Some time after Sim Update 11, I noticed this behaviour on Xbox that the Rolling Cache just switches off on its own. What triggers it, I don’t know and I never bothered to try and figure it out. What I noticed, however, is that when I went in Options / Data, the Rolling Cache was just off. I set it to 16 GB, because that’s how I used to use it, but then after a time it was off again. Not in the same gameplay session, not necessarily after a restart (although I never checked it systematically), it was just off after a while.
However, I also noticed that I didn’t actually notice it being off. Previously, I had it on because of performance and stability reasons. Microsoft Flight Simulator on Xbox has been notoriously unstable before Sim Update 10, and I also got generally smoother performance if I had Rolling Cache on, so that the sim didn’t necessarily have to stream everything from the servers all the time. But after Sim Update 11, it just didn’t make any difference. Performance is stable and I have no crashes (knock on wood). It just works.
So, I don’t know if it’s a unique bug or a general one, but I don’t use the Rolling Cache feature anymore, probably occupying less of my SSD as a result, and I see absolutely no disadvantage by playing like this. Maybe this is also an opportunity to “lean down” the simulator on console a little, since it feels performant and stable enough to do so anyway.
Rolling cache provides a buffer so that data doesn’t need to be continually streamed. Obviously its faster loading data from local storage that streaming it from the internet. While some users who have a reliable internet connection may see little or no difference, it is generally better to have it on.
My understanding is that even if you turn it off and set the cache size to zero that the sim still retains the 16 GBs of space on the drive, or whatever you had it set to. I routinely clear mine periodically.
It has never been explained well enough (IMO) what Rolling Cache actually does, besides the quicker access and maybe gains on a slow connection. Which again, is questionable. As some users on here have reported, it is better keeping it turned off.
Does it make a significant improvement/difference with it on, to warrant activating the setting. Is perhaps what we should be asking ourselves. Is it doing more harm to our drive and how frequently is it being accessed - those sort of open-minded discussions.
I think people who had a performance improvement were those who experienced issues after updates. (for the most part) When they then disabled it, performance improved. If they had re-enabled it again, they would like have experienced better performance again.
With the rolling cache on, when you fly over an area for the first time, the data is written to the cache. Subsequent flights over the same area will pull the data from the cache, not the internet. This is much more efficient.
The issue can arise where the version of the data on the internet is newer than the cached version. When working properly, the cached version gets updated, but sometimes it doesn’t and this can cause stutters to varying degrees, but sometime quite severe. By simply deleting the rolling cache and then re-enabling it (and restarting the sim) you should be back to normal.
Agree that its not particularly well communicated, but it does work well.
I haven’t used rolling cache since it started causing stuttering and frame drops early on. Ever since I disabled it the sim has been working really well in terms of smoothness. I don’t know if they’ve since improved it, but I’m in no hurry to find out since I don’t fly only in one area.
I am interested though, in how it works. If I fly in San Francisco, and then LA, and then back to San Francisco for example, will it keep both San Francisco and LA in the cache? Or does it overwrite the minute I leave and get new data when I come back? If an airport add on by itself can be multiple gigabytes I wonder how much of a city can be kept even in a big rolling cache. Seems like it could be a lot of unnecessary writing to the hard drive (I’m assuming if you have it off the scenery just writes to RAM as you fly through it).
Its actually a form of database structure. When it creates the file, it allocates the full size that you specify, even though at that point its empty. Its like a big empty bucket. As you fly, data is initially read from the internet and written into the structured bucket. This takes milliseconds, and subsequent reads of the same data come from the cache. Without the cache, data is stored in a smaller temporary cache, but when you close the sim its deleted. So if you start the sim up again and decide to fly from of to somewhere you’ve already been, the computer makes network calls, dns calls, firewall makes decisions on whether or not to inspect the traffic etc etc. Its just doing a whole load of stuff that it doesn’t need to do if you have cache enabled. But what you do need to remember to do is clear the cache after an update, or if you have a problem etc.
It doesn’t do any harm to switch it on, try it for a few days, and if you’re not happy with the results, switch it off again.
I fly gliders almost exclusively and much of that in circles so yes it is useful especially when it comes to scenery loading-in frame drops, pop-ins etc. However IMO if you spend your time flying the globe its probably a waste of time.
8GB is plenty enough and if you have it on a ram drive like I do it cleans itself at every system start (meaning I get none of the all too common issues caused by residual files).
It’s simple enough with Imdisk but obviously it takes up resources so I wont recommend it for everyone. MSFS itself runs quite happily with 16gb ram however any apps running alongside can soon eat up more.