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MSFS ADE Unable to Open Saved Project

=rk=

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I've been having a problem with ADE for a while now, in that it is unable to open the saved project. I'd been using v17 for FS2020 and honestly had done much of my editing by building the package from DevMode. Finally I wanted to add ILS, so I tried to build a project from MSFS .bgl, since the ADE project save was before the DevModel edits. ADE (re) created the project and performed a successful build, but it refused to open the save. So I updated ADE to the latest hotfix and tried again, to make a project from MSFS .bgl.

This time, when it refused to open the save, I went ahead and sent the error with my message. It has now become a regular pattern, if I want to edit in ADE, I must start a project, create a slew of folder names, titles, creators, all that bs, finally get into my edit screen, change one thing, build and then wham, all over again, if I want to change anything else...

Now, I know you can dig down into the .bgl and find the glitch that you are waiting to apply the fix for, like here:

OK - I have replicated it. It's a bug in my code. I am working on an update to fix some things so I will add it to that. Sorry can't give a timeline but will try and get it done soon

But I want to ask, please, can't we just "open" a .bgl and edit it, like we used to be able to do and then just compile it, without having to create an entire project, simply to move one parking stand? Because I know you are going to say, "but FSPackagetool won't build a .bgl, without a complete 'package'" and my response will be, "but there is nothing materially different about a "build't" airport .bgl, it has just been run through the Package Build process. I use MCX to edit Package .bgl's in the Community Folder regularly and it seems like no problem to use a legacy editor to edit a .bgl that exists in a package that has been "builded."

So to be clear, I am asking you to consider the idea of allowing users who have access to BglComp.exe, to use that tool to compile MSFS ready airport .bgls, thanks.
 

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scruffyduck

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So you are asking for the following directly without creating a project? Load Bgl File > Edit the airport > Build the result

There is a direct build function in ADE 2020 Tools > Direct Build.


I don't think however that this will do what you are after since it does require a project xml and structure to make it work
 

rhumbaflappy

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What you are asking is the purpose of 2-way editing. Load the ADE-created project into the MSFS DevMode. Edit the airport there (or edit the airport XML by hand and reload), then save the scenery and compile in DevMode. The only compiler is in the sim itself. ADE uses the fspackagetool to access that compiler. The DevMode does that directlym in the sim. I often use a batchfile to access the compiler directly, without using DevMode or ADE or the fspackagetool... but it uses the Steam version of the sim. For example:

Code:
rmdir "C:\Users\dickl\Desktop\Subi-Airport\_PackageInt" /q /s
rmdir "C:\Users\dickl\Desktop\Subi-Airport\Packages" /q /s

D:\Programs\Steam\steamapps\common\MicrosoftFlightSimulator\FlightSimulator.exe "-I" ; BuildAssetPackages "C:\Users\dickl\Desktop\Subi-Airport\Subi-Airport.xml" "C:\Users\dickl\Desktop\Subi-Airport" "C:\Users\dickl\Desktop\Subi-Airport"

pause

You would need to change the locations of the elements. I use an app to build the batchfile:
 

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=rk=

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Thanks, but all this overlooks the problem of ADE refusing to open a saved project.

I don't think however that this will do what you are after since it does require a project xml and structure to make it work

Except there already IS a project xml and structure, there are any number of them and I have to make them all as accurate as possible, location, mag var, state in Asia, etc, because I never know which one, ADE will decide to use. There is the exact xml and file structure I'd used five minutes before, which ADE does not accept.

Finally, I suggest it might be more effective to disable error reporting. I followed the routine, submitted my report and waited and went through this a few more times and finally decided to, well, take matters into my own hands. If it's required to report in the forums, that seems very acceptable and being ignored, I think, most can do without.
 
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scruffyduck

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OK - you mention that you are using Alpha 17? The current version is Alpha 21 HF5. If you want to work on a project in ADE and Dev Mode then you need to have two way editing. That was introduced in Alpha 19.

I am behind on checking error logs. Mea Culpa. I have looked in the log stack and found one dated 2022_09-11 that is yours. I see there that you have updated to the current version so two -way editing is available.

The error in the log when loading the project relates to the loading of an NDB

Please bear with me while I look for other logs and also understand what is happening here. It may be that you are trying to do something that ADE can't cope with since the code is limited in some errors and it can't, for example, cope with project structures not created with ADE initially,

EDIT
As you suggested it is easy enough to find the area of code that is causing the problem and should be fixable. Using a direct open of the source bgl file will need to use the same code so you will get the same error whether a project is created or not. The only solution is fixing the code which decompiles the bgl file so that ADE can use it.
 
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scruffyduck

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I have to make them all as accurate as possible, location, mag var, state in Asia, etc, because I never know which one, ADE will decide to use.

Rick - I don't understand the above. It seems to suggest that ADE is randomly opening a project from a set of projects,
 

=rk=

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I see I forgot to explain that before posting, to confirm that the error was not caused by the old version, I updated to v21 and tried again to start a project from an existing .bgl. I try to be as clear as possible and apologize for when I’m not.
ADE is not opening random projects. The situation is that I must create an entirely new one, I have no access to existing projects, when ADE refuses my NDB laden .bgl.

I can delete the NDB using DevMode, to enable ADE functionality, since I need to move the airport slightly to compensate for a new CGL, because DevMode will force me to adjust each element individually.
However, this airport is out in the middle of the ocean, it has exactly two, immense power poles, with wires strung between them and a little shack underneath, so if that is not an NDB, it is what I’m going to call it.

Getting back to adjusting for a new CGL, DevMode has a feature that I wanted to share. I have hundreds of placements, blast fences, rows of hangars, all need to be moved the exact same 15 feet, or so.
Nightmare right? Not necessarily and I will always use “groups,” from now on. A “group” of placed scenery objects, has its own transform/scale/rotate gizmo and will move all contained objects uniformly.

Problem solved. However, the gizmo is disabled for airports…
 
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=rk=

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Ok so reporting back, ADE still refuses to recognize the airport, even after I manually edited the XML to remove the NDB I added, using ADE, by right clicking the workspace, select "add" select "NDB." ADE will now open the previously saved project, but will not save changes to the file, like adding a background image and when I try to move the airport, ADE displays this message.

not be read.jpg


Two way editing will not work, because it requires ADE to at least save an XML that MSFS can build to edit, which is not happening.
 

=rk=

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Ok, I am reporting here, because I believe ADE might have corrupted a file, that caused the latest update to think my airport was a "water runway." The fact that ADE will add an NDB that causes ADE to crash when opening that same saved airport, implies a fundamental dysfunctionality, therefore, when other problems manifest in the airport, like zeroed out GUID's and unselected water runway designations, it would be helpful to get some independent confirmation. It seems like all I am getting are offhanded assumptions.

It may be that you are trying to do something that ADE can't cope with since the code is limited in some errors and it can't, for example, cope with project structures not created with ADE initially,

I never commented that the airport was not made in ADE. All my airports I have ever created, have been made in ADE. I commented that I edited the airport outside ADE, in MSFS DevMode. It seem logical to me, that if ADE has any sort of problems with MSFS DevMode created airports, that would be a problem with ADE and not MSFS DevMode.

I've been having a problem with ADE for a while now, in that it is unable to open the saved project. I'd been using v17 for FS2020 and honestly had done much of my editing by building the package from DevMode.

This message informs I had been using ADE, up through V17. I use the term "build," because it means "compile" and I feel like it is mistaken for "create," is that a possibility? So to be clear, that means no DevMode, no AFCAD, no manual editing of XML, only ADE, to develop my airports. As of my last, v17 created airport, I wanted more changes, v17 could not do them, DevMode could not do them, so I updated to v21 to see if that allowed the changes. Instead I ran into the NDB rabbit hole and then this whole mess crashed into SU10, so it took the blame, for a day or two.

This will be my third serial message in the thread. Scrolling up to confirm I had informed about ADE use, I noticed an edit. FYI, we do not get email alerts for thread edits, as we do for new thread postings and since I rarely reread threads, I will likely miss an edit. Looking over the edit, it appears to suggest doing the same as what I independently did anyway.

I'll remain available for consultation, below you will find a link to a thread where I cataloged some of my discoveries. Beyond that, good luck with it.

 

scruffyduck

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I will try and catch up on this. I have personal matters taking priority for a few days.
 

=rk=

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Rgr that. I'll update anything I discover, I hope all resolves well for you.
 

rhumbaflappy

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Here's what I have done. I used ADE to make a new project from your packages folder BGL. I've attached it. Perhaps a good place to restart.
Keep in mind, ADE MSFS is in an alpha state. Asobo keeps changing the rules, so it's a bit hard to see if anything can be replicated in ADE. Also, Jon's code depends on Patrick Germain's decompiler DLL to extract or read airports, so that means ADE must wait for Patrick to update his code
 

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=rk=

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Thank you Dick, it is very gracious of you to lend your hand to this modest project. Understanding the development condition of ADE and the maelstrom Asobo is subjecting us to, I am the proverbial bull in the China shop. Given the fact my efforts are clumsy and undisciplined, I am gratified when the experts allow me to feel like my feedback is useful.
 

=rk=

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After comparatively testing Dick's XML with one that had the "water runway bug," the attached NDB seems to be the culprit, both for preventing ADE re-opening a saved project and the runway bug. I think it is more a glitch that FSPackagetool will compile right on through it, hello, console? Than it's inclusion in ADE selections, but it seems like it should be removed.

Also, I wanted to add that ADE XML syntax, is far more elegant than Asobo. The one redeeming feature for the Asobo XML, is that they add little name titles in green, so you don't have to decipher the GUID when troubleshooting. Beyond that, the individual elements are all jumbled together, whereas ADE tabs out each level, making it much more legible.

Edited to reflect new information in post 15
 
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=rk=

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I hope this will be my last update on the subject. Apparently there is a bonafide bug in the Scenery Editor. There has to be a runway/taxi/apron surface material, when saving a DevMode edited airport, that had already had surface material applied. It may be the case that is allowed to have no material, that there is a specific GUID for this, but if you remove runway material in DevMode, it is the cause of the "000" GUID. I did not think the editor would allow us to save an airport that had been unintentionally turned into a water runway, therefore I blamed the simultaneous NDB removal.

I systematically rechecked and NDB is allowed, although it can only be applied by direct edit, or ADE.
 

scruffyduck

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I am specifically addressing the errors which arise with NDBs. The opening action of the project fails because the Region is empty. In transferring the empty value from the decompiled XML into the code ADE uses to generate and add the NDB to the airport a null value arises. Since ADE is expecting a string it currently generates the error.

I modified the ADE code to handle the null value and change it to an empty string. The error is gone.

There is code in ADE for the NDB object that can be in the airport record > a terminal NDB. This code will replace any empty region ID with the region ID for the airport. This may appear unsatisfactory but this can be over written by the user to any two letter value. Making it Empty will use the airport region ID as described above.

In the specific instance of an NDB in the source code causing an error and stopping the project being opened this is fixed in my ADE code for the next update.

If there are other ways to cause a failed load then I will examine them and try to create a fix. My apologies for the slow reply and also that the fix may not become physically available for a little while
 

scruffyduck

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but will not save changes to the file, like adding a background image and when I try to move the airport, ADE displays this message.

Sadly an outstanding issue is that ADE is not able to save a background image if two way editing is enabled. The problem is simply that ADE must generate XML source that is compliant with the Sim SDK. Any element in ADE such as background images are not in the Sim source schema and cannot be saved. I have a plan to use parallel loading so that elements which cannot be stored via the SDK schema are saved separately - probably in the AD4 file.
 

=rk=

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Thank you Jon. It is easy enough to manually edit the airport XML to remove the NDB reference and allow ADE to do its job and then edit the XML again after ADE is done. It just requires dropping the project xml onto FSPackagetool, to get a build of all ADE edits, plus the NDB, if necessary.

One thing I am not clear on, is at which stage ADE records edits. Using DevMode, it is only necessary to save changes and those are recorded into the relevant XML files in the ProjectSources folder. For example, I can load a scenery project, move a bunch of objects, click "save" and these placements are recorded into the Project Sources > Scene > placement.xml. Later, I can drop that project xml onto FSPackagetool and it will build the scenery project, using those placements.

I assume this is also the case with ADE, when saving a project, ADE edits the airport.xml. Otherwise, we'd have to apply the build function from within ADE and discard the contents of the project packages folder, before we edit the XML.
 

scruffyduck

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ADE generates XML when the user calls save. Underneath the skin ADE is still using the .ad4 project file and structure. The ad4 data will be updated as soon as the edit is finished but XML gets generated when a save is called. This is why ADE 2020 will (should) automatically save the project (and generate XML) before a build. The other thing to be aware of is that ADE does a complete rebuild of the XML each time it makes a save. This could lose hand edited XML.

You can get the XML whenever you like calling this:

1664290510410.png


Will get you a current copy of the XML source. It gets saved in the main projects folder you specify

1664290612089.png


Would be better if you could select a folder to export to but I have not gotten that far with the alpha yet.
 

scruffyduck

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You can get snippets of XML for specific elements by selecting one and using Right Click > Show XML

1664290838527.png


1664290875652.png


Select the text and copy it. You can get larger chunks via Tools > Raw Data View.
 
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