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  #1  
Old December 23rd, 2019, 01:43 AM

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Default Using ultrawide screen monitor 3440x1440

Decided to install winSPMBT on my new Windows 10 computers with a beautiful 34" Alienware 3440x1440 monitor.

Every time I try to start the game using "full screen" at desktop resolution or any other resolution, it crashes with "SAL error" message and reference to the display driver. "Directdraw could not be initialized."

I can start it in Window mode 1600x1280, but the font is extremely small and blurry. 1280x1020, the font is a clearer but still very small.1024x768 about the same.

What is recommended way to handle this? Should I just manually change the monitor itself to 1920x1080?

Does Windows scaling setting make any difference?
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Old December 23rd, 2019, 09:58 AM
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Default Re: Using ultrawide screen monitor 3440x1440

Have you tried windowed mode at desktop resolution?. (Not full-screen mode - that is only for legacy computers, modern day video cards often have problems with full-screen 256 colour mode).

I think others have had the game running on the new ultra resolution monitors, beyond 1080P resolution, but maybe not ones with such a pixel count. I'm sure those guys will pitch in.

Try changing the monitor's resolution downwards is my best guess. Start with 1920x1080 and work uwards till you find a limit where it cannot drive the monitor is likely your best approach. There may well be some hard upper limit for DirectX3 or 4 (which the third-party video driver we use is written in).
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Old December 23rd, 2019, 01:10 PM
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Default Re: Using ultrawide screen monitor 3440x1440

I have a 4k monitor (it defaults to 5120 x 2880, but I am) running at screen resolution 3840 x 2160 (in general for all my games, most games can't run in these larger screens or if they do the fonts are just too tiny).

While running at 3840 x 2160 in Window mode (no reason to use full screen mode) the game runs splendidly, I also set "Use Large fonts (CD only)" and everything is fine and dandy!

While running at 5120 x 2880 in Windows mode and using "Use Large fonts" everything is just fine as well (the font are a little bit smaller at the default zoom level (and in the in game screens (show unit details etc.) but zooming in just one level clears that up. Its quite a thing to behold at 5120 x 2880, even zoomed out all the way.

Essentially I prefer the 3840 x 2160 resolution since I play a few other games that work well at this res. (GG WitE/WitW, and TOAW, although I had to tweak TOAW's font.ini to handle 4k screen resolution).

YMMV
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Old December 23rd, 2019, 04:16 PM
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Default Re: Using ultrawide screen monitor 3440x1440

The other thing about the VFX video driver is that it is very picky about the pixel count (width or height) being divisible by - its been a long time since I dug into it - 2 or 4 pixels, I think the latter.

I recollect that I had to write special recognition code for the standard el-cheapo 15 inch laptop screens that are out there in the millions - 1378x780 or similar. My own Dell laptop was one of these, which helped the debug. The width had a 2 pixels remainder if a division by 4 was done. The code I put in there therefore shaves off 2 pixels from the width the standard Windows environment call gives, so the VFX driver will create a screen rather than abort with the usual DirectX error when that value-2 for desktop width is passed to it. It leaves a just noticeable margin at the edges where the desktop backround shows through.

The video card hardware also makes a difference - the cheap second hand refurbished Dell I3 desktop I have at the moment (99 quid from the local computer shop, + extra 4 MB of RAM +25 quid) has an integrated Intel graphics that seems to return a smaller area than the desktop - it leaves about a 2 pixel margin on each side. I may play with the Windows setup, as I think you can tell windows what margin size windows have in pixels somewhere deep in the preferences code, and that may have some bearing on that weirdness.
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Old December 23rd, 2019, 05:53 PM
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Default Re: Using ultrawide screen monitor 3440x1440

Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffreywilens View Post
Decided to install winSPMBT on my new Windows 10 computers with a beautiful 34" Alienware 3440x1440 monitor.

Every time I try to start the game using "full screen" at desktop resolution or any other resolution, it crashes with "SAL error" message and reference to the display driver. "Directdraw could not be initialized."

I can start it in Window mode 1600x1280, but the font is extremely small and blurry. 1280x1020, the font is a clearer but still very small.1024x768 about the same.

What is recommended way to handle this? Should I just manually change the monitor itself to 1920x1080?

Does Windows scaling setting make any difference?
windowed mode and desktop resolution is the ONLY thing you should be using with a monitor like that and win10. Stop even trying to use full screen. ( neither Andy nor I understand why people persist in trying to run the game that way.....as Andy said full screen is there for any older computer that might still be in use not modern systems)

If you want a "full screen experience" run it windowed / desktop using Borderless Gaming as described on the first page of the game guide.

Don
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Old December 23rd, 2019, 05:58 PM
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Default Re: Using ultrawide screen monitor 3440x1440

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Originally Posted by zovs66 View Post
. Its quite a thing to behold at 5120 x 2880, even zoomed out all the way.
I can only imagine. I had thought of getting a 28 inch 4k screen but the computer I have will not handle 4K . 5120 x 2880 is mind-boggling considering this game was originally released to run 640x480. I'd ask for a screen shot but it would be 4x more than I could view and ....again, mind-boggling to think of the game running at that res on a screen 4 x the one I have now. My Sony 4k TV is 55 in and can screen link but my computer can't. Maybe next year I'll think about a new one
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Old December 23rd, 2019, 10:06 PM
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Default Re: Using ultrawide screen monitor 3440x1440

Here are some screenshots at 5120 x 2880 just to show that its quite possible and runs quite well on a 4K monitor. Note some of these may be very large...

Default zoom level with a unit detail window open:


Zoomed out once:


A zoomed in snippet:


Another zoomed in snippet (may look the same but they are not):


Zoomed in all the way:


Same but note the wonderful detail of the knocked out guns!
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Old December 24th, 2019, 09:29 AM
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Default Re: Using ultrawide screen monitor 3440x1440

So I just realized I was using the wrong game for the screen shots, sorry about that, but the concept is the same but for those that "want'ed" to see MBT at 4k:

I started up a USMC 3/65-9/66 CG:


This is from a US vs. WP scenario:


This is from a Soviet vs. Finland scenario:


A zoomed in view:


A zoomed out view:


This is from a Egypt vs. Israel scenario:
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