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Old 01-01-2012, 02:08 PM   #1
Matthew_rs7
 
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Does Skyrim only use 2 cores?

When Skyrim first launched I heard a lot of complaints that it only uses 2 cores.

Has this been fixed? will it be fixed? Also, why would a quad core be listes in recommended requirements if it doesn't utilize them?
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Old 01-01-2012, 02:29 PM   #2
fabiostahl
 
 
 
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The game doesn't use more than 2 cores because it probably doesn't need it. To run using 4 cores, you probably should have a quad-sli videocard setup to keep it up.
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Old 01-01-2012, 02:49 PM   #3
ZakTheEvil
 
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That's what Tom's Hardware said in November.

This my highly un-scientific method of observation

I have Core i7 2600. I turned off most unnecessary processes. When running Skyrim I see activity on 4 threads, 4 threads idle completely. When I quit Skyrim all cores drop to near 0%. So it seems that it might be actually using 4 cores but it's not using hyperthreading to utilize the 8 logical cores, only the 4 real cores. Also, Windows 7 may handle this better than XP. The overall CPU load is only around 20-25% and TESV.exe causes average load of 23% with around 30 active threads.
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Old 01-01-2012, 02:57 PM   #4
ZakTheEvil
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fabiostahl View Post
The game doesn't use more than 2 cores because it probably doesn't need it. To run using 4 cores, you probably should have a quad-sli videocard setup to keep it up.
Actually, according to Tom's Hardware test Skyrim is CPU limited and doesn't benefit from SLI much. But that was back in November, before the patch and before new, optimized Nvidia drivers. Perhaps it's no longer true. I hope so. I have a GTX580 and I have my eye on a few used 580s on eBay for SLI setup. In my case the video card seems to be the limit. My CPU is still under 30% when my frame rate drops to 30s in busy areas.
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Old 01-01-2012, 03:52 PM   #5
squall_leonhart
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ZakTheEvil View Post
That's what Tom's Hardware said in November.

This my highly un-scientific method of observation

I have Core i7 2600. I turned off most unnecessary processes. When running Skyrim I see activity on 4 threads, 4 threads idle completely. When I quit Skyrim all cores drop to near 0%. So it seems that it might be actually using 4 cores but it's not using hyperthreading to utilize the 8 logical cores, only the 4 real cores. Also, Windows 7 may handle this better than XP. The overall CPU load is only around 20-25% and TESV.exe causes average load of 23% with around 30 active threads.
thats called load balancing and works by balancing the working threads across multiple cores to keep their invidual temperatures and power usage low.
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Old 01-01-2012, 04:01 PM   #6
ZakTheEvil
 
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Originally Posted by squall_leonhart View Post
thats called load balancing and works by balancing the working threads across multiple cores to keep their invidual temperatures and power usage low.
I was wondering about that. As long as the app is multi-threaded then the OS should handle the loads between cores. Windows 7 is supposed to do this much better than Windows XP. It's a modern OS after all. So that kind of makes it a moot point. Skyrim runs about 30 threads and the OS distributes them between the available cores. And the default affinity for Skyrim is all cores.
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Old 01-01-2012, 04:44 PM   #7
SirAndy
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matthew_rs7 View Post
When Skyrim first launched I heard a lot of complaints that it only uses 2 cores.

Has this been fixed? will it be fixed? Also, why would a quad core be listes in recommended requirements if it doesn't utilize them?
It uses 4 on my machine. I have 8 CPUs (4 physical, 4 virtual).

http://sirandy.org/skyrim/cpu.png

Win 7 x64, Intel i7-2600K, nVidia 580 GTX

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Old 01-01-2012, 04:53 PM   #8
abk.420
 
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try addin this lines to your Skrim.ini file in my documents\my games\skyrim
goes at the top under the uExterior Cell Buffer line in the [General] section

bUseThreadedParticleSystem=1
bUseThreadedBlood=1
bUseThreadedMorpher=1
bUseThreadedTempEffects=1
bUseThreadedTextures=1
bUseThreadedMeshes=1
bUseThreadedLOD=1
bUseThreadedAI=1

It helped me spread the load across a 4 of my I5 2500k 3.30ghz OC to 4.2

here is how mine looks under the [General] section

[General]
sLanguage=ENGLISH
uExterior Cell Buffer=64<-not sure if you could use
uGridsToLoad=7<-not sure if you could use
iPreloadSizeLimit=51380224<-not sure if you could use
iMinMemoryPageSize=100000<-not sure if you could use
iMaxMemoryPageSize=5000000<-not sure if you could use
iMaxAllocatedMemoryBytes=1800000000<-not sure if you could use
bUseThreadedParticleSystem=1
bUseThreadedBlood=1
bUseThreadedMorpher=1
bUseThreadedTempEffects=1
bUseThreadedTextures=1
bUseThreadedMeshes=1
bUseThreadedLOD=1
bUseThreadedAI=1
sLocalSavePath=Saves\

post your specs and i will help you with the other settings
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Old 01-01-2012, 04:57 PM   #9
abk.420
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SirAndy View Post
It uses 4 on my machine. I have 8 CPUs (4 physical, 4 virtual).

http://sirandy.org/skyrim/cpu.png

Win 7 x64, Intel i7-2600K, nVidia 580 GTX

I would turn of hyper-threading when play Skyrim, the game seems to run better, tested on other PC the has a i7 my brother uses
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Old 01-01-2012, 05:11 PM   #10
Gelda
 
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Uses 4 Cores out of 8 on mine as well

I have a I7 QuadCore Extreme processor and i know the game uses 4 Cores out of 8.

Have 8 Gigs of 1600 speed memory too and I did the memory tweek and no more CTD's either.

That was very anoying was saving every 5 min cause game would ctd it seems every 10 min of play.

On the box it says game is optimized for the Intel I7 Core processor using mulit core in the x64 environment.

When I first installed the game i was playing the game on the highest setting graphically but when I went back the second game would not run at the highest settings but had to drop back to Medium, now the game runs at highest settings.
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Old 01-01-2012, 05:14 PM   #11
SirAndy
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abk.420 View Post
I would turn of hyper-threading when play Skyrim, the game seems to run better, tested on other PC the has a i7 my brother uses
Hmm, i'll give that a try ...
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Old 01-01-2012, 05:14 PM   #12
abk.420
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gelda View Post
I have a I7 QuadCore Extreme processor and i know the game uses 4 Cores out of 8.

Have 8 Gigs of 1600 speed memory too and I did the memory tweek and no more CTD's either.

That was very anoying was saving every 5 min cause game would ctd it seems every 10 min of play.

On the box it says game is optimized for the Intel I7 Core processor using mulit core in the x64 environment.

When I first installed the game i was playing the game on the highest setting graphically but when I went back the second game would not run at the highest settings but had to drop back to Medium, now the game runs at highest settings.
does your I7 have hyper-threading? it could get better if you shut it off when playing skyrim its done in the bios
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Old 01-01-2012, 05:31 PM   #13
SirAndy
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abk.420 View Post
I would turn of hyper-threading when play Skyrim, the game seems to run better, tested on other PC the has a i7 my brother uses
This looks like a nice spread of usage:
http://sirandy.org/skyrim/cpu4.png

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Old 01-01-2012, 05:40 PM   #14
R0ck3tm4n
 
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I would like to bring attention to something said above. Because the load is spread around the cores I don't think we can tell by watching cpu core loads whether Skyrim uses two or three or four cores. I understand now that the threads are passed around the cores to spread the heat around, it's not like you might think that by watching the core loadings you can tell what's going on.

Either way, IPC (instructions per clock) performance like on the I7 2600K (very good) and also four cores are both good things. The options mentioned above tell me that four cores will be utilized with those options set to 1 (which means yes.)

We really won't know how the threads are assigned to the cores though. Just because Skyrim is using 5 threads, for example, doesn't mean we know which cores those threads are assigned to. The truth is, if the computer is running four or more threads, a quad core cpu is a good thing as long as the IPC is still strong. Right AMD? Lol...
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Old 01-01-2012, 05:46 PM   #15
R0ck3tm4n
 
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I also disagree with disabling hyper-threading unless I was shown test results and then I still would leave it on. Hyper-threading merely ensures more full utilization of each CPU core. It's not like it's going to slow down the game, is it? I'm sure one of you will tell me why I'm wrong. I paid that 100 dollars more to get the 2600K rather than the 2500K just for the hyperthreading.
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