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There are currently 63 users playing Freelancer on 43 servers.
June. 18, 2019

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Freelancer won't start
Just popping in
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Hi Everyone,

I wish I could play this good oldie but the game does not start, it never gets to the menu or the intro or anything similar to a 3d application window, but with some delay I get a "Freelancer has stopped working" message. Sometimes even an error shows up in addition saying "The instruction at 0x00000000 referenced memory at 0x00000000. The memory could not be read." The latter occurred more often with an unpatched clean install.

System specs:
OS: Windows 8.1 Pro x64 Retail, no updates
CPU: Intel i7 3630QM
VGA: Intel HD 4000 + GeForce GTX660M (Optimus)
RAM: 8GB
Customization: Documents, Photos, Videos etc. folders are moved to a different disk. Access and permissions were okay for any other game I have played in the last half year.

What I have tried to solve the problem:
- Compatibility modes *sigh* and elevated permissions
- Reinstall
- Remove FL registry entries but the entry "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE > SOFTWARE > MICROSOFT > Microsoft Games > Freelancer" does not exist
- Restore 'Documents' to the original location
- Install the game from another source (an image from theisozone)
- Apply the unofficial patch (1.40)
- Apply a mod to the game that uses its own EXE (issue remains the same)
- Googling a lot but it seems that this is not a common problem. Others have no issues with Win 8.

It may be worth to mention that the "myflaccountid.hta" application shows no Account ID if I run it.
There is a problem FAQ on this forum that suggests turning off 3D sound. Since I never get into the menu and I found no such option in the game's ini files I believe this is irrelevant. (http://the-starport.net/freelancer/fo ... hp?topic_id=1557&forum=21)
FL Server creates its files in Documents even if it is moved. It complains though about DirectPlay installation and that it causes the lack of multiplayer support.

This game is still the most satisfying space adventure game. Please help me find a solution so I could enjoy it once more.

Thanks in advance.

EDIT: Updated post with relevant symptoms.
Solution is to install DirectPlay. It can be done via "Programs and Features->Turn Windows features on and off->Legacy components->DirectPlay".

Attach file:



jpg  Untitled.jpg (75.43 KB)
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jpg  Server_error.jpg (37.46 KB)
45428_52f964a9dd244.jpg 497X244 px

Posted on: 2014/2/9 20:58
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Re: Freelancer won't start
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Don´t know if this helps but my suggestion would be:#
Do a clean INSTALL of Freelancer as Admin !!! Run EVERY Freelancer-related application like 1.1 Patch ,FLMM, Server.exe and sure Freelancer.exe as Admin. (with appro. admin rights)

P.S.:
Throwing out some more Suggestions if u don´t mind:
-If u can already find an PerfOptions.ini in your MyGames Folder the 3D sound entry should look like this to disable it without getting into the games options menu:
USE_3D_SOUNDS = 0.00

-I also recommend to do the official 1.1 Patch (as admin)!!!

-"Intel HD 4000" is a bit suspicious to me... is this an integrated graphics chip? If so... i remember there´s a major and common issue with such Intel-graphics.

if these "brainfarts" of mine don´t help any further... idk... sorry

Posted on: 2014/2/10 16:31
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Re: Freelancer won't start
Starport Admin
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A few notes, perhaps:
-The 1.4 patch most likely isn't compatible with many mods. If you're using both that and a mod, that might be part of your issue. If you're going to use a mod, only use that and nothing else - any relevant patches will be rolled in the mod.
-Make sure you've associated the game with the discrete GPU in your NVIDIA control panel. If you don't, the game will start with the HD4000 chip by default as it's not recognized by the driver as being a game (too old).

Posted on: 2014/2/10 17:31
"Cynicism is not realistic and tough. It's unrealistic and kind of cowardly because it means you don't have to try."
-Peggy Noonan
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Re: Freelancer won't start
Just popping in
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Quote:

J.R. wrote:
Don´t know if this helps but my suggestion would be:#
Do a clean INSTALL of Freelancer as Admin !!! Run EVERY Freelancer-related application like 1.1 Patch ,FLMM, Server.exe and sure Freelancer.exe as Admin. (with appro. admin rights)

-I also recommend to do the official 1.1 Patch (as admin)!!!


Tried to install and run everything as admin, nothing changed.

Quote:

P.S.:
Throwing out some more Suggestions if u don´t mind:
-If u can already find an PerfOptions.ini in your MyGames Folder the 3D sound entry should look like this to disable it without getting into the games options menu:
USE_3D_SOUNDS = 0.00


There are no config files in that folder as the game was never able to run . Only thing I got there is server related. FL server was able to run but it complained about failing to initialize DirectPlay.
I assumed that on demand component installation does not work in the case of Freelancer (which is ironic because it is even a Microsoft software) so I operated a bit in Windows features and found DirectPlay under Legacy components. Installed it and the server ran fine.
Funny thing: it solved my problem with the game as well. Runs just as it should.

Quote:

-"Intel HD 4000" is a bit suspicious to me... is this an integrated graphics chip? If so... i remember there´s a major and common issue with such Intel-graphics.


Yes, it's an integrated chip.

Quote:

if these "brainfarts" of mine don´t help any further... idk... sorry


No worries. You lead me to the solution. Thanks for the suggestions.


Quote:

FriendlyFire wrote:
A few notes, perhaps:
-The 1.4 patch most likely isn't compatible with many mods. If you're using both that and a mod, that might be part of your issue. If you're going to use a mod, only use that and nothing else - any relevant patches will be rolled in the mod.
-Make sure you've associated the game with the discrete GPU in your NVIDIA control panel. If you don't, the game will start with the HD4000 chip by default as it's not recognized by the driver as being a game (too old).


Assigning it to the discrete card produces the same symptoms. "FL has stopped working" error at first run plus "memory could not be read" error on consecutive runs.
Why that would be a problem anyway? I run many games deliberately on the integrated chip due to its power and heat efficiency. The benefits of the nVidia card are great calculation power, frame limiting option and forcing FXAA on any application even on oldies like Freelancer which is great.
Thanks for replying. I might drop the 1.4 patch then, did no know that it could cause problems with mods.

Posted on: 2014/2/10 23:44
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Re: Freelancer won't start
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Intel's GPUs just suck. They often won't support some games properly, especially less mainstream ones. Also, forcing options in the GPU drivers can often lead to compatibility issues. When facing a random glitch like this, one of the very first steps is to disable anything the drivers might force, including AF, AA, etc.

Posted on: 2014/2/11 1:04
"Cynicism is not realistic and tough. It's unrealistic and kind of cowardly because it means you don't have to try."
-Peggy Noonan
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Re: Freelancer won't start
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Quote:

FriendlyFire wrote:
Intel's GPUs just suck.


That's what I thought. Have a look at newer ones, anything above HD4000. They offer a wide compatibility similar to software rendering but it is much faster. I tested many games with it when my laptop had problems with the dedicated graphics for almost half a year. I was surprised how capable it was. Torchlight 2, Transformers: War for Cybertron and similar not so old titles ran without a hitch.
Some very old game does not like modern dedicated cards and then my integrated chip comes in handy. For example Stratosphere. Or any game that checks for vRAM size and can't handle gigabytes (therefore thinks I have 2MB).
I'm not saying Intel GPUs for the win, don't get me wrong. They were really terrible, I remember. Intel was new to GPUs. What if they improved?

Posted on: 2014/2/11 2:25
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Re: Freelancer won't start
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Freelancer is DirectX 8. Intel had stopped optimizing for DX8 ages before they even thought of the Core architecture.

If you don't want help and would rather stick to what's clearly not working, be my guest. I'm only pointing out that Intel's GPUs, regardless of the generation, are notorious for not playing too well with FL. One would think I'd have just a slight idea what the hell I'm talking about.

Posted on: 2014/2/11 3:06
"Cynicism is not realistic and tough. It's unrealistic and kind of cowardly because it means you don't have to try."
-Peggy Noonan
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Re: Freelancer won't start
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Saying that something sucks and won't work is not particularly helping.

Plus Freelancer is DX9. It is given in the requirements and is bundled with DX9 redist, check any retail CD. In addition it is working.

No hard feelings, I don't want to make you look bad, just prevent others from reading incorrect information.

Here is some official proof: http://support.microsoft.com/KB/814552

Posted on: 2014/2/11 5:04
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Re: Freelancer won't start
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Quote:

Szasz wrote:
Saying that something sucks and won't work is not particularly helping.

Plus Freelancer is DX9. It is given in the requirements and is bundled with DX9 redist, check any retail CD. In addition it is working.

No hard feelings, I don't want to make you look bad, just prevent others from reading incorrect information.

Here is some official proof: http://support.microsoft.com/KB/814552


You gave me a good laugh there. Freelancer, DirectX 9? Hah! Sure, they ask for the DX9 redist, because that's what was around at the time of distribution, but Freelancer is DirectX 8.

But really, I think you don't need my help after all since you seem to know better. I hope you resolve your issue and please do document it here if you do so that others don't have to go through this maddening process.

Posted on: 2014/2/11 5:21
"Cynicism is not realistic and tough. It's unrealistic and kind of cowardly because it means you don't have to try."
-Peggy Noonan
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Re: Freelancer won't start
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Quote:

You gave me a good laugh there. Freelancer, DirectX 9? Hah! Sure, they ask for the DX9 redist, because that's what was around at the time of distribution, but Freelancer is DirectX 8.


You're right. Despite the requirements, the engine is written for DX8.

Quote:

...I hope you resolve your issue and please do document it here if you do so that others don't have to go through this maddening process.


Already did. It is in the main post. The problem was a missing DirectPlay installation.

Posted on: 2014/2/11 5:31
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Re: Freelancer won't start
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Quote:

Szasz wrote:
Saying that something sucks and won't work is not particularly helping.

Plus Freelancer is DX9. It is given in the requirements and is bundled with DX9 redist, check any retail CD. In addition it is working.

No hard feelings, I don't want to make you look bad, just prevent others from reading incorrect information.

Here is some official proof: http://support.microsoft.com/KB/814552



Just so you know, mate, you're talking to the man who's taken apart FL's render pipeline and put it back together again. FL's DX8.

Posted on: 2014/2/11 5:31
"Before I start, I'd like to apologize from all my heart in front of everybody for all the bad things I've done before posting this thread. (Sizer, I'll ALWAYS hate you)" - TheDVDMan
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Re: Freelancer won't start
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I hadn't seen that edit. That's intriguing, first time I hear of that.

By curiosity, was that 8.1 retail, or 8.0 updated to 8.1?

Posted on: 2014/2/11 5:34
"Cynicism is not realistic and tough. It's unrealistic and kind of cowardly because it means you don't have to try."
-Peggy Noonan
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Re: Freelancer won't start
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Hi Folks.
This time I have the "same" problem by "myself"... to be more accurate... its the prob of a friend who wants to play on my server.

OS: WIN 8.1 Professional 64 Bit
Grafix: Geforce 530
RAM: 8 GB
CPU: AMD3
2x SSD-Drives (120 and 250 GB)

Activated FULL ADMIN-ACCOUNT (built in but hidden by default)
created a Folder on the second drive and checked for FULL-ACCESS with the logged in User (FULL-ADMIN)
Installed Vanilla-FL and official Patch 1.1... Done... no issues
Checked for installed DirectPlay ... Done... no issues
Guess what... FL works fine !!!

Installed FLMM... Done... no issues
Installed Mod and activated it... Done... no issues

No Problems so far but the weird thing is yet to come:
Suddenly Freelancer doesn´t start at all due to lack of access-rights to drive/folder/file or whatever !!!! H UHHHHHHHHHHH ???
Even just to change the version-number of a vanilla freelancer.exe (because my mod-files refer to version 4.46) and just copy it into the modded or un-modded gamefolder/EXE leads to the same problem !!!
After deactivation of the mod and all other changes the vanilla-game doesn´t start either due to lack of rights !!!

Checked and tried here and there and totally ran out of options. (

Some help or further ideas would be VERY WELCOME !!!!!

Posted on: 2014/12/29 15:33
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Re: Freelancer won't start
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You should make a new thread as your issue has nothing to do with this thread.

Posted on: 2014/12/29 15:36
"Cynicism is not realistic and tough. It's unrealistic and kind of cowardly because it means you don't have to try."
-Peggy Noonan
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Re: Freelancer won't start
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Sorry... but isn´t this the same Prob???

If it isn´t... would you please move the Post to the appro Thread ?

Sorry for this and best greetings

Posted on: 2014/12/29 15:40
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