Greeting fellow gamers. I recently installed GTA IV on Win 7 64bit. I'm running an AMD FX 8150 Eight-Core Processor with 8GB of DDR3 Memory and an ATI Radeon HD 5850 graphics card with 1GB of RAM.
I installed GTA IV as well as all the patches from 1 to 7. Upon running it I left all the graphics settings default and it looked great and ran smooth. The day after that was the same story. Then just today I got home from work, booted my computer, browsed a few websites and then started the game. Loaded the saved game got into the car and started driving and instantly noted that the game seemed jittery like the frame rate was lower than normal. I hadn't changed any settings. I hadn't added any mods or done anything different. I then decided maybe it was a fluke so I quit the game without saving and it closed to a blank black screen. I waited a while but eventually opened the task manager to see that GTA IV was listed as not responding so I forced closed it. Rebooted the computer and then ran it again. Not only was the lag still there but once again upon exit it got stuck on that black screen and stopped responding.
I've already searched several sites. I've tried adding the memory "trick" by adding the string to the desktop shortcut; didn't change anything. I tried disabling Windows Event Log and Windows Event Collector. I decreased the shadow texture quality in the graphics settings. I've tried pretty much every trick I found that sounds logical but in the end I'm still having BOTH the lag issue and the not-responding on exit issue.
While I'd love to know of any other possible fixes my real question is simply this, how can an install go from running perfectly to running subpar without any changes being made to the configuration?