Game does not start

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Moriarty
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Game does not start

Postby Moriarty » Sat Oct 19, 2019 4:16 pm

GOG version. Windows 7 64bit.

Just upgraded to the latest version (used to work), now it doesn't start. Well, it does start but...

* Run sis64, game starts but there's a tiny dialog behing the game that says: "DBGHELP.DLL too old". Game loads fine but it's impossible to do anything on the main menu. Closing the dialog (which is hidden behind the game) is the only thing that can be done. This then crashes the game.

* sis.exe (32bit) did work for a game post-upgrade, but as usual the game was getting slow after a few hours of play so I restarted it. mistake. Now the game doesn't start with the exact same bug as above.

I have two dbghelp.dll files in my sis install (32bit and 64bit version), both with modified dates of 2019-05-30.

Ironically it seems to be crash handler that's crashing the game. :-(

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sven
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Re: Game does not start

Postby sven » Sat Oct 19, 2019 7:31 pm

Moriarty wrote:GOG version. Windows 7 64bit.

Just upgraded to the latest version (used to work), now it doesn't start. Well, it does start but...

* Run sis64, game starts but there's a tiny dialog behing the game that says: "DBGHELP.DLL too old". Game loads fine but it's impossible to do anything on the main menu. Closing the dialog (which is hidden behind the game) is the only thing that can be done. This then crashes the game.


Most typically, the debug handler will be hit because something in the game has thrown an "out of memory" exception. My guess would be that either

a) You have a lower spec laptop, probably one with an integrated intel video adapter. Machines of this sort are not officially supported; some players have had success playing with them, but, if you're using an older laptop without a dedicated video card, you're on the ragged edge of what can be expect to work.

b) You have some other program running on your computer that's using up a huge amount of video and/or system memory, leading to memory crashes.

c) You have a virus scanner or similar program that's doing something really strange to SiS.

Does either a), b), or c) seem like a theory that might apply in your case?

Moriarty wrote:I have two dbghelp.dll files in my sis install (32bit and 64bit version), both with modified dates of 2019-05-30.

Ironically it seems to be crash handler that's crashing the game. :-(


Hmm... Yes, this is less than ideal. The crash handler shouldn't be hit unless you've hit a serious error -- but, ideally, it would work better than it is. Inside your Stars in Shadow/ directory, you should have two files `vc_redist.x64` and `vc_redist.x86`. Try running both. They *might* update your dlls and allow the crash handler to export more useful crash diagnostics.

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Arioch
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Re: Game does not start

Postby Arioch » Sat Oct 19, 2019 7:32 pm

We've seen this error before. Are you running on a laptop using integrated graphics, such as Intel HD Graphics 4000?

viewtopic.php?f=2&t=213&hilit=DBGHELP.DLL&start=60

Moriarty
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Re: Game does not start

Postby Moriarty » Sun Oct 20, 2019 5:20 pm

Thanks for the prompt responses. I'm afraid it's none of these things.
This is running on a proper PC, 16GB RAM, Ryzen 7 1700 CPU, discrete graphics card (Geforce GTX 1050 2GB).

No virus scanner or anything that should be touching running programs.

Plenty of free RAM (only about 6GB is in use right now).

I did get it running a couple of times since but it seems to be 1 in 5-10 or so and I'm unsure what the pattern is.

Hmm... Yes, this is less than ideal. The crash handler shouldn't be hit unless you've hit a serious error -- but, ideally, it would work better than it is. Inside your Stars in Shadow/ directory, you should have two files `vc_redist.x64` and `vc_redist.x86`. Try running both. They *might* update your dlls and allow the crash handler to export more useful crash diagnostics.

Both refuse to install because they're already installed.

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sven
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Re: Game does not start

Postby sven » Sun Oct 20, 2019 6:57 pm

Moriarty wrote:Thanks for the prompt responses. I'm afraid it's none of these things.
This is running on a proper PC, 16GB RAM, Ryzen 7 1700 CPU, discrete graphics card (Geforce GTX 1050 2GB).

No virus scanner or anything that should be touching running programs.

Plenty of free RAM (only about 6GB is in use right now).


Ok. As Arioch mentioned, we have seen a crash of this type once, in the ancient past, and in that instance, we were able to track it down to an issue with the player's collection of saved games. (Some of them were corrupt, leading to weird crashes.) Can you try moving all your saved games out of SavedGames/, and restarting the game?

Moriarty
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Re: Game does not start

Postby Moriarty » Mon Oct 21, 2019 8:37 am

It's not that either I'm afraid. All games removed (empty SavedGames subdirectory) and behaviour is identical.

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Re: Game does not start

Postby Moriarty » Mon Oct 21, 2019 9:19 am

Hmmm. So I managed to start the game today (the crash dialog stays in the background). But when I try and load my game, it crashes with the same dialog again (so there are now *two* of those dialogs up).

So evidently there's also something broken in this save as well as whatever is causing the bug... :-(
(Save is too large to attach, so emailed)

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Re: Game does not start

Postby Moriarty » Mon Oct 21, 2019 3:12 pm

I think I've figured it out. I have a software firewall. It was set to completely block SIS/64. Apparently SIS doesn't like this. If I allow it to access "localhost" it works.
Or at least, that seems to be it. For some reason this is also affecting the save I sent.

I'd suggest tweaking SIS so it works with blocked network access, or at least fails sensibly otherwise.

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sven
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Re: Game does not start

Postby sven » Mon Oct 21, 2019 6:35 pm

Moriarty wrote:I think I've figured it out. I have a software firewall. It was set to completely block SIS/64. Apparently SIS doesn't like this. If I allow it to access "localhost" it works.


Interesting. I'm not able to replicate this behavior using the built-in windows firewall. What firewall software are you using?

Moriarty
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Re: Game does not start

Postby Moriarty » Mon Oct 21, 2019 10:04 pm

It's a firewall from 2012 so getting it could be tricky. Maybe there are different ways to block the packets that Windows does differently?

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sven
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Re: Game does not start

Postby sven » Mon Oct 21, 2019 10:17 pm

Moriarty wrote:It's a firewall from 2012 so getting it could be tricky. Maybe there are different ways to block the packets that Windows does differently?


Yeah, my guess is that the blocking technique used by your firewall is triggering an error somewhere in the guts of luasocket. It's probably fixable, but having a copy of the firewall software in question would make the project a lot easier. What's the firewall's name? I might be able to find a copy somewhere.


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