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Multi view question in Opus...

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Having read the threads relating to this software, it has got me very interested. Not particularly for the weather engine, although this sounds great, but more so for the different camera views which are talked about. My question is, is it possible to introduce two additional side views, ie from the cockpit, to run on a networked PC while the client PC is running a virtual cockpit in fullscreen? What I want to achiveve (if possible) is retain my VC (in fullscreen) on my 30" monitor and then have a side view from the pilot's window and also one from the FO's window, running on either side of the main VC view on the 30" monitor? It does not have to be an extension to the virtual view on the main screen, just two additional views on either siide of the VC. Effectively, I have two additional, matching 17" monitors which would be really cool if I could have two side views without impacting on the CPU performance of the host PC. I hope I have explained myself properly...


Howard
P3DV4.5, MSFS2020, MSI Mag Z490 Tomahawk MB, i7-10700 CPU @ 4.8ghz, Nvidia RTX3090 GPU, 32gb RAM@3200Mhz, SSD/2Tb+SSD/500Gb+OS, Corsair 1000W PSU, Philips BDM4350UC 43" 4K IPS, MFG Crosswinds, TQ6 Throttle, PFC Yoke.



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Simple answer yes. But start researching on view alignment. We simply provide you with all the tools and the Live View option to help you create the views on your client systems, and then update them as you fly (of course yo must install FSX on each client computer).

 

Regards

Stephen

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Simple answer yes. But start researching on view alignment. We simply provide you with all the tools and the Live View option to help you create the views on your client systems, and then update them as you fly (of course yo must install FSX on each client computer).

 

Regards

Stephen

Thanks for the speedy reply Stephen. Is there some information relating directly to my request that I can find/download from your website? Thanks edit ( of course) but just wondering where in the information will I find info for my specific request.

BTW Stephen, when you say install FSX on the second machine, do you just mean FSX or a complete duplicate of the host machine's FSX installation including all the sceneries etc?

BTW2 erm, if this is not too difficult to implement, the idea of having peripheral views while flying in the VC without impacting on the performance of the machine is fantastic!


Howard
P3DV4.5, MSFS2020, MSI Mag Z490 Tomahawk MB, i7-10700 CPU @ 4.8ghz, Nvidia RTX3090 GPU, 32gb RAM@3200Mhz, SSD/2Tb+SSD/500Gb+OS, Corsair 1000W PSU, Philips BDM4350UC 43" 4K IPS, MFG Crosswinds, TQ6 Throttle, PFC Yoke.



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There isn't any particular information on our website. You will find information on cockpit builder sites but what you are trying to do doesn't sound too drastic so you could just give it a go.

You have to install FSX and all its sceneries on all client systems in order to get the same views. It is not possible to relay your screen image we just relay all the FSX location information etc to FSX on the clients.

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Ah, OK, I understand. I will have to do some digging and see what I can come up with. Thanks for the help Stephen, appreciated...


Howard
P3DV4.5, MSFS2020, MSI Mag Z490 Tomahawk MB, i7-10700 CPU @ 4.8ghz, Nvidia RTX3090 GPU, 32gb RAM@3200Mhz, SSD/2Tb+SSD/500Gb+OS, Corsair 1000W PSU, Philips BDM4350UC 43" 4K IPS, MFG Crosswinds, TQ6 Throttle, PFC Yoke.



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Howard,

 

What you want to do is really pretty easy -- 90-degree left and right views don't really have complex alignment problems. The simplest way to do what you're after is to have three PCs: your "flying" server (the system with your large display that will run FSX and the Opus FSXSERVER.EXE process), and then two additional PCs running a display for your left and right views. These two systems will run FSX and the FSXCLIENT.EXE processes. You configure the FSXSERVER to know that it will have two clients, then you configure each FSXCLIENT to know the name of the server (the name of the PC).

 

Note that you must also correctly set up file sharing between all of the PCs. If you're using a Homegroup set up C:\OpusFSX to be read/write by all members of the homegroup. I've also found that I had to setup the install folder for Microsoft Flight Simulator to be read/write shared as well.

  • Start FSX on the client systems.
  • Start FSXSERVER on the 'flying'server (you don't have to start FSX on the server for this setup, I've found it helpful to do so just because you'll have a reference 'front' view).
  • Start FSXCLIENT on both client systems. Watch for the clients and server to connect with each other -- you'll see two data links turn green on the clients and four links turn green on the server.

  • From the FSXSERVER application you select 'Cameras' and then select one of the two side view PCs, say the one on left.
  • When the camera control dialog appears, click 'Add New Camera' and give it a name. You can choose to make it either a 2D or virtual cockpit -- doesn't really matter for side views since there really isn't view alignment issue for the side views (but I would choose the same camera type for both sides).
  • Click in the "Yaw" field (it will turn red), type in -90 (note the minus sign; you want the camera to turn left), then click on the field again. It will turn back white, and the camera view will rotate to 90-degrees left.
  • Set the zoom as you like; a zoom factor between 0.8 and 1.0 seems to work well for a right or left view.
  • Click the 'Save All Cameras' button and exit the screen.
  • Select the 'right' PC and follow the same process as above, setting the Yaw value to 90 (you want the camera to turn right).
  • Set the zoom to match the left view.
  • Click 'Save All Cameras' and exit the screen.

 

That's it. You've now got your server set up for your forward view (with a virtual cockpit if you like that), and your two side views set up for left and right. As long as you have FSXSERVER and the two FSXCLIENT apps running alongside FSX the views will be synchronized.

 

Just FYI, adding additional PCs with clients for displays that are set at say, 45-degrees left and right is basically the same process, but the view alignment for those can be a major struggle without some practical help -- which I'll be happy to give you if you ever get there. It *is* possible to get nearly perfect view alignment for forward views, but the camera setup is very tricky.

 

-M.

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Hi Mark,

 

Wow! clear and well organized guidance offered to Howard for putting in place what appears to be a remarkable setup. And Howard, if you do set it up, please post a few pictures and/or comments.

 

Regards,

 

JJ


Jean-Jacques

CYND, Gatineau-Ottawa Executive Airport, Gatineau, Quebec, Canada

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Howard,

 

What you want to do is really pretty easy -- 90-degree left and right views don't really have complex alignment problems. The simplest way to do what you're after is to have three PCs: your "flying" server (the system with your large display that will run FSX and the Opus FSXSERVER.EXE process), and then two additional PCs running a display for your left and right views. These two systems will run FSX and the FSXCLIENT.EXE processes. You configure the FSXSERVER to know that it will have two clients, then you configure each FSXCLIENT to know the name of the server (the name of the PC).

 

Note that you must also correctly set up file sharing between all of the PCs. If you're using a Homegroup set up C:\OpusFSX to be read/write by all members of the homegroup. I've also found that I had to setup the install folder for Microsoft Flight Simulator to be read/write shared as well.

  • Start FSX on the client systems.
  • Start FSXSERVER on the 'flying'server (you don't have to start FSX on the server for this setup, I've found it helpful to do so just because you'll have a reference 'front' view).
  • Start FSXCLIENT on both client systems. Watch for the clients and server to connect with each other -- you'll see two data links turn green on the clients and four links turn green on the server.


  •  
  • From the FSXSERVER application you select 'Cameras' and then select one of the two side view PCs, say the one on left.
  • When the camera control dialog appears, click 'Add New Camera' and give it a name. You can choose to make it either a 2D or virtual cockpit -- doesn't really matter for side views since there really isn't view alignment issue for the side views (but I would choose the same camera type for both sides).
  • Click in the "Yaw" field (it will turn red), type in -90 (note the minus sign; you want the camera to turn left), then click on the field again. It will turn back white, and the camera view will rotate to 90-degrees left.
  • Set the zoom as you like; a zoom factor between 0.8 and 1.0 seems to work well for a right or left view.
  • Click the 'Save All Cameras' button and exit the screen.
  • Select the 'right' PC and follow the same process as above, setting the Yaw value to 90 (you want the camera to turn right).
  • Set the zoom to match the left view.
  • Click 'Save All Cameras' and exit the screen.

 

That's it. You've now got your server set up for your forward view (with a virtual cockpit if you like that), and your two side views set up for left and right. As long as you have FSXSERVER and the two FSXCLIENT apps running alongside FSX the views will be synchronized.

 

Just FYI, adding additional PCs with clients for displays that are set at say, 45-degrees left and right is basically the same process, but the view alignment for those can be a major struggle without some practical help -- which I'll be happy to give you if you ever get there. It *is* possible to get nearly perfect view alignment for forward views, but the camera setup is very tricky.

 

-M.

 

Blimey Mark, it sounds like a blooming nightmare! How on earth do I install duplicate FSX installations on two separate machines? I mean I have about 230 gb of addons! So each time I install an addon I have to install it on two extra machines? Is there a way of copying the FSX installation from the server machine directly to the client machines? Also, is it not possible to run the two additional camera views on a single machine rather than two separate machines? How does real weather work and AI when there is more than a single PC? Sorry for all the questions Mark, but this is completely new territory for me.

Hi Mark,

 

Wow! clear and well organized guidance offered to Howard for putting in place what appears to be a remarkable setup. And Howard, if you do set it up, please post a few pictures and/or comments.

 

Regards,

 

JJ

 

I most certainly will JJ...


Howard
P3DV4.5, MSFS2020, MSI Mag Z490 Tomahawk MB, i7-10700 CPU @ 4.8ghz, Nvidia RTX3090 GPU, 32gb RAM@3200Mhz, SSD/2Tb+SSD/500Gb+OS, Corsair 1000W PSU, Philips BDM4350UC 43" 4K IPS, MFG Crosswinds, TQ6 Throttle, PFC Yoke.



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I have nearly 2TB of add-on scenery and six PC's (a server and five clients). Yes, it's a bit of upkeep, but it's worth it to me.

 

The FSX installations have to be full-up installs with separate licenses. That's not quite the financial burden that is used to be, since FSX Gold (which includes FSX and the Accelerator Pack) is available from Amazon for about $25 USD. The larger expense, of course, is for the additional PC.

 

Yes, it is indeed possible to run a single client PC to manage both views. You'll want to create two cameras within OpusFSX and define each of them as a windowed view (there is a radio button for that as I recall), then manually place one view on the left monitor and one view on the right monitor. Note that when you create the windowed view camera within FSX you will NOT be able to place it on the desired monitor (at least, I couldn't find a way to do that). The actual windowed view won't appear until you save and exit from the camera management dialog. After it appears on your primary monitor (of your client PC; not your big display) you need to undock it and them move it to the "other" monitor. I'll warn you in advance that I had very little luck with OpusFSX in creating windowed views, saving them, and then getting the windowed views to reappear in the right places the next time I started up FSX and OpusFSX. Stephen and the team and OpusFSX frequently discourage use of windowed views and I can see why -- they probably understand how to make them work, but I never could get it to work consistently for me.

 

Completely independently of OpusFSX, FSX itself takes a pretty substantial framerate hit when you ask it to manage two or more "scenic" views, especially if you want them both to be 1920x1080-sized views (just as an aside, though, you can create as many instrument panel views as you need -- that doesn't seem to particularly tax FSX at all) I did this for a while with a client that was pretty beefy -- Core i7 quad-core with 16GB of RAM -- and it worked OK as long as I kept the scenery complexity at around 'medium' for all of the various settings. Using a separate PC for each display, on the other hand, provides a lag-free, (mostly) stutter-free experience at the highest settings for everything.

 

The complexity of managing multiple systems is a big daunting, I'll acknowledge. I share my high-res scenery over the network (and that works well). I copy the aircraft modesl to the SimObjects/Aircraft directories of all the clients that I'm going to use virtual cockpits for. If I don't want a virtual cockpit I use a "dummy" aircraft model that doesn't have any geometry. You can achieve the same effect by moving the camera on the z-axis forward to a setting of 2 or 3 which is generally forward of any model geometry that I've seen on any of my aircraft models so far -- or by using the 2D panel and setting the transparency to 100%.

 

Remember that all of this work is essentially just a one-time effort. Once you've got things configured you really don't have to fuss around too much with it afterwards, even when flying different aircraft (at least, that's what I've found for my system).

 

-M.

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I have nearly 2TB of add-on scenery and six PC's (a server and five clients). Yes, it's a bit of upkeep, but it's worth it to me.

 

The FSX installations have to be full-up installs with separate licenses. That's not quite the financial burden that is used to be, since FSX Gold (which includes FSX and the Accelerator Pack) is available from Amazon for about $25 USD. The larger expense, of course, is for the additional PC.

 

Yes, it is indeed possible to run a single client PC to manage both views. You'll want to create two cameras within OpusFSX and define each of them as a windowed view (there is a radio button for that as I recall), then manually place one view on the left monitor and one view on the right monitor. Note that when you create the windowed view camera within FSX you will NOT be able to place it on the desired monitor (at least, I couldn't find a way to do that). The actual windowed view won't appear until you save and exit from the camera management dialog. After it appears on your primary monitor (of your client PC; not your big display) you need to undock it and them move it to the "other" monitor. I'll warn you in advance that I had very little luck with OpusFSX in creating windowed views, saving them, and then getting the windowed views to reappear in the right places the next time I started up FSX and OpusFSX. Stephen and the team and OpusFSX frequently discourage use of windowed views and I can see why -- they probably understand how to make them work, but I never could get it to work consistently for me.

 

Completely independently of OpusFSX, FSX itself takes a pretty substantial framerate hit when you ask it to manage two or more "scenic" views, especially if you want them both to be 1920x1080-sized views (just as an aside, though, you can create as many instrument panel views as you need -- that doesn't seem to particularly tax FSX at all) I did this for a while with a client that was pretty beefy -- Core i7 quad-core with 16GB of RAM -- and it worked OK as long as I kept the scenery complexity at around 'medium' for all of the various settings. Using a separate PC for each display, on the other hand, provides a lag-free, (mostly) stutter-free experience at the highest settings for everything.

 

The complexity of managing multiple systems is a big daunting, I'll acknowledge. I share my high-res scenery over the network (and that works well). I copy the aircraft modesl to the SimObjects/Aircraft directories of all the clients that I'm going to use virtual cockpits for. If I don't want a virtual cockpit I use a "dummy" aircraft model that doesn't have any geometry. You can achieve the same effect by moving the camera on the z-axis forward to a setting of 2 or 3 which is generally forward of any model geometry that I've seen on any of my aircraft models so far -- or by using the 2D panel and setting the transparency to 100%.

 

Remember that all of this work is essentially just a one-time effort. Once you've got things configured you really don't have to fuss around too much with it afterwards, even when flying different aircraft (at least, that's what I've found for my system).

 

-M.

 

Hi Mark, thanks very much for taking the time to reply with such concise answers, it's appreciated. Well I have to be honest, I really can't see myself going down the three PC setup. I have a spare rig that I thought I could use with FSX so I think on reflection and mulling over your suggestions, I will use the second PC for instruments or something equally useful, such as FS Commander, charts or Google earth. :wink:


Howard
P3DV4.5, MSFS2020, MSI Mag Z490 Tomahawk MB, i7-10700 CPU @ 4.8ghz, Nvidia RTX3090 GPU, 32gb RAM@3200Mhz, SSD/2Tb+SSD/500Gb+OS, Corsair 1000W PSU, Philips BDM4350UC 43" 4K IPS, MFG Crosswinds, TQ6 Throttle, PFC Yoke.



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I think you're making a good decision. There are lots of interesting things to do with an "extra" PC with respect to FSX besides remoting more scenic views. Have a look at EFB from Aivlasoft (www.aivlasoft.com), for example. It's a fantastic flight planning and moving map application -- the best I've seen so far. It's a client/server app that allows the map client to be remoted from the server (which runs on your main "flying" server and connects to FSX).

 

If you're looking for other elements to add to your sim environment to make things more "real" you should also definitely look into the PilotEdge network (www.pilotedge.net).

 

-M.

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Cheers Mark, thanks again...


Howard
P3DV4.5, MSFS2020, MSI Mag Z490 Tomahawk MB, i7-10700 CPU @ 4.8ghz, Nvidia RTX3090 GPU, 32gb RAM@3200Mhz, SSD/2Tb+SSD/500Gb+OS, Corsair 1000W PSU, Philips BDM4350UC 43" 4K IPS, MFG Crosswinds, TQ6 Throttle, PFC Yoke.



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We haven't had any problems getting windowed view to work, here are some tips from our manual since FSX doesn't make the process straight forward!

 

1. Windowed views can only be created by the software editing your aircraft.cfg files in the simulator's SimObjects folders, located in <FSX>\SimObjects\Airplanes and <FSX>\SimObjects\Rotorcraft. If you look in these folders you will find an aircraft.cfg file. You can open these files using Notepad, if you go to the bottom of the aircraft.cfg file you will find our camera definition for the custom External Views.

 

[CameraDefinition.899]

Title = "OpusFSX Aircraft View"

Guid = {01021987-E220-6507-1024-462840738899}

Description = OpusFSX Aircraft View

...

 

If you have successfully created a Windowed view you will also see that view appended here ... For example,

 

[CameraDefinition.990]

Title = "OpusFSX Windowed View 1"

Guid = {01021987-E220-6507-1024-462840738990}

Description = OpusFSX Customized External View

...

 

If CameraDefinition.899 is missing then you either have the Live Camera feature disabled or the LC software cannot access your aircraft.cfg files. The aircraft.cfg files are amended each time OpusFSX server program is run and when you click on Save All Cameras, which you must do to save your camera views.

The Getting Started guide for Single PCs (and Networked PCs) has sections describing how to set the sharing and permissions on drives and individual folders. If you have the above CameraDefinition.899 missing then you most likely will have to make sure the relevant drives and folders are shared. First alter the drive containing FSX, then share the FSX installation folder itself. It is quite a simple process.

 

2. After making any changes to the cfg files you must load an entirely different aircraft type and reload the original aircraft to force FSX to reload the cfg data, including the modified CameraDefinitions contained within.

 

3. Windowed views cannot be Undocked by the software, there is no facility in FSX that allows this. So when Windowed views are displayed, if you want them Undocked then you must do it manually by right-clicking in the window. This is all clearly stated in the manual.

 

4. Windowed views should not be assigned with any button or key commands. They are displayed automatically when you select the aircraft and when you click on the Open Views button.

 

5. To assist you, when the view is displayed you should Undock the view, reposition and resize it, then click on the Save Views button. Next time the view is displayed and Undocked (by you), you can then click on Restore Views and the software will attempt to reposition and size the window for you (Warning - this process will not work if you have a TH2Go device, the device messes with the window sizes and positions making them unknown to other software).

 

6. Another useful test is to check you have a correct view setup is to load your flight then use the 'S' key to cycle through your view types. You should see (in the top right-hand corner) the following view types ...

 

Virtual Cockpit -> Outside View -> Tower View -> Aircraft View -> Custom View OpusFSX External View

 

before it then cycles back to the VC view.

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Hi Stephen,

 

Mmm, Ok, so I have two questions, the first is when you talk about windowed view, does this mean it can be run on a second PC, in windowed view but still maintain fullscreen on the host machine? and also, does this once again mean I have to have a duplicate FSX installation on the second machine as has been suggested by Mark? Sorry if I sound dim, but this is all very new to me...


Howard
P3DV4.5, MSFS2020, MSI Mag Z490 Tomahawk MB, i7-10700 CPU @ 4.8ghz, Nvidia RTX3090 GPU, 32gb RAM@3200Mhz, SSD/2Tb+SSD/500Gb+OS, Corsair 1000W PSU, Philips BDM4350UC 43" 4K IPS, MFG Crosswinds, TQ6 Throttle, PFC Yoke.



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