I have recently become inspired to improve scenery in FSX and I am hoping that some of you might be willing to educate me. Looking around and trying a few things, it seems that there is a bewildering array of tools and issues to assimilate. I have little programming experience but have worked in the IT industry for decades and have been flying in the FS world since FS2000. Here are some specific questions I am trying to answer:
How does FSX display scenery objects exactly? Perhaps you can help me fill in the gaps.
I know that bgl files are complied from a list of objects together with there display criteria. This is readable in the xml file that is sometimes provided with bgl files. I have used SDE to decompile bgl files. I have reviewed and edited contents and recompiled the updated xml and observed the results in FSX. It seems that some bgl files only contain GUID references to other files that presumably contain the model data. Some contain both GUID references and model data.
I have seen references to mdl files. How do these fit in?
I have yet to begin designing my own models. Gmax or FSDS seem to be the design tools that are most often spoken of. Which design tool is best for a beginner?
How does the model call the texture? Is it possible to see what texture file or files a model requires?
There are clearly some incompatibilities between bgl files compiled for FS9 and FSX. Confusingly, some seem to work well while others have problems. Are there any definitive guidelines or tutorials?
I have used the SDK Mission Builder to create scenery using library objects. While the interface seems to be better than other tools, in that you can place objects precisely using the mouse, it doesnít seem to work consistently. Sometimes it will display objects and sometimes it wonít. Sometimes the objects can be placed with the mouse and sometimes they canít. Can you help me understand what is happening?
In frustration, I have bought Instant Scenery which seems to work very well accept that you canít place objects using the mouse. Instant Scenery seems to find everything regardless of whether it is a library bgl or a object bgl. I am using the term Ďobjectí bgl to describe those objects that contain positioning data. How does FSX know what is a library file and what is an object file?
It seems that FSX creates a new object database every time something in itís registered directories changes. Is there any way to see what it contains?
Traffic seems to be controlled by bgl files but those I have tried, canít be decompiled in SDE. Is there a utility in the SDK or a third party application that helps set up traffic scenery?
I run Horizon GenX V2 UK scenery. I believe that autogen or .agn files can be created and placed in the GenX directories so that objects can be displayed. Are there any tools or tutorials that help with this?
I have asked a lot of question and will be grateful if you can answer any of them.