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  1. #1
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    Time to wake up cockpit, monitors/displays

    Hi all,

    SO good to see PM folks have a home

    I am at the point of trying to configure monitors with FSX, and PM.

    SO far, this has been semi-daunting.

    My goals are:

    - Easy "wake-up" of the simpit... throw the power switch, click on an icon or two, and we're good!

    - Appearance: No evidence of MS Windows. This means NOT being in windowed mode for PM or FSX, or finding some way to "hide" the windows and task bar.

    My Rig:

    I have a new dual core PC, with BFG 7800 video card currently driving 2 displays:

    - Display 1 is a 1024x768 video projector, to display the main flight view

    - Display 2 is a 600 x 800 touchscreen for the PM regional glass cockpit

    Currently, the displays function, but I'm not happy that I seem to have to be in windowed mode, in order to drag the displays around.

    As soon as I put the main display in full screen mode, the PM instrument display goes black.

    I know many builders have been here before me How did y'all deal with these issues?

    Thanks ever so much!

    SMS

  2. #2
    10+ Posting Member cbaye's Avatar
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    I've programmed my system to start up on one Icon per system by using the run program facility in FSUIPC and WideFS.

    On the flightsim computer, I click on the FS Icon which opens FS (I select my aircarft, airport, time, fuel etc) then as the AC is loading the PM-MCP and GoFlight display driver is started. (Note the GoFlight Dislpay driver is only needed for custom display programming, I use mine for Transponder status).

    On the PFD Computer I click on the WideFS Icon, Which starts two instances of the glass cockpit (PFD on left screen and EICAS on right) along with SquawkBox and PM Sounds (Note PFD is loaded first and EICAS is loaded last to avoid a "divide by zero error" if you try to start them one after the other. the time from first to last is only a second or two).

    On the FMS/CDU Computer, Again, starting WideFS calls the FMS and WhazzUp.

    You could concieveably put these into the startup folder and launch them automatically; but it might be better to build some sort of batch or command file to load them after a short delay for other system processes to start in the background.

    All that being said; FS prefers to start-up with the default cessna 172 and can get flakey if you try another aircraft. Not all programs remember last window position settings (the CDU does, the PFD and Whazzup do not). The good news is you can get down to one icon per computer but you still might have some houskeeping to do before each flight.

    - CB
    Chris Baye
    KMSP(GEP DME4.0,R010)
    GoFlight, Project Magenta (Boeing)

  3. #3
    1000+ Poster - Fantastic Contributor Bob Reed's Avatar
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    There is actualy a way to put WideFS in the startup folder and then through the WideFS ini file have it wait for FS. And by looking in the WideFS documentation to get the proper commands, it will wait for FS, start the first program you tell it to and then wait the amount of time you stated in the ini file and then start the next program. The PFD should remeber its last place. Have you shut the program down normaly "Q" to get it to save its positions? I run the PFD and Ecias on a machine simaler to what you are doing and do not have that problem.
    Bob Reed

  4. #4
    150+ Forum Groupie PaulEMB's Avatar
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    I run 5 pc s with PM as below

    pc1 FSX
    pc2 PM Pilot displays
    pc3 EICAS
    pc4 FO displays
    pc5 CDU and MCP
    (plus WideView on other pcs)

    After starting FSX, I turn on each pc (as part of the ground walkround check!), and by adding a shortcut to WideFS in the start menu, and adding the "Run1, Run2" cmd line in the WideFS.ini file (see Pete Dowson's docs), launch the PM application.

    A certain amount of playing about is required to get the displays in the right position - nearest thing I have to your case is the CDU/MCP setup running on one pc with dual video outputs.

    Shutdown is easy with the PM CDU, with one button press, but can also be achieved with WideFS.

    Once you get it right, use the option to "lock displays" in the PM ini file, to prevent accidental changes.

    Takes patience , but it is amazing what can be done, even by an idiot like me

    Read up the WideFS and Pm docs,and don't be afraid to experiment!

    In my experience, these documents are excellent, but you need to get your brain on the right frequency to use them fully! ( trial and error!)

    best regards,

  5. #5
    150+ Forum Groupie PaulEMB's Avatar
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    ps , I forgot to add - I'm using an FDS MIP, so I still have the windows title bars, but cant see them (behind the MIP).

    This can be changed with the PM ini file "Titles=Off", but I'm not sure about the Windows taskbar - you could set this to hidden in windows, so it only appears when you hover the mouse over it.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by PaulEMB View Post
    ps , I forgot to add - I'm using an FDS MIP, so I still have the windows title bars, but cant see them (behind the MIP).
    Ahhhh.... that sounds great... but I don't know what and FDS MIP is!

    Is is something I need/should have as well?

  7. #7
    150+ Forum Groupie PaulEMB's Avatar
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    I guess I got used to talking in acronyms!

    The MIP is the Main Instrument Panel, and in this case is a metal backer, full size across the cockpit, with holes and acrylic panels and windows where the instrument dispays are. The monitors are mounted behind the panel, so the visual effect is that you only see the instruments, which you have to size to fit the aperture.

    Before I got my FDS panels, I made an instrument panel from thin plywood - look at airliners.net, and get an idea of your cockpit. then cut out the panel, and put the monitors behind. This gives a very cheap solution, and a big increase in reality!

    My first sim was a flat sided wooden box, with 2pcs and a projector - the increase in experience was incredible! Just the fact you are "looking thru the windshield", not sitting in front of a pc, makes a big difference.

    Give it a try!

  8. #8
    1000+ Poster - Fantastic Contributor Bob Reed's Avatar
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    I agree with Paul! Anything you do to increase the "imersion" factor (man I miss the spell checker!) is worth the effort. It does not have to be high dollar! Just try like Paul said and build a "mask" (he decribes how he built his first MIP, that would be the mask the monitors go behind) and see what happens! You will be amazed!
    Bob Reed

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