My Estimate on HD space for CA, NV, & AZ for MSFS 2020

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The southern southwest U.S. is the region I fly in the most, so I thought it would be interesting to try and calculate how much HD space Iâ€™d need. Here are the results:

MSFS 2020 = 2 PB = 2,000 TB

197 million miles sq = World land

163,696 miles sq = California

113,998 miles sq = Arizona

CA + NV + AZ = 388,261 miles sq = Total

World Land / Total = 507.4

2,000 TB / 507.4 = 3.94 TB

This is totally doable, even on a SSD because I believe this is worst case since Nevada & Arizona are sparsely populated and would take up less HD space. What do you all think?

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World Land / Total = 507.4

What is the value of world land, (does it include oceans and islands which would be in the database too), and what are the units for 507.4?

Having figured all that out, you're guessing that the 2 PB is the data you need for the whole world, and that it's roughly linear in storage per sq. mi. or whatever figure it is, which may not be the case.

So maybe you have a roughly accurate figure and maybe there are factors that throw you a wild curve, making your calculations useless.

So it's a semi-educated guess (IMHO).

Of course they DO say that you can cache data to fly off-line, so...

Larry N.

As Skylab would say:

Remember: Aviation is NOT an exact Science!

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2 petabytes is the volume of data they are starting with before processing it with Azure AI. The actual amount of data used in the sim directly will be lower. Though we don't really know how much lower. I can also see areas with mountains, cities and the like taking up more space than farmland in the middle of Saskatchewan.
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507.4 represents a ratio (1:507.4) of CA, NV, & AZ land compared to the total world. So, 1/507.4 x 2,000 TB is approximately 4 TB. I was mistaken. 197 million sq miles is the entire world, not just the land. As you said, this is a very rough estimate, and the world is not linear which means different locations will not take up the same HD space. Edited by simpilot55
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Yeah, they totally have petabyte hard drives now a days for around tree fiddy on NewEgg....
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507.4 represents a ratio (1:507.4) of CA, NV, & AZ land compared to the total world. So, 1/507.4 x 2,000 TB is approximately 4 TB. I was mistaken. 197 million sq miles is the entire world, not just the land. As you said, this is a very rough estimate, and the world is not linear which means different locations will not take up the same HD space.

If it's 4 TB then that's doable. Pretty massive, but still doable. I have over 4 TB of HDD space in my desktop now. I'd have to buy a 4 TB drive just for this Sim.

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Well I'd say that Samsung had better up their game with bigger SSD's because ain't no way I'm going back to spinning platters.:)
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I use two 2TB platters myself but I made sure they were enterprise Hitachis. They are for spill over from my main 256 GB Crucial SSD. I may get a 512 GB SSD latter on.
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You don't mention what 3rd party add-ons you are talking about. It's actually quite easy. Usually developers will state the size of their addons. For example, our simwestSOCAL is around 40GB. Our simwestARIZONA (not released), will be larger as it will be available in 60cm.

Just add what size is for Arizona, Nevada and whatever and that should give you a good idea what size of HDD space you will need.

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You don't mention what 3rd party add-ons you are talking about. It's actually quite easy. Usually developers will state the size of their addons. For example, our simwestSOCAL is around 40GB. Our simwestARIZONA (not released), will be larger as it will be available in 60cm.

Just add what size is for Arizona, Nevada and whatever and that should give you a good idea what size of HDD space you will need.

They're talking about how much space will be needed to cache the enhanced scenery included in the sim, not add-ons. At the moment no one really knows for sure how space the scenery will take.

Ah... gotcha ;)
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They said there are no objects like in FSX. This is height mapping and photorealistic, well that's what I understand. :confused: It's a bit too technical for my brain (at my age) :pilot:

Maybe it's the photo's that will take up the space on HDD/SSD.

FSX Rules!! :pilot:

What time's the next flight?

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• 1 year later...
I believe MS claims they mapped 9 petabytes which if I'm correct is 9000 1 TB HDs and your own substation set up by the electric company to run them and the HVACs to keep your house from melting. Actually I had been wondering what it would take to cashe NW Washington and the Inside Passage up through BC into Alaska. It's all very complex landscape. I have a 1.5 TB per month cap. I know what my computer roughly pulls though the wall by using an Internet Speedometer Program so I could fly some square mile samples and apply that to the total area.
Liquid cooled, Intel i7-10700K, NVIDIA 3070, G.Skill Ram 32 GB, 2TB M.2 NVME. Z490 MB Loads of Christmas lights. :pilot:
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My experience is, that if you're offline, you never get bing or photogrammitry graphics, no matter how much you've cached.

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