resolution. Clearly these settings aren't being saved properly, but I don't yet know how to fix it.

If anyone out there can shed some light on this, I'd appreciate your jumping in here. Thanks!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
DarthCake

First and for all, a Happy new year from Belgium!

Hi, DarthCake - Your english is fine!

Ow, nice to read, touch it was terrible ...

Although I haven't benchmarked it, 97.44 seems just as fast as 71.44, which is an improvement over the 8x series, and a BIG improvement over earlier 9x derivers. The biggest problem is that it has no PowerMizer. If you need that, I'd stick with 71.44.

I think i don't really need PowerMizer, I'm using adapter the hole time ...

But is everything put on max performance then?

I will try it out over a few weeks, when i have more time for it.

The reason people are having such success with running the CPU at half-speed, is because the Go5200 is the system's bottleneck. The CPU spends so much time waiting for the GPU that running it at half speed makes no noticable difference and definitely keeps things much cooler. I'm not quite ready to recommend this for all 5150/5160 users, but people are definitely having good luck with this approach.

I'm not sure what you mean about 2D particles, but 3D particle effects are a real challenge for the Go5200 and can really bog things down, especially when using shader model 2.0.

The 3D problem is really noticeable in the expansion of call of duty, the smokenades makes a real mess on my pc :) .

Even if we would be able to upgrade our FX5200 to 128MB, it won't change anything about "special" effects like smoke or dynamic lightning/shadows ...

It would be nice if dell/nvidia had made from the vga slot, a standard slot for mobile vga cards, so we could replace the graphic card with other newer/better vga cards.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
LSudlow

DarthCake, yes, I've set PowerMizer to max performance at all times on drivers later than 71.44. That's okay for everyone most of the time, but it's a problem for people who need maximum battery life. Those people should stick with 71.44 or 67.66.

And a Happy New Year to you, as well!

:)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Xragon

I've been doing some more testing with the 97.44 driver, I have notice that in newer games some effects such as shadows are better rendered. But unfortunately the frame rate is still a touch slower than the older drivers in most cases, I noticed these drops more in older games such as UT2004 and the better rendered graphics and same frame rate in new games such as Counter Strike Source and WarRock.

With the current lack of save support for some settings and the fact that there is some noticeable frame rate drops I would suggest the lower driver still, but of course it's really up to the individual to choose, both work and have there ups and downs.

Have a Happy New Year oh and here's a banana... :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...