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nizar_AF

Still confused by the xml method

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Hello Oliver,

First thank you for your tool and the support you're providing for it. To be honest I'm still confused regarding scenery installation using the xml method. Since P3D V3 I have all my add-ons installed outside P3D. Actually most of them are installed into FSX and I simply add them through P3D scenery library indicating the FSX path and then copying to P3D the files that need to go to World\scenery or to the effects folder. This method works fine for me with P3D V4 and comply with the recommendation of leaving add-ons files outside the main folder of the sim. Since everyone is recommending the xml method I tried it using your tool and the sceneries I used it for all loaded fine in the sim save for the ones that require the files installed in the World\scenery (mainly for elevation correction) or in the effects folder. My question is how using your tool can I tell the sim to look for those files without copying them into the sim's main folder. 

Again thank you very much for your help.

Best regards

Fouad Chakib

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Hi,

the jury is still out, deciding if this works or not.

But the theory is this: You create a scenery folder for (all) those files somewhere and link it through an add-on.xml like this:

Quote

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<SimBase.Document Type="AddOnXml" version="4,0" id="add-on">
  <AddOn.Name>Base scenery layer</AddOn.Name>
  <AddOn.Description />
  <AddOn.Component>
    <Category>Scenery</Category>
    <Path>F:\BaseScenery\Scenery</Path>
    <Name>ExternalBaseLayer</Name>
    <Layer>3</Layer>
  </AddOn.Component>
</SimBase.Document>

 

 The important bit is, that as <Path> you choose the "\scenery\" folder where the BGL are located directly (and not the top folder like for a scenery area).

But - I really don't know if this actually works, this is only the method how it is supposed to work.

Best regards

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Hi,

Sorry to report that the suggested method did not work. Apparently the files that go into the base layer need to be copied in the main P3D for them to be read by the sim.

Best regards.

Fouad

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10 hours ago, nizar_AF said:

Hi,

Sorry to report that the suggested method did not work. Apparently the files that go into the base layer need to be copied in the main P3D for them to be read by the sim.

Best regards.

Fouad

Hello Fouad,

many thanks! May I ask which scenery you were using for testing this? If I have it too, I would like to run a few tests of my own, time permitting.

Best regards

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Good morning Oliver,

My test scenery for this is Skiathos by 29Palms. 

Best regards.

Fouad

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Hello Fouad,

OK, I have that one somewhere. As it hasn't been updated to P3D, is suppose it is still the same old Aerosoft version.

What am I looking for, how do I know that the base layer is working or not?

Best regards

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Yes Oliver. We are talking about the same scenery distributed by Aerosoft. If the bgl files that go into the base layer are not read by the sim then you will see an elevation problem (the runway and tarmac will be at the correct height but the grass and dirt surrounding the runway will be below the runway like in a cliff).

I'm at work now otherwise I would have provided screenshots for the 2 situations.

Cheers.  

Fouad

 

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OK, I have just tested it. Scenery looks fine to me, no plateaus anywhere.

Here is what I did (contrary to my own advice above)

- Created a folder for the scenery in my Documents folder (but could be anywhere)
        C:\Users\obinder\Documents\Prepar3D v4 Add-ons\Aerosoft\Skiathos

- Dropped a prepar3d.exe into it

- Installed Skiathos from the Aerosoft DVD, pointing it at that folder and directing it to install for "Prepar3D"

- The folder then contains the following subdirectories:
     Aerosoft\Skiathos\aerosoft
     Aerosoft\Skiathos\Effects
     Aerosoft\Skiathos\Scenery
     Aerosoft\Skiathos\Sound
     Aerosoft\Skiathos\Autogen

- Then I created this add-on.xml with the P4AO:
  C:\Users\obinder\Documents\Prepar3D v4 Add-ons\Aerosoft\add-on.xml

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<SimBase.Document Type="AddOnXml" version="4,0" id="add-on">
  <AddOn.Name>Aerosoft</AddOn.Name>
  <AddOn.Description>29 Palms</AddOn.Description>
  <AddOn.Component>
    <Category>Scenery</Category>
    <Path>Skiathos\Scenery\World</Path>
    <Name>Skiathos base layer</Name>
    <Layer>2</Layer>
  </AddOn.Component>
  <AddOn.Component>
    <Category>Scenery</Category>
    <Path>Skiathos\Scenery\0602</Path>
    <Name>Skiathos602</Name>
    <Layer>54</Layer>
  </AddOn.Component>
  <AddOn.Component>
    <Category>Autogen</Category>
    <Path>Skiathos\Autogen</Path>
  </AddOn.Component>
  <AddOn.Component>
    <Category>Sound</Category>
    <Path>Skiathos\Sound</Path>
  </AddOn.Component>
  <AddOn.Component>
    <Category>Scenery</Category>
    <Path>Skiathos\aerosoft\29Palms - Skiathos X</Path>
    <Name>29Palms - Skiathos X</Name>
    <Layer>161</Layer>
  </AddOn.Component>
  <AddOn.Component>
    <Category>Effects</Category>
    <Path>Skiathos\Effects</Path>
  </AddOn.Component>
</SimBase.Document>

 

36778491625_6df8c466fd_b.jpg

 

36778491655_9823f6f02d_b.jpg

 

36610463552_3fd36543a4_b.jpg

Best regards

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Hi Oliver,

I'm glad you could find a way to install this scenery. Unfortunately for me I haven't been able to generate the same xml file as you using  P4AO. Though I created a new folder and directing the installer to it the way you did, my lack of understanding how P4AO and xml logic work prevented me from correctly displaying the scenery in P3D. So for now I'll stick to my initial method (adding sceneries through the scenery library) for all my compatible legacy sceneries. Thank you very much for trying to help me.

Best regards

Fouad

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7 hours ago, nizar_AF said:

Though I created a new folder and directing the installer to it the way you did, my lack of understanding how P4AO and xml logic work prevented me from correctly displaying the scenery in P3D

This is what I did with P4AO after the installation:

  1. Used "Add scenery" to add the main scenery area of Skiathos "Skiathos\aerosoft\29Palms - Skiathos X", as a new Addon xml definition with no special layer number = it is on top of my library -> Saved
  2. Used the "Other addons" tab, "Add component" to add the Effects, Autogen and Sound to the same Addon XML definition that I created in 1. -> Saved
  3. Back to the first tab, first I opened the default 0602 scenery area node to check at what layer it is as default, that was 53
  4. Then I used "Add scenery" to add the corresponding "602" path in the Skiathos folder to still the same addon xml, giving it Layer 54
  5. Finally used "Add scenery" to add the corresponding "World" path in the Skiathos folder to my addon.xml, giving it layer number 2 -> saved

But it should also work if you just copy my addon.xml above and replace the paths with those where your own folder is. In my case they were in the same folder as the add-on.xml itself, that is why there are only relative paths - you can make them absolute too (C:\somefolder\subfolder\anywhere).

Skiathos is actually a perfect example why it is not a good idea to install these into P3D the "classic" way, because it has so many different parts. If you run the installer, directing it at the P3D V4 folder, it will overwrite part of your autogen definition. And if you don't do it, the Skiathos autogen will not be correct. This is an age old problem with the autogen files, I remember Earth Simulations provided unified -spb files that integrated many of the most well known sceneries. Without it, some sceneries would just cancel out each other's autogen definition. Plus, an update to P3D could disable any part of this scenery without letting you know which one is missing.

Best regards

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Thanks Oliver. I'm glad I picked the good scenery to illustrate what should and shouldn't be done in P3D. You are right about the autogen and I made sure the one provided by the installer does not overwrtie the P3D one. As for installing the scenery via the xml method, I tried both ways (using the P4AO and copying your xml and changing the paths) but as I said I wasn't successful. I'll try this evening doing it again using the setp by step you provided.

Best regards

Fouad

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4 minutes ago, nizar_AF said:

Thanks Oliver. I'm glad I picked the good scenery to illustrate what should and shouldn't be done in P3D. You are right about the autogen and I made sure the one provided by the installer does not overwrtie the P3D one. As for installing the scenery via the xml method, I tried both ways (using the P4AO and copying your xml and changing the paths) but as I said I wasn't successful. I'll try this evening doing it again using the setp by step you provided.

Best regards

Fouad

Hello Fouad,

maybe there is some other interference in your sim, like Orbx Vector or AEC? I did my test with the bare-bones P3D on my development computer.

If you edit the XML manually, please bear in mind that you cannot use the standard Windows editor for that. You need at least "Notepad++" to get the file encoding right (UTF-8 BOM)

Best regards

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Hi Oliver,

It worked. Following your step by step guide finally allowed me to correctly install and display the Skiathos scenery. So many many thanks to you for taking the time to help with this. I really appreciate it.

Best regards

Fouad

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Hello Fouad,

sounds good! Finally "proof" that the XML method is actually fully functional, I have been wanting to check this out for quite some time (=the part with files going into the base layer).

Best regards

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