Instructions for Networked Configuration with SimConnect
Posted by Damian Clark, Last modified by Jordan Jafferjee on 19 November 2015 07:34 PM
Detailed SimConnect Configuration Steps
Active Sky Next can be used in a networked configuration where FSX/P3D runs on a different computer (Deluxe + SP2 or Acceleration version is required if using FSX Boxed).
Allowing this to work requires proper networking and security configuration on both computers. SimConnect will be used in networked client/server mode to facilitate the weather communications functions. Networked file access will be used to pass data between ASN, XGauge and FSX/P3D station databases.
To properly use Active Sky Next in a networked configuration, you must have three folders shared on your FSX/P3D pc. If you are not familiar with how to share folders please search the internet as there are many helpful resources.
Folders to share
These folders should be shared with write permissions (Allow networked users to change my files).
If you are unable to locate these folders, you may need to enable "Show hidden and system files" in your VIEW options within Windows Explorer.
We recommend using the default share names for simplicity.
To confirm that you have sharing setup properly, attempt to access these shared from your remote/client computer. You should be able to view (and write to) these folders through Windows Explorer (via the Network/[computername]/[sharename] path)
Important requirements for networked configuration:
Step 1: Verify requirements
Look through the above requirements and ensure everything is setup properly and all FSX SDK & update installations have been run (if using FSX).
Step 2: Configure SERVER
There are two files which must be configured on the server. They are:
There are example files located in your SDK installation folder (normally C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Games\Flight Simulator X SDK\SDK\Core Utilities\SimConnect SDK\config). We suggest copying these files to the appropriate locations and then modifying as follows:
You will need a local and global comms section in the simconnect.xml file. The local is for local add-on connections (including the ASConnect component of ASN) and the global is for remote/networked connections (including the ASN client software).
The local section should be set as follows:
For the global section:
The values for Address and Port must be modified. The other values should be left as shown.
Step 3: Installing SimConnect client on CLIENT(s)
For FSX, there is a simconnect.msi installation file located in the SDK installation folder\SDK\Core Utilities Kit\SimConnect SDK\lib. This file should be copied to each CLIENT machine and run in order to install the appropriate SimConnect client files. Remember to update your SDK to SP2/Acceleration (if using FSX) before doing this.
For P3D, there the simconnect.msi is located in the P3D "REDIST" folder instead of "SDK" (use the XPACK/SP2 version).
Step 4: Configure CLIENT
There is a single configuration file needed on all clients:
There is an example file located in your SDK installation folder (normally C:\Program Files\Microsoft\Games\Flight Simulator X SDK\SDK\Core Utilities\SimConnect SDK\config). We suggest copying this file to the appropriate location and then modifying as follows:
The values for Protocol, Address and Port must be configured exactly the same as you have configured for the server’s SimConnect.xml file. We recommend the other values be left default.
Here is an example SimConnect.cfg file:
The SimConnect.cfg file needs to be set for all client computers that will be running addons that need to connect to FSX/P3D on the server.
*** NOTE: SIMCONNECT.CFG should NOT exist in any other location(s). It needs to be placed only once in your "MyDocs" folder. Any extra simconnect.cfg files (i.e. in your FSX appdata folder, or ASN install folder) will cause confusion and invalid configuration.
Step 5: Test the configuration
Using the samples provided in the SDK (FSX), you can easily test for proper networked simconnect configuration. The AI Traffic.exe example program (located in the SDK Installation folder\SDK\Core Utilities Kit\SimConnect SDK\Samples\AI Traffic) should be run after the SERVER’s FSX/P3D has been started. If successful, the AI Traffic program will bring up a console window indicating “Connected to Flight Simulator!”. If unsuccessful, the program will run and end immediately without any “Connected” message shown.
If using P3D, AI Traffic.exe is not included. In this case, a successful ASN connection to the simulator is the best indicator of a proper simconnect configuration.
Step 6: Configuring ASN
Once you have the shares and SimConnect configuration complete, you can configure ASN to properly work in networked configuration.
ASN needs to know the location of the main Simulator installation path as well as the FSX/P3D Appdata path. In addition, you may want to load FSX/P3D flight plans on the FSX/P3D computer into ASN on the client. Since your shares are already configured you simply need to point ASN to these locations. To do this, simply run ASN. ASN will identify that FSX/P3D is not installed on the client machine and automatically ask for and save the correct network share locations.
If you need to manually specify these locations, you can set them using the Settings screen in ASN. This should be done with the sim closed and not running.
Step 7: Configuring X Gauge
XGauge needs to be installed into the FSX/P3D installation. To do this, you can run the XGauge Installation Wizard (from the ASN Tools menu).
Need help? For troubleshooting and helpful tips related to common simconnect/networked configuration issues, please see this knowledgebase article: http://hifisupport.kayako.com/Knowledgebase/Article/View/35/0/simconnect-networked-configuration-technical-support