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Alistair Logie

Secondary PC to run ActiveSky, EFB2, PF3

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I have used a second PC for weather injection, ATC, EFB, moving map, and flight planning applications for years, and I see distinct advantages to doing it that way after many iterations of multi-monitor setups and exercises using ancillary apps "on top" of the simulator on a single PC.

Multi-monitor setups have *always* been a headache, especially if the monitors are of different resolutions or type.  Instability, frame rate hits, drivers that don't always support it properly have all been problems to wrestle with over years of trying.  A single monitor on the FS machine has always proven the most trouble-free solution due to its simplicity, reliability, and lack of performance hits.

Having the ancillary programs on a secondary PC allows you to access/manage those programs off to the side without interfering in the primary simulation.  It also gives you the opportunity to employ a different sound system for apps running on the secondary PC--especially nice for ATC apps, as you can select between a headset or a separate side speaker connected to the client PC and adjust volume independent of the sim's sound levels.  Having the sim on the speaker system and ATC on a headset is a natural way to operate.  It's also nice to have the side PC available for a moving map, or for display of charts and approach plates.

As far as performance is concerned, much of the time the main simulation PC (the "server") does have enough headroom for the other programs, but P3D will regularly smack all the cores with near 100% workload (e.g. when loading textures during a scenery tile transition), and while that is happening, there definitely is *not* enough headroom for the computer to handle the sim and several ancillary programs smoothly all at once.  For me, the prime directive in maintaining a smooth simulation is to preserve enough headroom so that the the sim almost never saturates all of the cores at once...peak load is the number to watch and manage to, not average load.

It generally does not take a powerhouse PC to run the ancillary software.  I usually use "hand-me-down" PCs freed up as a result of doing a new build for the sim.  An old laptop may also be pressed into service here.  I think most of us probably have or can cheaply acquire a PC that's past its prime for 3D apps, but still capable in a supporting role.

Bottom line--I think it's a great way to operate.

Regards

 

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Bob Scott | AVSIM Forums Administrator | AVSIM Board of Directors

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Timely subject as my entire flightsim deck is sitting in pieces all over the floor as I am enlarging the computer table to accomodate my Warthog and GoFlight modules. I anticipate getting a new computer very soon and am considering utilizing the current box to network for addons also.

I'm sure I will be corrected if I'm incorrect in my thinking, but doesn't using two rigs require two mouse/mousepad areas and two keyboards as well?

So if I was getting ready for decent using EFB to land at one airport and winds change and I now need to work with the EFB to see what STARS might work, I have to turn to the second mouse and keyboard right?

My brain is so old and full and I KNOW this would be an issue that would take some serious getting use to. I now have two monitors and occasionally will utilize my Surface to follow a tutorial or video. I'm forever trying to use the mouse on my flightsim rig to manipulate my Surface. I do have a Surface keyboard but it is yet another input device in the cockpit.  Might be my age!🤔

Cheers,

Bob

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I run a few extra PCs to support P3D.
I run NavDataPro and  Navigraph charts, vPilot client and Aivlasoft EFB all on a Surface Pro, which I think lends itself perfectly to provide an easy convenient interface to utils that benefit from running on an independent screen/interface.

I have other networked systems (4) running other tools which tend not to require user input once the flight is set up and underway.

 

 

 

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On 12/30/2018 at 11:04 PM, Radial9 said:

Timely subject as my entire flightsim deck is sitting in pieces all over the floor as I am enlarging the computer table to accomodate my Warthog and GoFlight modules. I anticipate getting a new computer very soon and am considering utilizing the current box to network for addons also.

I'm sure I will be corrected if I'm incorrect in my thinking, but doesn't using two rigs require two mouse/mousepad areas and two keyboards as well?

So if I was getting ready for decent using EFB to land at one airport and winds change and I now need to work with the EFB to see what STARS might work, I have to turn to the second mouse and keyboard right?

My brain is so old and full and I KNOW this would be an issue that would take some serious getting use to. I now have two monitors and occasionally will utilize my Surface to follow a tutorial or video. I'm forever trying to use the mouse on my flightsim rig to manipulate my Surface. I do have a Surface keyboard but it is yet another input device in the cockpit.  Might be my age!🤔

Cheers,

Bob

Hi Bob

If you use a program called Multiplicity you can use 1 mouse and 1 keyboard over multiple PCs. I just had a look at their web site to get the address for you and also noticed they have a 50% off the price sale on at the moment .

Here is the web address     https://www.stardock.com/products/multiplicity/

Ken

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Instead of Multiplicity, I use Mouse Without Borders. Its free!

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=35460

 

...Lloyd

Edited by Noell

Lloyd Noel (Ontario, Canada)

Intel i7 8700K@4.8GHz / Corsair H100i PRO/ Gigabyte Aorus 7 Gaming / 16 GB G.Skill DDR4 3200 500GB WD SSD (Win 10 Pro 64-bit) / 500GB Samsung 960 Pro (P3Dv4) / 240GB SanDisk SSD (P3D Misc.) 480GB SanDisk SSD (General Storage) / EVGA GTX1080/ Seasonic Platinum 850 watt

 

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3 hours ago, Noell said:

Instead of Multiplicity, I use Mouse Without Borders. Its free!

 

very nice, thanks for this it works great.


Ryzen 2600x, Noctua U12A, 32Gb Vengence @3200MHz, Sapphire Pulse 5700xt, P3D on WD Black SN750 NVMe SSD

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