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Jason Carr

8.4-beta-1 Released

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Hello all, the first 8.4 beta is out. I'm at family camp this week, but I've been working in the mornings. However unfortunately I have zero reception out here so once I head back to camp in a few minutes, so I won't be able to check up on anything until tomorrow morning. If you're skiddish about betas, you might want to hold off on this one just because I won't be available for a day.

Anyways, the focus for this beta so far has been to attempt to improve performance with the box images and the caching for .Next. The app will automatically cache images in the background for the active view (the currently displayed games). In addition, there's a small progress bar that shows at the top while images are being cached in the background. If you want to precache all images, just go to All Games, set the image group you want, and wait for the progress bar to complete.

It's still a work in progress, and I haven't been able to test anywhere but on this laptop, but I'm hoping it's a significant improvement.

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An image caching indicator is something I suggested long ago in one of the live stream and I'm super happy to see that being implemented. Can't wait to check it out!

Take care and enjoy the family camp!

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No fear beta seems to be fine so far.

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Posted (edited)

The new image caching is great... thanks for adding that.  One thing I might suggest is, instead of LB waiting until you highlight a platform to start building the thumbnails... just go ahead and do the whole thing on the first launch.  I would much rather wait the 1-2 minutes for them to be ready and then have smooth scrolling and images throughout the entire library.

*edit*  Another related suggestion... I know there is the little green progress bar at the top, but it would probably be beneficial to have a little popup that says "building cache, please wait" (or something like that)... the reason that I suggest this is that there are people that aren't going to wait 1 minute until it's done before they hit the forums saying their LB is running very slow.  So, it would mainly save Jason and the moderation team some headache.

Edited by Drybonz
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Posted (edited)

When you have a lot of games in the section (say the SNES for example) the UI becomes almost totally unresponsive while it caches the images. Once done though and you switch back, it's a lot quicker, but just saying the first time isn't great. Maybe it needs to use less resources to do the caching so you can still use the UI while it's doing it's thing.

 

CPU - AMD Ryzen 5 1600x

GPU - Nvidia 1070

RAM  - 8 Gig

HD - Mechanical

Edited by MancVandal
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@Jason Carr I know you are probably knee deep in code with other things but wanted to bring a couple issues to your attention to put on your list.🙂 I have been using BigBox and LaunchBox Next quiet a bit lately and getting everything dialed in on my new arcade cabinet and have noticed a few issues that has happened multiple times to me.

1. LaunchBox Next does not always close out completely and sometimes I have to ctrl-alt-delete and kill the program. It seems like I notice this more when I enter into BigBox mode from LaunchBox Next as sometimes LB Next does not close out and never enters into BigBox.

2. I get a black screen with audio still  2 or 3 times out of 10 tries (totally random) with startup videos with VLC or WMP (Sorry, I know you don't want to hear this one as VLC has been a pain in the past with videos)😬

3. Attract mode - I have my attract mode set to activate after 20 seconds of inactivity. Sometimes after exiting a game, attract mode starts back up immediately almost like the timer did not reset or attract mode is still running in the background while playing a game. Attract mode will also startup immediately sometimes after the startup video if it is a longer than normal video.

 

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4 minutes ago, kmoney said:

3. Attract mode - I have my attract mode set to activate after 20 seconds of inactivity. Sometimes after exiting a game, attract mode starts back up immediately almost like the timer did not reset or attract mode is still running in the background while playing a game.

I have seen this also on my setup, I quit a game back to Bigbox and the game wheel is spinning away.

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10 hours ago, MancVandal said:

When you have a lot of games in the section (say the SNES for example) the UI becomes almost totally unresponsive while it caches the images. Once done though and you switch back, it's a lot quicker, but just saying the first time isn't great. Maybe it needs to use less resources to do the caching so you can still use the UI while it's doing it's thing.

This post definitely supports my suggestion, above.

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VLC is at 2.2.6  the current version is 3.0.3.  I tried a manual update but it just causes BigBox to hang then crash.

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Thank you all; all noted. Beta 2 is out now with some more significant performance improvements, especially for during the initial caching. That was definitely something I was aware of and still planned to tackle. I'm hoping this version proves to be much better.

I'm headed back from camp tomorrow morning so my availability will be back to normal again very soon. :)

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Really nice... seems much faster and did not seem to need to rebuild a bunch of stuff after the beta upgrade.  Very cool.

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It looks like you've added the spacing code to this beta? That was the only thing stopping me using .NEXT, now it's perfect. The performance during caching is a lot better now too. GJ!

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12 hours ago, MancVandal said:

It looks like you've added the spacing code to this beta? That was the only thing stopping me using .NEXT, now it's perfect. The performance during caching is a lot better now too. GJ!

Nope, custom spacing code has not been added yet.

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lol, you're right, for some reason I was in LB and thought I was in LB.NEXT. Not to worry, sure it's on it's way. :)

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Hey all, beta 3 is out now with the following:

  • Improvement: LaunchBox.Next now obeys the default background settings properly

  • Improvement: LaunchBox.Next now resets to the default background when changing to a new platform/filter

  • Improvement: LaunchBox.Next now works with clear logo backgrounds

  • Fixed: LaunchBox.Next exiting issues while switching to Big Box

See the LaunchBox.Next missing features thread for details on what's left for .Next:

 

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@Jason Carr With the newest beta 3,launching into BigBox from LaunchBox Next is not working at all for me. It works fine from regular LaunchBox.

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2 minutes ago, kmoney said:

@Jason Carr With the newest beta 3,launching into BigBox from LaunchBox Next is not working at all for me.

Does LaunchBox.Next exit? Does it close the process?

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Yes it closes the process and is not in my task manager and LaunchBox Next exits.

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