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swift-connection module
FG swift connection.PNG
Started in 10/2018
Description Connection module to swift pilot client which allows connections to FSD servers like VATSIM
Maintainer(s) Lars Toenning
Contributor(s) Lars Toenning
Status Released (FG 2020.1) and actively developed
Folders flightgear/flightgear/next/src/Network/Swift/

This module allows FlightGear to connect to an externally running swift client.

swift is an open-source pilot client for multiple flight simulators (FSX, P3D, FS9, XPlane, FG) and operating systems (Windows, MacOS, Linux). It allows connections to FSD servers like VATSIM. Further information about swift can be found here.

swift project status

swift is actively developed here and is in public beta status.

Current features

The key features include:

  • aircraft interpolation
  • voice communication with ATC, support for new VATSIM codec planned
  • model matching
  • Database support for model mappings, users can contribute
  • TCAS support


FG 2020.3.* (LTS) and earlier isn't compatible with swift >= 0.11.0. The only way to use swift with VATSIM and Flightgear is by using the nightlies or building from next right now.

For communication between FlightGear and swift dbus is used. To assure that both sides using the same commands for communication the FGSWIFTBUS_API_VERSION must match each other. Otherwise connection is not possible.

For compatibility see the following table:

<2019.2 next
<=0.9.3 -/- -/-
develop 1/- 1/-


For an setup guide for FG see: https://swift-project.org/home/install/configure_fg/

Alot of good videos for the swift gui are on youtube: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLREsotdYQdGmeasv1x8vsNhiZGhankLoP

Linux specifics

Hotkeys support


On Linux, the swift client needs read access to the device nodes /dev/input/event*. In case your linux user does not have read access to this nodes, the swift client cannot grab keyboard events, and thus the PTT assigned keybind will not work.

To fix, for example in Debian 12, you just need to add a udev rule from the link above and reboot.

Aircraft mapping (swift mapping tool)

For correct aircraft loading and parsing into swift you need to add FG's model directories. The supported folders are:

  • $FG_ROOT/AI/Aircraft
  • Any other folder which contains user-flyable airplanes (in separate folders).

Note for Windows users

Starting with swift 0.9.1, swift automatically adds the sim and model paths if FlightGear was installed through the installer.

WIP video