SDK Installation (FSX) - Troubleshooting

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A troubleshooting supplement for the SDK_Installation_(FSX) process.

Do not link directly to this document.
Instead link to the parent, SDK_Installation_(FSX) document,
and instruct users to follow the process from there.

Some information contained here, is also in the parent document.

Only use this troubleshooting supplement -
IF you've already completed the actions in SDK_Installation_(FSX)
AND its still not working for you, (e.g. In-Game tools are missing).

Before starting this process -

  • Print out this page, and work from that.
  • Read through thoroughly before commencing installation.
  • Ensure you've followed ALL instructions before you request assistance, (ADE-Check report required).


Service Packs are available for both the FSX game and FSX SDK.

You must install the appropriate SDK SP version,
which corresponds to your FSX game SP version.

Find your installed FSX version in the FSX column,
read the matching SDK version column/row details.

FSX version Version ID# SDK version Availability Installer Location
RTM (Deluxe) 10.0.60905 RTM Retail only sdk.msi FSX RTM disk 1, SDK sub-folder
SP1 Discontinued N/A Standalone
SP1 10.0.61355
(Russian: 10.0.61357)
SP1A Download (166Mb) * fsx_sdk_sp1a.exe Standalone
SP2 10.0.61472 SP2 Download (211Mb) * sdk.msi Standalone
Acceleration 10.0.61637 SP2/XPack Retail only sdk.msi FSX Acceleration disk, SDK sub-folder

* May also be available on magazine cover discs.

For basic installation instructions, please see the SDK_Installation_(FSX) process.


Do not attempt to install the original retail version of the Flight Simulator X SDK over an updated SDK, as unpredictable results can occur.
If for some reason this is required, uninstall all versions of the Flight Simulator X SDK and re-install in chronological order.
When installing/upgrading/repairing the SDK, there is no need whatsoever to uninstall/reinstall the FSX game.


RTM, SP1 and SP1a documentation is supplied in html format, with each folder containing the relevant html file(s).

SP2 documentation is supplied in chm format, as a single compiled html file, fsxsdk.chm.
Located by default in C:\Program Files\Microsoft Games\Microsoft Flight Simulator X SDK\SDK

If your SDK is still in HTML format, rather than the Windows Help File format, (CHM),
then you have not installed SDK SP2.


If you had installed both FSX & SDK to their default locations,
a quick indicator that the SDK is correctly installed,
the OPT should now be available from the FSX in-game Tools menu.

If you had installed either FSX, or the SDK, to a non-default location,
you must run configsdk.exe from the SDK's root folder.

Running configsdk.exe will only correct the registry paths.
It will not update/correct the user's dll.xml file, (see FSX in-game Tools menu below).

FSX in-game Tools menu

The Tools menu is accessed from within a flight, (not from the main GUI).

The only SDK tools available in-game, are the Object Placement Tool, (OPT), 3 Traffic tools, and the Effects tool.

All other tools are run/started from outside the sim GUI.
Look in the root of where you'd installed the SDK, or in the start menu for documentation,
Click -> Start -> All Programs -> Microsoft Games -> Microsoft Flight Simulator X SDK -> Flight Simulator X SDK

If having correctly followed all the above instructions
and the Tools menu is still not displaying,
there are three aspects you need to investigate:

  • Addons
  • dll.xml
  • fsx.CFG

All changes must be made with FSX shut down.


Incorrect addon versions will prevent the in-game Tools menu from loading.

You must install all the appropriate addon updates, (e.g. FSUIPC),
to match your SDK Service Pack version.

This is essential when you upgrade FSX to a newer service pack.

If the Tools menu still doesn't load:

  • Remove all addon entries, (see dll.xml below).
  • Ensure the MS SDK tools load.
  • One by one, re-apply your addons, checking FSX each time to confirm the Tools menu is still present.


If the FSX Tools menu option is still not displaying,
you must edit dll.xml manually, to:

  • include the full paths for the SDK entries.
  • set disabled to false.
  • remove all non-sdk addon entries.

Any changes will not be reflected till next time you start FSX.



.xml files are hidden by default.

To see dll.xml you must have enabled Show Hidden Files and Folders.


There are several example/backup dll.xml files located in the -

  • SDK subfolders, (4 example dll.xml).
  • FSX root folder (default dll.xml backup copy).

Ignore those, they are irrelevant.

There is only one relevant dll.xml
it is located in your %APPDATA% folder.
i.e. The same location as your fsx.cfg.

Depending on your operation system you will find it in -

OS dll.xml location
XP C:\Documents and Settings\USERNAME\Application Data\Microsoft\FSX\
Vista C:\Users\USERNAME\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\FSX\
Win7 C:\Users\USERNAME\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\FSX\


You must use a text editor, e.g. Notepad, or an XML editor.
You must not use Word or Wordpad, as they will corrupt the file.

Editing Addons


Enabling Addons

To enable each of the 3 SDK tools they need to be set as follows.



The paths must be valid, otherwise the tools wil not load.

If editing, suggest you paste them in,
if typing them in, ensure they include all characters.

SDK Default Installation Location

A relative path e.g.
..\Microsoft Flight Simulator X SDK\SDK\Mission Creation Kit\object_placement.dll

is relative to the FSX default location
C:\Program Files\Microsoft Games\Microsoft Flight Simulator X

SDK Non-Default Installation Location

If either FSX or the SDK is installed to a non-standard location then use a full path (aka absolute path). e.g.
C:\Program Files\Microsoft Games\Microsoft Flight Simulator X SDK\SDK\Mission Creation Kit\Object_Placement.dll

If you'd installed the SDK to your F: drive, then the full path would be:
F:\Program Files\Microsoft Games\Microsoft Flight Simulator X SDK\SDK\Mission Creation Kit\Object_Placement.dll

Note: Ensure you fully remove the old path.
e.g. The double periods before the drive location.


Documentation Errors

There are errors in two of the SDK's articles on -

  • Mission Creation - Setup
  • Special Effects

They wrongly quote the dll.xml header's ManualLoad section.

All other SDK articles appear to be correct.

The correct header is -

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="Windows-1252"?>

<SimBase.Document Type="Launch" version="1,0">




When you install the SDK, or any SDK service pack,
afterwards when you first run FSX,
you will be prompted to trust/allow each of the 3 SDK in-game tools to run.

Allow always.

Did you ever say no ?

Please open your fsx.cfg in a text editor.

Look for the [Trusted] section
find the 3 tools entries, (may appear multiple times, one for each SDK version).

Example entries, (from an XP system) -

C:\Program Files\Microsoft Games\Microsoft Flight Simulator X SDK\SDK\Mission Creation Kit\Object_Placement.dll.LONGSTRING=1
C:\Program Files\Microsoft Games\Microsoft Flight Simulator X SDK\SDK\Environment Kit\Traffic Toolbox SDK\traffictoolbox.dll.LONGSTRING=1
C:\Program Files\Microsoft Games\Microsoft Flight Simulator X SDK\SDK\Environment Kit\Special Effects SDK\visualfxtool.dll.LONGSTRING=1

Where LONGSTRING is a 'meaningless' alphanumeric string, (e.g. elqluuzchciqbqtwawurawalhakbwatuaiiwrrti).

The final value should be =1
If not, change it to =1

Fire up FSX. Do the tools now display ?

If that doesn't work, it may possible be that part of your fsx.CFG is corrupted (contains an inappropriate character).

  • Try renaming your fsx.cfg to fsx_TODAYSDATE.cfg
  • Fire up FSX. It'll rebuild the fsx.CFG and prompt for the required permissions.

Vista users

If the 1's not sticking, it's because Vista treats all .cfg files as being system files. It opens a copy, and then saves your edited/changed file to somewhere else, (personal folders). Next time you open fsx.CFG, Vista is giving you the original.

Still having problems ?

DO NOT post any help request in the FSDeveloper forums
BEFORE you've completed the following -

We require that report information about your system.

Now check your ADE report for the following lines, (separated by other data) -




If the VERSION_NUMBERs don't match, go back and install the matching SDK version.

If the VERSION_NUMBERs match, and the Tools menu is still not displaying,
now post your question, including your report's entire text,
plus your dll.xml,
to the FSDeveloper - SDK Installation forum.

Important - When pasting your dll.xml into your forum post you must wrap it in [code] tags.