Jump to content

Kneeboard Builder (windows app)


Recommended Posts

[YOUTUBE]w9sKkpQ6_II[/YOUTUBE]

 

WEBSITE:

 

www.dcskneeboardbuilder.com

 

 

KNEEBOARD BUILDER simplifies the creation of custom kneeboards for DCS World. It automatically converts '.pdf' files to '.png' images and places them in groups that can be used to quickly create custom kneeboards for individual DCS aircraft. It also makes it easy to customize the way the kneeboard is displayed in DCS by providing an interface to easily change the size, position and color scheme of the kneeboard.

 

I am regularly releasing updates and program functionality is subject to change.

 

I would appreciate any feedback.

 

 

 

SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS:

 

- Windows 64 bit

 

- .NET Framework 4.5 or higher

.NET Framework 4.5 Download

http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=225702

 

 

 

NEW INSTALLATION:

 

1) Download and extract the Kneeboard Builder.zip to a location of your choice.

 

2) Open KneeboardBuilder.exe

 

 

BASIC USAGE:

 

1) Go to 'Preferences' (Options -> Preferences) and verify that the program is pointing correctly to your DCS installation folder and your saved games folder.

 

2) In the 'Import PDF" tab drag and drop any .pdf file(s), select an aircraft and type in a group name, ie "F86 Manual", for each file.

 

3) Click on Begin Import

 

4) When import is complete, click on the 'Create Custom Kneeboard' tab.

 

5) Select an aircraft and use the arrows to add the group you created to the 'Custom Kneeboard' for your selected aircraft. You can mix and match the groups as you please

 

6) Click on the 'Build Custom Kneeboard' button.

 

7) You are all done! Click on 'View -> Custom Kneeboard Folder' to verify that the images have been placed in the aircraft's kneeboard folder.

 

It is also possible to copy and modify your groups. For example, you could create a 'F86 Checklist' group, click on the 'Modify' button and only include pages that have checklists or create an 'F86 Weapons' group that only includes pages dealing with weapons employment.

 

You can change the custom kneeboard while you are in game as long as you are not actively in an aircraft.

 

 

INSERTING KNEEBOARD INTO EXISTING MISSIONS:

 

With version 1.4.0.0 you can now insert kneeboard images into existing missions. The kneeboard will be global and visible to all aircraft. I haven't been able to figure out how to do selective kneeboards for each aircraft (if even possible).

Backup your missions before inserting a kneeboard just in case something goes wrong. (I have not had any issues yet with .miz files becoming corrupted, but you never know...)

 

1) From the 'Create Custom Kneeboard' tab, select the kneeboard groups you would like to add your mission(s).

 

2) Click on the '.miz' button on the lower right side of the window.

 

3) Select a single mission or multiple missions in the file browser dialog and click 'Open'.

 

4) Your selected kneeboard groups will be automatically inserted into each selected mission, overwriting any existing kneeboard already in the mission.

 

Tip: If you want to clear a kneeboard from a mission or missions, perform steps 2-3 without selecting any kneeboard groups to add.

 

 

DYNAMIC KNEEBOARD SYSTEM:

 

The dynamic kneeboard system allows the kneeboard to be built using .lua at DCS runtime (when the kneeboard initially loads) using data from the loaded mission or from an external data source.

This means that it is possible for a 3rd party program (like a mission planner) to export data that could then be loaded into a kneeboard when DCS loads a mission.

Currently I have developed three dynamic kneeboard pages that you can add to any kneeboard that will dynamically load mission data from the current mission at runtime:

 

1) Dynamic Mission Briefing:

-creates a kneeboard page that contains the current mission weather, description and tasks based on the player's coalition.

-converts the weather measurements to metric or US based on the player’s aircraft

 

2) Dynamic Mission Radios:

-creates a kneeboard page that displays all pertinent radio frequencies for the current mission based on the player's coalition and aircraft.

-displays all JTAC, Tanker, AWACS and FARP and other flights radio information

-displays all preset frequencies for planes with preset radios

 

3) Dynamic Navigation Beacons:

-creates three kneeboard pages that displays all names, frequencys and locations(lat, lon) of all (non-airport) navigation beacons currently in DCS World.

 

The dynamic kneeboard group is located in the 'General DCS World Kneeboard' available groups.

 

1) Go to the 'Create Custom Kneeboard' tab and select 'General DCS World Kneeboard' in the 'Select Aircraft' drop down box.

 

2) In the 'Available Groups' section you should see the 'Default Dynamic' group. Click on the 'Default Dynamic' group and click on the right arrow to move it to the 'Groups Selected for Custom Kneeboard' section.

 

3) Now you can click on the 'Build Custom Kneeboard for General DCS World' to add it to the General Kneeboard and make the dynamic kneeboards visible in all aircraft. Or you can select a specific aircraft with the 'Select Aircraft' drop down box and then click on the 'Build Custom Kneeboard' button to add the dynamic kneeboards only to your selected aircraft's kneeboard.

 

CURRENT DYNAMIC KNEEBOARD LIMITIATIONS:

-full functionality is not available for single player missions where the player’s aircraft skill is listed as ‘Client’ in the mission.

-there is no scroll bar available in the kneeboards, so missions with long novels for descriptions or tasks will not have enough room to display correctly. (sorry Belsimtek)

-my word wrap function is still WIP so situation and task briefing texts may look a bit wonky at times.

 

 

UltraMFCD SUPPORT

 

Kneeboard Builder currently has limited functionality with UltraMFCD:

- Only groups built to the default kneeboard will display in UltraMFCD

- UltraMFCD must not be running when building the default kneeboard (Kneeboard Builder will crash).

- UltraMFCD cannot display aircraft specific kneeboards

- Moving Maps and Dynamic Kneeboards will not work with UltraMFCD (not much can be done about that as they are rendered by DCS)

- Size, Position and Color schemes will not modify the UltraMFCD kneeboard

 

 

TROUBLESHOOTING:

 

Kneeboard Builder won't start after an update has occured:

-delete the 'settings.xml' and 'KneeboardBuilder.exe.config' files and try starting it again. You will then need to verify your directory settings in Options -> Preferences.

 

Kneeboard Builder Crashes on Startup:

-don't place the Kneeboard Builder folder in the 'Program Files' or 'Program Files (x86)' folders as they require heightened priviledges for certain read/write functions. If you need to keep the

Kneeboard Builder folder in Program Files, make sure you run it with Administrator Priviledges, but be aware that doing so will disable the drag and drop .pdf feature (a windows security feature);

 

Cannot drag and drop .pdf for import:

-do not run Kneeboard Builder with Administrator Priviledges. This is a windows security feature and not a bug. If you must run it with Adminstrator Priviledges you will need to use the

'manually add' button to import .pdf files.

 

Dynamic Kneeboards not displaying any text or DCS hangs while loading mission:

1) if you are using a version of DCS World earlier than version 1.2.11.3386

-check the 'Use legacy kneeboard components' option in Options->Preferences

2) if you are using DCS World version 1.2.11.3386 or later

-uncheck the 'Use legacy kneeboard components' option in Options->Preferences

 

Moving Map kneeboard pages not displaying any text or DCS hangs while loading mission:

1) if you are using a version of DCS World earlier than version 1.2.11.3386

-check the 'Use legacy kneeboard components' option in Options->Preferences

-reset the custom color scheme Options->Preferences->Kneeboard Settings->Color Scheme->Reset

2) if you are using DCS World version 1.2.11.3386 or later

-uncheck the 'Use legacy kneeboard components' option in Options->Preferences

-reset the custom color scheme Options->Preferences->Kneeboard Settings->Color Scheme->Reset

 

 

SPECIAL THANKS:

 

Special thanks to uboats for helping me figure out the correct folder names for the F-86 and Mi-8 kneeboards.

Edited by AlaskanGrizzly
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Replies 1.5k
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Very cool. I will definitely be giving this a spin.

 

Thanks.

 

:thumbup:

ASUS ROG Maximus VIII Hero, i7-6700K, Noctua NH-D14 Cooler, Crucial 32GB DDR4 2133, Samsung 950 Pro NVMe 256GB, Samsung EVO 250GB & 500GB SSD, 2TB Caviar Black, Zotac GTX 1080 AMP! Extreme 8GB, Corsair HX1000i, Phillips BDM4065UC 40" 4k monitor, VX2258 TouchScreen, TIR 5 w/ProClip, TM Warthog, VKB Gladiator Pro, Saitek X56, et. al., MFG Crosswind Pedals #1199, VolairSim Pit, Rift CV1 :thumbup:

Link to post
Share on other sites

I would have never thought of Ghostscript being able to do this well done funny how a program i use every day has a use in DCS, oh i use it for converting drawings for take offs in my auto cad.

Eagles may soar high but weasel's don't get sucked into jet engines.

 

 

System Spec.

Monitors: Samsung 570DX & Rift CV1

Mobo: MSI Godlike gaming X-99A

CPU: Intel i7 5930K @ 3.50Ghz

RAM: 32gb

GPU: EVGA Nvidia GTX 980Ti VR Ready

Cooling: Predator 360

Power Supply: OCZ ZX Series 80 Plus Gold

Drives: Samsung SSD's 1tb, 500g plus others with OS Win10 64 bit

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

excellent!

 

will try it.

 

btw, does each group have a subfolder? Not actively in AC? seems that this can only happen in MP.

[sIGPIC][/sIGPIC]

My DCS Mods, Skins, Utilities and Scripts

 

| Windows 10 | i7-4790K | GTX 980Ti Hybrid | 32GB RAM | 3TB SSD |

| TM Warthog Stick | CH Pro Throttle + Pro Pedal | TIR5 Pro | TM MFD Cougar | Gun Camera: PrtScn |

Link to post
Share on other sites
Groups don't have subfolders at this time.

 

 

 

 

It is possible in single player if the aircraft are added in the mission as 'clients'.

 

But once you entered an AC, before switching to another, there is nothing like spectator in MP. So it seems not. I will try it soon.

 

Thanks again.

 

------

 

updated:

I just tried that once switch the AC, then the new group will be available.

Edited by uboats

[sIGPIC][/sIGPIC]

My DCS Mods, Skins, Utilities and Scripts

 

| Windows 10 | i7-4790K | GTX 980Ti Hybrid | 32GB RAM | 3TB SSD |

| TM Warthog Stick | CH Pro Throttle + Pro Pedal | TIR5 Pro | TM MFD Cougar | Gun Camera: PrtScn |

Link to post
Share on other sites

I will be working on improving my program to incorporate what I have learned from this post:

 

Kneeboard already have functionality for per unit separation

 

see part of Scripts\Aircrafts\_Common\Cockpit\KNEEBOARD\indicator\init.lua

 



local terrain_path = get_terrain_related_data("KNEEBOARD")
local common_path  = LockOn_Options.common_script_path.."KNEEBOARD/indicator/CUSTOM"
local user_path    = lfs.writedir().."KNEEBOARD"

local unit_name    = get_aircraft_type()

if unit_name ~= nil then
   scan_path(terrain_path..'/'..unit_name)
   scan_path(common_path ..'/'..unit_name)
   scan_path(user_path ..'/'..unit_name)
end

it means that itry to find images for unit in three folders :

inside active terrain folder

Bazar\Terrain\Kneeboard

for example for P-51D it will try to scan

 

Bazar\Terrain\Kneeboard\P-51D folder

 

inside self kneeboard folder

 

Scripts\Aircrafts\_Common\Cockpit\KNEEBOARD\indicator\CUSTOM\P-51D

 

and inside user dir

 

C:\Users\<USER>\Saved Games\DCS\KNEEBOARD\P-51D

 

also it try to find pages inside mission with same pattern

 

<MIZ_FILE_ROOT>/KNEEBOARD/<UNIT_NAME>/IMAGES/

Link to post
Share on other sites

I followed your instructions numerous times just to make sure it wasn't me but it could be.

 

In Preferences both my install directory and saved games are shown as correct but when i click the little button with 3 dots for each line it will show my install directory same applies for the saved games, so i point the saved games in the right direction and now both buttons show the saved games directory.

 

Any ideas i do have my DCS directory on a separate drive on its own.

Eagles may soar high but weasel's don't get sucked into jet engines.

 

 

System Spec.

Monitors: Samsung 570DX & Rift CV1

Mobo: MSI Godlike gaming X-99A

CPU: Intel i7 5930K @ 3.50Ghz

RAM: 32gb

GPU: EVGA Nvidia GTX 980Ti VR Ready

Cooling: Predator 360

Power Supply: OCZ ZX Series 80 Plus Gold

Drives: Samsung SSD's 1tb, 500g plus others with OS Win10 64 bit

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Version 1.2.0.0 Release

 

Version 1.2.0.0 is now available.

Version 1.2.0.0 Changelog:

 

-implemented auto update feature at application start

-added ability to manually create new groups

-added ability to manually import images to groups

-added selective reordering of images in groups

-added 'select all' button to modify page

-added ability to modify default Kneeboard (the kneeboard that shows airport charts by default)

-added General DCS World custom kneeboard that will be visible to all aircraft

-added option to choose whether to replace an existing group, merge with an existing group or create a new group during .pdf imports

-fixed issue of folder explorer not pointing to correct folder in the preferences page

-minor bugs fixes and minor GUI tweaks

-added readme file

 

 

Download link in first post has been updated.

Link to post
Share on other sites
The latest version will not run on my PC. Anyone else got the same problem?

 

Can you tell me what it is doing? Any errors or anything?

 

Trying deleting the "KneeboardBuilder.exe.config" file and then start the program.

Edited by AlaskanGrizzly
Link to post
Share on other sites
Version 1.2.0.0 is now available.

Version 1.2.0.0 Changelog:

 

-implemented auto update feature at application start

-added ability to manually create new groups

-added ability to manually import images to groups

-added selective reordering of images in groups

-added 'select all' button to modify page

-added ability to modify default Kneeboard (the kneeboard that shows airport charts by default)

-added General DCS World custom kneeboard that will be visible to all aircraft

-added option to choose whether to replace an existing group, merge with an existing group or create a new group during .pdf imports

-fixed issue of folder explorer not pointing to correct folder in the preferences page

-minor bugs fixes and minor GUI tweaks

-added readme file

 

 

Download link in first post has been updated.

 

It seems that 1.2 will touch the Kneeboard foloer in DCS World/Bazar/Terrain and make a copy of orig Kneeboard folder. Since all the operations will be erased after update or repair, so I suggest all changes should be done in Saved Games/DCS/Kneeboard

[sIGPIC][/sIGPIC]

My DCS Mods, Skins, Utilities and Scripts

 

| Windows 10 | i7-4790K | GTX 980Ti Hybrid | 32GB RAM | 3TB SSD |

| TM Warthog Stick | CH Pro Throttle + Pro Pedal | TIR5 Pro | TM MFD Cougar | Gun Camera: PrtScn |

Link to post
Share on other sites
It seems that 1.2 will touch the Kneeboard foloer in DCS World/Bazar/Terrain and make a copy of orig Kneeboard folder. Since all the operations will be erased after update or repair, so I suggest all changes should be done in Saved Games/DCS/Kneeboard

 

All custom groups are saved in the '/Kneeboard Builder/Kneeboard Groups' directory wherever you extracted the .zip file to; even those created under the 'Default Kneeboard' option, so they won't be affected by a DCS World update or repair.

 

The 'Default' group under the 'Default Kneeboard' option in the program is only referenced from the 'DCS World/Bazar/Terrain/Kneeboard_orig' folder and is automatically recreated after a DCS World update, repair or reinstallation.

Link to post
Share on other sites
All custom groups are saved in the '/Kneeboard Builder/Kneeboard Groups' directory wherever you extracted the .zip file to; even those created under the 'Default Kneeboard' option, so they won't be affected by a DCS World update or repair.

 

The 'Default' group under the 'Default Kneeboard' option in the program is only referenced from the 'DCS World/Bazar/Terrain/Kneeboard_orig' folder and is automatically recreated after a DCS World update, repair or reinstallation.

 

sounds good. :thumbup:

[sIGPIC][/sIGPIC]

My DCS Mods, Skins, Utilities and Scripts

 

| Windows 10 | i7-4790K | GTX 980Ti Hybrid | 32GB RAM | 3TB SSD |

| TM Warthog Stick | CH Pro Throttle + Pro Pedal | TIR5 Pro | TM MFD Cougar | Gun Camera: PrtScn |

Link to post
Share on other sites
Possible bug report:

 

It appears that if the PDF has parentheses in the filename, the file will not convert. I get indications that the pdf converted, but the output folder is empty.

 

Not a bug as Windows doesn't allow it.. Shouldn't be able to even name that file with parantheses... Windows should error out stating that you can't use those kinds of character types...

 

WEIRD..

"Pride is a poor substitute for intelligence."

RAMBO

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...