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captain420

How to manually add scenery/addons into P3D v4 the right way

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I truly appreciate LM design to get all the add-ons out of the core sim and facilitate a clean install/move of the system.  I have add ons that put files into the default "scenery\global" and "scenery\world" folder (their scenery and texture folder) what do I do with the add-on.xml to allow this?  Thanks


Vu Pham

i7-10700K 5.2 GHz OC, 32 GB RAM, GTX2080Super, SSD for Sim, SSD for system.  XP11.50,  P3Dv4.5

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I have created a separate scenery folder "BaseScenery\Scenery" for all those files and linked it at layer "2".  This loads it right before all the default scenery areas are read (theoretically anyway)

  <AddOn.Component>
    <Category>Scenery</Category>
    <Path>F:\P3DV4_Sceneries\BaseScenery</Path>
    <Name>My Base Scenery</Name>
    <Layer>2</Layer>
  </AddOn.Component>

Best regards


LORBY-SI

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On 5/6/2017 at 9:52 PM, Lorby_SI said:

The XML to reflect your installation would look like this:
C:\Users\...\Documents\Prepar3D v4 Add-ons\Aerosoft Dillingham\add-on.xml


<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<SimBase.Document Type="AddOnXml" version="4,0" id="add-on">
<AddOn.Name>Aerosoft Dillingham</AddOn.Name>
<AddOn.Description>Content for scenery</AddOn.Description>
<AddOn.Component>
  <Category>Scenery</Category>
  <Path>E:\P3D Addons\Aerosoft Dillingham</Path>
<Name>Aerosoft Dillingham</Name>
  </AddOn.Component>
<AddOn.Component>
  <Category>Effects</Category>
  <Path>E:\P3D Addons\Aerosoft Dillingham\Effects</Path>
</AddOn.Component>
<AddOn.Component>
  <Category>Sound</Category>
  <Path>E:\P3D Addons\Aerosoft Dillingham\Sound</Path>
</AddOn.Component>
</SimBase.Document>

The "<Category>Scenery" tag assumes that you have the folders organized like this:
E:\P3D Addons\Aerosoft Dillingham\Scenery
E:\P3D Addons\Aerosoft Dillingham\Texture

For organizing the layer numbers IMHO you need a tool. The "<Category>Scenery" tag in this example doesn't have a "<Layer>" tag, so it will just be placed on top of the library. If you want to control this manually, then this would put it right above the default scenery.cfg


...
<AddOn.Component>
  <Category>Scenery</Category>
  <Path>E:\P3D Addons\Aerosoft Dillingham</Path>
  <Name>Aerosoft Dillingham</Name>
  <Layer>127</Layer>
</AddOn.Component>
...

For those bgl files that need to go into the base layer, I suggest creating an additional folder:
E:\P3D Addons\BaseLayer\Scenery

and the corresponding XML:
C:\Users\...\Documents\Prepar3D v4 Add-ons\Base Layer\add-on.xml


<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<SimBase.Document Type="AddOnXml" version="4,0" id="add-on">
  <AddOn.Name>My Base Layer</AddOn.Name>
  <AddOn.Description>BGL files for the base scenery layer</AddOn.Description>
  <AddOn.Component>
    <Category>Scenery</Category>
    <Path>E:\P3D Addons\BaseLayer</Path>
    <Name>BaseLayerBGLs</Name>
    <Layer>1</Layer>
  </AddOn.Component>
</SimBase.Document>

Example for aircraft:

To collect my fire fighting aircraft in one place, I created a folder in Documents:
C:\Users\...\Documents\Prepar3D v4 Add-ons\FireFightingAircraft\Content
(that was my choice, it is not necessary to do it like that - you can put that folder anywhere)
When installing the aircraft I point the installer at this folder. So I end up having "SimObjects", "Gauges", "Effects", "Sound" in there.
The XML looks like this:
C:\Users\...\Documents\Prepar3D v4 Add-ons\FireFightingAircraft\add-on.xml


<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<SimBase.Document Type="AddOnXml" version="4,0" id="add-on">
<AddOn.Name>FireFighting Aircraft</AddOn.Name>
<AddOn.Description>Content for FF addons</AddOn.Description>
<AddOn.Component>
  <Category>SimObjects</Category>
  <Path>Content\SimObjects\Airplanes</Path>
</AddOn.Component>
<AddOn.Component>
  <Category>SimObjects</Category>
  <Path>Content\SimObjects\Rotorcraft</Path>
</AddOn.Component>
<AddOn.Component>
  <Category>Effects</Category>
  <Path>Content\Effects</Path>
</AddOn.Component>
<AddOn.Component>
  <Category>Gauges</Category>
  <Path>Content\Gauges</Path>
</AddOn.Component>
<AddOn.Component>
  <Category>Sound</Category>
  <Path>Content\Sound</Path>
</AddOn.Component>
</SimBase.Document>

I suggest using Notepad++ for editing XML files.

Hi, seems that you're working in a tool to hande this more or less automatically -please clarify-. With that tool, in the case of scenery, you'll probably can order or enable/disable all your scenery addons. Will that tool be available to everyone?, will it be freeware or payware?.

Reading your quoted post above it seems that in that example you have created two different directories to put your actual scenery and aircraft files (E:\P3D Addons\ for the scenery files and C:\Users\...\Documents\Prepar3D v4 Add-ons\FireFightingAircraft\Content\ for the actual aircraft files). Is this a preferred method or you could simply put all your addons files, for both scenery and aircraft, in the same directory -of course with its respective subfolders-, let's say in your example, everything under E:\P3D Addons\?.

Cheers, Ed

 


Cheers, Ed

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47 minutes ago, edpatino said:

Hi, seems that you're working in a tool to hande this more or less automatically -please clarify-. With that tool, in the case of scenery, you'll probably can order or enable/disable all your scenery addons. Will that tool be available to everyone?, will it be freeware or payware?.

Reading your quoted post above it seems that in that example you have created two different directories to put your actual scenery and aircraft files (E:\P3D Addons\ for the scenery files and C:\Users\...\Documents\Prepar3D v4 Add-ons\FireFightingAircraft\Content\ for the actual aircraft files). Is this a preferred method or you could simply put all your addons files, for both scenery and aircraft, in the same directory -of course with its respective subfolders-, let's say in your example, everything under E:\P3D Addons\?.

Cheers, Ed

 

Hi Ed,

the tool is freeware, and a beta of it is available in the DOWNLOADS section of the Lorby website: http://lorby-si.weebly.com

I am currently testing an update to it, which will have more functionality. Among others, it will be possible to import an existing scenery.cfg.

You could concentrate all your content in one place, as long as you reference it properly. Be aware though that there could be conflicts with content that is sharing filenames, for example textures. I split them up so I am able to deactivate them separately if I want to (you can always only disable the complete addon package, not individual components of it - but I hope that LM will make that possible too at some point)

An example of the more extreme variety: you can use those add-on.xml files as "containers" for different simulator situations. For example, you could have an add-on.xml that references VFR photoreal scenery, a special sky texture, a shader set and your GA aircraft, and another one that gathers UltimateTerrain/GEX and your airliners into a package. That way you can switch between two entirely different simulators by switching these addon packages on and off.

Best regards


LORBY-SI

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Same as Lorby_SI, It takes some time for me experimenting as Layer=1 do not work that way and you have to use Layer=2


i7-8700k, RTX2070 Super, custom water cooling, 32GB RAM, 6TB SSD space
Prepar3D v4, X-Plane 11, 40" 4k TV
Rex, Active Sky, RealAir and A2A pilot, GTN, ORBX mostly everywhere
 
30.jpg

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Hi all.....I post again my questions:

 

1) What is so different using the "addon.xml technic" versus dealing with .cfg files in the Program Data folder (simobjects.cfg, texture.cfg etc where you can add lines to point where your addons are installed) ? Exept maybe that you don't touch to any "sensible" core files....

 

2) How software like / using MakeRwys (ex ProATC X or EFB using MakeRwys to create the database) are dealing with this new way of installing scenery as they are not implemented in the scenery.cfg ?

 

 

Thanks for any suggestions.

 

 

Cedric

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3 hours ago, Lorby_SI said:

I have created a separate scenery folder "BaseScenery\Scenery" for all those files and linked it at layer "2".  This loads it right before all the default scenery areas are read (theoretically anyway)


  <AddOn.Component>
    <Category>Scenery</Category>
    <Path>F:\P3DV4_Sceneries\BaseScenery</Path>
    <Name>My Base Scenery</Name>
    <Layer>2</Layer>
  </AddOn.Component>

Best regards

Will this technique work with add-ons that actually replace base scenery files/textures?


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1 minute ago, bandini said:

Hi all.....I post again my questions:

 

1) What is so different using the "addon.xml technic" versus dealing with .cfg files in the Program Data folder (simobjects.cfg, texture.cfg etc where you can add lines to point where your addons are installed) ? Exept maybe that you don't touch to any "sensible" core files....

 

2) How software like / using MakeRwys (ex ProATC X or EFB using MakeRwys to create the database) are dealing with this new way of installing scenery as they are not implemented in the scenery.cfg ?

 

 

Thanks for any suggestions.

 

 

Cedric

 

Hello Cedric,

this question gets asked many times - see my own answers in this thread or any of the others.

1. Everything is different.

  • You rightfully said, that you can't screw up vital config files this way.
  • All your addons survive a full simulator reinstall.
  • This method works the same for all types of content - not only sceneries or aircraft (Sounds, effects, shaders, scaleforms etc. etc.)
  • See my last answer above - you can use the add-on.xml to configure different types of simulator experience - and you can just switch them on and off with one mouseclick in the simulator (and a restart. )
  • LM wants us to stay away from the "classic" config files. They are in hidden locations for a reason.

2. These tools will have to be rewritten by the author. In fact, he/she should have done that when Prepar3D version 3.3 was released, this technique did not just get invented with V4. It is not hard to do, just a couple more files to look up and resolve the paths to the BGLs.

Best regards


LORBY-SI

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6 minutes ago, odourboy said:

Will this technique work with add-ons that actually replace base scenery files/textures?

"Replace"

I admit that I am not a scereny designer. As far as I know, to replace a lower lever BGL you have to consciously add an exclusion of some kind. I doubt that textures can just be overridden, but that needs to be confirmed. Maybe P3D just looks up the files, and when it finds the first one with the right GUID, than it stops looking. As the add-on.xmls seem to precede the default files, what you propose should work (besides, it would make a lot of sense if it did).

That sounds like an interesting test, I will try that. Something like putting some REX4 textures in a folder, maybe the soft clouds and link it, see what happens.

Best regards


LORBY-SI

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Clouds, moon etc. type files are exactly what I was thinking of. Please let us know what happens! :ampun:

It would be really nice if the add-ons mechanism allowed you to 'override'.


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If I am trying to add something that would normally put something into the "Effects/Textures" directory rather than into "Textures", does that need to be added as a distinct "texture" asset directory, or is it implied to be there by being under a named "effects" directory?


Rob Jones, Lead Developer🆆🆃Working Title Simulations
(Except where stated, all opinions are mine, not those of my employer.)

 

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2 hours ago, Lorby_SI said:

Hi Ed,

the tool is freeware, and a beta of it is available in the DOWNLOADS section of the Lorby website: http://lorby-si.weebly.com

I am currently testing an update to it, which will have more functionality. Among others, it will be possible to import an existing scenery.cfg.

You could concentrate all your content in one place, as long as you reference it properly. Be aware though that there could be conflicts with content that is sharing filenames, for example textures. I split them up so I am able to deactivate them separately if I want to (you can always only disable the complete addon package, not individual components of it - but I hope that LM will make that possible too at some point)

An example of the more extreme variety: you can use those add-on.xml files as "containers" for different simulator situations. For example, you could have an add-on.xml that references VFR photoreal scenery, a special sky texture, a shader set and your GA aircraft, and another one that gathers UltimateTerrain/GEX and your airliners into a package. That way you can switch between two entirely different simulators by switching these addon packages on and off.

Best regards

Hi Oliver, thanks for your detailed explanation. I appreciate it.

I'll be following up the updates of your valuable tool.

Cheers, Ed

 


Cheers, Ed

MSFS Steam - Win10 Home x64 // Rig: Corsair Graphite 760T Full Tower - ASUS MBoard Maximus XII Hero Z490 - CPU Intel i9-10900K - 64GB RAM - MSI RTX2080 Super 8GB - [1xNVMe M.2 1TB + 1xNVMe M.2 2TB (Samsung)] + [1xSSD 1TB + 1xSSD 2TB (Crucial)] + [1xSSD 1TB (Samsung)] + 1 HDD Seagate 2TB + 1 HDD Seagate External 4TB - Monitor LG 29UC97C UWHD Curved - PSU Corsair RM1000x - VR Oculus Rift // MSFS Steam & P3Dv4.5hf3 - Win 10 Home x64 - Gaming Laptop CUK ASUS Strix - CPU Intel i7-8750H - 32GB RAM - RTX2070 8GB - SSD 2TB + HDD 2TB // Thrustmaster FCS & MS XBOX Controllers

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Guys, today I upgraded to V4.

I added my Netherlans photoscenery and FlyTampa Amsterdam ( + FT libraries ) with v1,8 from Scenery Config Editor and both show up very nicely.

All my other addon scenery I have to add are already outside P3D ( also outside the root from V3 )

Also I have downloaded Lorby's xml tool.

As I am just a V4 beginner , why would I use the xml way if I can add it in the scenery.cfg file with just a few mouseclicks ?

Thanks in advance.


Gerard

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11 minutes ago, GSalden said:

As I am just a V4 beginner , why would I use the xml way if I can add it in the scenery.cfg file with just a few mouseclicks ?

Thanks in advance.

...and there :

Regards,


Richard Portier

MAXIMUS VI FORMULA|Intel® Core i7-4770K Oc@4.50GHz x8|NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080ti|M16GB DDR3|Windows10 Pro 64|P3Dv5|AFS2|TrackIr5|Saitek ProFlight Yoke + Quadrant + Rudder Pedal|Thrustmaster Warthog A10|

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trying your tool now seems excellent making the xml job much simpler . Could not get backup to work but all else good added some scenary and works well.


Colin hodds

I7 9700K,nvidia 3090 ,ssd ,32gig 3200mhz ram ,win10,prep3d

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