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captain420

Best practices for P3D addon consolidation and organization?

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Posted (edited)

I'm about to build a new system and would like to know some best practices when it comes to creating and organizing all your add ons for P3D. Do you use the default 'Prepar3D v5 Add-ons' folder to contain all your add ons? or do you have a separate folder?

For my new computer I would like to consolidate all add ons into a single location for the sake of better organization and simplicity. Currently I have some developers that install addons into the default location and for ones that don't, I have a separate folder on another drive for my addons. I don't like this method as it gets very messy as time goes by when your addons starts piling up. 

I really wish that LM would allow us in the settings to specify our own location to use instead of putting the default addons folder on C:\ drive. I am very low on space and some add-ons take up a lot of space. I only have a 128GB SSD. This is why allowing us to specify our own location would be nice.

With that being said. I would like to here how you guys are handling this situation. Looking for an optimal way to organize all my add-ons for P3D v5.

Edited by captain420

Aaron Vinci

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Intel i7 3770k @ 4.5Ghz / Windows 10 Professional 64 bit / 32GB DDR3 1600MHz RAM / EVGA NVIDIA GTX 1080 FTW 8GB RAM / 128MB SSD (OS Drive) / 2x2TB HDD / 750watt PSU

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One way to get the default addons folder (the one in Documents) off the C drive is to move the entire Windows documents folder to another drive and make that the Windows default.  Some quick Google-Fu will lead you to any number of how-to links.  There is a second Add-ons folder in the Users\<your PC name>\AppData\Roaming that, AFAIK, can't be moved.

That said, most P3D add-ons allow you to choose an install location--with those add-ons the only things that go into the default addons folders (there are two) are a few very small .cfg and .xml files that point to it wherever it's installed.

There are a very few stubborn add-ons that insist on having the entire shooting match installed in the default folder in Documents and which stop working if you move them (like the Maddog MD-8x, for example).  The only real option there is the first one, where you move the folder and configure Windows to use that.

Lorby-SI's P3D Addon Manager is a free and powerful tool for managing your add-ons...in particular it makes moving older stuff that uses Scenery.cfg entries to the newer xml system easy.  It also allows you to make snapshots of your config so that you can revert to that if you accidentally booger something up.  Your rebuild will go a lot easier if you learn to use it first before you begin the process of installing all your stuff anew.

 


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Well the FSLabs, A2A planes want to install into the default P3D add-ons folder, and it installs everything, not just the add-on.xml files. Which takes up a lot of space. There are a few other addons in there that take up a lot of space also. This is what I'm referring to.  

For my new build, I want to avoid having addition add-ons folder asides from the default one that gets created when you install P3D. So I guess I'll set Windows to move the default Documents folder location to another drive then. 

That way I can also have my OrbX library in there as well as all future P3D v5 add-ons all in one centralized location for better organization.


Aaron Vinci

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Intel i7 3770k @ 4.5Ghz / Windows 10 Professional 64 bit / 32GB DDR3 1600MHz RAM / EVGA NVIDIA GTX 1080 FTW 8GB RAM / 128MB SSD (OS Drive) / 2x2TB HDD / 750watt PSU

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First, Lorby-Si 'Addon Organizer' allows you to set up any alternative for ..\Documents\Prepar3D add-ons folder. (lDiscovery tab)

Secondly, if an installer puts everything in the \Documents folder (so not just the addon.xml), I simply move all the files from \Documents to my own 'add-on' folder on another drive,  and edit the add-on.xml file to point to the new location.

 


Willy Vercruyssen

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I usually install addons on my desktop so i can see all the files that were installed, then move them to my own addons folder, organized by aircraft, programs and scenery. I then create (if required) an add-on.xml file for it and add it to the addons.cfg file inside ProgramData. I also remove the entry from the add/remove programs in the control panel (if it is a scenery) to get rid of all unnecessary clutter as i only really need to remove the entry from addons.cfg and delete the folder to get rid of it.

Like this, even if i have to completely reinstall the simulator, _ALL_ my add-ons will magically be restored once i start it.

Some stubborn companies still force us to drop their files inside the simulator folder (PMDG - oh shocking, Captain Sim to name but a few) and if you try to remove them from there, they will simply cease functioning as lots of stuff is hard-coded as it expects to live in that folder all the time. This is a real bad practice, but what can you do...


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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, captain420 said:

Well the FSLabs, ..want to install into the default P3D add-ons folder, and it installs everything, not just the add-on.xml files.

No, my FSLabs aicraft reside in D:\Prepar3d v5 AddOns, P3D itself in D:\Prepar3D v5. My default P3D add-ons folder is on my F: drive in F:\Documents\Prepar3D v5 Add-ons and this is where all the add-on.xml files go.

I've had it like that for years, in fact one of the first things that I always do on a new Windows installation is to move the Documents, Downloads, Music , Pictures and Videos folders away from the C:\ drive.

Edited by SierraDelta
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Cheers, Søren Dissing

CPU: Intel i7-7700K @4.8 Ghz | Noctua NH-D15 | GeForce GTX1080 8Gb | MoBo: ASUS Maximus IX Hero | RAM: 32Gb DDR4 2666 | SSDs: 500Gb Samsung M.2 EVO960 (Win drive), 240 Gb Kingston HyperX 3K (P3D drive) | Monitor: 28" ASUS PB287Q 4K | Win 10 Pro 64-Bit | Prepar3d v5.0 Professional | FTX Global, OpenLC EU, NA | ASP3D (Beta) & ASCA | Chaseplane

 

 

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3 hours ago, SierraDelta said:

No, my FSLabs aicraft reside in D:\Prepar3d v5 AddOns, P3D itself in D:\Prepar3D v5. My default P3D add-ons folder is on my F: drive in F:\Documents\Prepar3D v5 Add-ons and this is where all the add-on.xml files go.

I've had it like that for years, in fact one of the first things that I always do on a new Windows installation is to move the Documents, Downloads, Music , Pictures and Videos folders away from the C:\ drive.

Strange. I'm not sure what I did then. So you're saying that P3D's default addon folder location is located on your F:\Documents\Prepar3D v5 Add-ons and the only files you have in there are add-on.xml?

Cause that's how I currently have it set up as well. My default P3D addon folder location is on E:\Documents\Prepar3D v5 Add-ons but in there not only do I have add-on.xml files but the actual full install of some 3rd party airports, airplanes, etc. I made created a separate direction for installing all my addons to at E:\P3D Addons. I believe I have been doing something wrong and my setup is not optimal. May I ask why don't you just install all your addons into F:\Documents\Prepar3D v5 Add-ons then? Instead of having 2 folders for the same thing? This is why it gets confusing for me. Why have FSLabs installed to D:\Prepar3D v5 Add-ons, and then have the add-on.xml file installed into F:\Documents\Prepar3D v5 Add-ons when you can just simply have all the files install into F:\Documents\Prepar3D v5 Add-ons?

If you have the add-on.xml file installed in another location or folder, wouldn't you need to edit the add-on.xml file and change the path to reflect where it needs to locate the necessary files? Doing this way creates more work. Whereas if you have installed everything into one location, then editing the paths inside the add-on.xml file isn't required. Somebody correct me if I'm wrong. 


Aaron Vinci

----------------

Intel i7 3770k @ 4.5Ghz / Windows 10 Professional 64 bit / 32GB DDR3 1600MHz RAM / EVGA NVIDIA GTX 1080 FTW 8GB RAM / 128MB SSD (OS Drive) / 2x2TB HDD / 750watt PSU

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3 hours ago, captain420 said:

If you have the add-on.xml file installed in another location or folder, wouldn't you need to edit the add-on.xml file and change the path to reflect where it needs to locate the necessary files? 

The installer(s) take care of that automatically. I have not had to do any editing post-installation 

Concerning D:\ vs F:\ - the F:\ drive is slower than the D:\, which is an SSD. So, all (well, almost all) the important stuff goes on D:\, where as the add-on.xmls are on the slower F:\, no big problem since they are only read at P3D start-up. I just realised that the ASP3D "connector" is in F:\Documents\Prepar3D v5 Add-ons, but that was probably my own fault, I'll change that when the next Beta is available.


Cheers, Søren Dissing

CPU: Intel i7-7700K @4.8 Ghz | Noctua NH-D15 | GeForce GTX1080 8Gb | MoBo: ASUS Maximus IX Hero | RAM: 32Gb DDR4 2666 | SSDs: 500Gb Samsung M.2 EVO960 (Win drive), 240 Gb Kingston HyperX 3K (P3D drive) | Monitor: 28" ASUS PB287Q 4K | Win 10 Pro 64-Bit | Prepar3d v5.0 Professional | FTX Global, OpenLC EU, NA | ASP3D (Beta) & ASCA | Chaseplane

 

 

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On 7/12/2020 at 11:45 AM, captain420 said:

I only have a 128GB SSD.

Thats a VERY small drive for a Windows installation, you will hit the end of disk space soon anyway.

I highly recommend to go at least for a fast 256 or 512 GB as system drive. 


System: i9 9900k@4.9 - 32 GB RAM - Aorus 1080ti --- Sim/Addons: P3D v5 with tons of Addons and 3rd Party Airports
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