Microsoft KB Archive/173689

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SideWinder Force Feedback Controller Behaves Erratically

ID: Q173689

The information in this article applies to:

  • Microsoft SideWinder Force Feedback Pro, version 1.0
  • Microsoft SideWinder Force Feedback Wheel, version 1.0
  • Microsoft SideWinder Game Device software version 2.0


The SideWinder Force Feedback game controller may behave erratically if you play force feedback-enabled games on a computer with two sound devices installed. The game controller may occasionally bind, lose forces, or seem not to work for short periods.


Some computers include a sound card or audio chip set on the motherboard.

If you install a new sound card and disable the onboard chip set, you may encounter this problem because of direct memory access (DMA) conflicts between the onboard audio chip set and the installed sound card.

Windows cannot manage the DMA channel that may still be assigned to the onboard audio chip set, and conflicts with the DMA channel assigned to the installed sound card and game port.


You may be able to resolve this issue by following these steps:

  1. Make sure the onboard sound is enabled in the computer's CMOS settings. Please see your computer's documentation or manufacturer for information about how to accomplish this.
  2. Click Start, point to Settings, and then click Control Panel.
  3. Double-click System.
  4. On the Device Manager tab, double-click the Sound, Video And Game Controllers branch to expand it. Make sure both installed sound devices are listed.
  5. Click the onboard sound device, and then click Properties.
  6. On the General tab, under Device Usage, click the Original Configuration (Current) check box to clear it. Or, if you do not see this check box, click the Disable In This Hardware Profile check box to select it.
  7. Click OK or Close until you return to Windows.
  8. Restart the computer.

Windows may now be able to manage the resources of the disabled sound device and allow better communication between the Force Feedback game controller and the currently enabled sound card and game port.


For more information about solving problems related to SideWinder Game Controllers, use the SideWinder Game Controllers Troubleshooter located at the following Microsoft Web site:

Additional query words: side winder gaming forces feed back

Keywords : kbenv swff kbimu
Version : WINDOWS:1.0,2.0
Platform : WINDOWS
Issue type : kbprb
Technology :

Last Reviewed: April 30, 1999
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