It is currently Sun May 19, 2013 2:16 am
Step 3: Instant Half-Life 2 loading
This step will make the Half-Life 2 main menu loading a matter of seconds.
You will notice that the game will start instantly instead of having to
wait for about 30 seconds or more for it to load just the main menu.
Close all open Windows Explorer windows, and start Notepad. Leaving
the file blank, go to File > Save As... and browse to your
Valve\Steam\SteamApps\Your-Account-Name\Half-Life 2\hl2\media folder.
Type "valve.avi" (with the quotes) in the Save As... box and click on Save.
Click Yes when asked if you want to overwrite.
Now close Notepad, and open your Command Prompt (easily done in XP by going
to Start > Run and typing "cmd".) Browse to your
Valve\Steam\SteamApps\Your-Account-Name\Half-Life 2\hl2\media folder
using the cd command. Use the ATTRIB command to set "Valve.avi" to Read-Only.
If you're unfamiliar with the command line environment, then follow the
1. Make sure the prompt points to the hard disk drive the game is installed
(i.e. if it says C:\Windows> and Half-Life 2 is installed in C:\ then it's
all right.) If it's not, then enter the letter of the disk it is installed
followed by ":" (i.e. d:)
2. Use the cd command to browse folder by folder to your media folder.
This can be done easily, for example if the game is installed in
C:\Prorgram Files\Valve\Steam\SteamApps\Your-Account-Name\Half-Life 2\
then, type [cd "c:\program files"], then [cd "valve"], then [cd "steam"],
then [cd "steamapps"], then [cd "Your-Account-Name"], then [cd "Half-Life 2"],
then [cd "hl2"], then [cd "media"] (use quotation for every folder to avoid
errors, but NO brackets.)
3. The prompt should now be something like
4. Now enter [attrib valve.avi +r] (without the brackets.)
5. You shall now be ready, close the command prompt.
Now close any open windows you may have open and start Steam. When the
Menu appears, click on Play Games, then right-click on Half-Life 2 and click
on Properties. On the opened window click on Launch Options. In the box that
has appeared enter the following:
-heapsize x (where x, enter the 1/4 of your RAM with 3 zeros following.
That is, if you have 512MB of Ram installed, enter 128000)
The box should look like this now: +map_backround none -heapsize 128000
Click on OK and close all Steam windows. You can start the game now,
noticing that the main-menu appears in a matter of seconds, although it
only shows a faded picture background, instead of a full 3D background.
Explanation of Step 3 (for Power Users)
In this step we replace the valve.avi file with a blank file, making
the game not show any start-up videos, thus making the main-menu appear
instantly, in combination with the "map_backround none" option, which
makes the game load a faded picture instead of making you wait for it
to load a fully 3D environment. These two steps should make the Main-Menu
loading a matter of seconds.
The reason we're making the new blank valve.avi file read-only, is that
if we didn't, Steam would try and download a full valve.avi from the server
and replace the one we're using.
Why we're setting the read-only attribute through the command line? Well,
Windows XP has automatic thumbnails in any folder it finds files with the
avi, wmv or mpg extension, so it tries to load a thumbnail for the black
file, which results in the Windows Explorer crashing. Doing it through the
command line is the only way in order to set the read-only attribute to it.
Some may wonder what the "heapsize" option has to do with all this. Well
heapsize is the allocated RAM amount the game uses. By default it's on 64MB.
But because I know most gaming systems these days have more than 256MB of RAM,
I think it's a performance boost to allow the game to allocate more memory for
Troubleshooting: Undoing Step 3
I shall not add info on how to undo this step, as I think undoing it would
be completely useless. This step cannot in anyway stop the game from loading
as it only disables the starting video, and sets an image as a backround for
the menu instead of a fully-rendered 3D map.
The only reason I could think that this step would cause problems, is a
wrong heapsize. I recommend you undo this step AFTER you've tried playing
the game with the first two steps undone, and then if only you're still
having problems, do the following:
Start Steam. When the Menu appears, click on Play Games, then right-click
on Half-Life 2 and click on Properties. On the opened window click on
Launch Options. In the box that has appeared, delete everything and click
YokaI wrote:still probably ganna take as long, only a tiny bit shorter...
You could always fry you grafics down?
DarkMortar wrote:If you copied and pasted this in notepad, you may be a nerd. If you just highlighted this, you may be intelligent. If you read this like it is, you may become blind.
Yoshi wrote:ok so hl2 is starting faster, but because there is nothing precached now, when you start your first map it will take longer to load
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