155: FlyZone Switcher Sys Preparation #1

For those subscribers who signed up to request my coming FlyZone Switcher utility, following is the 1st step-by-step FSX system preparation guide.   These steps are relatively simple to follow.

However, keep in mind that all system preparation procedures described here and in the future are mandatory in order to work properly with my utility.   Do follow exactly of what I am instructing for now.    You may be able to customize some of the contents later once you complete and master the concept of my FlyZone Switching approach.

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News: ShadeShifter V3 Upgrade Patch Sent

The download link of the Upgrade Patch for ShadeShifter V3 has been sent to all CURRENT ShadeShifter users by a separate email.

Installation is pretty simple.   There are 2 old files to be overwritten, and 7 new files to be added to the previous version 2  —  If you have modified or created any files for the previous version, DO BACKUP them first.

1)  Unrar the file attached.

2)  Replace your ShadeShifterV2.exe with the new ShadeShifter.exe.    This filename will be used from now on to simplify future update when available.

3)  Copy all 8 files in attached ShadeShifterSettings folder to your ShadeShifterSettings folder, in which ShadeShifter.cfg will be the second file to be overwritten.

That’s all and enjoy.

153: Shade Shifter Version 3 Released

The version 3 of my Shade Shifter utility has been completed.   It will be ready for download within a week.   In addition to code optimizations and user-interface enhancements, major features added to the new version include the following:

1)
When the utility is started, it will automatically check and display the current Day Cycle of FSX for users’ reference.    This minimizes the needs of calling up the Day Cycle Calculator for just today.

For example, the Day Cycle of today — May-14, 2012 in FSX — is 2.   It will be shown as “Today’s Shade 02” when Shade Shifter is started.   (Refer to Post 116 for more information about the Day Cycle Calculator.)

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152: Downgrade to Radeon Version 11

Besides the latest OpenGL issue with TrackIR, Radeon’s 12.x driver has been giving me a subjective impression that FSX micro-stutters a little bit more than its predecessors.   This is even more significant after upgrading my system with Orbx’s latest patches.

Busy work is the excuse that keeps me using this version.   Since I am a bit free this weekend, I downgraded the video driver to 11.12 to verify my subjectivity a fuss or not.

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151: Enriching One’s Pilot Reward Collection

Besides missions, many rewards in FSX could be collected from regular free flyings.   These rewards are called Sandbox Rewards because the world in FSX is like a sandbox in which one can explore without limitations except challenges and realism levels people set for themselves.

Followings highlight eight quick Sandbox Rewards one could easily obtain by just landing at the airports specified.   These places, indeed, are fun to visit, too.
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150: A Quick Fix to TrackIR 5 Error

I’ve been using TrackIR with no problem until this morning.   When it was loaded, the screen popped up with a  message box as shown to the left.   After the OK button was pressed, another error showing up saying that TrackIR had stopped working due to some system issues.

Tried uninstalling and reinstalling the driver (either new or old), as well as turning off and on the computer, several times.  The error persisted.

A few people reported the same issue on NaturalPoints’ support Forum here.    Mike from the company replied that the issue was caused by an OpenGL conflict between Radeon latest driver (12.4 in my case) and TrackIR driver.    He said he could provide replacement files and instructions to solve the issue.  Continue reading