AFLT4 Beta

gadgets

Resource contributor
As I hinted in this forum a while back, I have been working on a much-improved version of Airfield Lights Toolbox (AFLT4). The new version sports an intelligent graphical interface that supports the specification of custom lighting for any airport surface or, indeed, for an entire airport (though the results may need a little "tweaking") with only a few mouse clicks. The need to place custom lights individually as part of the airport definition or to specify light arrays in text files will be a thing of the past. I also hope to significantly reduce FPS-impact. While the project is not yet complete, it is at a stage where meaningful evaluation can be undertaken.

I will be travelling for the next few weeks, but I hope to essentially complete the project while I'm away. In the meantime, to reduce final testing time and to ensure all the necessary user-functionality, I would appreciate receiving feedback on the user interface. (Since object library generation is not yet functional, you won't be able to see the results in FlightSim. But, the GUI tells you everything you need to know about light positioning and characteristics.) I believe the project as it now stands will be fully representative of the final version.

To that end, a beta version of the project is available at http://stuff4fs.com/Applications/AFLT4_Beta/Downloads. The download archive includes an extensive user manual.

Because I will be travelling with only limited Internet access, I may not receive or be able to respond to your comments in a timely fashion, nor will I be able to make frequent updates. But, if you are interested in having such capability in the near future, it will be helpful if you download the beta version and let me know what you think.

Please communicate with me via e-mail; it will be difficult for me to check for forum posts. Also, because of communication difficulties, please do not ask casual questions (time for that when the project is complete), or seek support until after you have consulted the user manual.

Don
 

gadgets

Resource contributor
A fully-functional version of AFLT4 is now available for beta testing at http://stuff4fs.com/Applications/AFLT4_Beta/Downloads/AFLT4006.zip. Anyone is welcome to download the archive and I welcome your comments. But, if you are just "kicking the tires (tyres)" rather than seriously evaluating the project, I'd appreciate it if you would hold-off for a couple of weeks until we have a chance to address any initial problem. The archive includes a comprehensive user manual and suggestions/instructions for serious beta testers.

Don
 

gadgets

Resource contributor
As described in the readme in v4006, I have completed the rework of the user interface. AFLT4007 is now available from http://stuff4fs.com/Applications/AFLT4_Beta/Downloads/AFLT4007.zip. If you are already using 4006, the new release should be automatically detected and downloaded.

AFLT 4007 requires a little help in reading 4006 files. When you start 4007, you'll be faced with a blank drawing surface. Under the Project menu, click Create New Project and enter the 4006 Project ID and Library Folder (renamed to Project Data folder) path. You previous airport and data should appear. Close AFLT4007 to save the new settings and re-open.

Don
 

gadgets

Resource contributor
I have just posted what I hope will be the final beta release of AFLT4. Primarily, the changes from its predecessor are a result of my "fine-tuning" of the various light sources to give a reasonably uniform appearance across all light sources and all FlightSim versions. I have also added a new section to the user manual giving "tips" for adjusting these "standard" light source characteristics for your specific application if you don't like these settings.

It Release 4.0.09 is not automatically detected the next time you start an earlier beta version of AFLT4, you can download it from http://stuff4fs.com/applications/AFLT4_Beta/Downloads/aflt4009.zip.

Don
 

gadgets

Resource contributor
I have just posted a new beta version of AFLT4 with several significant operational simplifications and enhancements.
  • The concept of "Library Folder" is now gone. AFLT 4 automatically assigns the data storage area.
  • I had neglected to include taxi paths and parking in earlier versions. They are now included.
  • "Stock" lighting can now be displayed independently and adoption of any or all of it takes but a few mouse clicks. This means you can configure custom 3D lighting for your entire airport quickly and easily.
A "strip airport" feature that regenerates your airport file (.xml or .bgl) without the stock lighting you've used or replaced is ready but not included in this release. (It needs further testing and I didn't want to delay release of the additional features.

So, as well as serious beta testers, "tire-kickers" are now welcome to have a look. I think you'll be surprised at how much realism can be added to your airports with so little effort.

The new release is available from http://stuff4fs.com/applications/AFLT4_Beta/Downloads/aflt4012.zip.

If you already installed a previous beta, the new release should be automatically discovered. But, be aware that the new version will not find your earlier project data. If you want to use that data, create a folder named "Projects" in your AFLT folder, then create a sub-folder named as your Project ID and copy the contents of your old Library Folder into that subfolder.

Don
 

gadgets

Resource contributor
I have just posted what I (again) hope is the final beta release, http://stuff4fs.com/applications/AFLT4_Beta/Downloads/aflt4013.zip. This new release supports the entry, editing and extension of apron edge lines.

I tried several methods for doing so before I found one that is satisfactory. As a consequence, the entry of lines and single lights underwent significant change. So, in your testing, please focus on that aspect.

As always, if you already installed a previous beta, the new release should be automatically discovered. But, if that previous release was not 4.0.12, please refer to the final paragraph of the immediately previous post.

Don
 
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