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JetBlack

Center Boundary & FATAL ERROR

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Hi All,
A quite long time after crossing ARTCC boundary VoxATC suddenly awakes and realises I'm in another ARTCC area so it asks me to switch to the current ARTCC frequency and then displays the famous "FATAL ERROR" message and finally it crashes. If I disable/reenable it then it reworks properly untill to a next ARTCC change.
Is that a know problem?

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I have had issues with transitions, getting the fictional oceanic center, but never yielding fatal errors. 

If you are and FSAD user, try turning off ICAO updates. I was getting fatal errors at certain airports with that turned on. 

 

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Hi,

No I'm not using fsAerodata.

Actually VoxATC seems not to read correctly data from bvcf.bgl. However the latter looks right in LittleNavMap or PlanG...

Some suggestions ?

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JB, as I look through some of your previous threads regarding VOXATC, you seem to be describing unique errors that haven't been reported previously. It almost seems to me that you have some other software that has caused a faulty VOXATC installation/behavior. I have no idea what that might be but I guessing that it has something to do with either scenery.cfg or one of your add-ons installed via an add-on.xml file.

P3d is very forgiving about a botched scenery library and makes the best of typos, mistakes and duplications in these configuration files. In contrast, VOXATC gets confused rather easily by these same issues. Its Indexer usually fails and one can't even get to running VOXATC, but sometimes the Indexer completes and VOXATC fails instead.

Other people have  done troubleshooting of these issue by disabling all 3rd party entries in the scenery library and then gradually adding them back either one or a few at a time.

Anyway, run the sim and temporarily disable all 3rd party add-ons.Then exit, restart the sim and test VOXATC. If that doesn't work then either the sim itself and or VOXATC are installed improperly.

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Jay, I disabled all my 3rd party add-ons. No sucess.
And even after a fresh reinstalling of FSX(SE) and then VoxATC I get the same disappointing result.
VOXATC is unable to perform any handover between centers.

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Hi ,

Here is an illustration of my problem.
This is a direct VFR  flight between Lincoln (KHLM) and Pile Mountain Lake (E45). After leaving the airfield area( about 5 nm from the airfield) you are prompted to contact Oakland Center 119.75 which is fine but when you enter in Oakland Center 126.85 area nothing happens until you reach the position shown on the picture. There, are asked to contact Oakland Center 126.85  and the horrible fatal error message is displayed...

VoxATC.jpg?dl=0

Maybe someone could try the attached flightplan and tell me if the same thing happens ?😎

Flight Plan

Thanks in advance.

 

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I'm away from my flightsim PC until 7/17 but I'll try that flightplan when I return from traveling. It's possible that this is some kind of bug specific to FSX-SE. I have a feeling that most of the people that post here use P3d4 with VOXATC.

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I have a feeling this error has something to do with radio frequencies either in the two stock airports or an airport along the flightplan path. The airport near where your fatal error is occurring KCPU, has a Center radio frequency. O22 and E45 have a Center frequency entry also. Most FSX and P3d stock airports do not contain a Center frequency but rather rely on the contents of bvcf.bgl. There could be a bug in VOXATC where this creates a conflict, but I will have to wait to check that when I return home. What I would do is edit both KCPU and O22 with ADE and delete the Center frequency to see if that helps. What makes me think that it is the cause, is that the error does not occur when you fly over a Center boundary, but rather it happens well after you've entered the new sector.

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Interesting but...
I did remove centers' radio with ADE from KCPU, O22, E45 and even from O68 with same bad result at the same place. Well, will see what happen on your P3D system later. As you said previously it's maybe a specific bug to FSX-SE version.

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It was worth a try. I'm surprised that a 32 bit version of VOXATC would have such a glaring bug as there have been 7 major versions of the app and FSX isn't exactly new either. I'm pretty sure that the only difference in the FSX, FSX-SE and P3d3 installers is where the VOXATC setup program looks for registry entries.

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On ‎7‎/‎8‎/‎2018 at 9:04 AM, JetBalck said:

Hi ,

Here is an illustration of my problem.
This is a direct VFR  flight between Lincoln (KHLM) and Pile Mountain Lake (E45). After leaving the airfield area( about 5 nm from the airfield) you are prompted to contact Oakland Center 119.75 which is fine but when you enter in Oakland Center 126.85 area nothing happens until you reach the position shown on the picture. There, are asked to contact Oakland Center 126.85  and the horrible fatal error message is displayed...

VoxATC.jpg?dl=0

Maybe someone could try the attached flightplan and tell me if the same thing happens ?😎

Flight Plan

Thanks in advance.

 

I just finished flying your flight plan on P3D 4.3 and had the same fatal error when switch airspace frequencies.  So, it does not seem to be unique to FSX/SE. 

Since my original response your post, I have also experienced this when flying from Jackson Hole to West Yellowstone.  If I fly the route in Expert mode, the fatal error does NOT occur.  This has motivated me to use expert mode more often for VFR flights.

FWIW, I'm using the FSAD airspace file.

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If you are using Navigraph data for the VOXATC procedures, you might want to check this.  Jose from fsaerodata told me that airport E45 is changed to KE45 in the Navigraph dataset. I doubt that's what's wrong but you never know.

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12 hours ago, 503Kento said:

I just finished flying your flight plan on P3D 4.3 and had the same fatal error when switch airspace frequencies.  So, it does not seem to be unique to FSX/SE. 

Since my original response your post, I have also experienced this when flying from Jackson Hole to West Yellowstone.  If I fly the route in Expert mode, the fatal error does NOT occur.  This has motivated me to use expert mode more often for VFR flights.

FWIW, I'm using the FSAD airspace file.

Hi,

Well spotted ! Using expert mode prevent VoxATC from crashing. However it still doesn't detect some centers' boundary crossing (mainly KZOA3232, KZOA3217, KZOA3219) unless you travel far deep into them.
Anyway this is at leat "playable" in expert mode and that's a good news.
I'm terribly afraid the developer's cadaver is rotting behind his desktop so better let him rest in peace. This bug will join the pile...
Thanks a lot for your help.

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8 hours ago, jabloomf1230 said:

If you are using Navigraph data for the VOXATC procedures, you might want to check this.  Jose from fsaerodata told me that airport E45 is changed to KE45 in the Navigraph dataset. I doubt that's what's wrong but you never know.

Hi,

No,I'm not using Navigraph data. Just the default stuff. I think it has something to do with ARTCC boundaries reading/processing. Is there any pre-existing data in VoxATC installation process or does it take all its data from FSX ?

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Posted (edited)

Everything that VOXATC uses is derived from FSX scenery files. All it does is convert and add various BGL files to its internal database. I'll stick with the theory that there is something amiss with the stock airports in that region of the US as the error is reproducible.

One other last option would be to fly the same flight plan IFR and see what happens. The comm handoffs may be somewhat different and yield a clue, although at this point I've chalked this up to a bug.

Edited by jabloomf1230

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Well, IFR flight is OK, I mean it doesn't crash and executes handoff where it is supposed to do so. The last handoff is made to the destination UNICOM as if it was an approach frequency and provides standard approach options (by pressing 0). Of course trying these options has no effect on UNICOM controller but it doesn't crash the process. You just have to do the standard non towered procedures (without any help from the prompter as we already know).

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BTW I've noted that handoff from the last center to E45'(virtual) approach is done at the same place where VFR flight crashes. I'm gonna add a real approach frequency on E45 and see what happens.

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Ok, here is a part of the story...

In real life Oakland center 121.25 provides aproach/departure services to E45.
In FSX, (default bgl) E45 owns a center frequency (Oakland center 126.85) which seems confusing the Sim. I turned it into an approach type frequency (Note I've also changed frequency to the real one: 121.25).
It doesn't crash anymore in VFR at now !
But it also means that other airfields of this area must be fitted with an aproach/dept frequency in order to avoid VoxATC crashing (maybe excepted those with no CTAF. I've not tested yet).
Unfortunaley once under the approach service' control you can't access to any requests such as emergency or position/bearing. Handoff to approach is made 40nm from your destination so you must pray not to get any problems all along this distance...

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In a previous discussion that Rob Ainscough and I were having on an unrelated topic, we talked about how there was a certain amount of "puzzle solving" to flightsims. It shouldn't be that way but sometimes  you can shine a light into the black box.

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Unfortunately as instructive as it could be puzzle solving doesn't fix bugs... it just gives you a clue to bypass them. And at the end when you add up the whole time you spent for so few it's just frightening.
Gardening is a more reliable hobby...😏

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But if I understand you correctly, the error is in the stock scenery and hence is only a "bug" in VOXATC in the sense that VOXATC doesn't compensate for malformed scenery files.

The sim's default ATC is so "stupid" that it ignores such problems. If one looks back over the threads in this subforum, the vast majority of so-called VOXATC "bugs" are actually the result of either malformed airports or inconsistencies in the sim's configuration files.

I agree that it should be easier for the casual user to correct these problems, but when one considers that VOXATC has replaced two key sim features, ATC and AI traffic, it's not surprising that problems arise.

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I've investigated further since my last post. E45 is an atypical example. As I mentionned before Oakland center is also providing an approach service to this airfield. This dual function unsurprisingly is not understood by FSX/VoxATC. This issue wouldn't be a big deal but it highlights something really messy with VoxATC. Centers handoff management doesn't work properly (in not-expert mode at least) as long as the arrival airport is not fitted of approach frequencies. And most of small airfields have no departure/arrival service.

In another vein, this also partially explains the bug of handoff from center to arrival airfields when the latter is equiped with unicom frequency only . If you want to get the right text on prompter you must disable/enable VoxATC before enterring the destination airfield area (5nm) you'll then be asked for an intial contact to the current center and so the procedure will be correct until the end of flight.

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Posted (edited)

I'm back from the West Coast and I can also confirm this misbehavior at E45, even with fsaerodata. Jose from fsaerodata is following this thread and he may have some future insights on how to fix the issue. I have personally never seen this error before and I have been using VOXATC back to version 6 and with FSX, FSX-SE, P3d3 and P3d4, although I only have used VOXATC 7.41 with P3d4. The error is specific to certain uncontrolled  airports that have mismatches between the Center frequencies contained in bvcf.bgl and the airport BGL file.

If one looks up the official FAA entry for E45:

https://nfdc.faa.gov/nfdcApps/services/ajv5/airportDisplay.jsp?airportId=E45

It states:

Quote
  • APCH/DEP SVC PROVIDED BY OAKLAND ARTCC ON FREQS 121.25/327.0 (ANGELS CAMP RCAG).

In the stock bgl file, the airport does not have an approach or departure frequency but rather an independent Center frequency, even though it is not a true Center frequency. The FAA says that the ARTCC provides these services. By adding 121.25 as an approach and departure frequency,  as JetBlack suggested above, everything more or less works okay, since the conflict is eliminated. Having a Center frequency included in the airport BGL file looks like a fudge that MS used to allow the correct behavior with the default ATC. Unfortunately, VOXATC looks at a center frequency as just that, not as departure and approach frequencies. Since it now sees two conflicting Center frequencies, the whole Center sector boundary algorithm goes in a ditch.

Edited by jabloomf1230

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