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A couple of years ago I used to be able to add images to a/c kneeboards, now I'm getting back into DCS and just can't figure out what I am doing wrong. The following example is for the f/a-18, but I can't get it to work right on my F-86.  I am sure it is something I am doing.  Can you point out what I am doing wrong?

My user name is Rick, I run Steam, using DCS open beta. Using the F/A-18 as an example, I've placed .jpgs and .pngs in the following directory:

C:\Users\Rick\Saved Games\DCS.openbeta\Kneeboard\FA-18c_hornet

I want to add start up checklists etc, so want the images to always for a particular a/c, in this eample the F/A-18.

Any help much appreciated! I've spent hours messing around tryin to get it to work.

I also did verify file integrity for the DCS software from steam.

Help! Please.

 

 


Edited by flameoutme
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For the F/A-18 the folder name is "FA-18C_hornet" ... it is case sensitive, so take care to write it exactly as shown.

 

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There are usually three possible reason for this.

 

First, the image format might simply be one that DCS doesn't like. All PNGs and JPGs aren't equal, and the game can be a bit finicky if it's not saved properly, but the problem is that it has never been fully cleared what “properly” really means. There have been some vague indications that it doesn't like some meta data and similar extensions to the format. Depending on what program you're using to create the files, and what those programs feel necessary to shove in there, they may break for that reason. Also, of course, if you don't stick to standard 8bit/channel RGB(A), there's no telling what this will result in.

 

Second, as Rudel_chw mentions, DCS is very particular about the exact directory name. Or, perhaps more specifically, the Lua script that the module uses to find and load the image files may have been written in such a way that it only accept a very specific capitalisation. And the exact directory name itself is not always immediately obvious. It's usually, but not always and not categorically, the same as the name of the module install directory in your DCS main install. For the Hornet, it's “FA-18C_Hornet”; for the Sabre, it's “F-86F Sabre”.

 

And thirdly, the aircraft module itself may just be bugged. There was one case where the image loading function for a module looked for “png” and “jpg” files, which seems logical… except that the way it was defined, it was filed that were named [something]png and [something]jpg, rather than “something.jpg” and .png — the unfortunate programmed had missed the dot for the file extension. 😄 In that case, an immediate fix was to create custom file loader Lua files because that part had been written accurately (yes, the kneeboard can also be a Lua file — that's how dynamic kneeboards like the ones in the Viggen or MiG-21 or Harrier are created).

 

 

Annoyingly enough, none of these can be fixed by running a repair or trying to fiddle with the main install. It's all in your local user files, and if nothing works there, you can only wait for a patch to fix whatever bug is behind it. If you know how to interpret the code, checking the module Lua files can usually give you a hint of what's going wrong — what directory it's looking in; what files it is actually trying to include and all that.

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Thanks @Tippis and @Rudel_chw.

I got it working, but I don't understand why it's working.

I, for sure, fly using OpenBeta. It is noted right in the steam game list, as well as the steam properties for DCS.  

But the path that works every time for the F/A-18 is:

C:\Users\Rick\Saved Games\DCS\Kneeboard\FA-18C_hornet

 

...Sans OpenBeta.

As long as it works, I'm happy, but I don't understand why it's working...

 

 

 

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Right. Maybe I should add that as a reason 2.5 😄

 

Sometimes, the open beta install sets the Saved Games\DCS.openbeta directory as the one to use for local settings. Other times, it just uses plain DCS. Whichever works, works, and and it's not actually tied to branch you're running. It seems to do more with what version it was you initially installed — if you downloaded the beta client install straight away, it probably recorded that in some registry key somewhere and therefore uses the .openbeta path; if you switch to open beta from the standard install, it probably just uses the straight DCS path. Or some such.

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