Current Dragon Center version working?

Discussion in 'MSI' started by Trailryder, Jan 23, 2020.

  1. Trailryder

    Trailryder Notebook Guru

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    So I just an MSI GE65 with Windows 10 on it's latest 1909 update as of today. I'm noticing a lot of MSI programs are broken and not launching. I'm reading it's pretty typical.

    I see MSI support has a version of Dragon Center 2 that's newer than the version I currently have installed. Has anyone got the current 2.6.2001.1001 version running with the latest windows update?

    How about some of the other MSI software like Help Desk and Driver and App Center?

    If one were to just do a fresh install of windows, I figure if you want all those programs again rather than using some 3rd party software, you'd have to find them for download independently. Would have to find the Steelseries software for independent download too.

    I'm wondering if a fresh install would also wipe out the MSI Recovery Image Backup. Not sure I want to do that.

    I'm not a gamer. Bought this because it has the same kind of specs you'd want for editing. So I don't need a lot of the gaming apps anyway, but I'd keep Dragon Center. That or use MSI Afterburner.

    Thanks for any insight.
     
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  2. senso

    senso Notebook Deity

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    Steelseries software is updated at least monthly, just download it from Steelseries directly, Dragon Center is useless and messes with a lot of BIOS settings, uninstall and just use TS to undervolt.
    Drivers for Intel ME and chipset, grab from Intel, same for the WiFi card, either grab from Intel or from Killer if you have one, latest GPU driver from Nvidia site, the rest Win update grabs them automatically.

    And I would do a nice clean install and wipe all the partitions to you get all the SSD storage, or even better, put the extra space to over provisioning.
     
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  3. Krzyslaw

    Krzyslaw Notebook Consultant

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    This is exactly what I have told him in his another thread. :)

    @Trailryder just take time and use software that people told you, take your time and read and if you have questions regarding TS ask. It is very easy tool with fantastic feauters that will help you stay cooler and with better perofrmance.

    And btw I advise to perform full nvram and ec bios reset via holding power button for 45 sec after you uninstall this crap software aka dragon center. There was thread here that after using dragon center edp was lighting in TS a throttle reason
     
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  4. hmscott

    hmscott Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    By installing a fresh Windows install over MSI's layout, even if you preserve the restore volume, that it would clear the required support files and data that pointed to the restore volume.

    What I do is to do a Macrium Reflect image of the original OEM MSI (Asus, etc) install - backup all the volumes as an image file that I can use to restore back to the original OEM install - including the working Restore partition / facility.

    You have likely already installed a bunch of stuff - and that will now get backed up too - so you'll have a larger image but the good thing is you'll be able to recover your configured system any time you like with that image.

    I usually do an image backup like that after I install all my stuff - sometimes I'll do that image backup at various steps along the way - just in case my next action breaks something I can restore from the previous image backup.

    Generally a fresh Windows install only gives you the illusion of improvement in performance - once you install all of your stuff and use it as long as you had before the fresh install, it'll perform the same.

    Most "bloatware" doesn't actually take anything more than a little space in storage, if it's not running it's not bogging down the system.

    I have figured out how to run DGC at the same time as XTU + MSI and have it all work together - so I have fan control, it's as simple as noting the order of changes before you do them. CPU changes have to start in the DGC - I set maximum multipliers, then up those multipliers a little more in XTU + add undervolting.

    That works well enough for me, I get 4.5ghz all core daily driver and have cool running CPU / GPU, so that's enough. I don't feel the need to unlock the BIOS or use TGS, all valid methods, I just don't feel I need it.

    If I update DGC it may break XTU settings, but I simply reset everything in DGC first, then load the profile in XTU again, Save it, and at next boot everything starts up fine.

    And, don't forget to keep a copy of your last working BIOS along with enabling some kind of driver install blocking for Windows Update. The Plundervolt microcode patch that locks out voltage tuning - and undervolting - is live and people are reporting it breaking their undervolt.
    http://forum.notebookreview.com/thr...lly-killing-undervolting-for-security.831309/

    Good luck :)

    Update: FYI, the 4.5ghz daily driver reference above is an example from a GT75 Titan-013 with an 8950HK / 2080. Here's a FireStrike run while running 4.7ghz all core on that laptop: https://www.3dmark.com/compare/fs/19893068

    I should have mentioned the laptop model and config above to avoid confusion but at the time I was focused on talking about co-existing with DGC and XTU together.
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2020
  5. hmscott

    hmscott Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    Although I've only tried it a couple of times, SS direct download's haven't worked for me while the version available from MSI has worked fine.

    IDK if there is a cooperative linkage between SS and DGC that needs to be updated in both before it works - like Realtek / Nahimic, or it's just coincedence, I usually stick with the paired version from MSI rather than try to jump ahead and get a newer version from Realtek / SS.

    YMMV. :)
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2020
  6. Trailryder

    Trailryder Notebook Guru

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    I'm not savvy enough to have thought of making a backup of the original installation.

    I'm lost with all the abbreviations you're using.

    I'm reading over the Throttlestop guide.

    "Reset nvram"..........are you talking about the CMOS?

    "Reset EC".........Don't know what that is or how to reset it. I've seen YT videos of a person sticking the end of a paperclip into a small hole on the bottom of the unit, but no one says why?

    I see no option in the bios to save a copy of it.

    The user manual on this thing sucks. The bios section alone of the user manual for my desktop PC motherboard is more pages than the user manual for this laptop.

    It's been 5 or 6 years since I built my last Desktop PC. Seems like every time I build or buy a new machine, I have to learn things all over again.

    Thanks for your replies.
     
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  7. hmscott

    hmscott Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    Let's start by you writing out the abbreviations you don't recognize, so I don't have to do all of them... unless it is all of them...

    Also, don't feel bad about not being savvy enough to do a backup right when you get the new PC / Laptop, most people just tear open the box and start using it, ignoring the nice MSI BurnRecovery or other vendors similar backup tools popup dialogs, even when they should be savvy enough to know better - impatience is a strong emotion. :)

    MSI laptops use MSI BurnRecovery - I do that first thing - in fact I've done it at the retailer before leaving the store. That way I've booted the laptop, seen the screen used the keyboard, and tested it lightly by backing up to a USB 3.0 32GB USB flash drive. Takes about 10 minutes on these new fast laptops. Make sure you get a nice fast USB 3.0 drive as well, it's speed will directly affect creating the backup and later restoring from it.

    Macrium Reflect doesn't rely on MSI BurnRecovery, in fact it's at a level above it and can backup the bare metal bits on both drives if necessary - sometimes vendors split the recovery partition on to the HDD to save room on the boot SSD, especially when they are under 1TB in size.

    Look at your current BIOS version and go to the Product Support page for your model, go to the BIOS section, and download a copy of that version from msi.com before it goes away - that's the easiest way since you aren't really updating your BIOS right now, you are trying to restore it later in case Windows Update updates it.

    Some Flash utility front-end's have a backup option that will backup your currently installed BIOS as a file on your system that you can use to flash back to that version later. Be sure to have your current BIOS version backed up asap so if it gets overwritten by Windows Update or some other means, you can restore to the old version.

    Macrium Reflect Free is easy to use, simply select the drive / partitions to backup and pick place to put the image file - a large USB 3.0 flash drive or external USB drive.

    Click "Home Use" enter your email to get updates the first time you download - then click Continue to download.

    Macrium Reflect is pretty straightforward to use, and there is help in the app and tutorial videos on Youtube.
    https://www.macrium.com/reflectfree

    If you have the flash drive by BurnRecovery you can restore the drives to the original install out of the box, also useful if you want to upgrade your drives - this will restore to the same size or larger drives.

    Macrium Reflect Free lets you create an image of your boot drive and other drives at any point in time that you can use to restore to new drives as well - or to the same drives in case you lost data or something else messed up the Windows drive.

    Macrium Reflect Free also lets you create a Flash drive to boot on and then either restore from the image on the flash drive if you put it there too, or from another external USB drive.

    How to restore Windows 10 system on MSI Notebooks


    How to use MSI BurnRecovery on Windows 10 preloaded system?
    https://forum-ph.msi.com/index.php?topic=169.0

    Also, a lot of people will encourage others that they should erase the disk and do a clean install of Windows 10 to get rid of system bloatware... that's a very unnecessary operation and has messed up a lot of people that should have never attempted it because they don't have the experience to pull it off without losing functionality.

    Even if you have experience there's no reason to do it. I used to do it myself, but found that testing before and after didn't show any appreciable performance differences. And, quite often there were tools or drivers unavailable for download yet since the laptop was so new the vendors hadn't posted the latest versions or at all.

    I find it works best to get used to the laptop and live with the tools loaded and see what bugs me, what works, and what is a waste of space - and realistically it's not a lot of space for a few MB on even a 256GB drive.

    The only things I uninstall are things I don't use and if I do use them I don't leave them run at startup, I run them when I need them. Uninstalling of disabling those few apps when I get around to it takes a couple of minutes, way less time than reinstalling Windows from scratch, all the drivers, applications, and then re-doing application and game installs and re-configuring them.
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2020
  8. hmscott

    hmscott Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    Sorry, I didn't realize you already did a clean install... sigh...

    You may be able to install MSI BurnRecovery to backup the Recovery Partition if you didn't format / delete that recovery partition. I haven't tried it myself, it might not need anything in the old boot install to reference, but it might. If you try it, please let us know how it worked for you.

    You can still download your BIOS from MSI Support while it's still there - Intel might ask vendors to only have the version of BIOS with the voltage lock, similar has happened before.

    And, Macrium Reflect is still a good tool for doing backup's after you get things reinstalled.

    Happy to answer any other questions you might have getting things reinstalled...
     
  9. Trailryder

    Trailryder Notebook Guru

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    Thanks.
    DGT, XTU, XTU+MSI

    I've never developed the thought process of backing up an original installation from a retail computer, as I've always built my own and installed fresh versions of Windows. I will say tho, that I was a little apprehensive of deleting the MSI recovery partition so that any time in the future it could be returned to factory condition. Besides that, I couldn't find my 64GB flash drive and I had not yet installed a 2.5" SSD as a backup and data drive yet, that I have since.

    With how fast computer tech and software changes and how quickly manufacturers may abandon a product, I figured, screw it. Get the newest, working drivers I can, archive them and just set it up to work with Windows and abandon product specific proprietary software if I can find something else that is open source and works better. I'm still in the phase of discovering what those are.

    Another reason I decided to scrap the original install was, shortly after I started loading my preferred programs, Windows Defender discovered a Trojan that it couldn't remove.

    I've been running a Windows 10 debloat script on my last few installs that I found and it seems to work pretty good. https://www.christitus.com/clean-up-windows-10/

    As for bios, my current installed bios is newer than what is offered at the MSI support. I have 105 and support has 104. Still tho, I guess if there was a way to fix a broken bios, an old version is better than no version.

    Thanks for video link. I'd seen it.

    So, this nvram you speak of, is that the same as the CMOS?
     
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  10. hmscott

    hmscott Notebook Nobel Laureate

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    DGT? => DGC = Dragon Gaming Center, or MSI DGC
    XTU = Intel Xtreme Tuning Utility, or Intel XTU
    XTU+MSI? => MSI AB + RT => MSI Afterburner (GPU tuner) + Rivatuner (various adapter / Display tuning). Both come together with MSI Afterburner download - you will be asked if you want to install RT after AB is installed :)
    Yup, that's how it happens, the backup USB flash drive required isn't there before the laptop arrives and boom! before you know it you've reloaded the OS :)

    That's why I suggest making sure you buy a *dedicated* 32GB USB 3.0 flash drive to be used only for backup's, and after creating the MSI BurnRecovery image on the flash drive, take the drive and tape it prominently inside the laptop box - I usually tape it to the inside box cover so you can't miss it when looking for it months later.

    You and the person that eventually buys your laptop will be thrilled they have that when the need arises.
    Yup, there are lots of good thoughts that appear in the head when we sit there with a new laptop and no backup flash drive available - quickly talking ourselves along the primrose path, so to speak. :)

    When the laptop is new it may have newer apps, drivers, BIOS in your case, than is available to download, that's the main reason to not do a clean install right off without doing a backup of the original Windows Install.

    I've actually got a nice pile of 32GB / 64GB flash drives now, and some have backups of machines I've built for others, in case they loose them. I recycle them when I hear they've sold on the laptop, and of course I recycle mine at that same time.
    False positives are usually the reason for these things, I check against a bunch of anti-virus and google search for such things when they come up, here's a good testing place:

    Analyze suspicious files and URLs to detect types of malware, automatically share them with the security community
    https://www.virustotal.com/gui/home/upload

    I checked a few files and all green, and then tested one I know is good but get's false positives too: dnsbench.exe from GRC.com and there were 8 false positives, it's a known issue and confuses many:
    https://community.sophos.com/produc...otection-firewall-nat-qos-ips/41683/dns-bench

    If you haven't already I'd open a case with MSI Support - create account - login - register your laptop (you get 3 months extra Warranty for registering within 3 months of purchase, have your receipt ready to upload to registration form) and tell MSI about the Defender alert, it may in fact be a problem, you never know.

    I'm pretty sure MSI does a malware check on their image before shipping - it's not impossible for something to slip by, but more than likely it was a false positive.
    I'll check it out later, thanks.

    I use WPD to lock down the laptop from Microsoft's shenanigans, and I used to use O&O Shutup, and they are compatible, but you have to check both settings after Windows Updates, both catch slightly more or less than the other. And if you change one thing in one app, check the effect in the other app after rebooting.

    I wouldn't play around with those yet, as you can disable services you need to operate and game, which can be confusing to everyone the first time through. For now use the Windows Privacy Dashboard - it's not complete, but it's better than nothing right now:
    https://www.tenforums.com/tutorials...shboard-manage-your-privacy-windows-10-a.html

    I also use CCEnhancer and CCleaner and it offers the option to remove Windows 10 Store Apps, others probably have other options to suggest beyond these. I haven't uninstalled them yet as I don't use them, they don't bother me, and I've got a 2TB MP600 boot drive, so for now I'm not worried about it with all the Microsoft Telemetry locked down by WPD and OOShutUp.
    Well, after you try undervolting you might find that 105 locks voltage control (or 106? when it comes out), the idea is to have 1 version older sitting around in your downloads ready to put to use should a Windows Update flashes a new BIOS or some automatic MSI tool might do that too - but you got rid of bloatware en masse, so your ok there.

    I'd download the 104, and the 105 when it shows up, just to be safe.
    Good, at least you know for next time. :)
    I haven't spoke of NVRAM so perhaps you are thinking of someone else that answered you?

    DGC changes things in the BIOS nvram that might not clear when you go into the BIOS and use "Use Optimized Settings" in the "Save" menu, as that should clear everything you've set in the BIOS and then change the settings back to Optimized Defaults - which change from BIOS version to BIOS version.

    It's SOP (Standard operating procedure) to go into the BIOS and set Optimized defaults before flashing a new BIOS. If you have a RAM upgrade that requires a voltage bump to boot, set that there and again after the flash go into the BIOS before booting the first time and set the RAM voltage again. For your new laptop, you can depend on Optimzed Defaults without additional changes.

    That's a lot of stuff, welcome to Gaming Laptops and NBR :)
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2020
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