Open Airfile Format

It seems to me that to really properly develop aircraft for FS, then ACES has left out airfiles from the SDK.

Personally, I think it is stupid to bother trying to develop something this detailed when that huge a chunk of info is missing.

While I realize that part of the reason was allegedly that they had to protect propriatary aircraft info (which I don't buy by the way) I think that this was a serious mistake.

My proposed fix would be for ACES to either document the airfile properly, or create a "user" airfile that gets "compiled" by a "tool" to their secret format. Or simply an alternate format that is documented for add-on aircraft.

In any case, spending endless hours in trial & error mode is not cost effective nor sensible, and so I'm starting to look at developing for other things personally.

Just my two-cents.


Resource contributor
While I'll agree that documentation on the FDE is sorely lacking, I wonder why ACES has omitted the ..\template folder from FSX entirely?

How many folks ever noticed the ..\template folder in FS9, much less used the sample .air and .cfg files provided? These are "generic" files that provide a baseline set of configurations for all types that are capable of being modeled in the sim.

Along with the information in the SDK on the .cfg file, it seems at least as though they did provide more in the FS9 SDK than they have in the FSX SDK... :(











While that was nice, it still did not document the .air file which would be required to have an aircraft have truely different flight performance vs. generic.

I have to say, if I were an aircraft manufacturer like Boeing, I'd be more than happy to have my aircraft in a sim, and not really worried about someone knowing the rough engineering specs. Not like Airbus is going to be able to use it to make their next aircraft, haha.

Anyway, posted this since MS is always saying they support developers.
Or how about documenting how to implement a completely new aircraft simulation type, rather than having to tweak the airfile for an existing one. For example, you could then completely replace the lacklustre helicopter flight modelling or implement new or novel types of aircraft like Hybrid Air Vehicles.

I also wonder why ACES has omitted the Aircraft Editor/FSEdit SDK along with the Template folder from FSX?

The Aircraft Editor (FSEdit) in Microsoft® Flight Simulator 2004 is a tool with a graphical user interface. You can use it to:
Modify, add, or delete aircraft.
Add, delete, or change aircraft panels, including gauges, instruments, and radios.
Change, play, or remove sound files.
Modify aircraft textures.
Alter flight dynamics.
To make the changes, FSEdit modifies the following files: Aircraft.cfg, Panel.cfg, and Sound.cfg.

To use this editor, you need basic knowledge of aircraft and aerodynamic terms and concepts. You may also need a Pilot’s Operating Handbook (POH) or similar reference material for the aircraft you want to modify, or you can use the default values provided by the editor.
At least this tool made a basic .air file from a new Aircraft.cfg file.


Resource contributor
I also wonder why ACES has omitted the Aircraft Editor/FSEdit SDK along with the Template folder from FSX?

At least this tool made a basic .air file from a new Aircraft.cfg file.
Jim, it would also - quite frequently - throughly trash perfectly working .air files by adding new and nearly always incorrect and/or unnecessary entries.