Author Topic: Understanding Aircraft.cfg  (Read 5153 times)

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Offline Target

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Understanding Aircraft.cfg
« on: March 04, 2012, 04:17:48 PM »
Alright hope you don't take it the wrong way if it appears that I treat you like a 0-knowledge-about-aircraft.cfg-entries guy, but this way I hope I can help you clarify some of the things that are going on in an aircraft.cfg entry:

[fltsim.46]Has to be in numerical order, aka the entry before has to be #45 and so on
title=AI 747-400 RR British AirwaysHas to be unique to each entry in the aircraft.cfg AND overall to all aircraft installed in your FS (I.e. AIA entry "747-400 BAW" and, as an fictional example, a POSKY 747-400 model with an aircraft.cfg entry "747-400 BAW" would stir up problems
sim=aia_747_400Has to match the FDE (Flight Dynamics) file in the MAIN folder of the specific aircraft folder. I.e for the AIA 747-400 you will have, once you enter the model folder (somewhere next to the aircraft.cfg), a file like this: aia_747_400.air (NOTE the .air extension indicating its an FDE. The sim entry after the "=" sign has to match the part before the "." of the air file: sim=aia_747_400 ---> aia_747_400.air
model=rr_no_reflHas to match a model folder in the main folder of the specific aircraft folder (The folder contains a .mdl file that is pretty much the 3D model of the aircraft). The entry after the "=" sign has to match the part after the "." of the model folder. I.e. AIA744: model=RR_no_refl ---> model.RR_no_refl
texture=British AirwaysHas to match the textures you installed for that specific repaint. So if you install BA 744 textures the part of the folder name where you installed the textures has to match the entry in the aircraft.cfg: I.e.: texture=British Airways ---> texture.British Airways
atc_id=G-BNLL(I just keep it for texture reference, especially when it comes to special liveries)
atc_airline=SPEEDBIRDHas to match what FS ATC calls it. Somewhere there should be lists of at least the standard FS ATC traffic callsigns
atc_flight_number=1123No idea if it should be in or not. Deleted it from my previous AI installation. Now with the new one, leaving it. Not sure thought someone said you should have it for IFR AI traffic.
atc_heavy=1If "1" ATC adds a "Heavy" callsign after the flight number. Used by the heavy metal (I.e. A340, A330, AN124, B767, B747, etc)
ui_manufacturer=AIFor two things: One for the aircraft selection menu in FS (Should you have AI traffic models visible). Two for the red labels you see when you fly around with AI traffic and when you have those labels activated. As the entry states depicts the manufacturer. I leave it as AI, that way in my selection menu ALL my AI aircraft show up under a single manufacturer tab.
ui_type=Boeing 747-400 RRSame as the ui_manufacturer entry explanation just now for the type and in my personal setup the part where I specify the exact manufacturer and model number (often with engine variation to not have duplicate entries)
ui_variation=British AirwaysThe paint variant
description=Brian Mitchell & Maik VoigtNot really necessary, but usually if you delete the line FS automatically adds it again, so now I just use it to indicate the painter of a repaint.
atc_parking_codes=BAWUsually the IATA code for an airline and used by AFCADs to determine where the aircraft should park on a FS airport. IMPORTANT: For FS9 only ONE entry possible. For FSX IIRC up to 3 or 5.
atc_parking_types=GATEUsed by AFCAD to determine where the aircraft should park on a FS airport. Most common are "GATE", "RAMP", "GATE,RAMP" (this one actually just a blank), "CARGO", "MIL_GATE", "MIL_RAMP", "MIL_CARGO" and some I don't remember right now

NOTE: THIS EXAMPLE IS BASED ON MY NAMING CONVENTION ETC. FOR MY FS SETUP. FOR YOU SOME OF IT MIGHT DIFFER, E.G.: MAYBE YOU LIKE TO INSTALL THE TEXTURE IN A FOLDER CALLED "texture.BAW", OR YOUR "XXX_XXX_XXX.air" FILE MIGHT HAVE A DIFFERENT NAME IF YOU DOWNLOADED IT FROM A DIFFERENT SOURCE (I.E. I think the HTAI Cessna 208 Caravan has a big issue there, because if you downloaded it from one source the .air is "HTAI_C208B.air" and from another source it came with "HTAI_208B.air" so now depending on the painter one is referencing the one air file in his readme fltsim entry another one the other and if you don't watch you might end up with the wrong one). SAME GOES FOR THE MODEL FOLDERS: Some painters change the naming in their personal setup, I.E. (sorry Mariano you just came to my mind ;D) one might have renamed "MODEL.RR_NO_REFL" to "MODEL.RR" because nowadays most painters stopped using the reflective models and therefore some delete the "MODEL.XX_REFLECTIVE".

Best regards,

Phil
« Last Edit: March 04, 2012, 06:52:02 PM by johanfrc »
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Offline vc-10

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Re: Understanding Aircraft.cfg
« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2012, 07:15:47 PM »
Just to add to Phil's post:
I don't use the atc_id= line, and I've had no problems. Completely get adding it in for reference though!
I don't use the atc_flight_number= line either, with no issues.

The best way of checking for these issues is to download Peter Van Der Veen's ACA2005 and ACA2007. You can download them from Peter's website at http://aifs2.pvdveen.net/?page_id=5

These programs will scan for errors in your FS setup, telling you exactly where the issues are. It's worth scanning every now and again just to check everything.

Offline RampRat

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Re: Understanding Aircraft.cfg
« Reply #2 on: March 06, 2012, 05:03:42 PM »
I would like to add my 0.02cts as well, if you don`t mind.

atc_id=
 &
atc_flight_number=

can indeed be left blank, since ai-flightplans usually provide a registration (atc_id) for every aircraft, e.g.

AC#1, N123AB, 1%...etc etc

AC#2, N234BC, 1%...etc etc

and also a flightnumber for each flight.

If it is a private A/c, a BBJ or ACJ, for example, without a flightnumber, it will be addressed as  "Boeing N1234A" or "Airbus VP-ABC" due to the > ,R,0000, < set-up in your flightplan.

It is only usefull if you are flying your own non-ai aircraft and YOU want to be called with a callsing & flightnumber or registration by ATC.


The 'description=" line will stay empty if you delete the text in the .air-file with AirED.

RR

Offline regan123

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Re: Understanding Aircraft.cfg
« Reply #3 on: March 06, 2012, 05:11:04 PM »
The only advantage to using the atc_id= line that i have found is that if you are using AIFPv2 to create flightplans, then it will automatically populate the reg no. from the atc_id= field.

Offline JWW2010

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Re: Understanding Aircraft.cfg
« Reply #4 on: May 10, 2012, 08:04:27 PM »
Useful for newbies this.

My only criticism and if you like question is letting the world know what the recommended maximum number of aircraft.cfg is. I have read all sorts over the years 80, 99 being most common answers. Im not even sure of the answer myself but always assumed it to be 99...i.e. you cant go to 100.

Does anyone have a definitive answer on this?

John

Offline Nils

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Re: Understanding Aircraft.cfg
« Reply #5 on: May 10, 2012, 08:21:51 PM »
I think FS has no restriction itselft, but there is/was (don't know) a bug with ACA2005 when the aircraft.cfg exceeds 200 entries.
So I try to keep it below 200 where possible, never had problems.
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Offline BruceN

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Re: Understanding Aircraft.cfg
« Reply #6 on: May 10, 2012, 08:37:36 PM »
Nils,

There was a patch/upgrade released for ACA2005 to overcome the 200 aircraft limit. Several of my aircraft folders are well over 300 aircraft each.

Offline Frontier

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Re: Understanding Aircraft.cfg
« Reply #7 on: May 10, 2012, 08:59:58 PM »
My A320 currently has 363 entries and runs without problems. 8)
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Offline Nils

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Re: Understanding Aircraft.cfg
« Reply #8 on: May 11, 2012, 12:20:47 PM »
Thanks Bruce, so I can merge my A320, A319 and 737-800W folders :P
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Offline Hannes44

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Re: Understanding Aircraft.cfg
« Reply #9 on: May 11, 2012, 06:10:25 PM »
@Nils
No, you cannot merge different model-folders; every model has a different aircraft.cfg.

Offline benclark

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Re: Understanding Aircraft.cfg
« Reply #10 on: May 11, 2012, 07:25:00 PM »
Hannes I think Nils was being sarcastic ;)

Although you could use the same aircraft.cfg for different models, as long as the contact points and lights sections are the same. That's why in theory you can combine all your AIA pax 747-400's for example in to a single folder but you couldn't add the -200's or 300's, they would still need their own folder.

Offline Nils

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Re: Understanding Aircraft.cfg
« Reply #11 on: May 11, 2012, 08:35:47 PM »
@Nils
No, you cannot merge different model-folders; every model has a different aircraft.cfg.

Hannes, I think you understood me wrong ;)
I had 2 folders of each plane, because they were at 200 entries. So instead of 6 folders I have 3 now :P
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Offline flyingcarpet75

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Re: Understanding Aircraft.cfg
« Reply #12 on: May 11, 2012, 09:33:41 PM »
When I read the TTools manual a long time ago, I got the impression that the maximum fltsim entries was 99 so I split my aircraft folders as soon as they reached the 99 limit. So I had three or four folders for the 738 and A320 for instance. Later, I realized that fs9 did not care but was too lazy to change things so now I still have three or four folders for these aircraft but each one holds about 2 to 300 repaints!

One thing I'd like to add about the fltsim entries. Remember that these were NOT made for ai aircraft but for flyable models, hence several lines such as

panel=
sound=
kb_checklists=
kb_reference=
atc_flight_number=
visual_damage=

These are totally useless when it comes to ai and can be disregarded and even better deleted. No need to write useless code. Remember that the fs engine will read every single line of code you feed it, so the less code the faster your sim will run. In fact, you should also remember that every line that reads like this

xxxx=
or xxxx=0

means that fs should use the default option on this line, which it will do regardless unless instructed otherwise. Which is why, for instance, you can happily delete the line
atc_heavy=0

You should keep this line only when it reads
atc_heavy=1

because in this specific case, you ask fs to add 'heavy' when atc calls out the flight, so you will hear atc saying for instance 'Delta 522 heavy' You should keep this line -or add to the fltsim entry if not provided- for every fltsim entry in anything larger than a 757. If your aircraft is an A320 for instance, atc does not call it heavy in real life, so adding the line
atc_heavy=0
or
atc_heavy=
or no line at all

will give the same result, instructing fs NOT to add the 'heavy' appendix after the flight number callout. It is the same because the default option for fs is NOT to do it, it will only do it when explicitly instructed to do so with the line atc_heavy=1

So once again, the less code the better.

I even apply this rule to the line

model=

For instance, the HTAI Cessna 208 Grand Caravan comes in two flavours. the standard model, or the cargo pod model. So the aircraft folder includes two lines for the model

model=
model=cp

If your aircraft has a cargo pod, then by all means you should specify it with the line
model=cp

but if your aircraft is the standard model, then you can use
model=
or purely forget that line and fs by default will use the standard model.

Of course, if you have a line that specifies something after the = sign, then you have to add it. Let's say if your aircraft has a line that reads
model=ge

even if it is the only model option in that aircraft folder, you have to add it in the fltsim entry or your aircraft won't show in the sim. Omitting a line is fine ONLY if there is NOTHING or 0 (ZERO) after the = sign.

 ::cheers::

Philippe
 
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Offline BruceN

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Re: Understanding Aircraft.cfg
« Reply #13 on: May 11, 2012, 09:54:30 PM »
Philippe makes very good points in his post and I concur with all of them as I follow the same editing techniques in all of my aircraft.cfg files. The smaller the file, the better, plus it's so much easier to read when each [fltsim] section is a short as possible.

One thing to note is that some utility programs that report errors by scanning the aircraft.cfg file and compare to other files in the sim, do not follow the default standards of FS as Philippe has mentioned. For example, if you remove model= because the default model is used, this may result in errors being reported since the utility may expect to find a model entry in the [fltsim.x] section. Likewise with some of the other default entries that are removed. Consider what is more important when modifying your aircraft.cfg files: a tight compact file or a file that is fully compliant with error reporting according to your favorite utility.

Offline TopoGigio777

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Re: Understanding Aircraft.cfg
« Reply #14 on: December 13, 2012, 05:42:56 PM »
Just one thing, in the "atc_parking_codes" goes the ICAO three letters code, not the IATA 2 letters code.