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Author    Guide to install RCRN AE with Mod Organizer

keithinhanoi

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« on: Dec 13, 2013, 05:44 »
The following install guide is an expansion of a post by DoubleYou on the STEP forums, so all credit goes to him for the original basic steps.

This guide is a work in progress, and as much as I have tried to be careful and ran through the steps several times, these steps may not work as described for you. When it doubt, backup! YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.

Take a deep breath - this is a bit long...

How to install RCRN AE 2.1.4 with Mod Organizer v1.0.11:
  • Download the RCRN .rar archive and extract the executable into Skyrim's real .../Skyrim/data directory.

  • IMPORTANT! Make a new Mod Organizer profile named "RCRN" with NO mods enabled in the mod list (the left-hand pane).
    If you use your main profile with active mods, this could lead to some files of your mods being overwritten by the RCRN installer. You will also want to use this profile when making changes in RCRN's Customizer application (explained later.)

    NOTE: if you have moved the official Dragonborn and/or Dawnguard DLCs out of your real /data directory and manually added them to Mod Organizer's mod list (in the left-hand pane), then you will need to enable them in this new profile in order for the RCRN installer to recognize the DLC(s) and install the correct files.

  • IMPORTANT! Make certain your Overwrite directory is completely empty!
    Move any files in Overwrite to their respective mods or use the "Create Mod..." feature. If you do not clear out your Overwrite folder it may be very difficult to find / separate the files installed for RCRN. Note that you can move any files back to Overwrite if you wish after RCRN has been installed.

  • Click on the Data tab in the right-hand pane of Mod Organizer.

  • In MO's list of files in /Data, find RCRN_AE_214.exe, right-click on it, and select Open/Execute.

  • The RCRN Installer will start and try to detect your Skyrim install directory. Make sure it matches the one set in Mod Organizer.

  • The RCRN Smart Assistant will first check for an existing ENB / HiAlgo install. Make a choice about whether the installer should adjust your .ini files.

    NOTE: The RCRN Smart Assistant will not report any incompatible mods, because you are installing to a MO profile with all of your mods disabled. You will need to check for incompatibilities on your own. Refer to this support page for a list of mods that are known to be incompatible with RCRN AE.

  • The last step of the installer is to choose your main RCRN preset - Legacy, Classic or Pure.

  • When you hit Next in the "Ready to Install RCRN" window the following will happen:
    a.  All the RCRN files intended to go into your Skyrim base directory will be installed there as expected.
    b.  All files intended to go into the /skyrim/data directory are conveniently placed in Mod Organizers Overwrite directory. DO NOT move these files out of Overwrite yet.
    c.  In addition, several empty folders have been created in your real Skyrim data directory where the installer would have put the files (evidently Mod Organizer doesn't prevent an application from creating folders in your data directory).

    NOTE: Keep in mind that some files are only installed based on whether the installer found either or both of the official Dragonborn / Dawnguard DLCs when you installed RCRN. If you remove/disable/add either of these DLCs, RCRN will not work fully as expected, or you may experience a crash at the logo screen due to a missing DLC. To help avoid this, you will need to add the RCRN Customizer as an executable in Mod Organizer. This is explained in another step, below.

  • In the Notifications section of your Windows Taskbar, find the icon for RCRN Updater, right-click on it and select Exit

  • In MO, open the Modify Executables window (click on the gears icon, near top-left corner)

  • Add RCRNCustomizer.exe to MO's executables list by doing the following:
    a. Type a name next to Title (eg., "RCRN Customizer")
    b. Click the [...] button next to the Binary text field, navigate to your /skyrim directory, locate and select RCRNCustomizer.exe
    c. Click the [Add] button

  • Choose the RCRN Customizer from MO's executables list (above the right-hand pane) and click the [Run] button.

    IMPORTANT NOTES about running RCRN Customizer in Mod Organizer:
    (click to show/hide)

  • In RCRN Customizer, first do the following:
    a.  Click the Advanced Settings button.
    b.  DE-select (untick) Updater AutoLaunch

  • Now make any RCRN settings changes you wish in the [Settings] and [Injection+] tabs. (Refer to RCRN's RCRN Customizer support page.) Then close RCRN Customizer and return to Mod Organizer.

  • Right-click on Overwrite in MO's mod list, select Create Mod..., enter a name for it (eg., "RCRN"), and finish. This puts all of the RCRN data files in the new mod you have just created. You should enable this new mod in the current profile("RCRN") so that if you later want to changes settings to RCRN, you can just switch the the RCRN profile and run the RCRN Customizer (as explained in the important note of Step 13 above.)

  • In Windows, navigate to your real Skyrim /data directory and:
    a.  delete the RCRN_AE_214.exe installer.
    b.  optionally, delete any empty directories created in /Skyrim/Data during the install process.

  • In Mod Organizer, switch back to the MO profile with your active mods and savegames.

  • Enable the RCRN mod you made, check that its .esp plugins/.BSA archives are enabled.

  • Disable any incompatible mods / plugins. (Refer to this support page)
    Notably, if using ELFX, only the main EnhancedLightsandFX.esp plugin is compatible, and all others should be disabled.

  • Run BOSS or manually set the plugin load order. (Refer to RCRN's support page)

  • Click on MO's Tools button (puzzle pieces icon) and select the Ini Editor.

  • In skyrimprefs.ini, do the following:
    a.  Under [Display], make sure you have the setting bFloatPointRenderTarget=1 (not =0)
    b.  Under [Launcher], make sure you have the setting bEnableFileSelection=1 (not =0)

  • You're finished. Cross your fingers and start Skyrim (or SKSE, etc.) as normal in Mod Organizer.

WHAT GOT INSTALLED:
(click to show/hide)

-------------------------------------------------

Changing RCRN's settings with RCRN Customizer in Mod Organizer
  • In Mod Organizer, switch to the RCRN profile you made in Step 2 of the RCRN in MO Install Guide (above.)

  • Make sure the only active mods are the RCRN mod you made, and the official DLCs (if installed as mods in MO.)

  • Move any files in Overwrite to their respective mods or use the "Create Mod..." feature.
    If you do not clear out your Overwrite folder it may be very difficult to find / separate the files that the RCRN Customizer puts in Overwrite. You can move any files back to Overwrite if you wish after you are finished with RCRN Customizer.

  • Choose the RCRN Customizer from MO's executables list (above the right-hand pane) and click the [Run] button.

  • Now make any RCRN settings changes you wish in the [Settings] and [Injection+] tabs. (Refer to RCRN's RCRN Customizer support page.)

  • Then close RCRN Customizer and return to Mod Organizer.

  • Open Overwrite, select all files / folders, drag them out, and drop them onto the RCRN mod in MO's left-pane mod list.

  • Move any files from Step 3 above back into Overwrite, if you wish.

  • Switch back to the MO user profile for your current game.

  • Make sure that any changed RCRN .esp plugins/.BSA archives are enabled in MO's right-hand pane.

  • Run BOSS or manually set the plugin load order. (Refer to RCRN's support page)

  • Start Skyrim (or SKSE, etc.) as normal in Mod Organizer, and enjoy your game!

Please also refer to the IMPORTANT NOTES in Step 13 of the Install Guide, above.

-------------------------------------------------

Uninstalling RCRN completely from Mod Organizer, Skyrim, and your system
  • In Mod Organizer, right-click on the RCRN mod in the left-hand pane, and choose Remove Mod... and click "Yes".

  • Click the Configure Profiles button (ID Card icon, near upper left corner of MO's main window.)

  • In the Profiles list window, select the RCRN profile, and click the [Remove] button, and then click "Yes" to confirm.

  • Click the Modify Executables button (gears icon, near top-left corner.)

  • In the Modify Executables list window, click RCRN Customizer to select it, click the [Remove] button, and click "Yes" to confirm.

  • From the Windows Start Menu, run Uninstall RCRN. It can be found in the RCRN directory in the main .../skyrim/ directory (not in /data/.)

  • Follow the uninstaller's prompts, and it will remove all other RCRN files from your system.

-------------------------------------------------

It is my intention to keep this guide updated with any improvements or to fix any errors.

With that in mind, I kindly ask to please let me know if you spot any issues or errors with the install process I've described.

Changelog
  • 18 Apr 2014 - Some reformatting, clarified ELFX compatibility, clarified notes about installer detection of Dawnguard / Dragonborn DLCs
  • 16 Jan 2014 - Some reformatting, RCRN Customizer in MO and Uninstall guides added, explanation of reasons for new profile and RCRN Customizer (as spoiler text) in MO improved
  • 13 Dec 2013 - Original guide posted
« Last Edit: Apr 18, 2014, 05:27 by keithinhanoi »

DOHrcrn2013

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« Reply #1 on: Dec 13, 2013, 09:56 »
Great work.  Excellent.  THANK YOU.


Ruse

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« Reply #2 on: Jan 04, 2014, 18:22 »
Thanks so much for this!

Parasoul

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« Reply #3 on: Feb 06, 2014, 14:41 »
Big Thanks!  8)

stickman07

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« Reply #4 on: Feb 14, 2014, 14:29 »
I stuck at the point where i need to use the "create mod" feature in MO. I can't find that feature and google is useless.
Thank you and sorry if i'm being thick-headed.

EDIT. i didn't know i had to right click overwrite in order to create mod. I'm so dumb  :P
Works now..thank you.
« Last Edit: Feb 14, 2014, 14:42 by stickman07 »

dunz

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« Reply #5 on: Mar 12, 2014, 02:44 »
Can we or should we extract the .bsa files?

keithinhanoi

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« Reply #6 on: Mar 13, 2014, 15:50 »
@dunz:

There's no need to extract the .bsa files. All of the files in them are specific to RCRN, so you don't get any .bsa vs loose file load order advantage by unpacking them.

In fact, every time you run the RCRN Customizer (within MO) you'll get a fresh set of .bsa files in the Overwrite directory, so it's much simpler to keep them as .bsa files to drop in the replacements.

dunz

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« Reply #7 on: Mar 14, 2014, 17:18 »
Thanks for the reply Keith.  Any benefit to DDSopting the textures?

Razorsedge877

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« Reply #8 on: Mar 16, 2014, 21:00 »
If I uncheck RCRN in MO and am in game, when I push the pause button my screen changes as if RCRN is still checked in MO. I believe it has to do with the actual skyrim folder. Any advice?

keithinhanoi

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« Reply #9 on: Mar 17, 2014, 08:48 »
Thanks for the reply Keith.  Any benefit to DDSopting the textures?

I'm not sure, to be honest.

The default snow textures are a mix of 512 & 1024 resolution (same for their normals), but Customizer has a high-resolution texture option which will supply 2048 resolution textures for everything except one normal.

Whether they need to be optimized depends on whether they have already been optimized which aLaaa or PandoraX357 could answer better than me.

However, if you do optimize them, make sure to keep a back up set, because if the textures / .esp plugins / .bsa archives have been installed as a Mod inside MO, then every time you even run Customizer from inside MO, nearly everything for your current Customizer settings is re-written, and that essentially deletes the versions of nearly everything that are in your MO Mod for RCRN and fresh copies are written to Overwrite.

So if you optimized RCRN's snow textures for example, and they were in a mod in MO named RCRN, when you run Customizer, they would disappear from that RCRN mod and a fresh default install set (not your optimized ones) would appear in Overwrite.

If you did make optimized textures, I'd suggested copying them to their own separate MO mod, called "RCRN textures" for example, and if you need to run Customizer, then disable that "RCRN textures" mod before running Customizer, and after you finish, delete the set of textures in Overwrite (and either move or delete the other files in Overwrite as appropriate.)

Apologies for the overload of information there, but it very important to understand what to expect when you run Customizer from within MO, which doesn't work like most mods, which are "install once and forget."


If I uncheck RCRN in MO and am in game, when I push the pause button my screen changes as if RCRN is still checked in MO. I believe it has to do with the actual skyrim folder. Any advice?

By disabling the RCRN "mod" in MO, you've only disabled half of what RCRN does. This is because RCRN uses two different elements to achieve its visual effects.

The first element is a set of Skyrim plugins, textures, and scripts that actually changes some aspects of the way the Skyrim game works. This is the stuff that would normally get installed in Skyrim's /Data directory, and in the case of Mod Organizer, is added to the "virtual" /data directory that it presents to Skyrim to read from.

The second element is an "injected" post-processed graphics enhancer that works much like SweetFX, if you know what that is. Essentially, it looks at the rendered output of every frame from Skyrim, and applies color changes, sharpening, and (optionally) anti-aliasing - all at very high speeds. This is accomplished using a dynamically loaded library (d3d9.dll) that injects itself into Skyrim's game code.

RCRN's d3d9.dll and it's associated files that define all the post-processed effects are installed in the the main Skyrim directory, which Mod Organizer can't touch. Therefore, unless you uninstall RCRN or rename / remove that .dll, you will continue to see those post-processed effects in Skyrim, regardless of what mods are active in MO. As you've discovered, though, you can simply use the PAUSE key to disable those effects.

Are you disabling RCRN to compare it to vanilla Skyrim or other weather / lighting mods? If yes, then you'll want to make sure to use the PAUSE key to disable to post-processed effects to see things as intended, as the those effects were specifically fine-tuned to work in conjunction with RCRN mod plugins, etc.

Razorsedge877

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« Reply #10 on: Mar 19, 2014, 23:08 »
I've been having issues with my computer but Have been trying to do two installs of Skyrim Revisited. One with Climates of Tamriel and one with RCRN.I really like the idea of dynamic lighting in RCRN but am not sure which route I want to take yet. I have a lot to learn with TES5Edit and am wondering if I can do all the patching right to still follow the Skyrim Revisited patch. Lets just say for theory sakes if I hit pause in game would I be able to use climates of Tamriel or maybe RLO since we both know they are not compatible with RCRN or will that not work? I would love to see a patch made for Falskaar and wyrmstooth by RCRN because I have been seeing those mod names popping up a lot lately. Just out of Curiosity what are your thoughts on RCRN vs COT?

Razorsedge877

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« Reply #11 on: Mar 22, 2014, 15:26 »
I was thinking why couldn't you take all the RCRN files and dll out of the skyrim folder and put them in ENB Manager and keep the data files in MO giving you the freedom to do an all vanilla, ENB configuration, or RCRN play through option

Yosharian

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« Reply #12 on: Apr 15, 2014, 20:09 »
Excuse me, thank you for this excellent guide but I can't help but think this statement is badly worded:

Quote
NOTE: if you have created mods for the official Dragonborn and/or Dawnguard DLCs in Mod Organizer's mod list, you will need to enable them in this new profile in order for the RCRN installer to recognize the DLC(s) and install the correct files.

Should be:

NOTE: if you are using mods which require the official Dragonborn and/or Dawnguard DLCs in Mod Organizer's mod list, you will need to enable them (the DLCs) in this new profile in order for the RCRN installer to recognize the DLC(s) and install the correct files.

It confused me for a moment, this phrase 'created mods'.

Thanks again.

UPDATE: Problems, problems.

Quote
RCRNdragonborn.esp  (installed if DB DLC was present at installation)
RCRNdawnguard.esp  (installed if DG DLC was present at installation)

These files are not present in my Overwrite directory before 'Create Mod' is issued.  All the other files are there.  Dragonborn & Dawnguard ESMs & BSAs were selected prior to installation, so RCRN installer should have detected the presence of DLC... but it did not.  Any ideas?
« Last Edit: Apr 15, 2014, 21:22 by Yosharian »

keithinhanoi

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« Reply #13 on: Apr 18, 2014, 05:36 »
Excuse me, thank you for this excellent guide but I can't help but think this statement is badly worded:

Quote
NOTE: if you have created mods for the official Dragonborn and/or Dawnguard DLCs in Mod Organizer's mod list, you will need to enable them in this new profile in order for the RCRN installer to recognize the DLC(s) and install the correct files.

Should be:

NOTE: if you are using mods which require the official Dragonborn and/or Dawnguard DLCs in Mod Organizer's mod list, you will need to enable them (the DLCs) in this new profile in order for the RCRN installer to recognize the DLC(s) and install the correct files.

It confused me for a moment, this phrase 'created mods'.

Actually, you can "create" mods in Mod Organizer for the Dawnguard and Dragonborn DLCs, so that you can enable / disable them in different MO Profiles.

But yes, the wording was not clear enough, and I have fixed it. Basically, if you have moved the DG and/or DB DLCs out of your "real" .../Skyrim/Data directory, and manually installed them as mods in Mod Organizer (so they are listed in MO's left-hand pane,) then they definitely need to be active when you install RCRN or use the RCRN Customizer if you want RCRN to work with either or both DLCs.

Quote
Quote
RCRNdragonborn.esp  (installed if DB DLC was present at installation)
RCRNdawnguard.esp  (installed if DG DLC was present at installation)

These files are not present in my Overwrite directory before 'Create Mod' is issued.  All the other files are there.  Dragonborn & Dawnguard ESMs & BSAs were selected prior to installation, so RCRN installer should have detected the presence of DLC... but it did not.  Any ideas?

Yes, again my wording wasn't clear enough.

Based on whether you have one or both of the DLCs installed, the RCRN installer will add ONLY ONE of the following 3 .esp plugins:

1. If you only have Dawnguard active, then RCRN will install RCRNdawnguard.esp ONLY.
2. If you only have Dragonborn active, then RCRN will install RCRNdragonborn.esp ONLY.
3. If you have BOTH Dawnguard & Dragonborn active, then RCRN will install RCRNdgdb.esp ONLY.

So you will never see more than one of the above three listed .esp plugins from RCRN.

I hope that explains it more clearly, and thanks for the feedback!
« Last Edit: Apr 20, 2014, 02:42 by keithinhanoi »