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Demious

Controller setup for GNS

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I've got my GPS buttons programmed to a hardware controller (VRInsight T&T) and always had this working for the native GPS, but now I've changed some aircrafts to the Mindstar GNS my controller setup doesnt work for those aircrafts.

I assume the Mindstar GNS isnt working with the standard controller functions from P3D/FSUIPC, as is the case for with sophisticated addons.

Can it be I'm doing something wrong, or is there another way to connect the Mindstar GNS to a hardware controller?

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Is there a way to tell the controller what events to send?

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I'm not sure if I understand right. The controller doesnt send an event, the controller sends a control number that can be assigned to an event in the software. At least, thats how I would put it...

 

What I want to do is assign the buttons on my VRInsight T&T panel to control the functions from the GPS.

And right now they are assigned to the GPS functions in FSUIPC, which would normally control the native GPS, but I see that those dont work for the Mindstar GNS.

How do I assign the controller buttons to the functions of the Mindstar GNS?

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I have no idea how that hardware functions.

 

I don't know what 'the GPS functions in FSUIPC' are.

 

I know that the simulator responds to events. I suggest you talk to the company that makes the hardware and determine if it can send events other than strictly talking only to FSUIPC... because if FSUIPC is the only interface it communicates with... it's abilities are extremely limited.

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It's a most basic controller, works the same as say, the buttons a Saitek throttle and can communicate with any interface that can receive controller numbers, like P3D itself.

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At this point you haven't answered any of my questions... however....

When you install our GNS units, there is a file called GNS.ini that is installed into our "Mindstar\Flight Simulator Addons" folder.

[KEYBOARD] Section Overview

The [KEYBOARD] section is a list of GNS functions that can be controlled by hardware events generated by knobs and buttons, or keyboards. Three control methods are supported:

  1. Keyboard shortcuts,
  2. SimConnect events, and
  3. FSUIPC offsets.

Each of the control methods are described in more detail below.

The section name [KEYBOARD] is a throwback to many years ago, prior to FSX, when the only control method available in our software was keyboard shortcuts. Over time, we added support for SimConnect and FSUIPC, but the section name remains the same. Don't let the name fool you!

The syntax used on each of the event lines is how the GNS detects which control method is used. Multiple control methods can be mixed within the file, but only one control method can be coded on any particular function.

Method 1: Triggering GNS Events using Keyboard Shortcuts

Using keyboard shortcuts to control the GNS is the most simplistic of the control methods, and it should not be used unless both of the other options below are not practical for you.

When defining keystrokes into the INI file, use only the lower-case version of a key, with modifier keywords. Valid modifiers for keyboard shortcuts are the words SHIFT, CTRL, and ALT. The modifier must be separated from the key definition by a "+" sign. To further understand modifiers, consider this - you must not use the "@" as a keyboard shortcut, but instead, you must type SHIFT+2 on the INI file line. Letters can be coded as upper or lower case, but there is no distinction. for example, between an upper-case G and a lower-case g. They are both recognized as the same key. If you want to code a G and a SHIFT+G, then those two are distinguished as separate keys.

Any keyboard shortcuts assigned to GNS functions will not be acted upon by flight simulator, even if you code a function that flight simulator would otherwise recognize. For example, if you are passing the letter "G" to a GNS function, the simulator will no operate the aircraft landing gear as it usually would with the "G" key because the GNS retains the keystroke and does not forward it to flight simulator.

One drawback of using keyboard shortcuts for GNS functions is that the main simulator window (the one with the menu bar) must be the window "in focus" in order for keys to reach the simulator. If you have a popup window open, GNS shortcut keys will not reach the software, even if the popup window is a GNS element.

Formatting Example for Keyboard Shortcuts:
NAV_ID_TOGGLE=CTRL+ALT+SHIFT+G



Method 2: Triggering GNS Events with SImConnect

SimConnect was introduced by Microsoft in FSX, and continues to be in use by Lockheed-Martin in Prepar3D. It is the preferred method of controlling the GNS from hardware. SimConnect events are generated by your hardware driver software that is programmed to connect to Flight Sim using the SimConnect interface. This means either you, or your hardware vendor, must have written a program that interfaces your hardware to flight simulator.

SimConnect events for the GNS use any hex number between and inclusive of 0x11000 to 0x11FFF. The number must be coded in the INI file with the 0x prefix in order to be recognized as a SimConnect event. The GNS will monitor the SimConnect event stream for the specified event, and if that event appears, the GNS will execute the action to which the event number was assigned.

Formatting Example for SimConnect Events:
NAV_ID_TOGGLE=0x11000



Method 3: Triggering GNS Events with FSUIPC Offsets

FSUIPC must be installed and operating on your computer in order to use this control method. The GNS installer does not install FSUIPC because no internal functions of Mindstar Aviation software rely on FSUIPC. If you want to use the FSUIPC control method, then it is your responsibility to install the latest version of FSUIPC.

To use this method, Enter values on the event lines in the format FSUIPC:0x1234567 where 1234567 is any avaialble FSUIPC offset based on the FSUIPC documentation. The G1000 expects the offset to be an integer in the range of 0 to 255. Each time the value at the specified FSUIPC offset increments, the GNS will execute the specified function. If the value at the offset increments more than once, then the GNS will interpret that as a request to repeat the specified function for the number of times the value changed. Once the value reaches 255, your hardware driver software should return the value to 0 and start incrementing again from there.

Formatting Example for FSUIPC:
NAV_ID_TOGGLE=FSUIPC:0x123456

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Sorry it takes some time, but I only just got a reply to my email and only got another question in return, so I'm still on it...

 

I'll have a look at the methods as you describe, hope I can figure it out and I'll let you know how things work out, or when I've got more information about the panel.

 

Thanks for the explanation, Ed.

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I had a look at the second and third method, but both are new to me and I think I just have to dive into that sometime soon. As being a simple user, for now these are a bit over my head.

But the first method seemed simple enough, so I tried that one to get things going and this works perfect! Even with the GNS itself windowed.

 

So I got everything I wanted assigned to my controller working as it did before with the native GPS.

 

Thanks for taking the effort to write this full explanation, Ed. Very much appreciated! :D

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And then the answer to my question would be a yes, it is programmable. LOL

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Ok, I'll remember for next time. ;)

 

I've been working in studios a lot, at different levels of professionalism and I heard the term 'events' being used in so many different ways that I had to adjust so often and at some point it only started to confuse me. And I looked it up a 100 times, but I dont think this mental bug will ever be fixed. :P

 

Glad to have this sorted now, it works like a dream. Response of the GNS is way better then it ever was with Native GPS. I Love this addon! :D

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