Sometimes, two mods with different functions, each alter a number of BHAV resources. Now it MAY occur that one BHAV is altered by BOTH mods, in each case to get a different effect. Obviously, those mods can't both work! For any routines they have in common, the one that loads LAST overwrites the ones that loaded earlier.
Now there are two possibilities:
- If the changes to the BHAV are important for other parts of both mods, then the mod loading first will NOT be able to function correctly, and we call this an unresolvable conflict. One will have to choose: use either of the mods, but NOT both!
- However, if the changes to this one BHAV are NOT important to other parts of both mods, then you have a third choice: you can load both, but the one that loads LAST, decides which version of this one BHAV will be in effect.
In some cases, a mod is created to complement another, or to improve upon it. The trick here is, that the main mod needs all the BHAVs that are included in it, and these BHAVs need to be exactly the way they were written. However, for the plug-ins to work properly, SOME of those BHAVs need to be expanded. So the plug-ins contain different, expanded versions of a few of the BHAVs that are also found in the main module. Now obviously, if the main module loaded last, the plug-ins' versions of those BHAVs would not be called, rendering said plug-ins inoperative.
So, in this case, the conflict is INTENTIONAL, and the author of the mod supplies instructions for the load-order, in order to ensure the proper functioning of all parts of the mod.
Load order is normally settled very simply (at least on NTFS drives): all sub-folders of Downloads are read in alphabetical order, and the packages within each folder are also sorted by alphabet. So, for example: if you keep the main mod and the accompanying plug-ins together in one folder, they'll load in a specific order depending on the names they were givenm and the author purposely names them such that they load in a correct order. However, if you were to put the plug-ins in sub-folder A, and the main module in sub-folder B, then the main module would load AFTER the plug-ins, and stuff would NOT work as intended.
HCDU (the Hack Conflict Detection Utility, as created by Paladin, and available at [url]www.simwardrobe.com[/url]) will find all mods that conflict with each other, and lists them in the order in which they currently load. So if the load order is wrong, you can see from HCDU's report what to change to make it work correctly. Many modders rely on info from this utility to determine IF conflicts can be solved, and HOW. That's why, when users report problems, modders often ask the player to run HCDU and share the report.
Information supplied by BoilingOil