• A Step-By-Step Guide To Installing AI Aircraft

    A Step-By-Step Guide To Installing AI Aircraft

    By Chris Peschke

    1. Having used Ultimate Traffic and Ultimate Traffic 2 for a number of years now, and having frequently referred folks to John Goodwin's excellent web site on how to install aircraft into FS2004, I have decided to build a step-by-step guide to assist UT2 users' install 3rd party AI aircraft into Microsoft's Flight Simulator X. A word of caution, I am a reasonably skilled FS fan but I am far from being a programmer of any sort and as such, this is an amateur's guide to installing 3rd party AI aircraft. Any errors in this guide are entirely mine. In order to satisfy the litigious inclinations of my American cousins, I accept no legal responsibility for you messing about inside FSX and any errors resulting from you following this guide are entirely your own fault. There are risks to messing around with any file called ".cfg" and you do so at your own risk.

    2. There are a number of means of installing 3rd party AI aircraft into FSX including putting them in a sub-category of their own which has some advantages. Some older AI aircraft models will show up in your aircraft file as flyable no matter what, and this can slow down your system. By placing them in their own sub-folder, you can eliminate this problem altogether.

    Doing this requires you to make adjustments in both FSX and UT2 must be pointed in the right direction too. Go to your Users/Roaming/Microsoft/FSX/FSX.cfg file and amend it to look read thus:

    User Objects=Airplane, Helicopter
    SimObjectPaths.6=SimObjects\UT2 Aircraft
    SimObjectPaths.7=SimObjects\AI Aircraft

    I simply add my AI aircraft to my Simobjects/Airplane folder in which case the above step is not required. If you can't see the FSX.cfg file in Vista or Windows 7, you will have to adjust your Control Panel/Folder Options and select "show hidden files and folders to make the file visible. User Access Control (UAC) in Vista and 7 can be a real pain, so I leave it disabled on my system so I don't get persistent questions/warnings from my system.


    A common question is why can't I add aircraft to the UT2 sub-folder? You can although it can cause difficult to resolve problems and so I recommend against it. The AI aircraft can be done without too much trouble since the models are virtually an identical match. The DJC models used have eliminated the multiple engine types, amongst other things, which will cause texture issues in FSX. Likewise, I have discovered that The Fruit Stand textures used have been altered such that it is possible to have incompatibilities such as inverted textures. Again, I recommend keeping your AI add-ons in a separate folder.

    3. Selecting an aircraft model: There are a variety of AI aircraft models available. The most popular ones include those by AI Aardvark, DJC, Evolve AI, Alpha India Group, AI Malcontent, CDAI, Fernando Martinez (FMAI), Henry Tomkiewicz (HTAI), Oskari Syynimaa (OSP), Project AI (Flightsimmer.com), SKJ and The Fruit Stand amongst many others. A good starting point for seeking models is avsim.com and flightsim.com. There are many web sites but these are two of the most popular. Not all models are created equal since there is always a battle between details/features and reasonable framerates. DO NOT USE FLYABLE AIRCRAFT! They come with cockpits, high fidelity sound and highly detailed textures which will reduce framerates to a crawl and cause system crashes.

    Tags: ai aircraft

    1 Comment
    1. wyatt's Avatar
      wyatt -
      Why are you posting this under FS2004? I searched for a tutorial on how to install AI in FS2004 and got this on FSX!
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