Killing Floor 2 Tweaker 2.4 released!

KF2

Quite significant update this time around. Made a huge overhaul of new Rendering Distance tweak, offering several easy to use presets and added an unofficial fix for a crash due to faulty auto set Unreal Engine parameters.

2.4 (2018-11-26)

  • Renamed “Extreme Draw Distance” to “Rendering Distance” and moved it from “Graphics Settings” to main KF2 Tweaker selection menu.
  • “Rendering Distance” tweak section now offers 5 rendering distance presets ranging from Ultra Low for people who need every drop of performance to Ultra for people who run top of the line computers and want maximum visual quality with zero objects popping into view, anywhere.
  • Added “Compatibility Patches” feature which currently fixes game sometimes crashing to Windows desktop with BugSplat dialog when trying to join server/map due to faulty auto set Unreal Engine Garbage Collection parameters on some systems (mine included).

Visit Killing Floor 2 Tweaker micro page for download:

Killing Floor 2 Tweaker

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Simple Shutdown Timer released!

SimpleShutdownTimer.png

It’s nothing fancy really, just a simple quick frontend for integrated Windows shutdown parameters. I made it for myself when I watch TV or Twitch on my laptop in bed as I go to sleep and I don’t want stream playing till morning draining entire battery, I usually set it to 1 or 2 hours and then it entirely shuts down the laptop, allowing me to watch TV like this for few days on a single battery charge instead of draining it all in one night. And I thought it might come in handy for you guys as well so I just released it to public.

It’s literally a simple sleep timer for what I’m using it which is why it only goes up to 4 hours and doesn’t have very granular control, because there is no need for it. If you need more granular control or more advanced controls, I suggest you look for something else. This one was made as simple as possible on purpose.

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Killing Floor 2 Tweaker 2.3.5 released!

KF2

2.3.5 (2018-11-23)

  • Added “Extreme Draw Distance” tweak

This feature dramatically enhances draw (rendering) distance of decals and other minor objects in the game world beyond Ultra settings. Most notable is on Zed Landing and Black Forest where grass on the ground, bushes and other “greens” are not popping into existence at certain rather short distances, but are rendered as far away as eyes can see.

Visit Killing Floor 2 Tweaker micro page for download:

Killing Floor 2 Tweaker

pCloud cloud storage amazing Black Friday 2018 lifetime deals!

As you may have noticed I’ve talked about pCloud in the past because it offers a generous up to 20GB of free cloud storage (you can get up to 20GB by using referral links) and it’s one of rare ones that has great Android app, Windows app and also web interface. There is only one other service that looks this good and it’s called AllSync which I’ll talk about some other time.

Now I’m gonna talk about pCloud LIFETIME deals (they consider lifetime as 99 years) they are offering for 2018’s Black Friday. They’ve run similar deals in the past so I kept my eyes on them.

It’s 75% off their LIFETIME plans and it’s 122.5€ for 500GB storage and 245€ for 2TB. TWO FREAKING TERABYTES!

LINK TO THE DEAL:

https://www.pcloud.com/black-friday?utm_source=blog&utm_medium=blog&utm_campaign=BlackFriday2018

They will run the deals for 5 days and there is a countdown, so if you’re interested, grab it because I think prices are amazing. The 2TB plan pays itself off in 5 years. I’ve been using OneDrive and Google Drive for far longer so it’s perfectly reasonable and it’s freaking 2TB. I couldn’t find any other cloud storage that offers such massive storage for this price. None.

There is just one caveat, their highly advertised CryptoFolder (zero knowledge end to end encryption) ISN’T part of the main plans. You need to pay for that separately and it’s 125€. That sucks a bit, but oh well, I guess you can’t have it all.

pCloud seems like a reliable option, has been on the market for very long, has huge user base, good prices and tons of cloud storage. Oh and they are based in Switzerland so privacy is taken very seriously as well. Especially if you also buy CryptoFolder option which prevents anyone accessing your encrypted files even if they somehow gain access to their servers.

Microsoft Outlook webmail needs per alias names

Microsoft’s Outlook (webmail) offers creation of aliases. Which is great. You have your base e-mail and you may want to create new e-mail addresses within it without having to create whole new Outlook e-mail account and all the e-mails to all aliases are sent and received under single mailbox.

All great till this point. Problem is, for some silly reason, Microsoft decided to allow aliases, but sticks your name to all of them.

So, if your name is “John Smith” and that’s what you have set in Microsoft Account, the sent e-mail address to the recipient will look like this:

John Smith <john.smith@outlook.com>

But then, if you create an alias “sheepmaster@outlook.com”, the e-mail address will look like this:

John Smith <sheepmaster@outlook.com>

As you can see, by creating an alias, you’ve created a new e-mail address, but Outlook webmail, for some silly reason doesn’t allow you to change the name in front. So, what’s the point of alias when it sticks your real name to it regardless.

And to make things even worse, it strictly has to be NAME and SURNAME. You can’t even make an anon e-mail with just your single word nickname. Nope, can’t be done at all. Two words, name and surname.

Microsoft really needs to rethink the design of this. It has the aliases there, but they messed them up entirely so they don’t really make any sense or use. Was even thinking of buying the Office 365 package, but this was a show stopper really. I need entirely separate aliases, one with real name for professional use and one made up for goofing around on the interwebs.

Solderless CPU protector IHS/shroud

So, I was thinking about this. We used to have naked CPU cores back in the past and one of the reasons why everyone started doing IHS (Integrated Heat Spreader) wasn’t really to spread heat as much as to protect the CPU core from chipping on the edges when mounting and dismounting CPU coolers and not placing it absolutely flush caused higher pressure on edges of CPU core, chipping it as a result. I remember my AMD Athlon XP 2400+ having edges chipped a bit after many mountings of CPU coolers. It was still working, but it looked a bit ugly and such chipping can possibly ruin it.

The main problem doing this are thermals. Ideal method of removing heat from CPU is having heatsink attached to it directly with highest heat conductive thermal compound in between.

With IHS, you’re essentially making a sandwich of materials and bonding compounds that are far from optimal. Sure, IHS can be copper which has excellent thermal conductivity, but bonding compounds usually aren’t. Even gallium used in liquid metal compounds has like over 10x lower heat conductivity than copper. And soldering IHS to CPU can cause the solder compound to crack in rare cases as it’s constantly expanding and shrinking as CPU is heating up and cooling down rather rapidly.

So, Intel started using regular thermal “bonding” compound even under the IHS where it’s contacting CPU. Sure they saved hundreds of thousands of dollars, but they also made CPU’s with absolutely atrocious thermals. This isn’t really an issue with low end CPU’s that barely get warm under load, but 12 or 16 core CPU can’t possibly work well.

I got this idea while looking at the other segment, GPU’s. GPU’s still have core die fully exposed. Partially because heatsinks always come pre-installed by manufacturer and partially, because they do a small trick that I think could be borrowed by Intel and AMD for CPU’s. Sort of proposal of 2 designs quickly mocked in Paint 3D…

CPU_Shroud

This one is borrowed directly from graphic cards. GPU’s have been using metal guard shrouds like this for ages and what these do is prevent placement of heatsink at an angle that is too high which is what causes the edge chipping. And given we can make chips at 7nm, I’m pretty sure they can manufacture whole CPU’s in such way that CPU core and metal guard shroud are perfectly flush, meaning shroud and CPU would be perfectly leveled on the package substrate. Shouldn’t be a problem even for multicore designs like Ryzen or EPYC. They would have to tighten up tolerances, but in the end, it would actually end up being easier than having to perfectly solder 4 or more individual chips to the IHS on top.

CPU_Protector

This second example was actually my initial “proposed” design, but I later figured out there would be issues with such design, mostly in terms of material used if solid and bending issues if hollow. Also, thermal compound would get stuck into thin crevice between guard and CPU as well as issues where liquid metal would potentially get inside and no way of cleaning it out. Filling the crevice with some sort of epoxy would complicate expansion of metals and core and I don’t think it would be a good solution.

So, I think the first one would work better, be able to protect the naked CPU core and be easy to maintain in terms of cleaning thermal compound.

I think heading in this direction is a necessity because we are increasing cores with each CPU release and having them under several layers of suboptimal heat conductive materials is a really bad design decision as thermals are getting worse and worse with every CPU release. “Heat spreader” should be a copper base of the CPU heatsink or water block, not an extra layer of copper between two layers of thermal compound which is just terrible.

Having fully exposed CPU gives you best way of removing heat and metal guard would prevent chipping of CPU die. Probably not 100%, but enough to allow several re-mounts of CPU without any damage.

I really hope AMD and Intel will consider heading in this direction because CPU’s in general look pretty terrible these days in terms of thermals…

Killing Floor 2 Tweaker 2.3 released!

KF2

2.3 (2018-11-09)

  • Added “Protect Key Bindings” feature to prevent unwanted random Key Bindings resets (sets KFInput.ini as read-only). Please report if controls still reset even when protection is enabled (changing Enhanced Dosh Throwing resets the protection!).
  • Added “Long Distance Detailed Shadows” under Graphics Settings. Makes shadows far away more detailed without the higher performance hit of the “Ultra High Quality Shadows” mode.
  • Few text changes

Visit Killing Floor 2 Tweaker micro page for download:

Killing Floor 2 Tweaker