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AFCAD for FSX


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12 replies to this topic

#1 RFields5421

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Posted 13 August 2006 - 08:28 PM

I would expect all files made for FS 9 One other thing needs to be pointed out - and Jim mentioned it in another form.A TREMEMDOUS number of the sceneries and other programs made for FS9 are created using FS2002 and even FS2000 programming techniques and practices.These are almost certainly not going to work well in FSX, possibly not even at all.Just because someone says their addon is for FS9 does not mean it fully complies with FS9 and forward standards.Completely starting over with new tools, techniques and programming practices is a b itch. That I understand. But at some point the wonderful work will stop being compatible with the new version of FS.It's been much the same for every release of FS, and will continue to be so in the future.

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#2 jvile

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Posted 13 August 2006 - 11:00 AM

I also believe that FSX is backward compatible to FS9 in certain areas only (XML). MS introduced XML in FS9 and stated in some of the SDK's the following>A new, XML-based, scenery format has been created and >is required for creating new scenery. Scenery should >no longer be created with BGL opcodes or the BGLC compiler >from previous versions of Flight Simulator. The older BGL >opcodes are supported for backward compatibility, >however, we cannot guarantee their support in future releases. Most if not all the terrain data in FS9 still use the old format but other scenery files such as the AP, AT, NV, OB went to XML. Designers are still developing scenery using the BGL opcodes and uploading their work currently. After 3 years I would have thought that if the scenery is based on XML in FS9 then new 3rd party airport scenery would follow the same data structure.I don't think we can base backward compatibility on what works vs what don't work but it is more of a utility program issue of how these read the FS9 data.Reggie uses one example (AFCAD program) that shows the XML data still exsist in FSX but AFCAD is now going to be 2 FS generations behind. When we look at the scenery post above on using utilities, little is mentioned in the way that FS9 uses XML data. The last 3 years should have been spent on developing utilities toward eliminating opcodes and moving more toward XML with templates. Now it seems like we are trying to make the utilities fit into FSX and when they don't we say "not backward compatible".Not trying to be critical here just an observation that the Terrain utilities are going to require a major overhaul and XML utilities need futher tweaking to fit with changes made in FSX.

#3 RFields5421

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Posted 12 August 2006 - 03:13 PM

AFCAD is not fully compatible with FS2004. Lee had to work in the dark without SDK's or even an accurate explaination of the file format, markers, and values. Amazing, but there were some things which he could not catch / find.AFCAD uses a compiler and schema which Microsoft's BGLComp cannot understand.You can build airport files to fullfill the parking role with BGLComp by coding XML, or with SceneGenX. Both match the FS2004 standards.Secondly, I know of about 2 dozen markers and values which exist in the FS2004 files - but have no impact on AI behavior.Pushback values RIGHT, LEFT, BOTH, NONE are just one. Lee coded all AFCAD created parking spaces to have a value of BOTH and did not give us an option to change that value. A sensible thing for FS2004 - but not for FSX, we hope.That's just one of the values I really hope will be configurable in FSX.Taxiway weight limits - another - where we can keep the heavies off some taxiway, etc.AFCAD FS2004 files would only be fully compatible with FSX if the MS team made absolutely no changes or improvements to the airport parking system.I don't think anyone wants that.

#4 scruffyduck

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Posted 12 August 2006 - 11:15 AM

Hi LuisAs far as I can tell so far backward compatability is for the most part maintained to FS9. The formats of the scenery bgl files and the distribution of information in them is certainly different in FSX but FS9 files seem to be read fine. AFCAD2 does not work but then it is reading a file format that it does not understand if used with FSX. I think AFCAD2 files work fine if transferred from FS9.Also the scenery mdl format has also changed but FS9 objects seem to read ok. I have seen some comments about the FSX demo version not reading material colors but I want to get deeper into that as I would wonder why that might happen.

#5 LuisFelizTirado

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Posted 12 August 2006 - 06:28 AM

This is all somewhat unsettling. I would expect all files made for FS 9 to still work in FS X. It is hard to believe that Microsoft has given up backwards compatibility.How does the demo look? Anything like all the screenshots we have been seeing over the past few months?Best regards.Luis

#6 scott967

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Posted 11 August 2006 - 08:03 PM

>Even the default files in the demo will not have the jets>pushback.>Thanks. thought I was doing something wrong.>>FS2004 traffic files appear to work, and at least the AIA B752>lands well at TNCM.Interesting. Just installed the default 734 so far but now will have to play with traffic.scott s..

#7 RFields5421

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Posted 11 August 2006 - 10:36 AM

My AFCAD files for FS2004 do change the parking at TNCM and TAPA. They do NOT appear to change the ramp areas and textures.We've had to turn the parking spots to make them head out because the props will pushback but the jets will not.Even the default files in the demo will not have the jets pushback.Of course with no FSUIPC - AFCAD cannot see where the aircraft is located in the FSX demo. So it's kind of hit or miss. The starting locations almost line up on the runways for those airports with my addon AFCAD files.Today I need to take the default FS2004 AFCADs of those two airports and see how well they lineup.The demo time limit is too short to fly an AI jet between those two airports. I have to try the CRJ - TKPK - TNCM.FS2004 traffic files appear to work, and at least the AIA B752 lands well at TNCM.However the traffic file in the demo is definitely different.Much more testing to be done.

#8 scruffyduck

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Posted 11 August 2006 - 02:05 AM

I suspect that all the old bgl format files have gone now and everything will be based on xml. What the actual binary file format for them is remains to be seen. I would expect any FS9 scenery objects and scenery files to work in FSX however and I have placed FS9 objects sucessfully in FSX using xml and bglcomp.

#9 scott967

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Posted 11 August 2006 - 12:56 AM

Also tried to use tmfviewer on various of the scenerybasescenery files to no avail. Then I compared the hex for some like worldlc.bgl with the FS9 versions and they seemed pretty much different, so it isn't a matter of just changing some version no in a header.Should also note there seem to be more tuning parameters in the form of xml files and terrain.cfg.scott s..

#10 scruffyduck

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Posted 11 August 2006 - 12:33 AM

That is correct. The format of those bgl files has changed in FSX as has the format of the FSX MDL files. Hopefully the SDK will clairfy what those changes are.

#11 scott967

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Posted 10 August 2006 - 07:49 PM

AFCAD will access APX31250.bgl in FSX demo and show the airports in the selection list, but won't open any of the airports.scott s..

#12 jonpatch

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Posted 09 August 2006 - 12:24 AM

Try the advanced search, and make sure you select "and" for your terms. For some bizarre reason the default is set to "or" which IMO is unlikely to be useful for the vast majority of searches. And limit your search to the likely forums or conference.Lee Swordy created the AFCAD editor for FS8 and FS9 (AFCAD2). I understand nothing's been heard from him in a while so that will indeed leave a hole in the development tools. We'll see what MS will come up with, and I'm sure other tools will fill the gap.Unfortunately I think it's unlikely that any tool will match Lee's professional quality and documentation. It is a superb tool.Jon

#13 Inactive Member_IdaBoy_***

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Posted 08 August 2006 - 12:39 AM

I am sure this has been talked about a million times, but the forum search tool is nearly impossible to use. What ever happened to a new AFCAD editor, and will there be the same system for FSX??