Jump to content
The simFlight Network Forums
johndrago

Wind Smoothing... Again FSUIPC 4.x

Recommended Posts

Hi Pete,

A couple months ago, you mentioned that you didn't have what you needed from MS to incorporate the wind smoothing option into FSUIPC for FSX, to fix the bad wind shifts again. Is this still the case?

In my opinion, FSX made no progress on this issue. The wind still shifts back and forth unrealistically. I loved your wind smoothing for FS9. It worked excellently!

Thanks again,

John

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A couple months ago, you mentioned that you didn't have what you needed from MS to incorporate the wind smoothing option into FSUIPC for FSX, to fix the bad wind shifts again. Is this still the case?

Yes, of course. Nothing will have changed in this regard until Microsoft overcome what they perceive as the more important issues -- according to feedback they get.

In my opinion, FSX made no progress on this issue.

Erhow many upgrades giving FSX progress have you seen so far? There's only been SP1, which was primarily a performance and major bug fix update. SP2, the only other one expected this year, will be about DX10, and performance again.

Until folks are happy that they can get the frame rates they expect with the graphics they have been shown I can't see "lesser" matters like this getting much attention. Those who are experiencing the problem (and it doesn't appear to be universal) need to be more vociferous. The facilities I need to control such things are at the top of my requests already made known to the team, but they will be perceived as "extra facilities", not fixes.

Regards

Pete

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A couple months ago, you mentioned that you didn't have what you needed from MS to incorporate the wind smoothing option into FSUIPC for FSX, to fix the bad wind shifts again. Is this still the case?

Yes, of course. Nothing will have changed in this regard until Microsoft overcome what they perceive as the more important issues -- according to feedback they get.

In my opinion, FSX made no progress on this issue.

Erhow many upgrades giving FSX progress have you seen so far? There's only been SP1, which was primarily a performance and major bug fix update. SP2, the only other one expected this year, will be about DX10, and performance again.

Pete

Hi Pete,

Sorry, I mis-typed. What I meant was that the wind problem has been a problem throughout multiple versions of FS, and is still in FSX. I know they have had only one update, but I have a lack of faith that they will address this type of issue, because they have bigger issues to deal with. That's why I was looking to you as you have been able to make things better through FSUIPC.

Thanks for reading.

- John

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
What I meant was that the wind problem has been a problem throughout multiple versions of FS, and is still in FSX. I know they have had only one update, but I have a lack of faith that they will address this type of issue, because they have bigger issues to deal with. That's why I was looking to you as you have been able to make things better through FSUIPC.

Yes, I hope I will be able to sort it out too. As I said, it is high on my list. In the end, if I can't get anywhere through SimConnect I may need to seriously look at hacking into the WEATHER.DLL, but that is a last resort as it takes a lot of time and effort and patience as many dead ends are followed -- and only lasts till the next revision. I am getting too old for that sort of thing really. Gone are the days where I was happy working all night buried in machine code traces!

Regards

Pete

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A couple months ago, you mentioned that you didn't have what you needed from MS to incorporate the wind smoothing option into FSUIPC for FSX, to fix the bad wind shifts again.

I'v been experimenting with trying to overcome wind shifts by continually reading amd modifying the weather in the 9 nearest weather stations (and GLOBal weather), continuously whilst you are flying. I have made some progress, but it does, unfortunately, impinge upon performance somewhat. I'm hoping that the new SimConnect efficiencies which will be incorporated in FSX SP2 later this year will offset some of this, but I've also provided for some adjustment in the options.

I'll be able to release an interim FSUIPC4 version with this wind smoothing tomorrow (Sunday), or Monday at the latest. Would you like to try it out, and let me know if it helps more than (through performance problems) hinders?

Regards

Pete

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'll be able to release an interim FSUIPC4 version with this wind smoothing tomorrow (Sunday), or Monday at the latest. Would you like to try it out, and let me know if it helps more than (through performance problems) hinders?

Regards

Pete

Hi Pete,

Sure, I will try it out. What kind of performance hits am I looking for? I just want to make sure that I recognize the issues properly.

Thanks,

John

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sure, I will try it out. What kind of performance hits am I looking for? I just want to make sure that I recognize the issues properly.

It'll be reading, modifying, and writing back the METAR strings (often several hundred characters each) for 10 WX stations (a 3 x 3 grid, plus GLOBal weather) at regular intervals. The default interval is around 2 seconds per station, so the whole cycle takes 20 seconds before it repeats, possibly by which time a new set of stations is used as the aircraft is moving.

There is an adjustment for the frequency -- you can make it twice as fast, or a lot slower. I've no idea how it'll impinge on performance on your systems compared to mine, only that it will have some effect. It's feedback on this that I need.

When SP2 is available (or also the Acceleration pack), the default will be twice as fast, because SimConnect operates faster for local clients in the new version. I hope this will make the facility more effective, because the slower it runs the more likely "glitches" (unwanted wind changes) will slip through.

Also, because trying to operate with this 3 x 3 grid of WX stations isn't actually guaranteed to catch the three WX stations really responsible for the weather at the aircraft, there might be glitches in any case. In FS2002 (or was it FS2000?) I remember that at Rotterdam one of the three stations was way down in North Africa -- the triangulation had a really weird elongated shape. Of course this was an error in the data, but it definitely had some weird weather effects as a result!

Incidentally, you can get an idea of performance from the current interim version, 4.167, available in the FSX downloads above. If you enable the changes to FS's own weather (Miscellaneous tab) and the Graduated visibility, it will be doing exactly the same as the wind smoothing one will -- it won't add anything to this to do wind smoothing as well. However, I'm making the interval factor modifiable on the Winds tab so you can do experiments with it. It won't stay there, I hope, once we know how it performs and what to set it to.

I'm on schedule to release 4.168 in the Downloads section sometime tomorrow (Monday).

Regards

Pete

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

On the download page (http://www.schiratti.com/dowson.html), it shows 4.16, with a release date of August 28. Is the correct file there?

No!!! That's the place for all official releases. For over a year now all interim releases and other goodies have been provided here, in the Forum. The FSX stuff is all in the FSX Downloads Announcement, above, -- as I in fact did state!

I really would advise you to scan the Announcements from time to time. They are actually there to Announce things. I'm constantly amazed at the number of questions I get here in new threads which are already long-answered in the Announcements!

:-(

Pete

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I really would advise you to scan the Announcements from time to time. They are actually there to Announce things. I'm constantly amazed at the number of questions I get here in new threads which are already long-answered in the Announcements!

:-(

Pete

Hi Pete,

I humbly apologize! :shock: My mistake, as I've just started getting back to this forum.

- John

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The latest interim version, 4.169, now available, is more efficient in performing the wind smoothing and other filters, only writing back the weather when it has changed sufficiently. If you are still testing 4.168 or before please change to 4.169.

Regards

Pete

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The latest interim version, 4.169, now available, is more efficient in performing the wind smoothing and other filters, only writing back the weather when it has changed sufficiently. If you are still testing 4.168 or before please change to 4.169.

Regards

Pete

Grabbing it now, thanks!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The latest interim version, 4.169, now available, is more efficient in performing the wind smoothing and other filters, only writing back the weather when it has changed sufficiently. If you are still testing 4.168 or before please change to 4.169.

Regards

Pete

I have been testing with 4.169, and had some REALLY strange results. 260kts winds, rapidly changing wind, freaky stuff.

I just saw your note about 4.17x, so I've just downloaded it, and will test with it.

Thanks,

John

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have been testing with 4.169, and had some REALLY strange results. 260kts winds, rapidly changing wind, freaky stuff.

That's worrying. Not sure how they could arise .... FSUIPC certainly doesn't invent winds, and the incremental values to those which exist should be reasonably small. Where are you seeing these reported? If through WeatherSet or Radar Contact or other programs reading weather via the NWI, that may just be incorrect reporting due to me breaking the NWI, not 'real' winds.

I just saw your note about 4.17x, so I've just downloaded it, and will test with it.

Okay. If you still see "freaky winds", please close FSX, add these lines to the [General] section in the FSUIPC4.INI file, and test again. Try to keep the test short as the log will get huge:

Debug=Please

LogExtras=256

Zip up the log and post to petedowson@btconnect.com.

Thanks,

Pete

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have been testing with 4.169, and had some REALLY strange results. 260kts winds, rapidly changing wind, freaky stuff.

That's worrying. Not sure how they could arise .... FSUIPC certainly doesn't invent winds, and the incremental values to those which exist should be reasonably small. Where are you seeing these reported? If through WeatherSet or Radar Contact or other programs reading weather via the NWI, that may just be incorrect reporting due to me breaking the NWI, not 'real' winds.

I just saw your note about 4.17x, so I've just downloaded it, and will test with it.

Okay. If you still see "freaky winds", please close FSX, add these lines to the [General] section in the FSUIPC4.INI file, and test again. Try to keep the test short as the log will get huge:

Debug=Please

LogExtras=256

Zip up the log and post to petedowson@btconnect.com.

Thanks,

Pete

I saw the freaky winds when on approach to KLAS. Prior to that, it was mostly ok. When on approach to KLAS, my airspeed jumped from 220kts to 270, then 190, then 270, etc... It finally stuck at over 260, at which point I had no forward motion.

In addition, the plane yawed back and forth from left to right with the rapidly changing wind.

I'm not using any outside weather, just FS real weather.

I have loaded the latest version, and am testing. I will report back.

Thanks,

John

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have loaded the latest version, and am testing. I will report back.

Don't go overboard on this at present. I've found another problem -- I'm not actually computing any smoothing increments on the wind speed or direction, because of a timestamping error which indicates no time elapsed! This one is easy enough to fix.

However, there seems to be some other problem whereby it fails to scan correctly to update its matrix of 9 weather stations. I'm still puzzled by this. The code is complicated, but it looks okay. When I've found and fixed this error I'll upload another version and let you know.

BTW I've done several flights with FSX's own downloaded weather, and whilst, perhaps because of the above, the winds haven't been smoothed, the big changes are always in the wind direction reversing, or nearly so.

I've not yet seen any cases of 250-270 knot winds. That really does sound like a result from a corrupted weather download.

Many of the cases of wind reversal occur soon after SimConnect reports a METAR which is really very very long and which contains many almost identical Wind Layers, 30-50 of them, some as thin as a few metres. I'm pretty sure this is part of the problem, and that both are symptoms of a serious bug in the FSX weather system. I have seen this in the original Beta last year, and reported it, but no one could ever reproduce it consistently.

Regards

Pete

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think I may have found one possible cause, or maybe another symptom, of the bug in the FSX weather system which is causing the rapid wind reversals. It looks like, with downloaded real weather, at least (and possibly updates thereto, or maybe just the dynamic changes in any case), as the weather is changing at each WX station more and more spurious extra wind (and temperature) layers are added. Most of these are nonsensical, only a metre or so thick.

As an experiment I changed FSUIPC4 to detect these spurious layers, and if they occurred, to remove them and re-write the METAR back to the WX station.

So far, with that mechanism in place, the wind smoothing appears to be a lot better. I've only been testing for a morning, but so far there've been no severe wind shifts.

Consequently, I'm uploading version 4.173 soon, and recommend that you now do some of your own testing with that version.

I'm away from Thursday through to Sunday, inclusive, but I'll do some real flight testing tomorrow, and catch up with any results from you next week.

Regards

Pete

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Consequently, I'm uploading version 4.173 soon, and recommend that you now do some of your own testing with that version.

Pete

Thanks Pete. I will start testing this week as soon as you release the latest.

- John

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I will start testing this week as soon as you release the latest.

Actually, it was there in the FSX Downloads announcement a few minutes after I sent the message in this thread! ;-)

Pete

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I will start testing this week as soon as you release the latest.

You might as well hold off for a while longer. I've just done a proper test flight, and it isn't smoothing. I've got something wrong somewhere. It works well on my test system (with the debugging system running), but not in my cockpit.

I hate this sort of problem -- you try to find out what is happening, and the very act of looking makes it work okay! Grrr.

I'll be in touch again when I have something better. Unfortunately I'm running out of time this week, so it will probably be next week now.

[LATER]

Okay -- I found out what the problem was. I has a little program called SA_WXR running in my cockpit, which reads out the weather at all sorts of locations all the time FSX is running, so that it can display a weather radar picture.

Due to a stupid error on my part, this regular read action caused my normal smoothing actions to be by-passed altogether! Duh! :roll:

So, I'll fix that now and test it, and may upload 4.174 tomorrow morning, or even later today, if it is okay. Meanwhile, if you don't get it, you can still test 4.173 provided you have no programs or gauges running which are reading the weather through FSUIPC.

Regards

Pete

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So, I'll fix that now and test it, and may upload 4.174 tomorrow morning, or even later today, if it is okay. Meanwhile, if you don't get it, you can still test 4.173 provided you have no programs or gauges running which are reading the weather through FSUIPC.

I have good news and much worse bad news, I'm afraid.

After fixing the above and trying a real flight with my wind smoothing doing what I intended, I have come to three conclusions:

1. The severe wind shifts are either a direct result of the appearance in WX station weather settings of large numbers of spurious and untenable wind layers, or they are related to that as a parallel symptom.

2. By having FSUIPC read the nearest weather station METARs, detecting the spurious layers (both wind and temperature ones), removing them and writing the result back, most of the occurrences of severe wind shifts are removed. In one complete flight, albeit only 45 minutes, I had only one such shift. In others, before I had this working, I could be assured of many more than that, especially during climb and descent, which I believe exacerbates the layering problem (as you are travelling through them).

I believe the shifts that do slip through are due to the impossibility of detecting and changing them all fast enough without killing performance, and also to the likelihood that the three WX stations actually contributing to the conditions at the aircraft are not always found by the simple 3 x 3 matrix of points I use at present.

3. The act of setting the corrected METAR back to the WX station via SimConnect causes a stutter. When several occur close together, you get a severe stutter. The main period of the stutters exactly coincides with the timing of the smoothing scan -- controlled by the 1-30 value on the Winds tab in FSUIPC4. (For FSX SP2/Accel, value 1 = 500 mSec, Pre-SP2 value 1 = 1 sec).

Conclusion

========

I'm afraid (3) above is a killer. I'll provide FSUIPC4 version 4.174 after a final test flight, tomorrow morning perhaps, but it will have the "change FS own weather" option clearly marked as causing stutters. The facility will, at present, merely be a demonstration, not, in my opinion, a usable feature.

At least all this work has given me a lot of "ammunition" in discussing the whole mess with Microsoft. I just hope I can make some progress.

If I can think of any other way to pursue our goals here, I will undertake them when I can. As a very last resort maybe hacking into the FSX code is going to be necessary, but this is not something I am inclined to do, and it certainly won't be this year.

Please lookout for 4.174 if you want to try things out further despite the likely drawbacks.

Regards

Pete

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If I can think of any other way to pursue our goals here, I will undertake them when I can. As a very last resort maybe hacking into the FSX code is going to be necessary, but this is not something I am inclined to do, and it certainly won't be this year.

Please lookout for 4.174 if you want to try things out further despite the likely drawbacks.

Regards

Pete

Thanks Pete! Your work is very much appreciated. I will look out for the new version, and give it a spin. At least it looks like all the research was not in vain. I hope that MS listens to you!

- John

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I will look out for the new version, and give it a spin.

Not wanting to give up without more of a struggle, I've now uploaded 4.175 with a renewed attempt at getting wind smoothing working. I'm managed to reduce the stuttering, but i fear it may also be less effective. I won't be able to do a full flight test on it till later in the week, but please try it yourself and let me know.

Regards

Pete

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use. Guidelines Privacy Policy We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.