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Picked upload! Lot Compressor

by Mootilda Posted 29th Nov 2010 at 2:30 PM - Updated 27th Nov 2013 at 2:56 PM by Nysha
38 Comments / replies (Who?) - 9 Feedback Posts, 5 Thanks Posts
Picked Upload! This is a picked upload! It showcases some of the best talent and creativity available on MTS and in the community.
LotCompressor Version 1.0:

Description:
The LotCompressor will make your lots smaller, so that they are easier to share. A "compress all" feature allows you to compress all of the lots in an entire neighborhood or subhood.

Although I wrote this utility to help with sharing lots and neighborhoods, it can also help to reduce the size of your save game on your hard drive by permanently reducing the size of your lot bin and all of your community lots. Since community lots are not saved as you play, the size reductions will remain in effect unless you modify these lots.

The LotCompressor shrinks the size of your lots by removing several unnecessary images. The missing images are not necessary and will regenerate the next time that you save your lot. Removing these images can significantly reduce the size of your lot. As an example, the subhood that I compressed went from 45 MB to 20 MB (see attached images). Your results may vary.

New forms of compression may be added at a later date. If you have ideas on how to compress lots further, please let me know.

Installation:
To install, just download LotCompressor.zip and unzip it. Run the EXE from the unzipped location.

This is "alpha" software and is still in development; it is not guaranteed to work and may corrupt your neighborhoods. Be sure to backup your game before using this tool.

I have included the source code for version 1.0 in LotCompressorSource.zip. There is no need to download this file unless you are a C# programmer who wishes to look at or modify the code.

Requirements:
- The program uses some DLLs from SimPE; they are included in the zip file.
- The LotCompressor is released under the GNU General Public License.
- You need the Microsoft .NET Framework 2.0 to run the LotCompressor:
http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/down...s.aspx?id=20137

Running under OS/X:
Please read this thread for information about running the LotCompressor under OS/X:
http://www.modthesims.info/showthread.php?t=366580

Instructions:

1) Backup your game files. The LotCompressor will NOT make backups for you.

2) Run LotCompressor.EXE. Click on Start.

3) Select the neighborhood and lot(s), or choose a lot from the LotCatalog. If your neighborhood is not in the standard location, use the Browse button to select the neighborhood. See Numenor's comment for instructions on accessing AnyGameStarter neighborhoods:
http://www.modthesims2.com/download...683#post2168683

4) Verify that you have selected the appropriate lot(s) and click on the Finish button.

5) Keep your backup until you are completely satisfied with the changes.

Operating System: Windows
Utility Type: Save Editors
Plugin Type: Not Applicable

You must have the expansion or stuff packs listed below installed to use this custom content. Please see the post text for any exceptions.

Sims 2
Key: - File was updated after upload was posted
Filename - Tip: You can click the magnifying glass to see the archive contents Size Downloads Date
LotCompressor.zip | Description: Current version of the LotCompressor V1.0 643.8 KB 1,686 29th Nov 2010
LotCompressorSource.zip | Description: C# source code V1.0 - for programmers only 47.0 KB 305 29th Nov 2010
Don't forget to Thank the creator after downloading! Use the Thanks button located above the screenshots above.
Basic Download and Install Instructions:

1. Download: Click the download link to save the .rar or .zip file(s) to your computer.

2. Extract: Use WinRAR (Windows) or Stuffit (Mac) to extract the .package file(s) from the .rar or .zip file(s).

3. Extract: You must extract all files from the .zip file. I recommend that you create a new folder on your hard drive to hold all of these extracted files. A reasonable location would be in a subfolder of your C:\Program Files directory. I do not recommend that you place these files into your Downloads folder.

Need more information?
 
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38 Comments / Replies (Who?) - 19 Feedback Posts, 18 Thanks Posts
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Test Subject
THANKS POST
#26 Old 1st Jan 2013 at 7:09 PM
I'm very impressed. One of my 'hoods was 282 MB and after using the Lot Compressor, it's down to 214 MB. I think it could be helpful with my community lots too, I don't tend to use them that much but I like having them there for the look of the neighborhood.
Lab Assistant
#27 Old 19th Aug 2013 at 12:31 PM Last edited by cedrigo : 19th Aug 2013 at 1:31 PM.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mootilda
I'm sure that there are other optimizations which can be performed. For example, I've noticed that unoccupied lots still contain information about the relationships between sims in the neighborhood where the lot was created. This is pretty useless information if the lot is unoccupied, so it may be possible to safely remove that information as well.

Hi,
First, I'd like to thank you for this usefull tool.
I was wondering if you made further testing about the files that could be deleted.
Some of my lots caused huge lag when moving from/to the catalog, and I found in those packages crazy things like 23000 unknown relationships (I played those lots in several neighborhoods...) so I tried to remove all that junk in my test-neighborhood and the lots seem to work fine when I play with a family.
I removed all the sim DNAs (SDNA), relations (SREL) and scores (SCOR) in the lot.
I would appreciate to know your opinion about this.
Site Helper
Original Poster
#28 Old 19th Aug 2013 at 4:02 PM
It's on my to-do list, but needs research before I feel comfortable deleting those records.
Lab Assistant
#29 Old 20th Aug 2013 at 5:40 PM
After some tests, I came to the conclusion that :

- SCOR are very small files, so deleting them doesn't make much difference on the package size. You save only 1 or 2 Ko. After playing on the lot, they're back.
For example I deleted 61 SCOR files in a package, played the lot, then checked, and there was 61 files again. So I think it's better to keep them anyway. They seem to have a purpose.

- SREL files are very annoying, they tend to accumulate. The more you play, the more sims you have on your lot, and the more SREL files you get. If you moved a lot from a neighborhood to an other, then you get the SREL junk from the old neighborhood. Especially if the lot was inhabited when moved (I know we shouldn't do that, I don't do it anymore. But I'd like to keep my old lots and I want to find a way to clean them...). That's why I had some old legacy lots with more than 20 000 SREL files inside...
Deleting those files, even on inhabited lot that is part of a neighborhood, doesn't seem to cause harm as far as I know (but it still requires more testing). It doesn't change the sims relationships, they still have the same friends etc. I haven't noticed any bug.
Maybe those files are about relationships between sims and objects on the lot ? I know that the more a sim uses an object, the more he tends to use it again, so the sims might create relationships with objects to remember which objects they like to use... maybe. But to be honest I really don't care if a visitor who is dead for ages had a good relationship with my old hot tub... And my sims already have trouble to remember where is their own bed, so it doesn't seem to be a very efficient system. ^^

Anyway, deleting those SREL files saves a lot of space. For exemple I had a lot with 26 454 SREL files, after deleting those files the package size went from 3004 Ko to 1194 Ko ! It's nearly a third of what it was before...
After deleting SREL files in my test-neighborhood my next plan is to delete it in my main neighborhood. I've got 365 lots so it's going to take some time, but I really want to try. If things go wrong I have backups. I'll give you feedback if you wish.
And if you need beta-testers to try new options for your tool, I'm in
Site Helper
Original Poster
#30 Old 20th Aug 2013 at 6:20 PM
The SREL records in the neighborhood are relationship from one sim to another. The first half of the SREL instance is the SDSC instance of the first sim, the second half of the SREL instance is the SDSC instance of the second sim. SREL records come in pairs, where the instances of the two sims are swapped.

If you delete the SREL records in your primary neighborhood, all of your sims will lose all of their relationships. Perhaps that's what you want, but it's completely inappropriate if you are just trying to remove stuff that isn't used.

In order to ensure that deleting records is safe, we need to know what they are used for. If the SREL records in the lot are not actually used in the game, then they are safe to delete. If they are being used for something, then we need to understand their purpose.

The SCOR records keep track of two things, that I know of: best friend status and business status. The fact that the SCOR records in your lot regenerate is not an indication that they are used; it may just be an indication that the game has a bug.
Lab Assistant
#31 Old 25th Aug 2013 at 5:28 PM Last edited by cedrigo : 25th Aug 2013 at 5:41 PM.
I deleted the SREL files in every lot in my neighborhood and saved around 40 Mo.
I agree with you that it would be better to understand what they are doing but the SREL files you find in lot packages are always labeled "unknown with unknown" so it's hard to figure out what they're for. In 365 lots I never found a SREL linked clearly to any of my sims.
So, sometimes the "trial and error" way seems to be the only way. :S
I've played my cleaned up neighborhood for a few days now and noticed no change or bug in sims relationships. Everything look the same as before.

While cleaning my lots I was able to notice a few other issues, for exemple I had duplicates of lots that should have been removed in the past. They weren't appearing in the neighborhood after removal but they were still in the lot folder. I deleted those lots in the folder.

I also noticed that the Lot Compressor was not compressing appartments. All the appartment bases and sub-lots still got all of the pictures. Is it on purpose ?
Anyway I deleted the pictures myself, keeping only the lot bin display picture in instance 2.
But now I'm wondering if this last remaining picture is of any use in apt sub-lots ?...
Test Subject
#32 Old 4th Sep 2013 at 2:29 PM
Thank you very much for this program! It saved a lot of space to many of mycustom subhood templates which I created following your tutorial.

One question: would it be possible to add the option, that the Lot compressor can compress several or all lots in the Lot catalog at once? Because I have hundreds of houses there, and going through all of them one at a time is a bit tedious.
Site Helper
Original Poster
#33 Old 4th Sep 2013 at 4:59 PM
Yes, that's a good idea. I'll add it to my to-do list.
Test Subject
#34 Old 16th Sep 2013 at 10:59 AM
Thank you!

- one more thing, though it isn't really necessary:

Would it be possible, that the Lot Compressor could also compress Packaged Lots inside a .Sims2Pack-file? Because so far, I have to first exit the game, compress the (modified) lot I want to package and then reenter the game (takes a long time because of too much CC....) so I can package it - or am I doing something wrong?
Site Helper
Original Poster
#35 Old 16th Sep 2013 at 4:22 PM
Yes, it's possible. I'll add it to the list.
Lab Assistant
THANKS POST
#36 Old 29th Oct 2013 at 12:11 PM
You know how awesome this program of yours is? I upload Lots and using THIS thing is required. Need I say more?...
Test Subject
THANKS POST
#37 Old 7th Mar 2014 at 10:00 AM
Thanks
Test Subject
THANKS POST
#38 Old 29th Jul 2014 at 9:12 PM
Thank you ! :)
Test Subject
THANKS POST
#39 Old 13th Apr 2015 at 9:20 AM
thank you for your helpful program ,even after your sad passing you are still helping people out ........
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