Welcome
Ladies and Gents:

These forums are now closed and registration disabled.

Please join us at our new forum on Proboards. Our hope is that these new forums are more stable, provide more and better features, and allow continuation of the project forums in a safer, more secure, long term environment.

me3explorer.proboards.com

--The ME3Explorer Team

Using ProcMon to Debug

Made by modders for modders. Step-by-step instructions on how to achieve specific modding goals with ME3Explorer. We *strongly* encourage you to post new tutorials on the wiki.

Using ProcMon to Debug

Postby BCSWowbagger » 26 Jul 2013, 06:53

One time, I was trying to edit a conversation on the Normandy -- Hackett's conversation with Shepard after she gets back from Palaven. First, I did a lot of searching through the asset files, and, eventually, I found what seemed to be the correct file: BioD_Nor_204CallHackett_LOC_INT.pcc . It had all the right conversation prompts and everything. I made some edits and dropped the modified file back into the game... and nothing happened! The conversation was completely unaffected!

I spent hours trying to figure out what had happened, but all to no avail. Eventually, I found out the truth: Hackett's conversation was not controlled by the pcc file above. Actually, the Extended Cut DLC contained a (totally undocumented) change to this conversation (the DLC version clarifies the Catalyst a little more), which meant that, actually, the file I needed to modify was all the way over in the Extended Cut DLC files! In his tutorial today, The Fob mentions a similar experience, where he tried to change the sound of the Mass Relays only to find that the sound was actually controlled by DLC. And all of us, from time to time, have bashed our heads against the wall trying to figure out what file is controlling X, where X is something in ME3 that we want to change.

So here's my trick. Not sure where I heard it, and it's probably not new to many of you, but it's useful enough that I think it warrants a tutorial, at least for newbies. This method will show you how to see what resources the game is using at any given instant, allowing you to quickly zero in on the files you want to access to make your mods.

There's a nifty free program Microsoft makes called ProcMon. Go here, download it, and extract it.

Now start up ME3. In Options -> Graphics, switch to Windowed mode, then adjust the resolution appropriately.
BCSWowbagger
Emeritus
 
Posts: 10
Joined: 21 Jun 2013, 20:33
Has thanked: 4 time
Have thanks: 10 time

Re: One Way to Find the Right Files

Postby BCSWowbagger » 26 Jul 2013, 06:59

Start ProcMon.exe. It will be a nightmarish mess. Ignore that. In the Filter menu, press Filter... (Ctrl-L) to bring up the filters menu. Filter the Process to MassEffect3.exe only, and filter the Operation to Read File, like so:

Image

Now load a saved game and start exploring what files are used! Here's a brief tour of the Normandy just after Palaven. Right after my save loads up, I head over to the console and start talking to Hackett. As soon as he starts talking, I start to see files from DLC_CON_END getting read in ProcMon -- that means that his audio is coming from the DLC!

Image

Then I head out, talk briefly to Primarch Victus, then hit the main deck, where the power immediately fluctuates and Joker alerts me that something's gone haywire in the AI core. As this happens, I am seeing the names of each relevant file streaming past me in ProcMon:

Image

In the CIC, we discover that Traynor's lines were apparently added or otherwise modified by the Citadel DLC:

Image

So far, I've only show you screenshots of object names. Object names are great, but they still leave you hunting for files a lot of the time, because how are you supposed to know which pcc file contains the "norkro_turianleader_d_D" conversation object? That's because I neglected to take a good screenshot when the sets were loaded, and that's when the containing files are actually loaded into memory. Fortunately, when I went down the elevator, I did take a good screenshot:

Image

BioD_Nor_361EDIReveal.pcc is an actual filename, not just an object name, and that means it's a very good candidate to be the file containing the next conversation. (There are several other files loaded at this time that are not shown in this screencap, like BioD_Nor_370Medical.pcc They are also good candidates.)

This is confirmed when we actually start our conversation with EDI:

Image

noredi_edi_reveal_m_d_Int is an object within the BioD_Nor_361EDIReveal_LOC_INT.pcc file. So now we know where to go if we want to edit this conversation, change the animations, or alter the music! We even have a pretty good idea of what specific objects are ultimately controlling those events.

Not a huge revelation by any means, but a useful tool for those not already using it.

BCSWowbagger
Emeritus
 
Posts: 10
Joined: 21 Jun 2013, 20:33
Has thanked: 4 time
Have thanks: 10 time

Re: One Way to Find the Right Files

Postby WarrantyVoider » 26 Jul 2013, 07:14

thanks alot, I always love tutorials with lots of screenies :D

Greetz WV
always backup your files!
mess with the best or die like the rest!
"I tried everything!" - "mkay, please list that..." ; please dont pm me for help, we have a help section
User avatar
WarrantyVoider
Emeritus
 
Posts: 2270
Joined: 22 Aug 2012, 11:33
Has thanked: 480 time
Have thanks: 626 time

Re: One Way to Find the Right Files

Postby Ottemis » 26 Jul 2013, 11:36

Useful, thanks!
User avatar
Ottemis
Harbinger
 
Posts: 824
Joined: 11 Mar 2013, 12:14
Has thanked: 225 time
Have thanks: 247 time

Re: One Way to Find the Right Files

Postby adamp2006 » 15 Jul 2014, 21:23

Very useful thanks, managed to find the model i've been hunting for using this method :)
adamp2006
User
 
Posts: 1
Joined: 15 Jul 2014, 19:54
Has thanked: 0 time
Have thanks: 0 time


Return to Modders' Tutorials

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests

suspicion-preferred