Legacy Importer assistance?
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Thread: Legacy Importer assistance?

  1. #1

    Legacy Importer assistance?

    Hey all,It has been a long time since I even attempted using the Legacy Importer. A new version was released lot long ago, so I tried it out today. I really do need to work with it more, as there are so many variables to convert/adjust, or simply take into consideration when converting FSX models to work in MSFS2020, apparently.I tried, rather unsuccessfully, to convert the RAZBAM A-7. I knew before attempting the conversion that it would have problems. Long ago, another SOH member had assisted me with this, but I no longer have what he sent me, no do I recall who it was! (Oh the joys of getting older).But, if anyone might be able to help, having already done this conversion, please send me a PM? Thanks, NC

  2. #2
    Chief,

    I still use it a lot. What kind of help do you need? I only convert my ports to legacy format, not the native format with the broken-up cfg files. My process is:

    - Select source and target folders, do initial import
    - in aircraft tab, select only red items, click "Try to add missing aircraft parameters"
    - in engines tab, select red items, click "try to fix engine issues"
    - in flight model tab, usually nothing to do
    - in systems tab, maybe try checking red items and pressing the bar to convert the lights, but usually it doesn't work anyway, so maybe not bother
    - skip runway tab, later copy runway.flt and apron.flt files from some other plane with same number and type of engines
    - in textures tab, convert bmp to dds with ImageTool if there are any
    - skip models tab
    - skip sounds tab
    - in panels tab, unpack CAB files if any. I generally do not try to do the XML-to-HTML "import panel gauges" thing

    That's it for Legacy Importer. But, updates SU4 and SU5 seem to be part of an effort by MS/Asobo to kill legacy planes, and LI has not been updated since March, so it will no longer produce a workable plane without some extra work.

    First, SU4 broke the .air files if they have any obsolete values, making engines and other things behave crazy. Download AIRED, edit the .air file and remove any OBSOLETE and UNUSED entries.

    Second, since SU5, you have to use Model Converter X to remove the mouse click rectangles in the interior MDL. There are instructions in the Legacy Planes thread here for doing this. If you don't do this, most legacy planes will now CTD a few seconds after you spawn in the cockpit.

    If you want all the sounds, you should look into the sound.cfg file for the names of any .wav files that are not in the Sound folder with it, and go copy those from your FSX Sound folder. Be sure to update layout.json after doing this.

    I generally delete any SPEC files in the various texture folders because they don't work the same way in MSFS as in any prior sim, and usually just look bad. Although, since SU5, it looks like MS/Asobo has changed it so that we can't have any specularity in legacy planes at all, they are always just matte.

    Then you are ready to try it out, see what's broken, and try to fix using whatever tools.

    When you go to fly, don't bother with Legacy flight model any more. SU5 changed that so it is now just the same as Modern. That can mean more tweaks to the aircraft.cfg to make the plane fly something like it should.

    Good luck!

    August

  3. #3
    Thanks! I will definitely follow your tips and report back! NC


    Quote Originally Posted by K5083 View Post
    Chief,

    I still use it a lot. What kind of help do you need? I only convert my ports to legacy format, not the native format with the broken-up cfg files. My process is:

    - Select source and target folders, do initial import
    - in aircraft tab, select only red items, click "Try to add missing aircraft parameters"
    - in engines tab, select red items, click "try to fix engine issues"
    - in flight model tab, usually nothing to do
    - in systems tab, maybe try checking red items and pressing the bar to convert the lights, but usually it doesn't work anyway, so maybe not bother
    - skip runway tab, later copy runway.flt and apron.flt files from some other plane with same number and type of engines
    - in textures tab, convert bmp to dds with ImageTool if there are any
    - skip models tab
    - skip sounds tab
    - in panels tab, unpack CAB files if any. I generally do not try to do the XML-to-HTML "import panel gauges" thing

    That's it for Legacy Importer. But, updates SU4 and SU5 seem to be part of an effort by MS/Asobo to kill legacy planes, and LI has not been updated since March, so it will no longer produce a workable plane without some extra work.

    First, SU4 broke the .air files if they have any obsolete values, making engines and other things behave crazy. Download AIRED, edit the .air file and remove any OBSOLETE and UNUSED entries.

    Second, since SU5, you have to use Model Converter X to remove the mouse click rectangles in the interior MDL. There are instructions in the Legacy Planes thread here for doing this. If you don't do this, most legacy planes will now CTD a few seconds after you spawn in the cockpit.

    If you want all the sounds, you should look into the sound.cfg file for the names of any .wav files that are not in the Sound folder with it, and go copy those from your FSX Sound folder. Be sure to update layout.json after doing this.

    I generally delete any SPEC files in the various texture folders because they don't work the same way in MSFS as in any prior sim, and usually just look bad. Although, since SU5, it looks like MS/Asobo has changed it so that we can't have any specularity in legacy planes at all, they are always just matte.

    Then you are ready to try it out, see what's broken, and try to fix using whatever tools.

    When you go to fly, don't bother with Legacy flight model any more. SU5 changed that so it is now just the same as Modern. That can mean more tweaks to the aircraft.cfg to make the plane fly something like it should.

    Good luck!

    August

  4. #4
    Given the results I've had with Legacy aircraft in MSFS, I've found the perfect way to deal with the issue:

    1) Load the plane in P3D or FSX
    2) Set the weather to "really bad" so you don't see the scenery much
    3) Fly the old stuff in the old sims and stick to native aircraft in MSFS

    It's sad. I wish legacy stuff worked better in MSFS. But MS doesn't really have a lot of incentive to put effort into that, particularly with the issues the sim has now with its core functionality.

    Maybe in a couple of years, when growth slows and they decide it's worth trying to bring over the stragglers. But from what I've heard from devs selling FSX/P3D stuff, the people who actually spend money are already on MSFS.

  5. #5
    I'd agree, Microsoft have succeeded in sending me back to Prepar3d for now. Has anyone managed to get imports to work in VR since SU4?

  6. #6
    I totally agree Denny and Keith, going back to P3D is another and possibly the best option. I still do it whenever I want a legacy plane to fly the way it should, and there are many planes there that won't port over. With a few good addons, the scenery can rival that of MSFS, except that the rendering and shading can never be as good. Even the exact same airplane or virtual cockpit looks a lot better in MSFS than in FSX/P3D because of the rendering and shading; but if you can do without that, most of the rest of the experience with legacy planes in P3D is better than MSFS.

    It's clear by now that flying legacy planes in MSFS is going to get worse, not better, as they continue to upgrade MSFS in ways that break the legacy planes. Eventually - meaning, any month now - legacy planes could become completely unusable in MSFS. I'm okay with it. Legacy planes fulfilled the function, for me, of providing good quality warbirds and antiques until decent native MSFS ones could be developed. It's probably not a good idea to invest significant effort in porting and tuning legacy planes with any expectation that they will be usable in the long run.

    August

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