Chuck Steinmetz

Am I Suffering In Silence? Or is it me....

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I've been flightsimming for several years.  I've watched the progress of P3D and many addons.  But I'm wondering if I'm the only one who seems to run into issues w/ the software.  It's very possible that it's set/up operator error....

I'm not questioning performance - I'm lucky enough to have purchased my computer(s) from Jetline Systems and they are solid machines.  I run a FDS Jetmax single seat 737 Sim w/ Simavionics software.  I also network Pilot2ATC on a third computer.

It took some learning to get everything set up  - but all seems to work well.  Once in a while I run into a glitch w/ P2ATC, but no ATC software is perfect.  The Simavionic software is rock solid.  Where I seem to run into issues is w/P3D (V4.4) and addons.

And where I get really frustrated is after spending the time setting up sim, the weather, the flight plan, the route, etc, etc...inevitably I run into an issue w/ something not working correctly....an airport, addon, FSUPIC/Throttles may disconnect, the jetways are sitting up in the sky, the plane is 5 feet into the ground or in the airport, a chunk of something is missing, etc....and there is no consistency to what the issues are so tracking them down becomes difficult.

I have learned to reboot my computer(s), make sure the are talking to each other, keeping my software up to date, make sure I've run the elevation config in Vector w/ any additional software as a part of my 'preflight' almost every time.  And yet just as you are ready to fly or start in earnest something comes up.

So am I nuts?  Is it just me?  And while I have no real desire to switch over to X-Plane (again, this has nothing to do w/ performance) are there fewer issues in this area w/ that software?  I know they have made many improvements in other areas.

So that's it - I felt I had to vent after an unsuccessful attempt this AM.  If this doesn't sound familiar to anyone else than it's definitely operator error and I'll keep reading forums like this and other for ways to improve my reliability.

Thanks!

Chuck

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You are not alone, as such.  It seems that there is always something not working quite right. Part of this is inherent in the complexity of the systems we setup.  If you only ran a stock install, only one airplane and a simple joystick then I suspect things would be more reliable.  I believe one must approach this hobby expecting that part of the hobby is maintaining and troubleshooting our setup.  You can either be frustrated or accept it as a challenge to overcome with joy (that's not quite the right word, but some sot of non-frustration).  I go both ways.  I have been frustrated many times.  I'm going down to my sim soon and full expect to spend some times updating software before I am able to practice some maneuvers.  A long as I can practice what I need to practice, I'm calling it a success.

To me the trials and tribulations of flight sim mirror real world flying.  I fly both jets and G/A.  The anomalies that show up in the flight simulation of jets show up and need to be dealt with in the real world.  On the G/A side something is always breaking.  In the last 2 month I have had to have a fan on G1000 pfd replaced.  A new stall warning horn and minor damage repair to wheel pants due to a hard landing.  When I feel myself getting upset, I remind myself I like I like airplanes and this comes with liking airplanes.

I would be great if everything always worked but alas, I think it never will.

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Yes, I have come to accept that troubleshooting is part of the hobby. I long ago concluded that the idea of technology working the way it is intended all the time and always improving is a myth! This said, it certainly makes those flights where everything worked well much more satisfying!

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You’re not wrong. The one great thing about a 64-bit sim is that at least we’re not looking over our shoulders for OOMs anymore, however.

That said, it’s a very low bar and I too wish P3D (especially when laden with addons) was more consistent and trouble free.

James

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To quote a great philosopher, "One of us is nuts and it's not you." Yes, it does seem like something is always breaking. In my case, I can't stop adding new airports and aircraft. Each has its own idea of how things should be configured and what your configuration files should contain. Recently, I added an aircraft that replaced my FSUIPC dll with an old version (thanks, man). I tried running a weather add-on that previously worked just fine, but now causes a strange loss of control responsiveness. The number of add-ons you have seems to only multiply the chance of problems. No surprise there.

Like Scott said, if you only run the basics and don't use add-ons, you'd not have many issues.

The problem is how much time is required to sort out whatever new issue has appeared. This is what has led to me taking long breaks when it all becomes too much.

Thank goodness for the forums here. If you can't find a solution to a problem, at least you can vent and find a sympathetic ear.

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4 minutes ago, honanhal said:

You’re not wrong. The one great thing about a 64-bit sim is that at least we’re not looking over our shoulders for OOMs anymore, however.

That said, it’s a very low bar and I too wish P3D (especially when laden with addons) was more consistent and trouble free.

James

Thank you all - I feel better already - I realize this is a P3D forum, but do we know if Xplane has similar issues?

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Was having the very same whinge only today.  I finally have everything working perfectly after so many frustrating flights ending in some issue (or so i thought). 

Planned, Setup and flew SFO to LAS last night. After a beautiful approach around from 27L to 19R, i noticed a strange graphics anomaly on finals and ended up sinking through the scenery. Yep, forgot to run Vector setup to exclude elevation correction at KLAS. 

What will tomorrows issue be I wonder?

Edited by Jetset408

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15 minutes ago, Chuck Steinmetz said:

Thank you all - I feel better already - I realize this is a P3D forum, but do we know if Xplane has similar issues?

I use both of them. X-Plane doesn't typically have the same issues - but different ones. It's as mentioned above. I use a networked configuration based on SPAD.neXt, a few of the Saitek FIPs like to spike under XP, then I change the cabling to the host machine, you can be sure one of the numerous USB devices isn't properly plugged in. I use Ultra Weather, the waves look "strange" , I have to switch them back and forth once, then they are fine. While XP dosn't have autogen loading in patches or black buildings, it sports shimmering over London in the (generally very beautiful) ORBX GB South, and yes, my recently installed Aerosoft EGLL causes a few patches void of buildings East of the airport... and so on.

Most of it can be sorted, but I would say, it's similar for both systems. And probably for any sim advanced and stuffed with addons like them. Experience (I've been into simming for 30 years now) helps a lot, though.

Kind regards, Michael

Edited by pmb

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20 minutes ago, Chuck Steinmetz said:

I realize this is a P3D forum, but do we know if Xplane has similar issues?

using XP and P3D 50/50, you will find similar and different situations in either sim. I find one no better than the other. Both good, both bad. choose your poison. 🙂

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17 minutes ago, Adrian123 said:

using XP and P3D 50/50, you will find similar and different situations in either sim. I find one no better than the other. Both good, both bad. choose your poison. 🙂

That was my guess, but it's good to know - thank you all!

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Maybe I’m just lucky because I’m enjoying P3D v4.4 with the PMDG737, plenty of 3rd party airports, Orbx FTX Global, GSX, EFB 2, Ultimate Terrain Europe and USA and Active Sky. Can’t remember when I last had a crash.

There are minor problems to sort out. SODE jetways not working at some airports but I hope to have those fixed with downloads. Keeping firm control of layering in scenery.cfg is always good.

When you’re having problems it’s best to disable as much 3rd party scenery as you can and run with default aircraft. Keeping things as close as possible to the default sim is a good start then add things back slowly until a problem is found then concentrate on fixing that.

With so many attractive addons it’s tempting to add lots of them but it’s not without risk.

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1 minute ago, Ray Proudfoot said:

Maybe I’m just lucky because I’m enjoying P3D v4.4 with the PMDG737, plenty of 3rd party airports, Orbx FTX Global, GSX, EFB 2, Ultimate Terrain Europe and USA and Active Sky. Can’t remember when I last had a crash.

There are minor problems to sort out. SODE jetways not working at some airports but I hope to have those fixed with downloads. Keeping firm control of layering in scenery.cfg is always good.

When you’re having problems it’s best to disable as much 3rd party scenery as you can and run with default aircraft. Keeping things as close as possible to the default sim is a good start then add things back slowly until a problem is found then concentrate on fixing that.

With so many attractive addons it’s tempting to add lots of them but it’s not without risk.

Thanks - Does turning scenery 'off' in the Addonorganizer that isn't being used help?  For example - just like another use above in this thread I really do enjoy addon airports.  So if I am fling from X to Y does shutting the other airports help?  I note that you can set up regions (which I haven't done yet) - maybe one answer is to set up the country in different sections and turn on/off those that aren't being used (if that would help)....again, thank you.

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1 hour ago, Chuck Steinmetz said:

I'm lucky enough to have purchased my computer(s) from Jetline Systems and they are solid machines.

Not only are Jetline PC's most excellent, their customer service and knowledge is too. If you have a chunk of time, give them a call, and they will take the time to get you up and running consistently or at least discover what/where the conflict(s) is/are. 

 

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14 minutes ago, Chuck Steinmetz said:

Thanks - Does turning scenery 'off' in the Addonorganizer that isn't being used help?  For example - just like another use above in this thread I really do enjoy addon airports.  So if I am fling from X to Y does shutting the other airports help?  I note that you can set up regions (which I haven't done yet) - maybe one answer is to set up the country in different sections and turn on/off those that aren't being used (if that would help)....again, thank you.

Not really Chuck. All your saving is a bit of loading time. What caught my eye in your post were problems with FSUIPC5 and throttles disconnecting. Is that something that happens occasionally or more often? Make sure you have the latest version of FSUIPC5 as earlier versions are not supported.

It shouldn’t be too difficult to sort out the hardware side. List what you have and the problems. Ideally you should raise it in the FSUIPC forum. Paid version or free one?

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1 hour ago, honanhal said:

That said, it’s a very low bar and I too wish P3D (especially when laden with addons) was more consistent and trouble free.

It is - it's when people start adding all sorts of random add-on combinations that things can go sideways. There's a reason why in aviation there are lots of restrictions before you can combine equipment combos and make changes.

Cheers!

 

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No its not just you.

Its the main reason I won't try X-plane,or even keep up with the every update in P3D, or even look into new products.

Life is just too short to keep on troubleshooting snags and problems , I dont tweak anymore.

 

Then there are products that are so confusing, i don't even get to the stage on the You Tube review where the endless options can be chosen and what every selection on the 50 choice list does  Ezodk/Chaseplane etc.

 

This hobby will drive you crazy if you let developers trap you into a riddle solving nightmare everytime you try and update/upgrade something

 

 

 

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Glad to see this thread as I have been wondering the same things.  I switched over from FSX last year and, while the OOM's are gone, the are definitely more problems of other types in P3D (at least in my case).

I have the most issues it seems with EZDocV2 and FSUIPC5.  EZCa2 frequently can't remember some camera settings on some planes yet other times it can.  FSUIPC5 seems able to redefine axes or link up double axis assignments etc.

I have a couple aircraft where if I save them in a scenario and load it later, some of its features won't work.  If I create the flight from scratch, all is well.  (I know about saved states - that's just not it ) 

I have used all these in FSX for years and am and familiar with their setup.    These are just a few examples.  As the OP pointed out, there's always something.....

  I make mistakes sometimes like anyone else, but there's something else going on in P3D (V4.3 in my case).

 

Cheers

Jeff B.

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Like conducting an orchestra. Trying to get each section and then the individual elements in each section to play together in harmony. Oh but isn't it sweet when it happens!?

Doesn't it feel victorious to finally get something to work after many frustrating hours of Google and Utube research. And then rarly use whatever it was but you just had to make it work. Couldn't walk away defeated. Flight sim is an inexhaustible hobby. Takes time expense, patience and tenasity. Certainly not for the plug and play genery. You have to love it or you will eventually leave it.

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4 hours ago, Ray Proudfoot said:

Not really Chuck. All your saving is a bit of loading time. What caught my eye in your post were problems with FSUIPC5 and throttles disconnecting. Is that something that happens occasionally or more often? Make sure you have the latest version of FSUIPC5 as earlier versions are not supported.

It shouldn’t be too difficult to sort out the hardware side. List what you have and the problems. Ideally you should raise it in the FSUIPC forum. Paid version or free one?

I believe the throttle issue is related to a USB going to sleep - I upgraded computers and needed to change the settings.  But then of course today the brake and flaps stopped working.  The fix was to swap out the USB port.  I have found the FSUIPC forum to be helpful - he demands that you know your stuff, but honestly that has made me a better user.  I do have the latest version and it's paid.

In general, I started this hobby about as naive as you could get when it comes to any part of the inside of a computer....today, while I couldn't program one to save my life at least I know what a config file is and how to make a change.....but I may never know the difference between 'local' and 'roaming' in my user folder.

To the gent (pracines) that mentioned Jetline Systems' customer service - you are spot on.  By far the best because at their core they are good people.  There are other great companies in this hobby - some not so good - but in general most of you like the opportunity to help out where you can.

So while I'm not crazy about another NE win tonight (sorry) I do have a better sense that I'm not alone and I won't get nearly as frustrated the next time things go wrong.  Thank you.

Edited by Chuck Steinmetz

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Thanks Chuck for your original post on this topic and other fellow simmers who have responded. I have found this topic to be both very interesting and informative at the same time.

I feel very fortunate that I have not had very many stressful hair pulling flight sim issues that have caused me to lose any sleep.For me as a real world pilot who can only afford to currently fly via flight simulation I have only been grounded a few times with just several CTD's in P3D 3.4, pre-installed on a two year old Jetline computer and at times the dread 32 bit "OOM". Like many other flight simmers, I too suffered through several Microsoft Windows 10 Update "Screw-ups". Eventually I will probably move on and update my Jetline with another 1 TB SSD and put the latest version of P3D whether it be version 4 or a version 5 if and when that hits the market.

For the most part, I have adopted a "KISS" philosophy (Keep It Simple Simmer) especially with P3D 3.4. Other than aircraft addons & F1 GTN750 & 650, the only scenery addons I have are from Orbx. I have stayed away from all of the other software addons that seem to enhance the flightsim experience greatly but also stirs the so-called flightsim pot with a lot of potential program problems and crashes. I would very much like to add a real world feel to my flight sim experience with hardware addons such as rudder pedals and multi-engine throttle, prop and mixture set-ups, however I am afraid that I too may be hit with a "sleepy USB" so for now, I will stick with my 9+ year old Saitek X 52 throttle and Joy stick which still works well. 

Again, thanks for the great post and informative thoughts. By the way, I was not all that crazy either how the Super Bowl turned out but it is what it is!

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I've found that, as in flying the plane, checklists are a Godsend for making sure I don't forget to do the whole littany of important "little" things before loading things up for a flight.  Before i started doing that, I experienced a recurring rash of midstream aggravations, like realizing that my destination scenery isn't active when I'm halfway there, forgetting to export the makerwys data to my ATC program so it can't see the runways on my shiny new addon airport, getting that surprise "a Couatl update is available" message because I didn't pre-emptively run LiveUpdate, not physically checking the departure and arrival airports etc.  Once I got methodical about it, the unhappy surprises really dropped off to noise level.

Some of the unhappiness mentioned above, like USB ports going to sleep, are checklist items I address anytime/every time Windows gets an update...I have a small list of things to check, like making sure the update didn't re-enable power saver settings on the USB ports, didn't re-enable the nVidia HD Audio drivers on my video card (it conflicts with my primary sound card), and didn't make my network shares disappear on the remote PC that runs weather/ATC/EFB.  I have a checklist for adding scenery to the sim that makes sure I get the scenery in the proper place in the config hierarchy, that I disable any conflicting ADE/AFCAD in MyTraffic, that I check the SODE gateway install, that I've checked the position of GSE and clutter around a couple of preferred parking spots, and that I actually sit a plane down on the field post-install in day and night conditions looking for things like elevation problems, misplaced or doubled-up objects, lighting issues etc.  And once I've done it, I log it in a spreadsheet so I can check if it's been properly prepped for use.

Checklists are a tried and true way of methodically managing complexity...a way of making sure you look at the important things every time  They're a great way of learning from all those little mistakes, rather than continuing to make them over and over again, which really does detract from the joy of a flawless simulated flight.

Regards

 

 

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5 hours ago, Chuck Steinmetz said:

I believe the throttle issue is related to a USB going to sleep - I upgraded computers and needed to change the settings.  But then of course today the brake and flaps stopped working.  The fix was to swap out the USB port.  I have found the FSUIPC forum to be helpful - he demands that you know your stuff, but honestly that has made me a better user.  I do have the latest version and it's paid.

That's an easy fix. Control Panel - Device Manager and then right-click on each USB Hub and choose Properties.

Go to the Power Management tab and ensure "Let this device go to sleep" is unchecked.

You don't mention your yoke and throttle make but generally they prefer USB2 ports to USB3. You will have a couple of those so try to plug them into those if they're not already.

Windows 10 updates do have a tendency to switch those power mgmt settings back on so it's something you need to watch.

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11 hours ago, Chuck Steinmetz said:

I've been flightsimming for several years.  I've watched the progress of P3D and many addons.  But I'm wondering if I'm the only one who seems to run into issues w/ the software.  It's very possible that it's set/up operator error....

I'm not questioning performance - I'm lucky enough to have purchased my computer(s) from Jetline Systems and they are solid machines.  I run a FDS Jetmax single seat 737 Sim w/ Simavionics software.  I also network Pilot2ATC on a third computer.

It took some learning to get everything set up  - but all seems to work well.  Once in a while I run into a glitch w/ P2ATC, but no ATC software is perfect.  The Simavionic software is rock solid.  Where I seem to run into issues is w/P3D (V4.4) and addons.

And where I get really frustrated is after spending the time setting up sim, the weather, the flight plan, the route, etc, etc...inevitably I run into an issue w/ something not working correctly....an airport, addon, FSUPIC/Throttles may disconnect, the jetways are sitting up in the sky, the plane is 5 feet into the ground or in the airport, a chunk of something is missing, etc....and there is no consistency to what the issues are so tracking them down becomes difficult.

I have learned to reboot my computer(s), make sure the are talking to each other, keeping my software up to date, make sure I've run the elevation config in Vector w/ any additional software as a part of my 'preflight' almost every time.  And yet just as you are ready to fly or start in earnest something comes up.

So am I nuts?  Is it just me?  And while I have no real desire to switch over to X-Plane (again, this has nothing to do w/ performance) are there fewer issues in this area w/ that software?  I know they have made many improvements in other areas.

So that's it - I felt I had to vent after an unsuccessful attempt this AM.  If this doesn't sound familiar to anyone else than it's definitely operator error and I'll keep reading forums like this and other for ways to improve my reliability.

Thanks!

Chuck

Chuck... I share your frustration and thoughts 150%! I too am getting rather miffed with the whole simulation thing, for the very reasons you pointed out.

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Hello. I have a 777 jetmax with overhead, 2 jetline computers. I noticed someone mention earlier about USB. My setup has a 777 printer and for some reason the printer stopped working - I couldn't figure out why it stopped printing - it had power, the computer recognized it, all settings were correct but wasn't printing. Then I remembered purchasing a 3.0 USB cable for the printer, swapping out the 2.0 USB cable.  This is when the printer stopped working so I decided to reconnect the printer with the 2.0 USB cable and it started to print again. My conclusion, too much power / data transfer with the 3.0 USB cable for the printer to handle. 

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I had one of these moments last night when the "loading autogen scenery" part of the loading process suddenly started taking excessive amounts of time (to the point where I had to load P3D again). I remembered something similar happening several years ago, but I could not remember the solution. Fortunately, I found an old thread on the UK2000 forum that I had posted at the time.....and I realised that I had disabled the scenery entry that called the autogen model files! The P3D loading process was searching for them without success, which is why it appeared to have virtually stalled.

Edited by Christopher Low

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