SimonC

Change "Prepar3D v4 Add-ons" dir

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Hello,

I hope this is just something I am quickly missing... I would like to change the default "D:\Documents\Prepar3D v4 Add-ons" directory. As in, I don't want P3D to save it's own "Prepar3D v4 Add-ons" dir into my documents folder. (note that on my computer "Documents" is on D:\Documents)

I know I could work with symlink for instance, but I would hope for a simpler solution, I would like to control that from P3D.

Any chance?

Thanks

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What are you trying to achieve?  P3D is probably using Windows API calls to retrieve the location of user documents, so there are a lot of things you could mess up here with trying to work around it.

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Yes, I know all too well about that - and that is why I would not like to mess with it outside of P3D, but rather tell P3D where to have that folder.

What I am trying to achieve is simple actually. With the new scenery design of having add-on.xml placed there, one is almost forced to place files there too, but if your disk-concept is different, then you might have a problem with that. Given the wish that I have a single SSD for sim only, I also want all my scenery there, even if in the separate folder. Of course, it would all be the same if you had one single drive. Which I don't... and my D:\Documents\ is where User-Docs reside, and E:\P3D and E:\P3DAddons is where actual P3D files are. Since devs are usually pointing to D:\Documents\Prepar3D v4 Add-ons, it would be nice if P3D where to allow this to be defined and addons then read the set path. I don't see the reason that this folder *MUST* be in User-Docs.

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Can it be done? Yup. Is it a good idea? Nope.  

There is NO reason to put the files there also, just the xml file. You really have nothing to gain other than personal preference and could possible cause you more grief than it's worth.

 

Vic

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As you mentioned, just set up a symlink. As far as windows is concerned, there's absolutely no difference though I wouldn't recommend it for a regular user. 

While I'm all for the new add-on.xml concept, I find it a bit odd that it uses the documents folder as the location. It wouldn't be so bad if it was just for the xml files as intended. However, some devs install all the data to their documents/addon folder which winds me up just a little bit... :D

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No regular user here, working with servers and lots of workstations on daily basis (sysadmin).

Quote

While I'm all for the new add-on.xml concept, I find it a bit odd that it uses the documents folder as the location. It wouldn't be so bad if it was just for the xml files as intended. However, some devs install all the data to their documents/addon folder which winds me up just a little bit... :D

That.

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2 hours ago, Ebs said:

However, some devs install all the data to their documents/addon folder which winds me up just a little bit... :D

Very easy to fix. Move the files where you want and change the path in the xml file. The only caveat is if the dev uses indirect addressing ( ../../) in a control file. You'll find ouot quickly - it will either work or not. If not, move files back.

I would also complain to the dev - the documents folder is for the xml file not data files and IMHO, makes the dev look a little lazy.

Vic

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10 hours ago, vgbaron said:

Very easy to fix. Move the files where you want and change the path in the xml file. The only caveat is if the dev uses indirect addressing ( ../../) in a control file. You'll find ouot quickly - it will either work or not. If not, move files back.

The other caveat is that when there's an update for that addon, it'll either fail because it can't find the original files or it'll go ahead and install new files to the documents folder. Again, a potential mess for the 'regular' user.

What I've found so far is three types of approach that developers take and I'll name names! (not an exhaustive list of course)

1. Install everything 'the old way' directly into the P3D install folder. (PMDG, Majestic, Orbx) 

2. Use add-on.xml but ALSO install all the data to the addon folder: (UK2000)

3. Use add-on.xml and install data to user defined location. (FsDreamTeam, Flightbeam)

There's also a weird 4th option. The dev uses add-on.xml BUT installs the data somewhere in the P3D install path (Drzewiecki)

I believe LM are trying to completely separate the addons from the main install. So, if you wipe your P3D install, your addons remain intact. Right now though, there's a long way to go until more developers start using the new system. I think we'll see more of that as support for FSX (FSX:SE) starts to be phased out.

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You are going to brake something for sure.

I don't get the obsession with these kind of things, I just spent 5 days helping one of my customers with AI lights not working and it was all because he was fiddling with all his add-on's locations and creating XML files that caused a massive conflict with all the Simulator system textures.

Developers design their add-on's in a way to warranty their tools will work, changing variables like this never ends well.

Simbol 

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@simbol I've just installed your freeware product and you're one of the few developers I've seen who use the add-on.xml the way it's meant to be used. Much respect for that.

As for people messing about with this I totally understand. Before I installed v4 I had 2 SSDs in my system. One was a tiny 120GB windows SSD and the other a big 500GB SSD for all my sim files. This served me well, although I did have to spend some time managing other applications due to the fact I always had very little space remaining on my C drive. But, I made sure to keep any and all sim files off my Windows C drive. Before v4 I purchased an additional 500GB SSD to use for my C drive and retired the old 120GB one.

If I was still using the 120GB, you can be sure I'd be making my own add-on.xml files for those developers that insist on installing all their data in my Documents folder (on the C drive). Purely just for managing disk space.

I edited my previous reply as I had stated A2A and FSL do the 'option 2' concept. I've since done a bit of reading and it appears FSL allows you to not install in Documents (but Documents is the default) I'm still not sure about A2A

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You guys have given me a headache just reading it.:biggrin:

Just done a flight into EDDM, if you want bad weather and 30kt winds, low vis, go for it, I need a rest. :cool:

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2 hours ago, Ebs said:

What I've found so far is three types of approach that developers take and I'll name names! (not an exhaustive list of course)

1. Install everything 'the old way' directly into the P3D install folder. (PMDG, Majestic, Orbx) 

2. Use add-on.xml but ALSO install all the data to the addon folder: (UK2000)

3. Use add-on.xml and install data to user defined location. (FsDreamTeam, Flightbeam)

There's also a weird 4th option. The dev uses add-on.xml BUT installs the data somewhere in the P3D install path (Drzewiecki)

I believe LM are trying to completely separate the addons from the main install. So, if you wipe your P3D install, your addons remain intact. Right now though, there's a long way to go until more developers start using the new system. I think we'll see more of that as support for FSX (FSX:SE) starts to be phased out.

Why those top-tier addon-devs can't change their paths, is beyond me. But, I also tested yesterday, what happens if I set couple of addons externally (those that support it) and wipe my P3D. Most went well, but FSL, which is also "outside", didn't work afterwards. Had to reinstall it.

UK2000 gives you an option to install scenery-data into separate location.

It's not only the way till devs start using the new system, the way is even longer until they start using it correctly. I sometimes have a feeling we users teach devs how to use it...

I also started doing what someone else mentioned, is to install into dummy-p3d-folder, and then created my own add-on.xml with Lorby-SI's tool. I'm now in a process of trying to install all my sceneries with the new system.

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1 hour ago, SimonC said:

I also started doing what someone else mentioned, is to install into dummy-p3d-folder, and then created my own add-on.xml with Lorby-SI's tool. I'm now in a process of trying to install all my sceneries with the new system.

I am very against this, most users don't understand that the XML technique is designed for developers to override the simulator preference to resolve textures, effects, sceneries, shaders, etc. And of course other things.

From the few people that have contacted me with issues with my AI lights add-on's, 80 percent of these users have messed up PD3V4 with wrongly implemented XML files!!.

I already have said this on others topics on Avsim and others developers also added information on top of my explanation.

XML files edition only give developers like me headaches when users damage their systems and contact us saying ours tools don't work.

If your add-on's don't support the XML method (mines do), contact your developer and ask they  to move on to the new requirements from LM, don't play to be a developer thinking you can convert their tools by magic XML documents, because most of the time these developers haven't done it because their tools are not ready for it yet.

This is my advise from the other side of the coin.

All the best,

Simbol 

 

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Hello,

Is there any way to transfer the Prepar3d v4 Addons folder from my documents to another drive ? Even if I select a different folder during installation, the addons end up in the v4 add-ons folder in my documents.

Thanks

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Quote

From the few people that have contacted me with issues with my AI lights add-on's, 80 percent of these users have messed up PD3V4 with wrongly implemented XML files!!

So what was really wrong? From a technical aspect.

And believe me, I am probably one of the rarest users, who actually go all the way when troubleshooting. If I have a problem with a tool, aircraft or scenery, then yes, I will post a question somewhere, asking if I am the only one, but I will also go all the way as to uninstall my sim, and run it basic, as to ascertain that my problem is coming from the tool, aircraft or scenery itself. I do this very easily with imaging, since I have more drives, making a restore not a 4 hour process.

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