Is it normal for a 2003 game to use 100% of 1 CPU core on modern CPU

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I notice Command and Conquer Generals Zero Hour on my Core i7 12700K with all e cores and hyper threading disabled at 5GHz all 8 P-cores is always taking 100% of 1 core while all other cores are unused.

Now I know old games would never use more than 1 core, but it seems odd it would need 100% of 1 core. l I remember even back in the old days like 2002- early 2005 before multi core CPUs, that it was said you have a CPU bottleneck if the CPU was at almost 100% usage even back in the day??

So 1 CPU core is like 1 physical CPU on chip back in the day, except 1 CPU core of even a 10 year old Intel Core CPU or even a Core 2 Duo is so much much much much more powerful at same clock speed than Pentium 4 and Athlon XPs. Let alone by far the fastest cores on the market clock for clock being Alder Lake Performance cores.

So why would such an old game need to peg 100% of 1 super fast core that is like probably at least 20-30 times faster at same clock speeds than Pentium 4 Northwoods or Athlon XP back in the day.

Or is it the way modern Windows scheduler works with very old games that it just throws all 100% CPU usage of 1 CPU core at it regardless.

I know DOS Box is inefficient and uses ridiculous CPU cycles to emulate very very old games. But this game is a native Windows 32-bit game from 2003 which Windows 10 64-bit and all X86 CPUs through Wow6432 can run natively and is not using DOS box at all.

The game runs great all settings maxed out, but is interesting none the less.

Just curious why it would peg 100% use of such a powerful core when playing it?? When I remember it only using like 70-80% of a 3GHz P4 Northwood back in early 2000s. Does a much more powerful video card being a 3090 which is only used like 20% if that as opposed to an old Radeon 9800 Pro or GeForce 6800GT from 2005 make a big difference in CPU usage??

Mods if this should be in a different forum, please feel free to move it to where it should be.
 
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Are you running with an uncapped framerate? Naturally if your framerate is uncapped than it will use all of your CPU that it can in order to achieve the highest framerate possible.

No. Command and Conquer Generals caps FPS to 30 by default. FPS never exceeds 31 per MSI Afterburner on screen display when gaming in it.
 
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could be.
got the patches installed? how many cpu players your using? frame rate capped to monitor refresh rate? where did you get your copy?
https://cnc.community/generals/how-to-play

Copy is original of Generals Zero Hour I got for my 20th birthday in 2004. And copy of Command and COnquer Generals is original copy I got for Easter 2003.

Had to apply no CD cracks as Windows Vista or 7 and above due to security feature does not work with original CD to load game in game even though it installs fine.

I have latest 1.04 for Zero Hour and 1.07 Patch for Generals.

And only 1 CPU player.
 

pendragon1

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Copy is original of Generals Zero Hour I got for my 20th birthday in 2004. And copy of Command and COnquer Generals is original copy I got for Easter 2003.

Had to apply no CD cracks as Windows Vista or 7 and above due to security feature does not work with original CD to load game in game even though it installs fine.

I have latest 1.04 for Zero Hour and 1.07 Patch for Generals.

And only 1 CPU player.
maybe start over and use the official instructions, you shouldnt need cracks.
 
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maybe start over and use the official instructions, you shouldnt need cracks.


Actually for this game yeah you do if you run Windows 7 or later. I think Microsoft patched some security hole that broke the old version of Securom CD check in later versions of Windows starting as far back as 7 or maybe even Vista. Not sure if that was considered a security hole and if I remember right it was and Microsoft did not allow those old CD checks to run on Windows 7 and later. XP it is no issue at all.

https://forums.tomshardware.com/threads/getting-c-c-generals-to-work-on-windows-10-x64.2429374/

https://answers.ea.com/t5/C-C-The-U...er-Generals-Zero-Hour-Windows-10/td-p/4701341
 

pendragon1

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actually
or is this the "crack" your using?
edit: i though that this was official, its not...
edit2: current patch for gens is also 1.08.
1647112793049.png

1647112954733.png

https://cnc.community/generals/how-to-play
 
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cdabc123

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Kinda just sounds like the nature of the code to me. I wouldn't say its a bottleneck as I'm assuming performance is just fine. I would just let one core endlessly rip through the code at 5ghz :p
 

Mchart

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Either the nature of the code, or the 'fix/crack' portion is causing it in the efforts to avoid the DRM.
 

daglesj

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Kinda just sounds like the nature of the code to me. I wouldn't say its a bottleneck as I'm assuming performance is just fine. I would just let one core endlessly rip through the code at 5ghz :p

Yes back in 2003 it would have 1 core at 2.2GHz at best and share that with the OS and everything else.
 

Nobu

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Yes, the C&C engine is highly CPU bound, everything runs on a single thread iirc, and the graphics are all very simple. You could run it at full speed on any modern GPU, and most GPUs from back then could handle it fine as well.
 
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Yes, the C&C engine is highly CPU bound, everything runs on a single thread iirc, and the graphics are all very simple. You could run it at full speed on any modern GPU, and most GPUs from back then could handle it fine as well.

Yeah makes sense. I do not remember for sure, but I think most games back in the day used 70 to 80% of CPU if it was not CPU bottlenecked so I assumed Generals is no different. But it is a strategy game, so probably just uses 100% of 1 CPU core regardless of its power and would have on a much weaker CPU back then to with a much weaker video card? I mean aren't real time strategy games generally more CPU intensive than other types of games.
 

Mchart

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Yeah makes sense. I do not remember for sure, but I think most games back in the day used 70 to 80% of CPU if it was not CPU bottlenecked so I assumed Generals is no different. But it is a strategy game, so probably just uses 100% of 1 CPU core regardless of its power and would have on a much weaker CPU back then to with a much weaker video card? I mean aren't real time strategy games generally more CPU intensive than other types of games.
Back then the game would have been GPU bound for sure.
 

GiGaBiTe

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Now I know old games would never use more than 1 core, but it seems odd it would need 100% of 1 core. l I remember even back in the old days like 2002- early 2005 before multi core CPUs, that it was said you have a CPU bottleneck if the CPU was at almost 100% usage even back in the day??

The CPU usage is always 100% because of how games were programmed back then. They would have tight code loops running that would execute code as needed, but if there was nothing that needed to be done, the code loop would be waiting for the next thing to be done, rather than kick out NOPs to tell the CPU there was nothing to do. This means the CPU was always 100% busy doing something, even if it was just waiting to do something. The pipeline would always be full, even if instructions in the pipeline were completely wasted and useless. This is the reason that no matter what CPU you have - a 386 or an i9-10980XE, the one core will always be at 100% CPU usage.

This is also why Windows 9x had crap performance and caused thermal issues on some machines with broken ACPI tables. Windows 9x would default back to a code loop that did the same thing, rather than let the CPU idle down.
 

RogueTrip

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Are you playing at the same resolution with no widescreen mods. Did you play at 1024x768 back when.

I did not play this game, but played my games between 800x600 to 1024x768. If lucky at 1280x1024.

1280x1024 vs 1080 is like 58% more pixels.
 

bananas1

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Well normally it's a good thing to have the cpu as heavily utilized as possible, but if you're running a 20 year old game at 30fps capped something seems wrong. You may want to check the communities for each game to see what behavior is normal on a modern system. There may be some kind of background activity the CPU is trying to handle over and over
 

travm

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It might be that the game code was designed with delay code to keep time consistent across different cpu speeds. It may just be designed to specifically use 100% of the cpu. If you run other processes it would just use fewer delays, but stay at 100%.
 

Dan_D

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It is very normal. Back in 2003 we not only had single core, single CPU systems primarily we often had to disable background processes and close applications to free up system resources for maximum performance. We would disable antivirus software and all kinds of things in order to get the most out of our systems. I'm not surprised the game is taking 100% of a single core. How fast the modern core is or what clock speed it runs at is irrelevant. The CPU being faster than what we had back in 2003 won't change how the CPU is loaded.
 

OFaceSIG

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It is very normal. Back in 2003 we not only had single core, single CPU systems primarily we often had to disable background processes and close applications to free up system resources for maximum performance. We would disable antivirus software and all kinds of things in order to get the most out of our systems. I'm not surprised the game is taking 100% of a single core. How fast the modern core is or what clock speed it runs at is irrelevant. The CPU being faster than what we had back in 2003 won't change how the CPU is loaded.
...using sound cards to free up cycles...
 
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daglesj

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I remember always switching off the clock too and rebuild a fresh build of 98SE and XP every 4-6 months. Every little process you could switch off...

Black Viper's list for the win!!!!!
 
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I remember always switching off the clock too and rebuild a fresh build of 98SE and XP every 4-6 months. Every little process you could switch off...

Black Viper's list for the win!!!!!
What a waste, you did not need to reinstall XP every 4-6 months.
 
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If you weren't absolutely meticulous about what websites you visited, and software you installed you basically did.

Mainly required when using college student budget parts.
I guess so. People do tend to trash their OS with bloatware and do little to no maintenance.
 

daglesj

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Just something I liked doing on a Sunday afternoon. I didn't keep a lot on there. XP was probably like 2 or 3 times a year but a lot of hardware was changing. From 7 onwards it got down to only if major hardware upgrades warranted it.
 

travm

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Really since win 7 reinstalling became way unnecessary. I've only done a fresh something like once in the last 5or 6 years
 

Toriessian

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Back in my day I had to walk up a hill 20 miles to get to my computer, and when I got there I had to load drivers into the the PC's upper memory by hand using the config.sys and autoexec.bat files and I liked it :p
Kids these days and their fancy windows and cores and processes. Who needs all that?? :)
 

pitingres

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Back in my day I had to walk up a hill 20 miles to get to my computer,
Uphill both ways, I trust. In the snow.
and when I got there I had to load drivers into the the PC's upper memory by hand using the config.sys and autoexec.bat files and I liked it :p
Files? Bah. Files are for sissies. Entering binary machine code using the front panel switches is how real programmers did it.
 

lopoetve

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Back in my day I had to walk up a hill 20 miles to get to my computer, and when I got there I had to load drivers into the the PC's upper memory by hand using the config.sys and autoexec.bat files and I liked it :p
Kids these days and their fancy windows and cores and processes. Who needs all that?? :)
604k free with CDROM, sound, AND mouse - and with EMM386 loaded. I only had one game that took a boot disk, and it didn't want EMM386. (Hindsight - should have just commented out that line and rebooted... things you know now vs back then).
 

Toriessian

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604k free with CDROM, sound, AND mouse - and with EMM386 loaded. I only had one game that took a boot disk, and it didn't want EMM386. (Hindsight - should have just commented out that line and rebooted... things you know now vs back then).

I learned so much about computers learning how to free up memory so I could get the Wing Commander II speech pack working. Those were the days.
 

Toriessian

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Hah! Those were the…. Uh…



I just drank a fifth of jack due to you. Fuck you. Fuck you very much. God the PTSD.

Man it sounds like those days were rougher for you than me? Did you have a Cyrix processor or something?
 

lopoetve

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Man it sounds like those days were rougher for you than me? Did you have a Cyrix processor or something?
Started out on an old 286, then 486 DX2/66 (got that up to 24MB of RAM eventually!)... VLB Graphics baby! Trying to run WC3 on that was... bad. 3+ minute load times. Ugh. Sorta playable. WC2/1 played fine. After that...

Yeah, I was poor. 6x86 PR90 - then a 6x86 PR200 (didn't support DMA!). Put a Rendition Verite V1000 in that (couldn't afford a Voodoo card). Eventually saved up and got a PII-266... but in an FX board from Supermicro, so it was finicky as shit about things (didn't like PowerVR, barely liked the Voodoo card I eventually got, really didn't like the V2200 I got)... yeah. It was rough times. But that 486 sang in terms of conventional memory!
 

Toriessian

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The 486 DX2/66 was a beast for its time. I had one too!
And I called it.... the 6x86s caused a lot of drinking.
 

lopoetve

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The 486 DX2/66 was a beast for its time. I had one too!
And I called it.... the 6x86s caused a lot of drinking.
Yep. So many weird bugs, so many oddities, etc. IT was faster than the 486, sure - but it wasn't the pentium alternative that they sold it as.
 
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