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PMDG 737NG overhead panel controls


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Dear Pete,

In PMDG 737NG I would like to find the best solution to toggle the controls of the overhead panel. I found that in the PMDG menu there are key commands e.g. for the MCP and EFIS, but there aren't commands for the overhead panel. I tried a lot of the controls in your controls list document, but except for the lighting commands, the others don't seem to work :(

What is the best way to get them working?

Regards,

Tamas

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In PMDG 737NG I would like to find the best solution to toggle the controls of the overhead panel. I found that in the PMDG menu there are key commands e.g. for the MCP and EFIS, but there aren't commands for the overhead panel. I tried a lot of the controls in your controls list document, but except for the lighting commands, the others don't seem to work :(

What is the best way to get them working?

I don't use it myself, but that particular aircraft is one of those where you can use what are called "mouse macros", and in fact the macro file for the overhead is provided with FSUIPC as an example. It is the "737 OHD" macro file. You must have missed where it tells you this in the FSUIPC Installation guide AND the User Guide?

Pete

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Actually, I saw that macro file, viewed it with notepad, but because I planned not to use mouse macros, I omitted reading that part of the documentation. This way it seemed cryptic to me. I will read it and try using the provided mouse macro.

Sorry, if this is also mentioned there, but do you think I should be careful with the window size / screen resolution? I mean mouse macros usually use x,y coordinates, and I have a widescreen 1920x1080 monitor. Thanks for the tip.

Regards,

Tamas

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Actually, I saw that macro file, viewed it with notepad, but because I planned not to use mouse macros, I omitted reading that part of the documentation. This way it seemed cryptic to me. I will read it and try using the provided mouse macro.

I don't think there's much to read or learn. If the Macro file is in your FS Modules folder at the time you run FS, the macros in it will all be listed in the FSUIPC drop-down assignments list for keys and buttons. You just assign as you want. You will see them all starting with the name of the file.

The macro file was made by following the directions in the mouse Macro section of the User Guide. That's the place to start if you want to understand what was done and what others are doing to create macros for other various add-ons.

Sorry, if this is also mentioned there, but do you think I should be careful with the window size / screen resolution? I mean mouse macros usually use x,y coordinates, and I have a widescreen 1920x1080 monitor. Thanks for the tip.

You really do need to read the User Guide. It isn't hard.

Mouse macros do NOT record the position of the mouse. When being constructed they use your mouse click to work out where, in the code for the gauges, the mouse click goes to to action your request. What is then stored is a code location. Once created and tested to work the macro doesn't even need the graphic for the gauge on screen. The screen and mouse have absolutely nothing more to do with it!

Note that mouse macros only work on the specific code and version of the add-on's gauges they were made with. And they don't work at all for XML gauges or those not written to Microsoft gauge SDK methods (like, unfortunaytely, most of MS's own default aircraft).

Pete

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I dissapeared for some days, due to programming my effective 8 buttons wiht the 9 mode button combinations and at present my FSUIPC.INI file is 29kbytes big. I spent many hours on assigning the overhead functions, and your tip helped me.

Now I read about the mouse macro, I was able to create some, except for that one with the throttle quadrant. I haven't found a proper command for speedbrake arm/disarm, and flight detent. When I tried to create the mouse macro for this, and pressed TAB to test it, it only swithed that lever up to speadbreak off position. With the mouse it is a little bit difficult, because you have to click and pull the lever down to move it to flight detent position.

Can you help me finding the way to program this function to a button press? I will also have a question for the axes configuration, but in another thread.

Tamas

I don't think there's much to read or learn. If the Macro file is in your FS Modules folder at the time you run FS, the macros in it will all be listed in the FSUIPC drop-down assignments list for keys and buttons. You just assign as you want. You will see them all starting with the name of the file.

The macro file was made by following the directions in the mouse Macro section of the User Guide. That's the place to start if you want to understand what was done and what others are doing to create macros for other various add-ons.

You really do need to read the User Guide. It isn't hard.

Mouse macros do NOT record the position of the mouse. When being constructed they use your mouse click to work out where, in the code for the gauges, the mouse click goes to to action your request. What is then stored is a code location. Once created and tested to work the macro doesn't even need the graphic for the gauge on screen. The screen and mouse have absolutely nothing more to do with it!

Note that mouse macros only work on the specific code and version of the add-on's gauges they were made with. And they don't work at all for XML gauges or those not written to Microsoft gauge SDK methods (like, unfortunaytely, most of MS's own default aircraft).

Pete

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Now I read about the mouse macro, I was able to create some, except for that one with the throttle quadrant. I haven't found a proper command for speedbrake arm/disarm, and flight detent. When I tried to create the mouse macro for this, and pressed TAB to test it, it only swithed that lever up to speadbreak off position. With the mouse it is a little bit difficult, because you have to click and pull the lever down to move it to flight detent position.

I'm pretty sure that the speed brake is operated by the normal FS controls for spoilers. Have you tried those?

Pete

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Well,

SPOILERS_ON 66064 and SPOILERS_OFF 66065 they are okay for flight detent. SPOILERS_SET 65786 and SPOILERS_TOGGLE 65589 also work, but opposite way as I expected, never mind.

About arming speedbrake, I tried these ones, but not any of them worked.

SPOILERS_ARM_ON 66066

SPOILERS_ARM_OFF 66067

SPOILERS_ARM_SET 66068

SPOILERS_ARM_TOGGLE 65853

Tamas

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SPOILERS_ON 66064 and SPOILERS_OFF 66065 they are okay for flight detent. SPOILERS_SET 65786 and SPOILERS_TOGGLE 65589 also work, but opposite way as I expected, never mind.

SPOILERS SET is the older axis command. the more modern one is AXIS SPOILERS SET.

About arming speedbrake, I tried these ones, but not any of them worked.

SPOILERS_ARM_ON 66066

SPOILERS_ARM_OFF 66067

SPOILERS_ARM_SET 66068

SPOILERS_ARM_TOGGLE 65853

Are you testing this on the ground? If so, don't!

Get the aircraft in the air. FS has a quirk whereby it auto-activates the spoilers on the ground when armed, just as when landing.

Regards

Pete

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I tested spoilers arm in the air. If you say that these are the controls that should work, then maybe I need to create and check my log file. Now, because of my plans to use approx 8-9 buttons to toggle controls and use 6 buttons for different "modes" I have very complex setup like these (and even more complex ones)

61=CP(+0,25)(F-10,0)(F-10,1)(F+10,2)(F-10,3)(-0,20)(+0,21)(-0,22)0,12,C66066,0 ; SPOILERS_ARM_ON 66066

62=CP(+0,25)(F-10,0)(F-10,1)(F+10,2)(F-10,3)(-0,20)(+0,21)(-0,22)0,10,C66067,0 ; SPOILERS_ARM_OFF 66067

63=CP(+0,25)(F-10,0)(F-10,1)(F+10,2)(F-10,3)(+0,20)(-0,21)(-0,22)0,12,C66068,0 ; SPOILERS_ARM_SET 66068

64=CP(+0,25)(F-10,0)(F-10,1)(F+10,2)(F-10,3)(+0,20)(-0,21)(-0,22)0,10,C65853,0 ; SPOILERS_ARM_TOGGLE 65853

So I might have to test it on a completely "safe" button, like which I don't use with combinations, and I use it in the general section. The more complex the setup becomes, the more difficult to debug. Now 99% of the functions are working (I left some to use by mouse because I really run out of buttons :)), there are just these few issues. The others I want to debug myself first, and only if I'm completely lost, I will ask for your help.

Regards,

Tamas

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I tested spoilers arm in the air. If you say that these are the controls that should work...

The spoilers toggle and arm controls are those which are assigned by default to the / and shift+/ keys (or is is \and shift+\ ? I never remember). Have you never used the keyboard with FS?

And anyway, why bother messing with your complex button arrangements to test things, when you can assign the same controls, for testing, to any of many key presses?

Most more sophisticated setups would use an axis assignment for spoilers in any case. FSUIPC has calibration for the ARM point on an axis. Both "Spoilers set" and "Axis spoilers set" are axis controls, as I say, not really button controls -- unless you provide an appropriate parameter too.

Regards

Pete

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Have you never used the keyboard with FS?

Only brakes, parking brakes and gear up/down :) for the others I used mouse.

Most more sophisticated setups would use an axis assignment for spoilers in any case

That's a good idea. Now I use my 3rd throtle lever as a steering tiller, but it would be nice to use it for spoilers / spoilers arm when in the air. I read that offsets can be used for this, different offset means I am on the ground or in the air, but can you please tell me exactly how to do this? This part of joystick calibration and axis assignment now looks like this:

SteeringTiller=-16351,-3559,-1892,16255/16

4=0U,256,D,36,0,0,0

Tamas

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That's a good idea. Now I use my 3rd throtle lever as a steering tiller, but it would be nice to use it for spoilers / spoilers arm when in the air. I read that offsets can be used for this, different offset means I am on the ground or in the air, but can you please tell me exactly how to do this?

To change an axis function completely depending on such a thing as when you are on the ground or in the air can only be done with a Lua plug-in. No offset is involved other than reading the one which tells you whether you are on the ground or not.

You'd assign the axis to run the Lua program (much like assigning a button to run a lua program). You wouldn't assign it to either steering axis or spoiler in FSUIPC. The axis value from your device is passed to the Lua program as "ipcPARAM". Then that program would may process the value before sending it to FS as Axis Rudder Set (for steering) or Axis Spoiler Set (for spoiler) parameters according to the "on ground" flag read from the offset.

I haven't tried this myself, and I'm not sure you'd be able to calibrate the outcome in FSUIPC (because FSUIPC is processing a different axis which may not be scanned when calibrating the "mapped" axis"). But it might be. I don't know anyone else who has tried it either. It would be an interesting experiment which I shall certainly try when I get some time -- maybe later this week.

Regards

Pete

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