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Prepar3D Tweak Assistant (PTA)

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Hi,

 

Would it not be easier for everyone if we were given the option to restore the original ShaderHLSL files in the GUI before doing anything else in PTA? The problems encountered with previously edited files are all too evident. Yuri can't rely on users having the foresight to create backups and, unfortunately, these backups may well have been modified already and so negate the usefulness of this step. Giving the user the opportunity to restore all the clean unmodified files at the outset and, indeed, any time PTA is active would be a very helpful addition.

 

File sharing may be happening already to help those who have fallen into the trap. If there are problems with this then perhaps Yuri should seek clarification/permission from LM. This does seem to be a unique situation in that there are several products currently capable of modifying shader files and, as we are now seeing, there are potential if not real issues when combining or switching from using one product to another. Running a P3D 'Repair' operation can be a solution, if it works, but then other mods are likely to be affected making the climb back to the previous state somewhat frustrating if not tedious.

 

Just a suggestion.

 

Mike

Hi, Mike!

Thanks a lot for this suggestion.

Sure, it could be very useful option. But when PTA restores original shaders from backup, source is your copy of software.

In that case source will seem to be unclear origin.

Yuri

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Sure, it could be very useful option. But when PTA restores original shaders from backup, source is your copy of software.

 

Hi Yuri,

 

That, as things stand, is the problem. If LM will agree to allowing you to include a set of default, unmodified ShaderHLSL files (not all of them, just the few that are tweaked by PTA) with your utility then this project can move forward. Until then I can see you being constantly bombarded by frustrated users who have run into difficulties with no easy way out.

 

This whole business is really a grey area under the license agreement and I suspect LM are allowing some latitude knowing, as they do, that file modification by various third parties has always happened simply because the sim's architecture positively encourages such creative activity. If the sharing of unmodified files can never be permitted, at least openly, then perhaps there's a way of accessing the P3D installation cab files to reinstate any default unmodified content without running a formal 'Repair' procedure which, in itself, can be counterproductive. We used to be able to do this in the days of Microsoft Flight Simulator when all content was accessible from the installation disk/s.

 

I don't wish to over complicate this. Put quite simply, any potential issues would be avoided by the inclusion of an option to restore the particular default files before doing anything else. That way any user of your utility will be able to start from a default, unmodified file state which, evidently, is a prerequisite for the successful operation of PTA.

 

Regards,

Mike


My rig: ASUS ROG Rampage V Extreme, i7-5960X (Dynamic OC 4.6 GHz - all cores, HT=ON, AM=4085), Corsair Hydro Series H110i GT Cooler with 2xNoctua NF-A14 PWM 140mm fans, G.SKILL Ripjaws 4 series 16GB (4 x 4GB) DDR4 3000, ASUS GTX 1080Ti ROG STRIX 11GB, GDDR5X (Driver versions: 441.66 (Win7), 441.66 (Win10)), Samsung 850 EVO 1TB SSD x4, Samsung 970 EVO 2TB V-NAND M.2, LG BH16NS40 16x SATA Internal BDRW, EVGA 1200 P2 Watt PSU, Cooler Master HAF X, ASUS ROG Swift PG278Q (G-Sync) monitor at 120Hz. Oculus Rift. Windows 7 Pro 64bit / Windows 10 Pro 64bit (Dual Boot), Prepar3D v4.5.12.30293.

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I agree that exchanging original files between users is something not common, a grey area, and surely being limited/not authorised by the LM's license agreement. So, probably one way out is to include on any future version of PTA an explanation on how to recover those eventually modified original shaders files, from the LM's own installers.

According to other posts here, it seems that doing a "repair" of P3D (using the main setup installer downloaded when everybody buys a license) solves the issues.

Cheers, Ed


Ed Patino

P3Dv4.5 hf2 - Win 10 Home x64 // Rig: Corsair Graphite 780T Full Tower - ASUS MBoard Maximus XI Hero Z390 - CPU Intel i7-8086k 6-cores - 32GB RAM - MSI Nvidia GeForce GTX1080Ti 11GB - 3 x SSD x 1TB Crucial/Samsung + 1 x SSD 2TB Crucial + 1 HDD Seagate 2TB + 1 HDD External Seagate 2TB - Monitor LG 29UC97C UWHD Curved - PSU Corsair RM1000x - VR Oculus Rift // P3Dv4.5 hf2 & Aerofly FS 2 - Win 10 Home x64 - Gaming Laptop ASUS Strix - CPU Intel i7-8750H - 32GB RAM - Nvidia RTX 2070 - 2TB SSD - 2TB HDD // Thrustmaster FCS & MS XBOX Controllers

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Well I tried this last night for the first time.  Amazing!  Great work indeed.

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Been thinking about this a bit more and am starting to wonder whether there would, in fact, be any serious barrier to making these files available under such controlled conditions as would be provided by the PTA utility?

 

Yuri would be providing files which we all have anyway as legitimate licence holders. He is not distributing files in the strict sense, but merely providing a set of LM's default files to replace those that may have been modified either by his utility, by another or, indeed, manually. In fact he is providing a backup just as if the backup had been created by the end user. That way the unwary user who has rushed headlong into making changes will be protected. Many will argue that the responsibility would always lie with the end user and the creation of appropriate backups should have been anticipated before any experimentation. Sometimes that is just not realistic as the excitement of the moment with the accompanying eager anticipation often drives our actions and we do things we later regret.

 

I am not arguing from a position of needing a shortcut to restore the status quo. I have learned long ago from bitter experience to protect the status quo before making any changes. Those new to this game, however, may not be as savvy...yet. Providing well thought out and comprehensively designed shader modifying utilities such as PTA and RSP is all well and good until changes are attempted on files which have already been modified. This produces unexpected results and error messages start to appear.

 

Another way of handling this would be for such utilities to restore each file to it's default state before new settings are applied or prior to the utility being abandoned. That way each tweaking session would start from a clean slate. If a particular set of mods produces results which the user would like to preserve then the utility should allow the user to back up that file set while giving that particular set a unique name thus allowing for future reinstatement. This would also allow the user to build a small library of preferred settings. I see PTA has an 'Auto save current preset' capability prior to exit. Clearly, each time changes were made, and applied, the utility should automatically delete the Shaders folder to trigger a cache rebuild.

 

Hope these suggestions are helpful.

 

Mike


My rig: ASUS ROG Rampage V Extreme, i7-5960X (Dynamic OC 4.6 GHz - all cores, HT=ON, AM=4085), Corsair Hydro Series H110i GT Cooler with 2xNoctua NF-A14 PWM 140mm fans, G.SKILL Ripjaws 4 series 16GB (4 x 4GB) DDR4 3000, ASUS GTX 1080Ti ROG STRIX 11GB, GDDR5X (Driver versions: 441.66 (Win7), 441.66 (Win10)), Samsung 850 EVO 1TB SSD x4, Samsung 970 EVO 2TB V-NAND M.2, LG BH16NS40 16x SATA Internal BDRW, EVGA 1200 P2 Watt PSU, Cooler Master HAF X, ASUS ROG Swift PG278Q (G-Sync) monitor at 120Hz. Oculus Rift. Windows 7 Pro 64bit / Windows 10 Pro 64bit (Dual Boot), Prepar3D v4.5.12.30293.

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I would be willing to bet that LM will jump up and say a great big NO to this.

 

This is copyrighted proprietary material - there is no way they would allow anyone to distribute them.

 

IMHO, the responsibility is for the USER to back up his system. If they didn't do it - well, consider it a lesson learned.

 

Vic


 

P3D#1 - 7700K 5.0g ROG X270F 3600 15-15-15 - EVGA RTX 2080ti 1000W PSU 1- 850G EVO SSD, 2-256G OCZ SSD, 1TB,HAF942-H100 Water W1064Pro
40" 4K Monitor 3840x2160 - AS16, ASCA, GEP3D, UTX, Toposim, ORBX Regions, TrackIR
P3D#2 - 3770K 4.7g Asus Z77 1600 7-8-7 GTX1080ti DH14 850W 2-1TB WD HDD,1tb VRap, Armor+ W10 Pro 2 - HannsG 28" Monitors
 

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I would be willing to bet that LM will jump up and say a great big NO to this.

 

This is copyrighted proprietary material - there is no way they would allow anyone to distribute them.

 

IMHO, the responsibility is for the USER to back up his system. If they didn't do it - well, consider it a lesson learned.

 

Vic

 

I can also assure that LM will not allow to distribute licensed material. Life is just like that, like or not.

Ed


Ed Patino

P3Dv4.5 hf2 - Win 10 Home x64 // Rig: Corsair Graphite 780T Full Tower - ASUS MBoard Maximus XI Hero Z390 - CPU Intel i7-8086k 6-cores - 32GB RAM - MSI Nvidia GeForce GTX1080Ti 11GB - 3 x SSD x 1TB Crucial/Samsung + 1 x SSD 2TB Crucial + 1 HDD Seagate 2TB + 1 HDD External Seagate 2TB - Monitor LG 29UC97C UWHD Curved - PSU Corsair RM1000x - VR Oculus Rift // P3Dv4.5 hf2 & Aerofly FS 2 - Win 10 Home x64 - Gaming Laptop ASUS Strix - CPU Intel i7-8750H - 32GB RAM - Nvidia RTX 2070 - 2TB SSD - 2TB HDD // Thrustmaster FCS & MS XBOX Controllers

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I would be willing to bet that LM will jump up and say a great big NO to this.

 

This is copyrighted proprietary material - there is no way they would allow anyone to distribute them.

 

IMHO, the responsibility is for the USER to back up his system. If they didn't do it - well, consider it a lesson learned.

 

Vic

Thanks, Vic. I fully agree with your position.

 

[Add later]:

I've slightly improved PTA to version 1.1:

 

- New custom shaders: Curves, Levels, LiftGammaGain, Technicolor, Vibrance adapted for Prepar3D renderind engine.

- New tweaks for core shaders: Blend distance adjustments, Alternate lighting for clouds groups, Clouds lighting tuning. (Actually, old tweak from avsim.com that friends asked me to include)

- Separate management for applying core shaders, custom shaders, config parameters.

- Some user interface refining.

 

How to upgrade from PTA version 1.0 to 1.1:

 

All presets from version 1.0 is compatible with 1.1 so just replace old PTA*.exe to file from distribution archive and use new features of version 1.1

  • Upvote 1

Yuri

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I would be willing to bet that LM will jump up and say a great big NO to this.This is copyrighted proprietary material - there is no way they would allow anyone to distribute them.IMHO, the responsibility is for the USER to back up his system. If they didn't do it - well, consider it a lesson learned.Vic

Hi Vic,

 

Yes, I would have to agree with this position as it would likely establish a precedent which LM would certainly find to be unacceptable. However, would this same objection apply to the restoration of default settings in files that have been previously modified? The targeted files exist on the licenced end user's drive and I'm suggesting the PTA utility could provide an additional option allowing the restoration of the relevant default shader variable values prior to applying any new tweaks. Surely this cannot be regarded as being the same as actually distributing files? If LM or MS had wished to discourage any file modification then why make them accessible to the creative end user or, indeed, third party developers?

 

Regards,

Mike


My rig: ASUS ROG Rampage V Extreme, i7-5960X (Dynamic OC 4.6 GHz - all cores, HT=ON, AM=4085), Corsair Hydro Series H110i GT Cooler with 2xNoctua NF-A14 PWM 140mm fans, G.SKILL Ripjaws 4 series 16GB (4 x 4GB) DDR4 3000, ASUS GTX 1080Ti ROG STRIX 11GB, GDDR5X (Driver versions: 441.66 (Win7), 441.66 (Win10)), Samsung 850 EVO 1TB SSD x4, Samsung 970 EVO 2TB V-NAND M.2, LG BH16NS40 16x SATA Internal BDRW, EVGA 1200 P2 Watt PSU, Cooler Master HAF X, ASUS ROG Swift PG278Q (G-Sync) monitor at 120Hz. Oculus Rift. Windows 7 Pro 64bit / Windows 10 Pro 64bit (Dual Boot), Prepar3D v4.5.12.30293.

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Mike - in order to do that the utility would have to have original copies of said files within it's distribution. That's distributing licensed files - period. Reading and backing up the files already on the system and restoring same is not distribution, it's moving them around on the system.

 

There's no scenario where distribution would be legal. And if the program could read the originals from the local drive, the problem is resolved anyway.

 

I see what you are saying but it only works if the utility can determine exactly which lines have changed. Sounds simple in discussion but too many loose variables in practice. Would open up Yuri to lots of complaints about screwing up the files - not worth the effort.

 

Anyone that modifies any file on their system without making a backup deserves what they get. The problem is that some people blindly modify files with the tweak of the week with no clue. These are candidates for frequent reinstalls. There is no way Yuri could account for that unless he just restored the entire file -  taking us back to the original copyright issue.  :smile:

 

Vic


 

P3D#1 - 7700K 5.0g ROG X270F 3600 15-15-15 - EVGA RTX 2080ti 1000W PSU 1- 850G EVO SSD, 2-256G OCZ SSD, 1TB,HAF942-H100 Water W1064Pro
40" 4K Monitor 3840x2160 - AS16, ASCA, GEP3D, UTX, Toposim, ORBX Regions, TrackIR
P3D#2 - 3770K 4.7g Asus Z77 1600 7-8-7 GTX1080ti DH14 850W 2-1TB WD HDD,1tb VRap, Armor+ W10 Pro 2 - HannsG 28" Monitors
 

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Okay Vic, my brain is starting to hurt - need to lie down..lol

 

Not going to win this one...

 

Mike :)


My rig: ASUS ROG Rampage V Extreme, i7-5960X (Dynamic OC 4.6 GHz - all cores, HT=ON, AM=4085), Corsair Hydro Series H110i GT Cooler with 2xNoctua NF-A14 PWM 140mm fans, G.SKILL Ripjaws 4 series 16GB (4 x 4GB) DDR4 3000, ASUS GTX 1080Ti ROG STRIX 11GB, GDDR5X (Driver versions: 441.66 (Win7), 441.66 (Win10)), Samsung 850 EVO 1TB SSD x4, Samsung 970 EVO 2TB V-NAND M.2, LG BH16NS40 16x SATA Internal BDRW, EVGA 1200 P2 Watt PSU, Cooler Master HAF X, ASUS ROG Swift PG278Q (G-Sync) monitor at 120Hz. Oculus Rift. Windows 7 Pro 64bit / Windows 10 Pro 64bit (Dual Boot), Prepar3D v4.5.12.30293.

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Thanks, Vic. I fully agree with your position.

 

 

Any help would be appreciated - did a repair of P3D and the shaders definitley got replaced back to factory also had a backup - either way I am getting these errors when I apply preset - thank you

 

Well with the help of Ed here at AVSIM and the files listed here it works now time to try it out - thank you


Rich Sennett

               

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Hi, Rich!

 

The original P3D shaders in version 3.2 have file sizes (in bytes):

Cloud.fx = 21301

GPUTerrain.fx = 51029

General.fx = 33360

HDR.hlsl = 6252

 

Please, check it in you backup store. is it true?

 

As I know, REX can modify only cloud.fx (if cloud size algorithm enabled). And only one line is modified in cloud.fx: GetScreenQuadPositions(quad, width*0.5, height*0.5);

(In this case you can just return original cloud.fx and adjust cloud sizes in PTA by tweaking "Clouds size coeff." - result will be the same).


Yuri

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Hi, Rich!

 

The original P3D shaders in version 3.2 have file sizes (in bytes):

Cloud.fx = 21301

GPUTerrain.fx = 51029

General.fx = 33360

HDR.hlsl = 6252

 

Please, check it in you backup store. is it true?

 

As I know, REX can modify only cloud.fx (if cloud size algorithm enabled). And only one line is modified in cloud.fx: GetScreenQuadPositions(quad, width*0.5, height*0.5);

(In this case you can just return original cloud.fx and adjust cloud sizes in PTA by tweaking "Clouds size coeff." - result will be the same).

 

Thanks Yuri got it to work but for some reason rex sky textures looked very nice in rsp and now they look bland  - cartoonish is there something I  can do for that - also I believe you cant run both at the same time because once they are touched by rsp game over right ? thank you for the hard work 


Rich Sennett

               

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Hi, Rich!

 

The original P3D shaders in version 3.2 have file sizes (in bytes):

Cloud.fx = 21301

GPUTerrain.fx = 51029

General.fx = 33360

HDR.hlsl = 6252

 

Please, check it in you backup store. is it true?

 

As I know, REX can modify only cloud.fx (if cloud size algorithm enabled). And only one line is modified in cloud.fx: GetScreenQuadPositions(quad, width*0.5, height*0.5);

(In this case you can just return original cloud.fx and adjust cloud sizes in PTA by tweaking "Clouds size coeff." - result will be the same).

where is the update? I redownloaded the file buts its still showing 1.0 RC

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