So I've just installed the Skyrim Special Edition and customized it with about 100 mods using Nexus Mod Manager. But even though I can play a heavily modded regular Skyrim without problems, I'm now noticing some performance drops while outside. They don't happen inside though. I've watched the performance monitor closely while playing; my memory is at about 40%, CPU at 20% utilization. Also, I don't have permanent low fps, it's more like microstutters every few seconds or so. This leads me to believe that I'm hitting some kind of bottleneck (possibly the hard drive - the game is installed on my HDD, not enough space on the SSD) when some of the HD textures from my mods get loaded or something similar.

I really don't want to turn off all my mods one by one to see which is causing the performance drops. So I would like to know if there is an easier way to find the culprit. Maybe a more advanced monitor that notices spikes in the system load or performance drops? Or an automatic analyser (like the automated mod organizing tools) that tells me which of my installed mods is likely to cause this sort of stuttering?

Any help is appreciated, I'm open to both automated and manual approaches, as long as they are not as immensely time-consuming as checking every mod one by one.

  • I'm not sure this is going to be very game related; all of the techniques are just straight up performance metric data collection.
    – Frank
    Commented Nov 24, 2016 at 23:25
  • Microstutters can be all kinds of things in Skyrim, not just resource loading. And yeah, avoiding uninstalling is unlikely. The advice to disable mods until funding the culprit hasn't become obsolete yet. (Nor the advice to install and test mods one at a time.) Commented Nov 24, 2016 at 23:31

2 Answers 2


I would try a binary search:

You said that you have around 100 mods enabled so, try disable the last 50 mods.

Performance drop persists? Disable another 25 mods

Performance drop still persists? Disable another 12-13 mods and so on...

You could do it even if the Performance drop goes away with the first 50, just narrow down your search by dividing the active mods by half every time. It may take 2-3 hours but it's really worth the next 300 (guess, that could be even more) hours of gameplay.

Note: The performance drop may be caused by the mod load, so that there's no real culprit but all mods contribute to slowing your pc.

  • That's a good suggestion, thanks! I think this method can be improved upon by considering what kinds of mods are most likely to cause the drops (e.g. all those sweet 4k textures) and disabling those first. I'm accepting your answer since it seems to be the fastest way to get to the source of my problem
    – MoritzLost
    Commented Dec 27, 2016 at 10:25
  • I agree that you should try to remove the heavyest mods, the more you organize, the faster you will be. It's only up to you now ;)
    – A.Danzi
    Commented Dec 27, 2016 at 10:27
  • 1
    Isn't that a Binary search rather than Brute force?
    – Fotti
    Commented Dec 27, 2016 at 15:58
  • @Fotti yeah, you're right.. thanks for the heads up, will edit the answer right now
    – A.Danzi
    Commented Dec 27, 2016 at 22:54

I would say check your load order. A lot of the times whenever I would play Skyrim, or Fallout that your load order needs to be pretty organized. That way your mods don't clash whenever they start up. Case and point, when I used to play the original Skyrim on steam, I would actually use the steam workshop to get most of my mods. This is fine and dandy, but a lot of it was just added items and armor, and not too much with the game play in general. When I added alternate start, I started getting crash on main menu on many occasions. I eventually found out that it was just that with all of those weapons and armors and when everything was said and done the Alternate Start mod would not work due to its placement in the load order list. There are various tools that you could use in order to optimize load order. (LOOT is one that is pretty nice and you can get it through Nexus if that is your mode of obtaining mods)

Hope this helps!

  • I use LOOT to optimize my load order and haven't even gotten a warning from it, so I'm pretty sure that's not it. +1 for the suggestion though
    – MoritzLost
    Commented Nov 25, 2016 at 20:48

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