ATC with JOINFS

Suggestions, ideas and general discussion about JoinFS.
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ATC Roo
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ATC with JOINFS

Post by ATC Roo »

****Updated due to JOINFS updates.*****

How to act as an Air Traffic Controller using JoinFS.

Euroscope
I've created a tool that will display JoinFS aircraft on Euroscope.
I've called it ESJFS and for those that would like to try it, it can be found here.

**EDIT Jan 2021**
I've just updated ESJFS to V3, which now includes an updater.
I don't update it a lot but If a new version becomes available, you will be notified by the updater.
I've also tweeked a few things, although it looks and works the same as before.

To use it with JoinFS.
1. Start JoinFS
2. Start the ESJFS tool.
3. Start Euroscope and click Connection.
4. Select Connection Mode = Direct to VATSIM
5. RealName, Cerificate, and Password = ANYTHING you like.
6. Server = 127.0.0.1 or the word localhost.
7. Connect to VATSIM TickBox = Unticked.
Finally Click Connect!

A picture of the settings I use is below.
Image

The tool will now also allow a connection directly to FSX/P3D or FSUIPC (And possibly XPUIPC).
If connecting this way any Aircraft that is in your SIM will be shown on Euroscope.
Handy if you don't want to use the default FSX radar or you use Xplane which doesn't come with a radar AFAIK.

DEFAULT FSX RADAR
To see JoinFS traffic on the default FSX radar you must start as an ATC in the following order.
1.Start your sim and set up a Tower in Freeflight mode.
2.Open JoinFS and in the settings menu tick Enable ATC Mode and input the ICAO code for the airport you will be controlling.
3.Run the JoinFS client and connect to the network with your friends.

But Roo how do I start the Tower in Freeflight mode?
I hear you say.

Yes there is no option to start the default FSX ATC Tower in Freeflight mode as there is in Multiplayer mode, but there is the option to load a saved flight.

So if you are in multiplayer mode as a Tower you can save this flight to use in Freeflight mode.

1. Start FSX and go to Local Network LAN and click sign in.
2. Click Host a session (bottom right).
3. Select Freeflight for the session Type, put anything you like in the other boxes and click next.
4. Select Air Traffic Controller in the role drop down box, Select the airport you want to control, the weather you would like and the Time of day.
5. Click SAVE and save the flight as KLAX Tower (replace KLAX with the airport you chose).

Complete steps 4 and 5 for every airport you would like to have quick access too when wanting to control.

6. Once all the airports you'd like are created, click back and sign out which should take you back to the main FSX login screen.
7. Select FreeFlight from the top left.
8. From the Free Flight screen select Load half way down the screen.
9. Select the Tower you would like to control at and click Fly Now.
FSX Will load you into the Tower view at the airport you chose.

If you have the AI aircraft enabled you will see them on the radar screen too.
I would advise turning AI traffic off when controlling in Freeflight mode.

I hope that helps anybody wanting to control aircraft using JoinFS and the ATC mode feature.
Last edited by ATC Roo on Thu Jan 07, 2021 2:37 am, edited 16 times in total.
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Peter
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Re: ATC with JOINFS

Post by Peter »

Hi Roo,

Thanks for this. A quick question, should I be able to see taxiing aircraft on the tower's radar monitor screen, or is it just airborne detections?

Peter
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Re: ATC with JOINFS

Post by ATC Roo »

You should see both Peter.
Although I've edited my radar a lot so I'll check with the default shortly.

There's a button bottom right of the radar controls which will filter ground, air or both.
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Re: ATC with JOINFS

Post by Peter »

Great, thanks.

Peter
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Re: ATC with JOINFS

Post by ATC Roo »

Just checked with the default radar.

I don't see any JOINFS ground aircraft.
Well there was one that flickered on and off as if one update would show it as on the ground and the next it would be airborne.
It was stationary on the ground.

Where as if I create an FSX AI aircraft on the ground on my PC running the radar I do see that.
If I create an FSX AI on a LAN PC running JOINFS it does get broadcast to my other PC and shows on radar as on the ground.

It looks like any aircraft the JOINFS client creates are created as airborne AI?
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Peter
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Re: ATC with JOINFS

Post by Peter »

ATC Roo wrote: Where as if I create an FSX AI aircraft on the ground on my PC running the radar I do see that.
If I create an FSX AI on a LAN PC running JOINFS it does get broadcast to my other PC and shows on radar as on the ground.

It looks like any aircraft the JOINFS client creates are created as airborne AI?
Yes, that's exactly right. When I create the network aircraft, I first create an AI aircraft with the Ground flag off, so yes it is basically airborne all the time as far as FSX is concerned. The problem is that in SimConnect you can't change this flag so I think FSX determines whether an aircraft is airborne itself. Perhaps the network position is causing it to keep touching and lifting off the ground slightly and causing the state to switch. This is something I can investigate.

Thanks,
Peter
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Re: ATC with JOINFS

Post by ATC Roo »

Peter wrote:[ Perhaps the network position is causing it to keep touching and lifting off the ground slightly and causing the state to switch.
That's exactly what I thought and glad I was able to explain it.

Also regarding the QNH/Altimeter setting .
If the session that created the AI on is on a different pressure setting to the radar showing it, then it will show as airborne.

I got around this by selecting the weather tick box in JoinFS so everybody had the same pressure.
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Peter
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Re: ATC with JOINFS (Please Read Again)

Post by Peter »

Hi,

please read the first post of this thread for an update on using the radar program.

Thanks,
Peter
Deano1973
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Re: ATC with JOINFS (Please Read Again)

Post by Deano1973 »

Peter wrote:Hi,

please read the first post of this thread for an update on using the radar program.

Thanks,
Peter
We have a radar that works okay and doesn't seem to cause any issues Peter, if it helps: "Aircraft Radar"

http://emarciano.free.fr/En/index.htm

I adapted it for use in Tower view and also internally in our 11 Squadron Typhoons.
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Peter
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Re: ATC with JOINFS (Please Read Again!)

Post by Peter »

Thanks, Dean.

I'm going to add a new setting to JoinFS for 'ATC Mode' which will show the traffic on the default radar but the aircraft may act a bit funny, but that's not really a problem for the controller.

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Re: ATC with JOINFS (Please Read Again!)

Post by ATC Roo »

Thanks Peter.
I look forward to testing it.
AndyKing
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Re: ATC with JOINFS (Please Read Again!)

Post by AndyKing »

So if I understand this correctly ATC is only able through FSX and NOT P3D ?

Is there or will there be an 'add-on' specifically as an ATC program, like 'ATC Rader Screen' originally produced by Manuel Ambulo http://www.fsmanuel.com
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Peter
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Re: ATC with JOINFS (Please Read Again!)

Post by Peter »

Hi Andy,

I have not seen any reports that indicate ATC Mode will not work in P3D. Unfortunately I don't own P3D and so am unable to confirm. I can't see any reason why it shouldn't work. All you need to do is go to JoinFS settings and enable ATC Mode. Then see which of your existing radar software, including the default radar (which definitely works in FSX) shows the aircraft listed in the JoinFS aircraft list.

Best regards,
Peter
AndyKing
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Re: ATC with JOINFS (Please Read Again!)

Post by AndyKing »

OK, so after re-installing FSX to see JoinFS ATC for myself I have discovered that only Acceleration has the 'Tower' mode so JoinFS ATC presumably only available in that version, as for P3D well it does not have a tower mode or am I not looking for the right thing.

So my question is will there be an 'add-on' to JoinFS that will act as a seperate stand alone ATC 'Module' if you like.

I am interested in this as I have a very clunky ATC suite that feeds off of an FSHost server written in PHP/MySQL where it pulls the info from an XML file that FSHost outputs, like I said very clunky and could do with re-programming in VB or CC+ but thats out of my area of understanding.

But I am happy to look at this sort of thing with programmers, I also note the question has also been raised about the 'Map Feature' on websites, again it is possible to do with FSHost but the coding would need re-engineering to suit JoinFS.

Here is an example map produced by FSHost:
http://109.70.148.31/User305.html

Regards
Andy
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Peter
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Re: ATC with JOINFS (Please Read Again!)

Post by Peter »

I believe that other radar add-ons, and GPS add-ons will show JoinFS aircraft reasonably well.

I'm still not clear what you mean by an add-on for JoinFS. What exactly is it that you would like it to do?

The data file support that I'll be doing for the map feature that you mentioned may well be what you're after. I'm going to try using the whazzup file format which means that existing map plug-ins that use that format should work without modification. I can, of course, generate alternative formats if that would help avoid any re-coding on the server side.

Peter
AndyKing
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Re: ATC with JOINFS (Please Read Again!)

Post by AndyKing »

Hi Peter, sorry I really seem to be confusing the issue here.
OK, I will ask the guys that use 'ATC Radar Screen' to test.

Maybe 'add-on' is the wrong thing to call it... probably better to show you what I have done so you can see the application idea, PM me if interested.

I am not familiar with Whazzup, is it even still available ?
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Peter
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Re: ATC with JOINFS (Please Read Again!)

Post by Peter »

I doubt I'll be doing any ATC specific utilities as that's sort of outside the scope of JoinFS. However, I am definitely interested in ensuring that existing/new ATC add-ons are able to work alongside JoinFS. That's why I added the ATC Mode and will be adding support for server interaction via a data file.

As far as I've been made aware, Whazzup is simply a file format. So plug-ins and server code that are able to read it, will automatically be able to display information from a server running JoinFS.

Peter
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Re: ATC with JOINFS (Please Read Again!)

Post by ATC Roo »

In an ideal world it would be nice if Euroscope could work with JoinFS.
Maybe a Euroscope addon could be created that shows all aircraft in a users Simulator or an interface to connect directly to a join fs node (maybe one for a dev with no project)?

Realistically there are radar programs out there already that will show any aircraft in your sim on a radar screen.

So if your sim is connected to JoinFS the radar addons will show the aircraft.

I have found using the default FSX radar to be the easiest way and have not yet tested anything else.

Have a look at flightsim commander as that should work and I have a radar display which installs as an aircraft which you select as you would any other aircraft.

I'll test this when I get chance and post a link to it.

On a slightly different note if Peter does create a whazzup type file for map apps this may also be able to be used with Euroscope, as Eurocope can be configured to use any whazzup file hosted anywhere.
The problem I see with this is that it would need to be hosted on somekind of webserver to be available publicly and the constant reading of the file would probably cause issues with Web hosts.
Could JoinFS host it?
Depending on how fast it updates (VATSIM use a 5 second delay AFAIK) it might also be able to be used to control with, although gaining data direct from the JoinFS interface would be better.
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Peter
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Re: ATC with JOINFS (Please Read Again!)

Post by Peter »

That's a good point, Roo, I'm fairly sure I can get JoinFS to respond to http requests and so provide an interface that way.

Peter
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Re: ATC with JOINFS (Please Read Again!)

Post by spokes2112 »

Hi all,

Since downloading JoinFS I have been carousing the forums to stay in the loop and came across this post. A shameless plug here but have you tried using this upload - http://library.avsim.net/search.php?Sea ... t&Go=Searc? It's basically the stock control tower turned into a non-visible/non-flyable aircraft therefore able to select where you would want to be using the stock "select aircraft" and "select airport" dialogs. It is slewable for a good vantage point and has an external program to adjust the height of the tower.

Currently working on an upgrade w/ these features -
1. The saving of radar settings (zoom/modes etc..) from previous session. (Doug Dawson gauge)
2. (maybe) The saving of the opened windows based on the previous session. (without using a saved flight, Doug Dawson gauge)
3. Removal of all stock effects so when slewing at an airport other MP players won't see you. Scrapes, dust etc..
4. An alternate mode for the "Session Info" window where the upper traffic list is forced to show atc_id rather than airline/flight # if provided. That way if on a JoinFS session the pilot nickname is forcibly shown. Other ATC helper info provided in this mode. (Mode is togglable)
5. Other small things.

Roman
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