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BaobobMiller

Multiple "Shift" buttons (Saitek "Mode" switch)

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Hello campers!!

 

This post is to ask for multiple shift states as a feature request.

 

How many of us have saitek flight controls with otherwise useless mode switches on them? I say useless not because they are exactly, but rather because most of us have been unable to do anything with them unless we use the saitek profile software and lets face it, for most of us that is just not good enough. It can tend to be unreliable, laggy, etc... not to mention it only sends keystrokes, and it doesn't even do that very well depending on the keys involved. But it's a great idea right?

 

I know, some of you are still saying "What Idea?? I never could figure out what that thing is for!!". If you already know, great. but please keep reading anyway (I really am going somewhere with this).

 

FIrst for those who don't yet know how the mode switch is supposed to work.

 

The mode switch was designed to be used with the saitek profile software to allow you to assign the buttons on your controller (in my case the pro flight yoke) to more than one command. with the switch set to mode 1 for example my A1:A2 switch can be probrammed to Elevator Trim Up and Down while with the switch set to mode 2 it can be Camera Zoom in and out. Cool Right? Three modes essentially means 3 times as many "buttons" right there on the control wheel since they are ALL able to be set up with 3 commands each.

 

The downsides of course incluse things like: you can only assign keyboard commands using the profile software (which means that thanks to Microsoft in their infinate wisdom leaving several vital commands OFF the list if keybindings that you can set up in game... you end up either modifying the keybindings manually in a text editor and hoping FSX doesn't overwrite the file with default values too often, or using yet another third party software such as FSUIPC to read the key combinations you programmed the profiler to send in order to listen for those fake keypresses and turn them into fsx commands. Is your head spinning yet?

 

What if that wasn't the case? What if you could use your mode switch as a Shift state right in LIDNA? It would be easier... faster... and all your bindings could be in one place rather than having some in LINDA and some in a combination of the profile software and FSX while still others such as the Altimiter bug I keep set ti the mode 2 B1:B2 combination are set with a keypress being generated by the Saitek software and then using FSUIPC to translate that into an offset and pass it to FSX.

 

Now for those who are a little more advanced you CAN just upen up the FSUIPC.ini file and write yourself a few complex button assignments... Something like n=CR(+0,10)0,5,C65892,0 but isn't the reason we are using LINDA really to make things easier and to consolidate our control programming?

 

For thise of you who are advanced enough to feel good about adding complex buttons to the FSUIPC.ini file.... GO FOR IT!! no really... You can have full use of you mode switch as soon as you do... and as soon as you read the rest of this post and follow an instruction I'm going to give to the rest of the community.

 

For the rest of you, the fact is... I can get you half way there. The other half is going to have to be added byt the LINDA developers directly.

 

FIrst, (and I know this may make a few of you uneasy) as most of us know saitek wrote the drivers for their controller software to deliberately hide the mode switch from everything except their profile siftware so that you could not mistakenly try to program in game functions to the mode switch... so we have to undo that... It is actually a function of the profile software itself. any thime a profile is loaded the mode switch is hiden. What's that you say? You don't have a profile loaded? Well actually... if you have the drivers for the controller installed... you have a profile loaded there is a default profile tucked away in your windows\system32 folder that gets loaded any time there is not a "user profile" in place. The file name changes slightly depending on which controller you are using and what version you drivers are but don't worry it's easy to find. Just open up your windows\system32 folder (for most of us that's c:\windows\system32\) and scroll sown to the files (not folders but files) beginning with the letter s you are looking for the one whose name starts with Sai and ends with .pr0 most of them will be SaiD0BAC.pr0 but your might be a little different it's the only .pr0 file in the systen 32 folder by the way. \

 

Now if you are like me you will want to rename that file rather than deleting it (just in case you ever want to put it back) just make sure that if you rename it... fyou can find it again if you need it. Once you rename the file you need to restart your computer. Restart your computer... RESTART YOUR COMPUTER. Ok perhaps that was a little excessive you only need to restart once, but if you don't restart the mode switch still won't show up.

 

So... AFTER YOU HAVE REBOOTED

 

Open LINDA and play with your mode switch a bit while watching your joysticks. you will notice that now the mode switch shows up as buttons... in the case of my pro flight yoke they are:

mode 1 = 9

mode 2 = 10

mode 3 = 11

 

Now you can start to explore using the Shifted functiality in LINDA programming but you have to remember one extremely important thing. In this case I'm going to use mode 1 as my normal mode and mode 2 as my "Shifted" mode so just for argument sake I'll assign my headding bug to the C1:C2 switch on my yoke, C1 = button 7 which I set to Headding Bug Dec, and C2 = button 8 which I set to Headding bug Inc. Don't forget to add the commands to the both the "On Press" as well as the "On Repeat" sections so that you can hold c1 or c2 and have the Headding bug continue to increase ofr decrease while you hold.

 

Next move your Mode selector to mode 2. If the mode selector was already on 2 move it off and then back to 2 so that you can tell which button it represents in LINDA. As I said earlier My mode 2 is button 10 so I will set 10 to GLOBAL SHIFT. Now hit save within LIDNA to save to buttons and then check the "Shifted" checbox rught under the save button. Don't PANIC all your buttons didn't just disappear. The screen switched to showing you the list of commands programmed in for ONLY while the "Shift" button is pressed. In this case button 10 or "Mode 2". Now you can set up the C1:C2 to something else like Rudder Trim for example.

 

BUT there is one more important thing. As you may have already experienced you may have to reload the LUA engine (settings page right hand side) for the changes to be fully implimented.

 

Now I said I would take you 1/2 way there and I just did. So as for the developers part???

 

How about the tittle of this post? Could you add multiple shift states to LINDA please? Pretty pretty please? Two shift states would be enought to use the pro flight gear with it's three modes but there may be need for more than that in some situations, depending on the controller. Now that I have the mode switch showing up I have every intention of using it. Absolutely no offense to Pete intended but I would much rather use a quick and simple ui such as LINDA to impliment it. The Consolidation that LINDA provides is outstanding!!

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I would also humble ask to add multiple shift states. Or button combinations as in FSUIPC. Thank you.

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Nice idea and it would equally apply to my CH Eclipse Yoke as well.  Unfortunately, having been working in that area of code recently, I can tell you that it is complicated and such a change would be involved and time consuming. For the moment, I personally don't have time to begin such a task.  However, should there be a demand from our small community then it could be added to the wish list.

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You asked for a second shift option for CH Eclipse and Saitek Joysticks.  Now you can try it out with LINDA 2.5.5!

 

The new second shift mode for HID devices allows a total of 3 shift modes to be added to individual devices. This is designed to make use of the rotary 3 position modes switches available on the CH Eclipse and Saitek Yokes.  The modes are set on the Joystick page by ticking the Shift - 1 and -2 checkboxes and are:

  • UNSHIFTED - latching mode identical to the normal unshifted mode.
  • SHIFTED ONE - latching mode identical to the momentary action of the LOCAL SHIFT and latching action of the GLOBAL SHIFT.
  • SHIFTED TWO - additional latching mode.

The new SHIFTED modes need to be set for the OnPress action on all 3 pages (normal, shift -1 and -2).

 

The LOCAL action needs to be set for the OnPress and OnRepeat actions of the button used.
 

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