Some sound devices may have problems to use the default sound setting of Four Winds according to which the sound effects are played by using the Windows multimedia sub system, and the background music and the win of the game tune by using the DirectShow sub system (part of DirectX). This may appear e.g. as sudden slowdown of the whole system ( the problem typically continues even if you quit Four Winds and can only be fixed by rebooting the machine).
If you encounter this problem, you can try if bypassing DirectX as the sound system for the background music and win of the game tune helps. When DirectX is bypassed, the same system (Windows multimedia module) is used to handle all sounds (wave files and MIDI files). Note that when DirectX is bypassed, you can only use .MID files (MIDI files) as background music and the win of the game tune. DirectX supports several other formats, as well (e.g., .WAV, .AIF, and .MP3 files). Accordingly, you should disable DirectX sound only if you encounter problems with the default dual sound system. Also, as the problem is caused by an error in ths sound card driver, it is recommended that you first check for an updated driver from your manufacturer's web site and see if that corrects the problem, and use this setting only if nothing else helps.
Note: You must exit Four Winds and start it again before the setting takes effect.
Choosing the language of the user interface
Enabling or disabling the splash screen
Enabling or disabling editing of hand names
Leaving Windows Taskbar visible
Using color management
Forcing MIDI to always play from the start
Using power save scheme
Configuring game controls
Specifying user file locations
Adjusting the speed of the animation
Changing a theme
Using custom tiles
Customizing the sound effects and background music
Choosing the board size
Choosing a way to display discards