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  1. #1
    CoP Dynamis
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    BG Medical Direct3D8 to Direct3D9 Proxy - Performance Helper (For FFXI)


    Direct3D8 to Direct3D9 Proxy
    Final Fantasy XI in Direct3D9!

    Donations
    • This project is released for free in hopes to help fix issues with playing the game on laptops that have switchable graphics. Donations can be made to show your appreciation to my work and a way to say thanks if this project has helped fix any issues you may have had. Donations are also what encourage me to continue working on this project in the future if other bugs and problems arise. Any amount is appreciated and I am thankful to anyone that does donate. I hope this project can help fix your issues like it has mine.

      I accept donations through Paypal. You can donate, even without an account, by using this link:
      https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/websc...=7U7Q2GRT6KUJN


    What Is This Project?
    • The Direct3D8 to Direct3D9 proxy project is a middle-man DLL that interprets the Direct3D8 calls, used by Final Fantasy XI to render the game, and proxies them to Direct3D9 calls instead. This causes the game to run within Direct3D9 as if the game was coded to use it originally. This can have a huge impact on performance for lower-end machines, machines that suffer issues with Nvidia Optimus / AMD Switchable Graphics, and so on. This also can solve issues with those on Windows 10 having issues running FFXI at all due to low performance or invalid rendering due to the lack of true Direct3D8 support. (Mostly seen on laptops for this specific use-case.)


    Who Should Use This Project?
    • Ideally, anyone can use this project. However, I designed it mainly for my own personal use due to issues running the game on my new laptop. A huge problem today with Windows 10 and things like Nvidia Optimus / AMD Switchable Graphics where they refuse to work with older (Direct3D8 based) games. Because of this problem, games tend to run at extremely poor performance, low framerates, and even render incorrectly.

      As an example, I have a brand new MSI GE72VR 7RF Apache Pro with an Intel Core i7-7700HQ processor and a Nvidia Geforce 1060 graphics card. Because of being a 7th gen Intel chip, I am forced into Windows 10. Due to this, my laptop refuses to run FFXI using the dedicated graphics and instead uses the CPU rendering for everything. While this happens, with a beast of a machine like this, FFXI runs at 5-10fps. Along with that, things tend to render incorrectly or very poorly regardless of settings.

      Using my Direct3D8 to Direct3D9 proxy, the performance gain is over 100%. The game runs under Direct3D9 which causes Nvidia Optimus to pick up the process and use the dedicated graphics. This also fixes ALL the rendering issues I was facing without the proxy. FPS is a solid 30 (60 if set, 100+ is fully unlocked) with no issues of slowdown, lag, input delay etc. making the game fully playable.

    System Requirements
    • The following things will need to be installed on your machine in order for this project to work. While this project is focused on Windows 10 users whom have switchable graphics issues, others are free to use this project to up-scale the game to Direct3D9 if they wish. This offers more control of the games rendering via your graphics card options should you wish to mess with them any.

      For Windows 8.1 / Windows 10 users, you may be prompted to install DirectPlay when you load the game, this is required to even play Final Fantasy XI on the newer operating systems. Simply accept the installation for that and follow the steps on-screen to do so. This is built into Windows and not related to this project at all but is required to play the game.

    How To Use / How To Install
    [list]At this time, the project will only work with the stock retail client, or while using Ashita.
    Ashita is a Windower alternative for those that are unaware of what it is. You can learn more about Ashita on it's homepage here:
    http://ashita.atom0s.com/

    The installation of this project depends on if you play on Retail servers or if you play on a private server. Please follow the directions below for which one you play on. Failure to do these directions properly will result in the project not working properly, crashing the game, or not working at all.
    • Retail Installation Steps
      1. Download the latest version of this project.
      2. Open the folder where you have PlayOnline installed to. (ie. C:\Program Files (x86)\PlayOnline\SquareEnix\PlayOnlineViewer\)
      3. Extract the d3d8.dll and d3d8.ini file into this folder.
      Both files should be copied into this folder.
      If installed correctly, the folder should look like this:
      http://i.imgur.com/UxkK2cL.png
    [hr][/hr]
    • Private Server Installation Steps
      1. Download the latest version of this project.
      2. Open the folder where you have Ashita installed to and open the ffxi-bootmod folder. (ie. C:\Ashita\ffxi-bootmod\)
      3. Extract the d3d8.dll and d3d8.ini file into this folder.
      Both files should be copied into this folder.
      If installed correctly, the folder should look like this:
      http://i.imgur.com/AjWHGD9.png

      If your private server requires that you use a custom boot loader in a different location, then you will need to copy the two files (d3d8.dll, d3d8.ini) into the folder with their custom loader instead.


    Downloads / Information

    You can find the homepage for this project on the Ashita forums here:
    http://ashita.atom0s.com/forums/viewforum.php?f=26

    Support and discussions regarding this should be posted here:
    http://ashita.atom0s.com/forums/viewforum.php?f=27

  2. #2
    2600klub
    I donated 5 bucks and all I got was this shitty title from Zet

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    I truly admire your dedication to this ancient game, I mean that.

  3. #3
    CoP Dynamis
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arkanna View Post
    I truly admire your dedication to this ancient game, I mean that.
    I enjoy supporting my applications / work until there is no need or interest for it. Since people use a lot of things of mine from FFXI, I keep working on it even though I haven't played the game since before Abyssea was released. Glad I can help others have a more enjoyable experience.

  4. #4
    i should really shut up
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    Good job making this, thanks.


    But, I don't use Ashita :/

  5. #5
    Yoshi P
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    Arthas

    Could this improve performance at all if you aren't using one of those switchable mobile graphics things?

  6. #6
    Old Odin
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    Made a very small (and insignificant) donation on PayPal. I can't fully use your project atm, but I admire your dedication and I've been dreaming for something like this for many, many, many years.
    I just hope someone from the Windower team could work hand in hand with you to make this useable not just with vanilla and Ashita, but Windower too.
    But in the end I can understand how that would be unpractical and unrealistical.

    Regardless, kudos again for your inspiring work Atomos!

  7. #7
    Old Odin
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    Quote Originally Posted by fantasticdan View Post
    Could this improve performance at all if you aren't using one of those switchable mobile graphics things?
    If you have a high end CPU/GPU and play with default settings you probably won't see much of a difference, but if you start turning on shadows and want to play at more than 30fps and make your framerate consistant, then I'm very very confident this project would create massive differences in such scenarios.

  8. #8
    Yoshi P
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    Tried installing to see if it would increase fps with weather/shadows on, but causes ashita to crash as ffxi is launched from pol.

  9. #9
    Lyramion's better half
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sechs View Post
    Made a very small (and insignificant) donation on PayPal. I can't fully use your project atm, but I admire your dedication and I've been dreaming for something like this for many, many, many years.
    I just hope someone from the Windower team could work hand in hand with you to make this useable not just with vanilla and Ashita, but Windower too.
    But in the end I can understand how that would be unpractical and unrealistical.

    Regardless, kudos again for your inspiring work Atomos!
    Echoing this, thanks very much for all of your hard work and dedication. I really hope someone can port this over to Windower somehow as I am so invested in Gearswap, that there's no way I could swap over. I do travel a lot for work, so when I am not home, Optimus impacts my performance quite a bit. The fact that this is out there in the wild gives me hope!

  10. #10
    CoP Dynamis
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    Quote Originally Posted by fantasticdan View Post
    Could this improve performance at all if you aren't using one of those switchable mobile graphics things?
    If you have an old system, it could, but it's mainly meant for laptops with switchable graphics. But anyone is free to try it out and use it if they want. Another thing this opens up is the use of things like SweetFX / ReShade and similar graphics projects like those. So if you are interested in them you can make use of them with this project from what I've been told. (I don't use them so I have no idea how they are setup and work with other wrappers etc.)

    Quote Originally Posted by Sechs View Post
    Made a very small (and insignificant) donation on PayPal. I can't fully use your project atm, but I admire your dedication and I've been dreaming for something like this for many, many, many years.
    I just hope someone from the Windower team could work hand in hand with you to make this useable not just with vanilla and Ashita, but Windower too.
    But in the end I can understand how that would be unpractical and unrealistical.

    Regardless, kudos again for your inspiring work Atomos!
    Thanks for the donation and kind words. I do not have any plans on working with the Windower team though, sorry.

    Quote Originally Posted by fantasticdan View Post
    Tried installing to see if it would increase fps with weather/shadows on, but causes ashita to crash as ffxi is launched from pol.
    If you would like to contact me on Discord, I can help you out over TeamViewer to try and find out the cause of your crash. My Discord name is:
    atom0s#3826

  11. #11

    Quote Originally Posted by Spicyryan View Post
    Good job making this, thanks.


    But, I don't use Ashita :/
    Judging from the way he has implemented this I don't think Ashita is necessary. It installs a wrapper disguised as D3D8.DLL in the POL directory. When you launch the game it looks for D3D8.dll and the first thing it finds is the "D3D8.dll" in it's own directory which it then loads and uses. Because this "D3D8.dll" is the first thing with that filename in the directory path it doesn't load the D8D8.dll in the the system32 directory (the real one) as it normally would.

  12. #12

    Doesn't seem to be working in windows 10, FFXI just picks up D3D8.dll from the system32 directory and ignores the one in it's local directory. I can tell this because the files can be deleted or moved after ffxi is running and it would be locked if it were in use.

  13. #13
    RIDE ARMOR
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    Ashita + this = AWESOME! The game is so smooth. I do have one issue, and that's the background brightness is way too low at night so that I can't navigate caves ingame. Other than that, this is .... perfect. Thank you!

  14. #14
    New Odin
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    What I saw when googling for other issues is people using dgvoodoo2:
    https://reshade.me/forum/troubleshoo...-on-load#14438

  15. #15
    RIDE ARMOR
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    @Gokulo I don't want to mess with that >_> I heard people asking for help with that in /yell haha. This works...

  16. #16

    Finally got it to work, I had to put the DLL and INI in /PlayOnline/Square Enix/FINAL FANTASY XI

    If you can delete the DLL after FFXI is running then it is not working, if access is denied when you try to move or delete it than FFXI has loaded and is using the D3D8.dll

    EDIT Ok I have to have it in both PlayOnlineViewer and FINAL FANTASY XI or else it will not work. If it's only in FINAL FANTASY XI it dumps back to POL when I start the game and if it's only in PlayOnlineViewer it just doesn't load.

  17. #17
    CoP Dynamis
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    Quote Originally Posted by Atomic Skull View Post
    Doesn't seem to be working in windows 10, FFXI just picks up D3D8.dll from the system32 directory and ignores the one in it's local directory. I can tell this because the files can be deleted or moved after ffxi is running and it would be locked if it were in use.
    It should be placed in the same folder as pol.exe (or the same folder as the private server boot loader you use if you play on a private server.) I personally only tested on private servers since I do not play on retail. The handful people that have tested for me were on various systems, mostly Windows 10, and had no issues or need to put it in the FFXI folder since the main app loading the d3d8.dll module is pol.exe. If you bounce back from FFXI to pol and back into FFXI in a single instance it may have issues with the current path and may require it to be in the FFXI folder as well, but initially it shouldn't need to be there.

    Quote Originally Posted by Grayn View Post
    Ashita + this = AWESOME! The game is so smooth. I do have one issue, and that's the background brightness is way too low at night so that I can't navigate caves ingame. Other than that, this is .... perfect. Thank you!
    You may need to tweak your mipmap and bump map settings.
    Ashita offers the /ambient command as well to help brighten things up but again the first two settings need to be adjusted correctly for it to work.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gokulo View Post
    What I saw when googling for other issues is people using dgvoodoo2:
    https://reshade.me/forum/troubleshoo...-on-load#14438
    Every tester of mine was a user of dgVoodoo and all had the same issues with it. Random crashes, random artifacts and so on. My proxy is specifically for FFXI to help ensure it is stable and works well with the game to avoid any crashes. So far I have had no reports of crashes that were fault of the proxy itself.

  18. #18
    RIDE ARMOR
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    No issues anymore after fixing the bump/mip mapping settings down to 0.

  19. #19
    Sea Torques
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    This worked on my new Alienware 13 that I bought since its got optimus built into it. Wouldnt use the dGpu only IGFX. Pity someone cant make a fix for this so it would work on windower ashita does work and all (after getting kaspersky to stop blocking 4 files) but the TParty plugin is misalligned and wont position correctly on 1440p resolution.

  20. #20
    CoP Dynamis
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    Quote Originally Posted by Infini View Post
    This worked on my new Alienware 13 that I bought since its got optimus built into it. Wouldnt use the dGpu only IGFX. Pity someone cant make a fix for this so it would work on windower ashita does work and all (after getting kaspersky to stop blocking 4 files) but the TParty plugin is misalligned and wont position correctly on 1440p resolution.
    Issues with alignment are usually due to your window and menu resolutions being different. The addons and plugins made for Ashita were designed before SE offered the ability to alter the menu resolution so they are not coded to handle the different scaling that can be done because of it. To fix this, usually you can just set the menu resolution to match your window size and it should align properly then. However, some less common resolutions may still have some issues.

    As for this not working with Windower, it is not something that is broken. It is intentionally coded that way.

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