| This changelog is a draft.
It should not (yet) be seen as an official document..
FlightGear 2.6.0 ChangeLog
The FlightGear development team is happy to announce the v2.6.0 release of FlightGear, the free, open-source flight simulator. This new version contains many exciting new features, enhancements and bugfixes. Major improvements from v2.4.0 include reduced AI aircraft load times, easier graphics tuning, more sophisticated AI aircraft and improved usability.
Founded in 1997, FlightGear is developed by a worldwide group of volunteers, brought together by a shared ambition to create the most realistic flight simulator possible that is free to use, modify and distribute. FlightGear is used all over the world by desktop flight simulator enthusiasts, for research in Universities and for interactive exhibits in museums.
FlightGear features more than 400 aircraft, a worldwide scenery database, detailed sky modelling, a flexible and open aircraft modelling system, flexible networking options, multiple display support, and an open architecture. Best of all, it is open-source so no company controls development.
Download FlightGear V2.6.0 for free from 
FlightGear - Fly Free!
Some of the major changes include:
- At selected airports, FlightGear can automatically start at an appropriate parking spot based on the size and type of your aircraft.
- To reduce stuttering during model loading and take further advantage of multi-core CPUs, MP and AI aircraft models are now loaded in a background thread.
- To reduce load times still further, only the parts of the aircraft currently visible are loaded from disk.
- Many new and updated AI aircraft and liveries. Over 80 airlines now populate the virtual skies.
- The range at which AI aircraft are displayed is now configurable, allowing you to tune FlightGear for best performance.
- AI controlled pilots have received extensive landing training wit, and now make a more realistic approach, and vacate the runway when able.
- The Local Weather package has been further integrated with the FlightGear core, and has been renamed "Advanced Weather". New rendering techniques allow more detailed clouds with no performance impact. High altitude clouds are rendered more realistically, and clouds move with the wind without impacting performance.
- New replay system. Video-player like controls, including slow motion and fast forward. Pilots can now take over the aircraft at any time during a replay. Great for training particular flight phases such as approach over and over again.
- Aircraft status ratings are displayed in the FlightGear launcher for a selected number of aircraft, allowing you to see at a glance the FDM, model, systems and cockpit quality.
- Multiplayer settings can be accessed in-sim. You can now choose your callsign, select an MP server and connect within the simulator.
- Automatic scenery download is now even easier to use. Simply select the scenery directory to download to, and switch it on.
- Individual graphics effects can now be configured from within the Rendering Settings dialog, allowing you to fine-tune the performance of FlightGear within the sim.
Highlighted new and improved aircraft
- Improved appearance of the sea by adding foam and aligning the waves with the surface wind. Wave speed is dependant on windspeed.
- Transition effect.
- Wet tarmac during rain showers.
- Combined aircraft shader: a combination of the bumpmap-, specular-, reflection and lightmap shader. Reflections now rotate counter to the aircraft movement, the shader supports 4 lightmaps per objects.
- Improved skydome-shader.
- Additonal joysticks and rudder pedals are supported out-of-the-box, including the Logitech WingMan Interceptor, Saitek Pro Combat Rudder Pedals, Thrustmaster HOTAS Warthog, various accelerometers, .
- Many, many more. See our bugtracker for an extensive list