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    Help requested with a Helios button issue

    I am trying to do a simple Helios profile for the A4E Skyhawk and have managed to do 2 gauges (air speed and radar altitude) using CaptZeen's Helios generic interface and instructions (http://captzeen.com/helios/creating_helios_profiles/#/), but I need some help in understanding how to make a button light up when on and go dark when off. For example, a simple Master Arm button would light up when armed and go dark when not armed. An example of the logic used by Helios would be greatly appreciated. If you do provide an example, don't worry about using the correct code for the button.

    Right now, I am just using simple keystroke commands for each button, but this is not a satisfactory long-term solution.
    Trackir4 using the latest Trackir 5 software, Win10 Pro [Creator Update] updated from Win7Pro Pro 64Bit, Intel(R) Core™ i5-2500 3.30 GHz 6M Intel Smart Cache LGA115 , GigaByte GA-Z68XP-UD4 Intel Z68 Chipset DDR3 16GB Ram, GTX MSI Gaming 1060 [6 GB] Video Card, Main Monitor 1 on left 1920x1080 Touchscreen Monitor 2 on right 1920x1080 .

    #2
    Hi
    Some one else may have an easier way to do it, but its actually not hard.

    For a simple toggle switch, you go to the left pane and select 'indicators', choose which you'd like to use (most of the time I use the green light one) left click on it and drag it onto your panel. In the Properties pane on the right, scroll down to the bottom and there you can choose the picture or graphic you like to use for the ON and OFF appearance. Next go to the 'Bindings' section, click the 'Input' tap, go down to the interface you're using (say DCS Generic), go down to toggle switch you're using for this (lets say #1), click and drag that over to 'Toggle Indicator' or which ever one of the choices you wish to use. Save Profile and you're done. Now when you flip the switch on and off it will change between the pictures you choose.

    Hope that helps

    DJ

    Comment


      #3
      DeJohn: Your instructions seemed simple enough, but apparently not for me. I could not find the generic interface info for the button to activate the search radar in the Skyhawk so I tried to follow your instructions using key commands. However, when I click on the "Input" button and go to Interface>keyboard nothing drops down for keyboard actions so I cannot bind anything. Going to Toggle Switch 1,0>TSwitch_1 changed and dragging it to "toggle indicator" did not seem to work either. BTW, do you use static valve or trigger value in the last column under value source.
      Trackir4 using the latest Trackir 5 software, Win10 Pro [Creator Update] updated from Win7Pro Pro 64Bit, Intel(R) Core™ i5-2500 3.30 GHz 6M Intel Smart Cache LGA115 , GigaByte GA-Z68XP-UD4 Intel Z68 Chipset DDR3 16GB Ram, GTX MSI Gaming 1060 [6 GB] Video Card, Main Monitor 1 on left 1920x1080 Touchscreen Monitor 2 on right 1920x1080 .

      Comment


        #4
        sobe

        The reference I made to Toggle Switch 1,0>TSwitch_1 was just an example of where to look, not a suggestion on which one to use. The switch you would use is the one that 'you' assigned to that button in your profile.

        But lets forget about about that part for now, and focus on just changing the look of the button. As I said in my post you need to change the graphic or picture for your button/switch. Here you have several options, 1- create your own pictures, 2- use existing pictures from another profile and 3- modify an existing picture to look how you want it to.

        For 1 & 3 I use Photoshop, but you can use any program that handles (.png) format. #2 is by far the easist way to go, thanks to Capt Zeen and his wonderful profiles, he's done most of the work for us in this reguard. (Remember you need 2 pictures, one for the 'OFF' state and one for the 'ON' state of the button.)

        In CaptZeen's F16 profile there is are button pictures I think you might be looking for, if not it will give you an idea of what you're looking to do. If you don't have that profile, download it.

        Now, in the Helios Editor, Toolbox on the left, select Buttons, click and drag the 'Tactile Square' button onto your panel. Next with your new button highlighted, in the 'Properties' pane on the right, under 'Appearance' you'll see 'Images' two of them, 1 marked Normal(the off state) and 1 Pushed(the on state.)

        Click on the Browse icon to the right of the Normal picture and navigate to the F16 folder in the 'Documents/Helios/Images/Capt_Zeen/F16', there you will find the picture(active-stby_ACTIVE_OFF.png), select that one. Do the same for the Pushed picture but use (active-stby_ACTIVE_ON.png).

        Next scroll down the 'Properties' pane to the bottom, and where it says 'Type' change that to 'Toggle'.

        Save your profile, and run it to test. The button should change from off(not lit) to on(lit).

        Comment


          #5
          DeJohn: Success at last. The button now switches from blank to active and back. However, as the old saying goes: "No good deed goes unpunished." When the jet starts off cold, the button is in sync. However, if the jet starts off hot and in the air, some missions already have some switches in the on/active position while the button in Helios is still in the off/blank position. So the next step is how to do the "Input" tab in order to sync the button with the actual state of the switch.

          As I understand Helios, the "output" tab is for Helios > DCS and the "input" tab is for DCS > Helios. IS THAT CORRECT OR DO I HAVE IT BACKWARDS?

          When I go to the input tab for this button and then go to Input>interface>keyboard, nothing appears under the keyboard heading. In Input>interface>profile, there are several choices as well as several choices under the bindings column. I am confused as to what to do, if anything to sync the button.

          One alternative that is not my choice, is to have two profiles for the Skyhawk, one for a cold start and one for a hot start where the blank/active images are switched. I recall doing this to some degree for the F16 in BMS using Ice's old profile. But again, I don't really want to do that here.
          Trackir4 using the latest Trackir 5 software, Win10 Pro [Creator Update] updated from Win7Pro Pro 64Bit, Intel(R) Core™ i5-2500 3.30 GHz 6M Intel Smart Cache LGA115 , GigaByte GA-Z68XP-UD4 Intel Z68 Chipset DDR3 16GB Ram, GTX MSI Gaming 1060 [6 GB] Video Card, Main Monitor 1 on left 1920x1080 Touchscreen Monitor 2 on right 1920x1080 .

          Comment


            #6
            sobe,

            First let me say that I'm not able to give you actual information on your A4E panel, since I don't have that mod on my system, and can not get DCS to show me values. Mainly because I am a rotor Head rather than a jet jockey. Though there are two jets that I fly on occation, F-86, (because one of my favorite movies is The Hunters, with Robert Mitchum), and the F-16, mainly out of respect and nostalgia, since my Father-in-law(GOD rest his soul) was the engineer who designed the cockpit for it. But I will give you any help I can, though my ideas may not be the best or the way others do things; sometimes you just have togo with 'what works for you' kind of fix.

            Now, as to your question. This was the part in my original post where I mentioned the switch, which is how you get DCS to talk to your panel through the interface.

            If I understand your posts, you are mainly using Helios as far as your buttons go, as a keyboard emulator for your inputs rather than using the interface for this function. Nothing wrong with that, its how many of us started using Helios before the advent of the interface.

            Originally, when I built my UH1 simpit I ran into the same issue of syncing of the panel with the different states that DCS would start an aircraft in. As you are not using physical switches like I am, your process can be straight forward, however a little time comsuming at first.

            1st... take a piece of paper and number or name all the switches you use on your panel. (don't worry if your panel is not complete, you can add to this list in the future as you go).

            Next, run DCS and the A4E as a hot start on the ramp. Make note of which of your switches are in the ON state in the simulator.

            Then do the same thing for DCS starting in the air.

            Also for starting 'Cold/Dark',(this usually only concerns toggle switches and rotary knobs), yes even in this state DCS for what ever the reason in some aircraft will have switches in the ON state even though the aircraft is shut down.

            Now that you know which of your switches are on or off in different starting conditions, look to see which of your panel switches are different states between the Hot Ramp and In Flight. If they are the same in both starts, then you only need to put one extra button on your panel, if some are different you'll need to use two buttons.

            For the sake of these instructions, we'll assume that your buttons are on in both the Hot Ramp and Inflight starts.

            In Helios, on your panel, find an area that you will not be using for any thing else.(for this example lets say the upper left corner). From buttons in the Toolbox, click and drag which ever button you'd like to use, over to the upper left corner.

            In the properties pane, name the button sync, in the Text area put HOT SYNC (or what ever you want to show on the button), and under Behavior type 'Toggle'.

            Now with your 'sync' button highlighted, in the Bindings pane, click output tab, expand 'Monitors', then Monitor 2, then your panel, In there should be a list of the buttons on your panel. Unless you have multiple panels on your main panel. If that is the case, expand the panel that has the button you want to sync.

            When you find your button, expand it. We'll use the button we worked on in my last post.

            You'll have multiple choices for the button, one of them should be "set physical state". Click and drag that choice over to 'closed' in the Bindings section, and then repeat that step to the 'open' binding. Leave the value as trigger since that is all we are doing is triggering the look of the button rather than giving it an actual value.

            Save your profile under different name so that we don't mess up any work you did prior to this session (usually I just add a number to the name, 1,2...so on).

            Run your profile to test... Click on the Sync button, and what should happen is your search radar button should switch between unlit and lit, the same as if you clicked the button itself. However, clicking the sync button will send no commands to DCS, it will only change the look of the buttons you programed to change.

            Hope this helps
            DJ

            Comment


              #7
              I followed your instructions but I seem to be missing or confused on something. Where did I tell the Hot Sync button to sync just certain switches-for instance the Off/Standby switch for the autopilot? In a cold start, the switch is off and generally in a hot start the switch is in Standby. So how does the Hot Sync button know to do this for only the autopilot off/standby switch and not the other switches (which I will have to determine after I solve this issue) ?

              Your FIL must have had some interesting stories to tell you about the cockpit. It has held up through a lot of changes. The only stories that I know are the force change on the joystick and the angle of the seat.
              Trackir4 using the latest Trackir 5 software, Win10 Pro [Creator Update] updated from Win7Pro Pro 64Bit, Intel(R) Core™ i5-2500 3.30 GHz 6M Intel Smart Cache LGA115 , GigaByte GA-Z68XP-UD4 Intel Z68 Chipset DDR3 16GB Ram, GTX MSI Gaming 1060 [6 GB] Video Card, Main Monitor 1 on left 1920x1080 Touchscreen Monitor 2 on right 1920x1080 .

              Comment


                #8
                sobe,


                Basically the instructions you just did to sync the radar button, you do for each button you want to change the condition of when you press the 'Sync' button.

                The switch you're describing, appears to be a 3 way toggle switch in the cockpit. However not having the mod I don't know what actions it takes. In Helios 3way toggle switches are selectable in 1 of 4 types... on/on/on, on/on/momentary, mom/on/on and mom/on/mom.

                You'll have to look in the cockpit to see how the switch moves each time you click it, to find out which type for the setting you should use on your panel.

                NOTE* if the switch or button doesn't have that 'set physical state' in its choices, Which is actually the case with toggle and rotary knobs, you would use the 'set position' insted. So you'll have to declair the position for the 'closed' and 'open' binding.

                In Helios, toggle switch positions are as follows...

                two position toggle, position 1 is top or up, 2 is bottom or down.

                three position toggle, position 1 is top, 2 is middle and 3 is bottom.

                Now in the case of your autopilot toggle, you will set the 'closed' state at position 2, and the 'open' state at position 3.


                If you do this right, and you have say 10 buttons/switches that the sync button has to change, then each of the sync button states (closed and open) will have 10 entries each in them.

                Comment


                  #9
                  I sent you a PM.
                  Trackir4 using the latest Trackir 5 software, Win10 Pro [Creator Update] updated from Win7Pro Pro 64Bit, Intel(R) Core™ i5-2500 3.30 GHz 6M Intel Smart Cache LGA115 , GigaByte GA-Z68XP-UD4 Intel Z68 Chipset DDR3 16GB Ram, GTX MSI Gaming 1060 [6 GB] Video Card, Main Monitor 1 on left 1920x1080 Touchscreen Monitor 2 on right 1920x1080 .

                  Comment

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