|19 Apr 2010||#1|
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Intel Graphics Media Accelerator 950 Mods and Tweaks
Now, if your an owner of any Intel graphics card, you will probably already know that it fails badly. You might ask yourself, "is their anyway to make my card better?" Well, there is!
The mod's and tweaked out drivers I'm about to show you comes with no warranty. They have not been known to cause physical damage, as a matter of fact, nobody ever reported any hardware issues. But just to let you know, I'm not responsible if something were to happen.
If your still reading on, then good for you
First off, we talk drivers. The most popular OS's are Windows XP and Windows 7. At downloadcenter.intel.com, you can get your graphics drivers there (945 falls under 950GMA, as does 945GM, and maybe 945GME).
First off, obtain a zip package of the latest drivers for your 950GMA card. For me, I would obtain the .zip (not .exe) of the Mobile 945 (945GM) driver package for Windows 7 32-Bit. Afterwards, extract it somewhere in a folder.
Second, go into the Graphics folder and notice the .inf in there. This file will become your best friend. Keep note of the name of it (it differs on XP and Vista/7, and x86/x64)
This file can be edited with notepad, and it has, for the most part, Human readable text. Become familiar with it.
Now, remember how you wanted to run a game but it said it didn't detect Vertex Shaders 2.0 or Hardware TnL? This can be fixed on the 950GMA (only on Vista/7 though). You could also do a number of different things as well.
Now, as you go down the inf a bit, you'll notice a section like this:
[Intel.Mfg] %iLPGD0% = i945G0, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_2772 %iLPGD1% = i945G1, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_2776 %iCLGD0% = i945GM0, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_27A2 %iCLGD1% = i945GM1, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_27A6 %iCLGE0% = i945GME0, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_27AE %iBWGX0% = i965GX0, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_2982 %iBWGX1% = i965GX1, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_2983 %iBWGQ0% = i965G0, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_2992 %iBWGQ1% = i965G1, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_2993 %iBWGC0% = i965G0, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_29A2 %iBWGC1% = i965G1, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_29A3 %iBWGZ0% = i965G0, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_2972 %iBWGZ1% = i965G1, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_2973 %iCRGD0% = i965GM0, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_2A02 %iCRGD1% = i965GM1, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_2A03 %iCRGE0% = i965GM0, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_2A12 %iCRGE1% = i965GM1, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_2A13 %iBLBG0% = iBLB0, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_29C2 %iBLBG1% = iBLB1, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_29C3 %iBLBQ0% = iBLB0, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_29B2 %iBLBQ1% = iBLB1, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_29B3 %iBLBQC0% = iBLB0, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_29D2 %iBLBQC1% = iBLB1, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_29D3
Ok, now the 950GMA is very similar to the 965 series cards. So similar, infact that you could use the 965 drivers and get great performance boosts and features.
So, a very quick and easy mod is to change this:
%iCRGD0% = i965GM0, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_2A02 %iCRGD1% = i965GM1, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_2A03
%iCRGD0% = i965GM0, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_27A2 %iCRGD1% = i965GM1, PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_27A6
NOTE: Almost everything below will only benefit Vista/7 users. XP does not have TnL emulation at this time... Best thing to do is to just do the device ID mod
Then just install the driver and boom right? Maybe on a few games but na nothing useful. On Vista and 7, you just gained access to a powerful feature in graphics cards called Hardware TnL, well, I should say that you gained the right to make it seem like this exists. You really have Software TnL now, which means the TnL (Transform and Lighting btw) is ran in the CPU.
So games like Dawn of War I for instance, this game won't run (or it will run very slowly, i forget) because TnL does not exist. If it doesn't run, bam it now runs. If it runs slowly, bam you get a HUGE fps difference. Having TnL is a huge must on games, because if games take advantage of it, then your talking a FPS difference of maybe 10-20 in some cases even.
So you did the driver mod, your computer booted back up with no issues, and if you had Aero on before, its still on. If all that is true, congratz!. Check device manager now and if it says you have a 965 now, then you are ready for anything!
Now this TnL feature I was talking about, its great, but games still don't know it exists, at least some games don't.
The executables listed in this section on the INF file are the only games that know that TnL exists:
[Enable3DContexts_AddSwSettings] HKR,, ~cod2sp_s.exe, %REG_DWORD%, 1 HKR,, ~cod2mp_s.exe, %REG_DWORD%, 1 HKR,, ~farcry.exe, %REG_DWORD%, 1 HKR,, ~gta_sa.exe, %REG_DWORD%, 1 HKR,, ~hl2.exe, %REG_DWORD%, 1 HKR,, ~IW3SP.exe, %REG_DWORD%, 1 HKR,, ~UT2004.exe, %REG_DWORD%, 1 HKR,, ~WoW.exe, %REG_DWORD%, 1 [Enable3DContexts_DelSwSettings] HKR,, ~cod2sp_s.exe HKR,, ~cod2mp_s.exe HKR,, ~farcry.exe HKR,, ~gta_sa.exe HKR,, ~hl2.exe HKR,, ~IW3SP.exe HKR,, ~UT2004.exe HKR,, ~WoW.exe [Enable3DContexts_BLB_AddSwSettings] HKR,, ~BF2142.exe, %REG_DWORD%, 1 HKR,, ~CoD2MP_s.exe, %REG_DWORD%, 1 HKR,, ~CoD2SP_s.exe, %REG_DWORD%, 1 HKR,, ~dragonshard.exe, %REG_DWORD%, 1 HKR,, ~FarCry.exe, %REG_DWORD%, 1 HKR,, ~FSW2.exe, %REG_DWORD%, 1 HKR,, ~GTR2.exe, %REG_DWORD%, 1 HKR,, ~hl2.exe, %REG_DWORD%, 1 HKR,, ~JustCause.exe, %REG_DWORD%, 1 HKR,, ~legostarwars.exe, %REG_DWORD%, 1 HKR,, ~medieval2.exe, %REG_DWORD%, 1 HKR,, ~Oblivion.exe, %REG_DWORD%, 1 HKR,, ~OblivionLauncher.exe, %REG_DWORD%, 1 HKR,, ~ShatteredUnion.exe, %REG_DWORD%, 1 [Enable3DContexts_BLB_DelSwSettings] HKR,, ~BF2142.exe HKR,, ~CoD2MP_s.exe HKR,, ~CoD2SP_s.exe HKR,, ~dragonshard.exe HKR,, ~FarCry.exe HKR,, ~FSW2.exe HKR,, ~GTR2.exe HKR,, ~hl2.exe HKR,, ~JustCause.exe HKR,, ~legostarwars.exe HKR,, ~medieval2.exe HKR,, ~Oblivion.exe HKR,, ~OblivionLauncher.exe HKR,, ~ShatteredUnion.exe
Anyway, yea what if you have a game that needs TnL and its not on this list? Well, fear no more!
Just download this tool here. This was created by a member of the 9xxssf group (a group in which I'm very active in). Just to cut a long story short, this is the place to be to run games on ALL 9xx series Intel Cards. This is even the place where premade modded drivers arise from that are better then the small mod I listed above.
Now about that tool you downloaded, it lets you add games to the list to make it know (or not to know) that TnL exists.
This tool is very important for testing games. Now, the first button you would want to press is Add Game. This could be tricky for some games, and for others its really easy. Alls you have to do is find the executable for the game. Well games like StarCraft II Beta, have 3-4 executables, and to this date I still don't know exactly which one is the real deal. If at all unsure, add all the executables (that look resonable, like don't add "Uninstall.exe") in the game folder.
The game you add will be at the bottom of that list. Go to it. It might look like ~Game.exe which would be normal. Now, the fun part. For the most part, any game you add to the list will say its in Hardware Vertex Mode. This means that the game is searching the hardware for TnL. So basically, on a 950GMA, this means no TnL emulation. In some cases, this slows down some games that would otherwise benefit from either Hardware or Software TnL.
Go ahead and change the Vertex Processing Mode to Software. Now test the game. It might run better, not change, or run slower. This all depends on the game, and your CPU.
An example for me, World of Warcraft runs much faster in Hardware Vertex Mode then Software Vertex Mode because of my 1.6Ghz CPU.
After you test the game in that mode, switch it again. See if performance changes. If it changes between the two, then change it to the mode that worked best.
Now you can do this to any game and program, even DWM.exe (not recommended).
Well, thats the basics to modding a driver for the 950GMA. Now I shall provide you with very helpful links.
My MediaFire share folder containing 9xxssf's modded drivers, and tools
The 9xx San soldiers frontier (9xxssf) group. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED to visit this place.
9xx Soldiers sans frontiers | Google Groups
The SF project page. Also is a SVN that has some useful stuff on it along with beta drivers
Intel 9xx Modded Drivers | Get Intel 9xx Modded Drivers at SourceForge.net
|My System Specs|
|19 Apr 2010||#2|
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Looks believable. I have a few friends with that card (lord help them), will pass this on to them.
Honestly, Intel needs to offer better integrated cards. My laptop (may it RIP) had an Intel 4500MHD. I wanted to rip it out and shove in something better. Its actually the reason my laptops dead.
|My System Specs|
|19 Apr 2010||#5|
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Yea, their hardware would be much better, if it wasn't for the drivers...
If Intel didn't take shortcuts on their hardware even, they might be OK. Like really how useful is a card with Pixel Shader 2.0 and no Vertex Shaders on Hardware or TnL? The card is DX9 but it doesn't even have basic DX7 instructions....
|My System Specs|
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