Wednesday, 20 June 2012

hiberfil.sys - If you don't use Hibernate, you don't need it

Hiberfil.sys is a file that stores everything currently in your system memory so that should you hibernate your PC, it will be able to shut down everything and then fairly quickly boot back up and reload all the data back into your memory. The difference between hibernate and sleep is that sleep will actually just keep your data in the memory, meaning the PC will still draw some power to do so (if the RAM loses power, it loses the data).

But do you ever actually use hibernate? This is a feature that is really meant to help boot the PC up quicker, much like sleep, but at the same time it's supposed to save a little more power. Personally, I just shut my PC off unless I'm going to use it again soon, in which case sleep mode is just fine.

So why do I still have this gigantic hiberfil.sys file eating up my SSD space? By default, hiberfil.sys is 75% of the size of your total RAM, so in my case that's 6gb of space uselessly occupied on my 80gb SSD.

To get rid of it, at least in Windows 7, is pretty easy. Simply open a command prompt as Administrator (Start button -> type "cmd" in the search bar -> Right click on Cmd and then Run as Administrator) and type:

powercfg -h off

Done. This will disable hibernate as well as delete the hiberfil.sys file.

Monday, 11 June 2012

Virtual Reality Gaming Is Closer Than We Thought

This is fairly recent, and in my opinion, rather exciting news. I've been following John Carmack's twitter feed for a while, but only now does it actually make sense. He's been developing a virtual reality head set - an HMD (Head Mounted Display). It's currently in extremely early prototype stage, but I have to say this is a pretty impressive piece of work.

Basically there is a display inside which will display independant images to the left and right eye so that you get a bang-on 3D effect. The screen also offers a 90 degree field of view, so it's all encompassing. On top of that, there are accelerometers so that you can to some degree adjust your in game view simply by turning your head.

According to an article by The Verge, the HMD currently has only a 1280x800 display, which means you're getting a 640x800 res image to each eye. Hopefully they can at least double if not quadruple this number for release, but even so it is a very neat piece of technology.

While it is too early to tell, Carmack is hoping that when the display is finally finished it can be purchased as a hobbyist kit for around $500, which seems quite reasonable to me. I just hope it works with all FPS games! I might have to start a list of must-play games... you know, just in case.


Sunday, 10 June 2012

Amnesia: The Dark Descent - Justine

Amnesia: The Dark Descent. I got this game as soon as it was released and I can't tell you how much I enjoyed it. In preparation, though mostly to determine if I would like the game or not, I picked up the Penumbra series. Penumbra is a series of 3 games, although only 2 are really part of the series with the 3rd being quite a bit different. Anyway, the first 2 are almost identical, gameplay wise, to Amnesia so it was (and is) a great place to start. These games are all made by Frictional Games, and are all survival horror games with somewhat of a classic "point and click" adventure style, by which I mean you will find many notes and clues as well as items to pick up and combine to solve puzzles.

I recently felt like playing Amnesia again, so I loaded it up. Had to download quite a bit of new data, though, so I wasn't surprised when the loading screen had new options - namely a button labelled Justine.

As it turns out, Justine is a new level. I don't know who the protagonist is (though I have an idea), but you wake up in a cell and off you go to make your way through a series of trials. Unfortunately there's some evil corpse creature trying to murder you, and there's some Gramaphones you can activate to hear recordings that indicate this is all a purposeful trial for you.

Without any further ado, this is my first attempt at it. Please note: I failed. For maximum immersion, play in a dark room with headphones.