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CMSF2 getting a splash screen with just the tank firing in the dark? Here's why.


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I have a Windows 10 install.  What I find is that the CM2 titles sometimes appear to hang at startup eg a black screen and not even getting to the tank firing in the dark splash screen.

The 100% successful fix for this, for me, is to switch desktop ie WIndows Key plus Tab then click back on the desktop with the hung startup.  Sometimes need to do it a few times, but will always work.

I've been in IT for 20 odd years and have never had any issues getting CM to run on umpteen different machines.  I would never use third party anti virus with Win 7 or 10.  I always install games to somewhere like   Hard Drive Letter:\games , not the Windows Program Files directories.  I don't use Controlled Folder Access.

Any issue I have had with a CM install has been fixable within Windows sometimes by looking through the log entries in Event ViewerFor example that led to me  having to enable Data Execution Protection For All Programs and Services and add the CM titles as exceptions, in Windows 7.  In Windows 10 the titles happily run under the default setting Turn on DEP for Essential Windows etc.  Have you tried changing the DEP settings @Erwin ?  I seem to remember that when I had issues in Windows 7, the program would open briefly then disappear, similar to how you have described.

Edited by Jock Tamson
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6 hours ago, Jock Tamson said:

Have you tried changing the DEP settings

Part  of the problem is that one feels one has to be a programmer or have a more in-depth knowledge of how the software runs that I have or want to have.  If my IT guy can't figure it out why should I waste my time? 

This situation reminds me of that 90's tank sim game "Panzer Elite" where it got so complex one spent more time getting the thing to run than playing the game - then as so many others, it was abandoned and faded into history.

Am pinning my hopes on lots of STEAM users figuring this out.

Edited by Erwin
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There are at least 3 threads containing comments about your issues so I presumed you'd be interested in a potential fix.  It takes about 30 seconds and will either work, or not.  System > Advanced System Settings > Performance Settings > Data Execution Prevention tab > Turn on DEP and exclude the CM executables.

If your IT guy hasn't read the Event Viewer Logs, and hasn't seen Windows report a DEP exception, then he will not have tried it.  It is debatable whether it is an issue with CM or Windows.  Your IT guy couldn't get it to work, he isn't going to blame his own troubleshooting skills is he?

At the end of the day, PC gaming has never been like owning a Xbox.  Let's be grateful we are not all here sharing tips on how to configure config.sys and free up upper memory like 1995.

Edited by Jock Tamson
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I think I had this same issue the very first time I tried to install CM on my new computer. Unfortunately I don't really remember what I did exactly to fix it, but it is not something that has happened ever since. I haven't read the whole thread but have you tried something as simple and obvious as deleting the display size.txt or even the preferences.pfc files in your documents/ Battlefront / Combat Mission ? (back up the pfc just in case before you do this).

And Jock Tamson is right about these anti virus software. They cause tons of problems and are frankly useless. If you need a particular file scanned, just use a site like Virus Total.

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Many years ago I remember installing AVAST on my machine and it totally messed up my ability to run any CM game. I uninstalled and the problem went away. I recall at the time multiple people said they we on machines with similar specs to mine and they had no problem at all with AVAST. If I wasn't the only one having that problem I was very nearly the only one. I still don't know why that happened to me only.

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On 8/13/2020 at 2:25 PM, Hat Trick said:

Also I still can't seem to log into the mojohelpdesk screen and it doesn't like my username/password combo when I try to sign in, even though I use it for posting this on the forum.

When you open a ticket the auto response should send you your login information. It will be different than both the store and the forum. Otherwise drop me a note by direct message. There may be personal information that I have to ask you.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Can anyone help me with this? Last night, I decided to upgrade my original CMSF to CMSF2 so I bought upgrades for the main game and the British and Marine modules.
I've entered all the serial numbers I had from Battlefront but I'm still just getting to the splash screen. Then I noticed no serial from CMSF from Battlefront - I bought the 'real' version from Paradox - can I install that and apply the Battlefront upgrade over it? Can I get a serial number from Battlefront for this? Thanks in advance for any help/pointers.

Edited by Kes
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  • 2 months later...

I'll post this since it may help other players in the future.  I downloaded the CMRT full installer to a new laptop and got the Splash Screen with the tank.  I spent several hours following the above suggestions with no luck. 

I entered the activation code that came with the full installer.  It would advise that activation was successful and the "Play" button appeared.  I hit play and it would take about 30 seconds for the splash screen with the tank to load.  But then it would go no further.  Just the screen with the tank. 

I entered the activation code more than a dozen times after trying the different suggestions above and was always advised "Activation successful".  So I was sure it was not an activation problem.  There was only one green box on the screen to unlock and it was successfully unlocked.  It told me every single time that activation was successful.  So I continued to change things, update things, turn off security, make exclusions, do the DEP for Essential Windows etc. 

Finally I entered the security code for the CMRT base game instead of for the 4.0 full installer and it again advised "Activation successful".  But this time when I hit the play button the splash screen immediately loaded and the game started as normal. 

To be fair I also did everything listed above plus a few more things.  So it might have been a combination of some of these things plus the base game code that made the game finally run.  I'm not sure. 

But my suggestion is, do NOT think that the activation is okay just because the screen reads activation successful.  Even with a full installer I would first exhaust every activation code for that game family I was ever given before moving on to the many other suggested remedies.  I don't think the order of the code entries matter because I entered the full installer code first (about 15 times) and then entered the base game code once on a separate attempt.  

@Erwin I'm not sure if this is helpful at all but in case it might be I'm tagging you.   

Now off to drink some alcoholic beverages .............         

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What license keys you will need depends on when you purchased the Base Game and what the Engine version was at that time. With CMFI the original Engine was 2.0. Purchases of the base game (which can be of a bundle with one of the modules) could have been 2.0, 3.0 or 4.0.

So if your base game was purchased when the 4.0 Engine was current for that game, then you'll only need that Base Game license key to activate and you will be able to run the base game.

If your purchase of the Base Game was when the Engine was either at 3.0 or 2.0, then you'll need both the 3.0 and 4.0 Upgrade license keys to activate the base game (to the 4.0 version). I don't believe the original Engine 2.0 base game license key is necessary if you have the 3.0 and 4.0 Upgrade license keys.

Play close attention to the Green 'Successful Activation' boxes since they will tell you what you have activated. I believe the 'Base Game' will come up as one of the activation boxes, even if you don't put in the original license key (from an Engine 2.0 purchase). With 3.0 and 4.0 Engine purchases you will obviously need the Base Game license key.

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Haven't yet tried it on my new Win 10 machine, but what I think MOS was saying is that even after getting a successful "Activation" the game still would not start (what I have been experiencing - although at least did get to see a tank).  But, the game worked ok after he used the old license keys that, as you say, should not be required.  

 

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16 hours ago, Schrullenhaft said:

Play close attention to the Green 'Successful Activation' boxes since they will tell you what you have activated. I believe the 'Base Game' will come up as one of the activation boxes, even if you don't put in the original license key (from an Engine 2.0 purchase). With 3.0 and 4.0 Engine purchases you will obviously need the Base Game license key.

I think in the past when I've done this all the activation boxes were displayed in the window.  But they were grayed out, or something, until they were successfully activated.  After activation they turned green and read, "Activation successful".  This last time with CMRT and the full installer there were no boxes displayed until after I pasted in the code and hit the activate button.  Then one green box appeared and read "Activation successful" with another button that read "Play".  I then hit "Play" (as there didn't seem to be any other options) and got the now infamous tank screen. 

If there had also been a grayed out button displayed that read "activate base game" (or something along those lines) it would have been obvious that I needed another activation key.  Instead the window displayed the "Play" button.  I had only one CMRT download on the new computer (the full installer) so, at the time, it made sense that there might only be one activation code. 

I guess I should have ignored the "Play" button and entered another activation code. 

Anyways, its over with until next time.  I'm hopeful that all CM titles will eventually move to Steam.  The sooner the better IMO.  

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