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Frequently Asked Questions

What is the mastercomfig way of doing things?

Some people often get initially frustrated about mastercomfig, since it doesn’t work like a traditional config, and when you try to use it like one, you may encounter more problems.

Generally, think of mastercomfig in “layers” rather than things you need to edit directly. You edit things by overriding things in your user “layer”. Your user layer consists of a user modules layer, autoexec layer, game overrides layer, and class config layer. Modules override mastercomfig/preset modules layer. Autoexec layer overrides mastercomfig/addons layer. Game overrides layer overrides mastercomfig game overrides (run on game join/every time you change class), and per-class networking settings, for all classes. Class config layer overrides mastercomfig game overrides (class configs run after game overrides) and per-class networking settings, for a single class.

This layered approach means that the config’s settings are more managed (i.e. most things are done for you, with you just changing a few things based on your own preference, so that settings don’t conflict for best possible stability and performance), and contained (you can easily drop in a new version of mastercomfig, and your layers will remain in your user folder, so you don’t have to re-edit anything whenever you change a version). See the next few questions for more details.

With this approach, you’ll find yourself reading documentation more rather than digging through config files, checking to see how you can do something or change a setting when you encounter something you’d like changed. However, the GitHub source is a good reference for some things. For example, you can see the many comments within the main comfig.cfg for information about settings within mastercomfig, as well as how to override individual things at a finer level than with modules. But be careful about compatibility conflicts between different console variables in this case! You can see what modules are used in your preset so you only override modules that you need. You can check what commands are bound within the Null Cancelling Movement addon if you need to bind the commands to different keys other than WASD.

Why does mastercomfig use a VPK?

mastercomfig is not just a configuration file like older FPS configs which only use autoexec.cfg. It is a complete performance and customization scripting mod which requires many custom files to work.

Here are some of the features that mastercomfig gains, by being a mod rather a configuration file:

  • dxsupport overrides, which unlocks r_drawropes, fx_drawimpactdebris, fx_drawimpactdust, fx_drawimpactspark, tf_impactwatertimeenable, dsp_off, cl_particle_retire_cost and mat_slopescaledepthbias_decal

  • These allow for performance improvements for ropes, particles, sound, and fixing a bug where 1 decal still appears even if decals are disabled

  • Class spawn scripts, which allow for scripts to be run periodically during a match

  • Modular design which allows for an extensive user override system (modules, addons, configs), rather than having to redo edits every time mastercomfig updates

  • mm_override script, which fixes crashes while loading for Competitive matchmaking

  • Optimized preload configuration, which improves memory usage and load times

  • No messy cloud sync or config saving propagation which happens in the cfg folder

Now, this only explains why mastercomfig is a mod, which can also be a folder, rather than explaining why mastercomfig is a VPK.

mastercomfig is specifically a VPK because:

  • Encourages people to use the modular customization system in mastercomfig, which does not require manual intervention every update to redo user custom settings
  • Easy distribution, and drag and drop into the custom folder, and recommended by Valve:

Quote

First, mount all user customizations. This will search for VPKs and subfolders and mount them in alphabetical order. The easiest way to distribute a mod is to pack up the custom content into a VPK. To “install” a mod, just drop it in this folder.

Source

  • Better performance, as stated by Valve:

Quote

When the game boots, this folder is automatically scanned for VPK files or subfolders. Each subfolder or VPK is added as a search path, so the files inside those VPK’s or subfolders will override the default game files. Mounting a VPK to the filesystem is more efficient than adding a subfolder, as each time the engine needs to open a file, it will need to make a call to the operating system to search the folder. VPKs can therefore be searched by the engine much more efficiently. Each subfolder is a new search path that must be checked each time the engine tries to open a file. So, for optimal load times, always use VPK files and don’t make any subfolders in this folder!

Source

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We search VPK files before ordinary folders, because most files will be found in VPK and we can avoid making thousands of file system calls to attempt to open files in folders where they don’t exist. (Searching a VPK is much faster than making an operating system call.)

Source

  • Modular design, which allows for contained custom settings and variants of mastercomfig

Why does mastercomfig override my class configs?

You can easily move your class configs by creating a new user folder next to your class configs, and then dragging them all into that new user folder.

mastercomfig has class configs due to a bug/missing feature in Team Fortress 2, which does not allow for game.cfg to be executed on clients upon joining a game.

Class configs are also a reliable way to periodically run some commands during a match, which can be used to fix memory leaks.

Instead, mastercomfig uses the class configs for:

  • Class specific network setting aliases (net_hitscan, net_projectiles, net_spy) for easy customization
  • user/game_overrides.cfg script for easy global class settings
  • game_overrides_once_c alias for running a script only once per game session
  • Fixing a networking issue with bumper cars
  • Overriding map specific detail prop, water fade distances, and sound channel mode
  • Fixing the freezecam sound effect getting stuck sometimes
  • Clearing all decals, including permanent ones inaccessible by other commands
  • Fixing client desync bugs periodically without interrupting demos
  • Improving load times after first map load
  • Fixing cases where animation and model mods can stop working after many server loads
  • Fixing issues where animation and models mods could be reset

mastercomfig overrides class configs because:

  • Every path in the game can only have one file associated with it, due to how Source handles mods
  • Drag and drop installation, especially for those who do not want to mess with configs

Why is there no mastercomfig app?

mastercomfig had a desktop app called mastercomfig 7. It was discontinued because it was too hard to maintain and update.

Since mastercomfig 9, the download website has features which resembles the app.

How can I get help with mastercomfig?

Check the troubleshooting guide for more info.


Last update: October 15, 2020