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So life just got a little bit more complicated again. Installed the new KSUN and guess what?  KSUN is not visible  in my Scenery Config Editor. In P3Dv4.4 it is placed on top in the scenery list and can NOT be moved down to a place where I want it to be. Yes I can move it in Lorby-SI AddonOrganizer_P3D_V4, so it looks I have to skip my SCE. Very sad about this.

 

Jack

the Swede in Spain

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Hello Jack,

this should have no effect on either other Orbx products or anyone else's.

You should be able to just leave it where it is.

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Sorry Nick, but some of my freeware (Norwegian, Swedish and more) MUST be put on top of the scenery-list.

 

Jack

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emfbi, but my understanding is that we cannot use SCE in P3D because of the xml entries....lorby's is the only tool to manage scenery positions...open to correction if I am wrong...:-)

 

 

Sherm

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You can use SCE for all entries exept for the ones added with XML.

 

Jack

 

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14 minutes ago, JJJackson said:

Sorry Nick, but some of my freeware (Norwegian, Swedish and more) MUST be put on top of the scenery-list.

 

Jack

 

Providing the freeware in question is not in the area of KSUN, it should in no way be bothered by being below the KSUN XML entry.

 

Greg

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9 minutes ago, Greg Jones said:

 

Providing the freeware in question is not in the area of KSUN, it should in no way be bothered by being below the KSUN XML entry.

 

Greg


Well, you might be right, but the freeware designers have a different opinion., I have asked them. :D

 

Jack

 

 

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2 hours ago, JJJackson said:

You can use SCE for all entries exept for the ones added with XML.

 

Jack

Correct  Jack,

 

but, because of that exception it seems to me that those of us who install add on scenery above FTX, CSE is essentially worthless for

P3D. But, to each his or her own. One thing we know about our hobby is that there is no such thing as “ one size fits all.”

 

sherm

 

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One more reason that I do not upgrade.. Technologically, the newer systems are way beyond my scant capabilities (and  my older system).. so for now I will not even TRY to go past Prepar3d v3.4. Terry.

Edited by teecee

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Nick, so why does ORBX tell us to set the ORBX Library Insertion Point BELOW all our 3:rd-pary add-ons if it doesn´t matter where they are placed? Does this mean we can just skip setting the Insertion Point, if the installer will place all new ORBX scenery on top, in the future?

 

Jack

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No.

KSUN's file structure is as designed for the xml file that places it and is

a step on the way towards the stated aim of eventually having all Orbx

products installed outside the P3D folder.

Pleae just treat it as the exception that it is and carry on.

It will have no effect one way or the other on your other scenery.

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"a step on the way towards the stated aim of eventually having all Orbx products installed outside the P3D folder".

 

Thanks for the info. Looking forward to have to reinstaal all my ORBX scenery that per today are NOT using the xml way of installing. :(

 

Jack

 

 

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5 minutes ago, Nick Cooper said:

KSUN's file structure is as designed for the xml file that places it and is

a step on the way towards the stated aim of eventually having all Orbx

products installed outside the P3D folder.

I'm curious about this. There's a lot of talk about "having products installed outside the P3D folder", and I can certainly see the sense in that. What I don't understand is why this seems to require all sorts of over-complicated messing around with XML files and add-ons. Surely all the current ORBX products (and indeed any vendor's products) can just be installed in a target directory based outside the main sim folder and the current "scenery.cfg" file method used to locate them?

 

For instance, you could quite easily have a folder called "Addon Scenery" directly in the root folder, rather than underneath the sim folder, and install everything in there and reference it quite satisfactorily via the old-style scenery.cfg mechanism. The only drawback I can see is who creates that folder to start with, but I would have thought there must be ways to get round that via the registry (something like an "addon_scenery_dir" entry that an installer checks for, and creates if not present but uses if already existing?)

 

This is not a bitch/whinge - I really am curious about this. I will admit that the whole XML Addons thing is one of the things that really hacks me off with P3D, if only because it turns out there are at least three ways for an installer to do this, using different locations and files, and so it becomes a bit of a pain to keep track of. I will confess I dread the day when new Orbx products (I sort of don't count this one, as it's a TD product) start using this approach. Unless LM can tidy it all up a bit by then, that is.

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1 hour ago, andy1252 said:

I'm curious about this. There's a lot of talk about "having products installed outside the P3D folder", and I can certainly see the sense in that. What I don't understand is why this seems to require all sorts of over-complicated messing around with XML files and add-ons. Surely all the current ORBX products (and indeed any vendor's products) can just be installed in a target directory based outside the main sim folder and the current "scenery.cfg" file method used to locate them?

 

For instance, you could quite easily have a folder called "Addon Scenery" directly in the root folder, rather than underneath the sim folder, and install everything in there and reference it quite satisfactorily via the old-style scenery.cfg mechanism. The only drawback I can see is who creates that folder to start with, but I would have thought there must be ways to get round that via the registry (something like an "addon_scenery_dir" entry that an installer checks for, and creates if not present but uses if already existing?)

 

This is not a bitch/whinge - I really am curious about this. I will admit that the whole XML Addons thing is one of the things that really hacks me off with P3D, if only because it turns out there are at least three ways for an installer to do this, using different locations and files, and so it becomes a bit of a pain to keep track of. I will confess I dread the day when new Orbx products (I sort of don't count this one, as it's a TD product) start using this approach. Unless LM can tidy it all up a bit by then, that is.

 

It's not so much about the bgl or texture files but about the other acompanying files: effects for sceneries or gauges and effects for aircraft. These kind of files had to end up in the respective folders of P3D with the old method which could cause problems with overwriting each other. Of course you could avoid this by using own subfolders but not every developer did make use of this.

With the XML method you can keep these files out of the P3D folders for good.

Edited by Vora
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2 hours ago, Vora said:

 

It's not so much about the bgl or texture files but about the other acompanying files: effects for sceneries or gauges and effects for aircraft. These kind of files had to end up in the respective folders of P3D with the old method which could cause problems with overwriting each other. Of course you could avoid this by using own subfolders but not every developer did make use of this.

With the XML method you can keep these files out of the P3D folders for good.

Yep, I've been aware of that with a few of the XML add-ons I've got. Although I haven't done so (as I didn't cotton on to the idea until I'd already got a well polluted system), if I ever get round to either a complete re-install or P3D v5 comes along, I plan to create a full set of "outside" folders for the sounds, effects, gauges etc and make sure all add-ons go into those and just concatenate these folders to the "live" ones. I've done that in a small way with some of my files and it works fine.

 

My real issue is the way LM has implemented this stuff with a whole bunch of different ways and places to put all this xml stuff. One replacement technique would at least make thinks easy to find and manage, but three? What's that about? Anyway, I won't go on about it any more in these forums. If I can ever be bothered to bitch seriously about it I'll do so at the P3D forums.

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10 hours ago, JJJackson said:

Thanks for the info. Looking forward to have to reinstaal all my ORBX scenery that per today are NOT using the xml way of installing. :(

You won't need to do this. If a product needs to be installed outside of the simulator, Central will handle that for you.

 

The legacy method of installing products and adding them using the scenery.cfg isn't going anywhere. Central will continue to support that as long as we support FSX and P3Dv1+2.

 

10 hours ago, andy1252 said:

What I don't understand is why this seems to require all sorts of over-complicated messing around with XML files and add-ons.

Done correctly, using the add-on package system shouldn't require any XML file editing at all. It should all be handled by the developer (which we intend to do).

 

In Central 4, you'll designate a "library" folder, which determines where your Orbx add-ons are installed (for P3Dv4, XP11 and AFS2). Central will handle everything from there, including telling Prepar3D about the add-on and activating it in the simulator.

 

Then, should you need to re-install the simulator, you won't need to reinstall your Orbx add-ons again. They'll all be in the library still.

 

Add-on packages have another advantage too, which is the ability to enable and disable add-ons. Say you wanted to see what the default simulator looks like without Global Base. At the moment, that process will take you a few hours of uninstalling and re-installing. With add-on packages, you just deselect the add-on and restart the sim.

 

10 hours ago, andy1252 said:

Surely all the current ORBX products (and indeed any vendor's products) can just be installed in a target directory based outside the main sim folder and the current "scenery.cfg" file method used to locate them?

You're mostly correct here. The small exception is for all the other files we place in the simulator. For example, we modify autogen files, effects, lclookup.bgl, and more.

 

10 hours ago, andy1252 said:

 if only because it turns out there are at least three ways for an installer to do this, using different locations and files, and so it becomes a bit of a pain to keep track of

There are definitely some limitations with the add-on package system, but nothing we can't overcome. I think posting more information on this is an area that we can improve on.

 

Having it all managed by software like Central 4 will make this easier for everyone. We've been doing a lot of experiments with this. I'm really impressed by how it works so far.

 

5 hours ago, andy1252 said:

My real issue is the way LM has implemented this stuff with a whole bunch of different ways and places to put all this xml stuff.

There are only really two ways to do this. You either place your add-on in an "add-on discovery path", or you manually register the add-on with the simulator (which we are doing for KSUN).

 

Although it may seem complex, it is actually far less complex than the current way of having to edit a dozen files just to get a product installed.

 

 

 

The bottom line is, Central will handle all of this for you. So you shouldn't need to mess around with any files at all.

 

We'll publish more information on this version soon

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Thanks Ben but.... as per today my ORBX-products are installed in the ORBX directory in the P3D root, will they be "transferred" by the Central v4 to the "new" directory I am going to designate? Just noticed one more thing that puzzles me. My KSUN  is installed in my P3DV4\ORBX\FTX_NA\FTX_AA_KSUN directory! Installed with the xml-method but to my "normal" ORBX directory!!! :huh:

 

Jack

Edited by JJJackson

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32 minutes ago, JJJackson said:

Thanks Ben but.... as per today my ORBX-products are installed in the ORBX directory in the P3D root, will they be "transferred" by the Central v4 to the "new" directory I am going to designate? Just noticed one more thing that puzzles me. My KSUN  is installed in my P3DV4\ORBX\FTX_NA\FTX_AA_KSUN directory! Installed with the xml-method but to my "normal" ORBX directory!!! :huh:

 

Jack

 

Hi Jack,

 

I can't answer your first question, but as far as KSUN is concerned, your installation is correct. KSUN is installed to the same place airports have been traditional (under the P3D\Orbx folder). The XML points the sim where to find it. The XML in itself doesn't determine where the file gets installed, it's simply a pointer to where the airport and it's components have already been installed to.

 

Ultimately, the addon.xml system will allow us to provide a fully self contained product (at least for airports) without the need to place files in  different folders. In the case of KSUN, the airport itself, elevation adjustments, effects and texture scripts are all contained under the \FTX_AA_KSUN folder all referred to by one XML file. Previously they would have been added to 4 seperate places. From a user standpoint, this will make your sim much 'tidier' while also being more flexible in which drive/folder you can install to. From a support standpoint, it will be much simpler for us to troubleshoot as there'll be no need for users to go ferreting through folders looking for obscure files.

 

Cheers,

 

Greg

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Ok Greg, I understand that and appreciate your answer. Hope someone can answer the first part of my question.

 

Jack

 

 

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8 hours ago, Ben McClintock said:

In Central 4, you'll designate a "library" folder, which determines where your Orbx add-ons are installed (for P3Dv4, XP11 and AFS2). Central will handle everything from there, including telling Prepar3D about the add-on and activating it in the simulator.

 

Then, should you need to re-install the simulator, you won't need to reinstall your Orbx add-ons again. They'll all be in the library still.

 

Hi Ben, and thanks for the info. FTC v4 sounds like it will be interesting. A couple of requests re that, now that you've kicked off the subject. First would be to allow separate library folders for for the different products (P3D, XP, AFS2). I, and I suspect I may not be alone, have these sims on different drives and media, i.e. my P3D and its Orbx stuff are on SSD but my AFS and XP are on a different HD and the Orbx stuff for XP (the full True Earth stuff at least) is on yet another HD. This is for reasons of capacity (no room on the SSD for all XP and the other non-P3D sims) and performance (XP doesn't seem to need SSD for scenery loading). And the second request would be for full documentation to be available, if not necessarily shipped automatically, on what FTXC is doing and where it's putting everything. I realise a lot of users will have much simpler setups and no desire to know what's going on but it would be nice to have info available for those that want (need?) it.

 

8 hours ago, Ben McClintock said:

Add-on packages have another advantage too, which is the ability to enable and disable add-ons. Say you wanted to see what the default simulator looks like without Global Base. At the moment, that process will take you a few hours of uninstalling and re-installing. With add-on packages, you just deselect the add-on and restart the sim. 

 

8 hours ago, Ben McClintock said:

There are only really two ways to do this. You either place your add-on in an "add-on discovery path", or you manually register the add-on with the simulator (which we are doing for KSUN).

 

The real bug-bear for me with the XML add-on technique is the fact that you have to start the sim before you can disable/enable the add-ons, unless you want to go messing with the XML files yourself. With the old style approach, using SCE you can simply turn on or off whole groups of scenery packages before you start the sim. I believe Lorby have some software that is supposed to do the same thing for XML-based addons, but I'm not sure I have faith in it because of the fact that LM seem to allow at least three different locations and techniques to provide the XML files that control these addons. Like I said originally, this is not a whinge about anything Orbx (or TD) is doing, more a general despair almost at the way LM has implemented this. I fully understand the need for a better mechanism to be able to install all the additional stuff that a modern add-on requires, and XML seems a perfectly fine way to do it, but LM seems to have gone about this in a really half-cocked manner. All they really needed to do was make all the system files/folders considered private (no third party files to be placed there) but provide a completely separate mirror folder structure under a single high level folder. So you could have, for example, \P3D\Add-ons\scenery    \simobjects    \sound  and even \autogen \world etc, and ALL add-ons and components should be installed in here, and these folders are concatenated internally so that they are accessed first when files loaded in the sim. Replacing any system files would therefore never actually remove/delete/overwrite those files, they'd simply never be referenced. But they'd still be there for any fallback requirement.

 

Developers could use a simple old-style approach to install products (scenery that just has bgls and textures, for instance) or full XML based installs for anything more complex. Either way, it's all going in to one set of folders that contain no actual LM files. Installing, upgrading or generally messing around with P3D itself would simply ignore the entire \Add-ons folder structure. In theory, if all the add-ons were implemented via XML techniques, and the actual XML files were of course also in their own sub-folder within the \Add-ons environment, you'd be able to completely remove a P3D system, install a new version, and assuming there were no compatability issues, all your add-ons would become available for use immediately with out themselves needing re-installation.

 

I'm sure it'll never happen, things will just continue to get more complicated, but hey - I can dream!

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