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Why am I crashing so much latey?


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It's very hard to say without more information.  In fact, from what you said it's hard to tell even whether you are crashing or disconnecting.   If you are actually getting some kind of error message from Linden Lab as you are bounced out of SL, then you are disconnecting.  Take a very good look at the list of suggestions at http://wiki.phoenixviewer.com/fs_run_crash .  A few of them are specific to Firestorm, but most of them apply to any SL viewer. 

BTW, your cable Internet service person can help a lot, but he is probably not checking to see if you have an unusually long ping time to SL's servers, and maybe not checking to see if you have unusual packet loss.  Your ISP is typically only going to be sure that you have adequate bandwidth, which is not usually much of a problem for SL users.  He will also not be able to tell you whether your computer is overheating.  That can be a serious (and expensive) issue.  Your computer will generally crash programs to cut energy use and drop the temperature if it senses that it's getting dangerously hot. If it has been a while since you opened your machine to clean out the dust bunnies and cat hair, or if you haven't checked to be sure its fans are all spinning, do it now. 

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It's very hard to say without more information.  In fact, from what you said it's hard to tell even whether you are crashing or disconnecting.   If you are actually getting some kind of error message from Linden Lab as you are bounced out of SL, then you are disconnecting.  Take a very good look at the list of suggestions at http://wiki.phoenixviewer.com/fs_run_crash .  A few of them are specific to Firestorm, but most of them apply to any SL viewer. 

BTW, your cable Internet service person can help a lot, but he is probably not checking to see if you have an unusually long ping time to SL's servers, and maybe not checking to see if you have unusual packet loss.  Your ISP is typically only going to be sure that you have adequate bandwidth, which is not usually much of a problem for SL users.  He will also not be able to tell you whether your computer is overheating.  That can be a serious (and expensive) issue.  Your computer will generally crash programs to cut energy use and drop the temperature if it senses that it's getting dangerously hot. If it has been a while since you opened your machine to clean out the dust bunnies and cat hair, or if you haven't checked to be sure its fans are all spinning, do it now. 

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Rolig mentioned packet loss and ping time as possible explanations. You can check those by typing ctrl-shift-1 in your viewer. Packet loss should be 0.0% but you can live with a little bit for a while (although it gets really annoying in the long run). Ping time depends on how close to the LL servers in California you live and how good your connection is. Hard to say what you should expect but if it's higher than - say 500 ms - you definitely have connection issues.

Annoying as these issues can be, it's unlikely they will cause crashes though.

I think the most common cause of crashes in SL is graphics card overload. Many places in SL are so graphics heavy they can cause serious problems even for the strongest game computer. The easy way to check that is to change your graphics preferences to "Low" and see if that fixes the problem. If it does, just increase the settings gradually until you find out how much your computer can manage. Another way is to go to a low lag water sim and see if you crash there too.

If you stay in the same place all the time, you may also want to check if there are any graphics crashes in the vicinity. Graphics crashers seem to be the latest fad among griefers and are beginning to become a serious problem in SL. Those are objects specially made to overload people's graphics cards and they can cause really nasty crashes. They don't affect the servers very much so LL doesn't do anything about them and if the'yre rezzed on an unmonitored parcel, they can stay there for ages before they're removed.

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