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Howto:Mix scenery versions

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If you experience FlightGear crashes especially near big airports, or in Europe, they may be caused by the bigger size tiles used in the new scenery for more details. Those bigger tiles may cause memory problems if your memory (RAM) is smaller 8GB. Right now engineering is working on new methods for how to handle that bigger scenery also for smaller memory-sizes – but that requires many program-changes – thus it will take some time. (Engineering is short on manpower for this task – so any voluntary help is welcome!)

If you have those problems you might consider to use the old “scenery 1” for areas in which you experience problems. When doing that you may just replace the

  • 10x10-tiles of scenery: But have a look onto any map to see how big that 10°x10° area is! (e.g. 4 of those tiles cover the whole Central Europe: e000n49, e000n50, e010n49, e010n50 !)) - and remember: Even so you may be angry → the scenery2-tiles are much more detailed and just prettier! So you may want to use as many of them as possible!
  • 1x1-tiles (always 1/100 of a 10x10-tile!). But using those needs more work from you, because you still need to download the big 10x10-tiles first and then remove the not wanted 1x1-tiles out of the 10x10-tile directory.

Please find in the following a description on how to do both:

Structure your sceneries

Make sure you do not mix scenery-v2 with scenery-v1 in one directory! So we suggest you structure your directories like (you can use your own names):

  • AddOn1”: Into that you should put all AddOn-sceneries that are based on scenery-v1. They will be used as they are -- with whatever scenery-version you use!
  • scenery1”: Into that you should download all the scenery-v1 tiles
  • AddOn2”: Into that you should have all AddOn-sceneries that are based on scenery-v2 (and that shall override also newer sceneries that may be downloaded later, by a new version and/or TerraSync!)
  • TerraSync”: Into that one TerraSync will download whenever it is active. Be CAREFUL: Since FlightGear 3.0 TerraSync downloads always scenery-v2! Do not mix it with scenery-v1 tiles in any directory!
When you are flying in an area for which you have set up scenery1 you should disable TerraSync! Otherwise TerraSync will detect the old level scenery and try to load the new one – which causes a drastic, not needed, additional workload for your PC! (You may switch off TerraSync in flight by setting “enabled = false” in “FlightGear-menu-bar → Debug → Browse Internal Properties → sim → terrasync” (you may just “CTR+mouse-click” onto the value to switch the current value).
  • scenery2”: For the new scenery-v2 tiles

The total may then look like (here shown is the Linux-directory-naming):

When you use FGrun it may look like (on “FGrun page 0” BEFORE the “aircraft-selection”!!)
FG_SCENERY: /home/emmerich/FlightGear/Scenery/eddf-ellx/

/home/emmerich/FlightGear/Scenery_old/
/home/emmerich/FlightGear/AddOn2/
/home/emmerich/FlightGear/Scenery/TerraSync/
/home/emmerich/FlightGear/Scenery/

When you use a start-program it will look like: (Remember: All in one line! And the separators are “:” in Linux and “;” in Windows!)
--fg-scenery=/home/emmerich/FlightGear/Scenery/eddf-ellx/:/home/emmerich/FlightGear/Scenery_old/:/home/emmerich/FlightGear/AddOn2/:/home/emmerich/FlightGear/Scenery/TerraSync/:/home/emmerich/FlightGear/Scenery/

FlightGear will then walk through this sequence and stops searching as soon as it finds the name of the tile it is looking for. And you are able to define with what scenery you want to work: e.g. if you want to use scenery-v2 only → just remove the “scenery1” from that sequence!

If needed, see the description on how to define these directories to your FlightGear, e.g.:

Three ways to find the V1-tiles you want/need

Use the FlightGear world map

Call up http://www.flightgear.org/legacy-Downloads/scenery-v2.12.html. Point with your mouse into the square(s) you need and note down the area-name shown below the map. e.g.:

  • for San Francisco (KSFO) that would be w130n30
  • for Frankfurt (EDDF) that is difficult to see on that map – it could be either one of e000n40, e000n50, e010n40, e010n50

NOTE: so far that page allows for the download of Scenery v1.0 (confusingly, v2.12 is the FlightGear version actually, which used Scenery v1.0!). However, see the next chapter for download.

Use any map

Of course you can also use any road-map or atlas with GPS data. But watch that you get the 10x10 pieces! You have those when the last digit in the GPS degrees is “0”! Ref. the above examples!

Use the UFO to search the needed tiles

  • Start (e.g. with the UFO) at that airport/place you have problems at
  • Open: Menu-bar → Location → Select Airport
  • see at the right the values for Lat/Lon. e.g.:
    • for EDDF that is 50.032 / 8.542 (north / east)
    • for KSFO that is 37.619 / -122.375 (north / west)
  • reverse the order, take only the value before the decimal, and set the last digit to 0:
    • for EDDF you get: e000n50
    • for KSFO you get: w120+10 = w130n30
(for “west” and “south” you must add 10! They count from right to left and top to bottom)

Warning: See e.g. the “Lat 50.032” at EDDF! That means the edge of that tile is directly on the borderline “50” to “40”! In cases like that you may have only part of that airport you wanted! I suggest you always load the “Neighbors” if the first digit after the decimal is smaller 3 or bigger 7 (as is in all other values above!)!

Download the 10x10 tiles

Do NOT try to use any “Automatic Download” programs (i.e. TerraSync) – those will always download the ver.2 scenery!

So far, you can use http://www.flightgear.org/legacy-Downloads/scenery-v2.12.html, but someday that might be updated to allow the download of Scenery 2.0. If that happens, follow this procedure:

Optimize the downloaded 10x10 to 1x1 tiles

if you want to continue using as much as possible from the more detailed scenery-v2 or you do not have much disk-space available, you may reduce that big 10x10 tiles to the only required 1x1 tiles.

If you open one of the now downloaded/extracted 10x10 tiles you will see inside (up to 100) 1x1 tiles. So you can remove a lot of those if you e.g. just want to use the “close to airport” tiles in ver.1 and leave all others in ver.2. For that I suggest again the rule from above: Always make sure that to any border there remains at lest ~30% of a degree.

i.e. see the examples from above: Take the Lat/Lon values, and cut off everything after the 1st decimal:

EDDF 50.032 / 8.542 becomes e008.5 / n50.0
KSFO 37.619 / -122.375 becomes w132.3 / n37.6

(remember: “-/w” means +10!)

now let us arrange the +/- 0.3° areas around them:

w132.6 / n37.9 W132.0 / n37.9 e008.2 / n50.0 e008.8/ n50.0
KSFO

w132.3 / n37.6

EDDF

e008.5 / n50.0

w132.6 / n37.3 w132.0 / n37.3 e008.2 / n49.7 E008.8 / n49.7

So, after taking of again all behind the decimal, you see:

For KSFO you only need one 1x1-tile: w132n37
For EDDF you need two 1x1 tiles: e008n49 + e008n50

You can remove all the other 1x1-tiles within that 10x10-tile – just watch it: If you define more areas – those may require additional 1x1-tiles inside this same 10x10-tile! (e.g. if you do the same for KRHV or ELLX, etc.)

Available as AddOn

If someone did prepare such a “minimized ver.1 area for his airport – he may offer it to others here: