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RSC Data Convertion

Reference info:->

RSC Data Conversion (for SimVimX Plugin ver. 2.xx, upcoming release )

If you have a custom plane model that is not included in the built-in RSC plane conversion database, you can create a custom conversion for any parameters directly in the data configuration tool (Configurator).

SimVimX Configuration file structure (see the image on the right)

Along with I/O assignments for SimVimX plugin (also used for hardware connection reference), the data.cfg file includes an additional section with data conversion blocks for different plane models you will use with your configuration.

Only the main I/O configuration section in the data.cfg file is essential. The user custom planes conversion section is optional, and is not needed if your custom plane is included in the RSC aircraft database (RSC_Planes.dat file) or if the aircraft model you use with your cockpit works as-is with default X-Plane functions.


Conversion Guide

  1. To open the conversion list and options click on the Conversion button. You will see the list of conversions currently present in your configuration, or empty area if you don't have any conversions yet.
  2. To start a new conversion for your aircarft model press the "Add new Plane"[+] button.
  3. Enter (copy-paste) the actual name of the folder where this plane is located in X-Plane - for example: Carenado PC12_v1.3, JF_PA38_Tomahawk.
  4. To add a new plane to the conversion list press the ADD button.
  5. You also can upload and translate data from the old simvimx_xxx.dat file that you have created in the old converter - press the old button.
  6. The newly added plane model appears in the plane list. If it is the first plane added it will be selected and you can start converting the assigned parameters for this plane.
  7. If you already have the conversions that you created earlier in your cfg file, you can continue to edit any of them by selecting the plane you need with the radio buttons.
  8. If your plane has FMS CDU and uses custom commands, open the "Conversion" window and click the FMS button. The special mapping page will open, where you can convert any FMS button for the selected plane, whether you have preset SimVimX FMS matrix or user-assigned inputs.
  9. The Startup button opens the window where you can specify what datarefs or commands should be activated on plane start. This option is included for switch cover guards opening on start (if they prevent dataref change from hardware switches when covered).
  10. The View button shows the simple list of currently converted parameters, for reference.
  11. Now you can continue to create your configuration and convert the needed parameter keywords for the custom plane. Save and download your data.cfg at any time with [SAVE] and put it into the SimVimX plugin folder.

I/O Data Conversion Manual

To remap a specific parameter keyword, it must be assigned as input or output first. Then you can select the assigned parameter and click the [Convert] button. The needed plane should be selected in the plane conversion list!

Note: Although you select the assigned parameters, the conversion has nothing to do with the pin numbers assignment, it's just keywords remapping and once converted any parameter can be re-assigned to any other pin.

INPUTS

The options that will appear in the data conversion window depend on the I/O type.

1. Momentary button

For one momentary button you can assign either one custom command or a custom dataref with one value, or a custom dataref with two values if it works as a toggle button, depending on what option is provided by your custom plane developer. Of course, using the command is preferred.

  • option 1: One command is used (execute once or toggle action).
  • option 2: One dataref is used with an optional single value (sets specific dataref value once).
  • option 3: One dataref and two optional values (toggle action, sets either value in cycle), can have more than two values if needed.

3. Toggle Switch (OFF-ON switch, Korry-type switch)

A parameter assigned for toggle switch (On/Off) can be converted in 3 ways - your custom aircraft model may have two commands (preferable), or you can use a custom writable dataref with two On/Off values. The third option, which is often the only one available in some custom planes, is just one toggle command that is OK for a virtual on-screen panel (for mouse click), but for the real switch synchronization you need to know what dataref is used for virtual switch position animation:

  • option 1: select two custom commands - one command for Up(ON) position, another one for Dn(OFF) position.
  • option 2: enter a custom (writable) dataref, enter values for OFF,ON position, divided by comma.
  • option 3: enter a custom "toggle" command, add related dataref (for position control/synchronization).

4. T-Switch (3-position toggle switch)

3-position toggle switch parameter can be converted in 4 ways - an aircraft model may have 3 commands, a custom writable dataref with 3 values, it can often be two "switch Up" and "switch Dn" step commands, and even one "toggle" command that changes all 3 switch positions cyclically.

For the last two options you need to know what dataref is used for the switch position animation, and the value related to the switch central position (which can be -1,0,1 or 0,1,2, etc.)

  • option 1: enter all 3 custom commands - one command for each of the 3 positions.
  • option 2: enter a custom (writable) dataref, then enter 3 values for each position, divided by comma (DN-Center-UP).
  • option 3: enter 2 custom "UP and DN" commands, add related dataref (for position control/synchronization), enter the dataref value for switch "center" position (for example - "0" for -1,0,1 dataref values, or "1" for 0,1,2 dataref values).
  • option 4: enter ONE custom "toggle" command, add related dataref (for position control/synchronization), enter the dataref comma-separated values for [Down, Center, UP] positions. The plugin function always will set correct position on the plane start.

6. Rotary Switch (or any other multi-position switch)

N-position Rotary switch parameter may also have one of 3 options to be configured - an aircraft model may have N commands, a custom writable dataref with N values, or two "switch Up" and "switch Dn" step commands. For the last option you need to know what dataref is used to store the switch position:

  • option 1: select N custom commands - one command for each of the N positions.
  • option 2: enter a custom dataref, add all values, divided by comma, for each of the N positions.
  • option 3: enter 2 custom "UP (+) and DN (-)" commands, and enter the related dataref (for position control).
  • The plugin function always will set correct position on the plane start.

5. H-Switch (2-way momentary switch or rocker switch)

A rocker switch parameter can be converted in 2 ways similar to an encoder - either 2 up/down commands or a dataref that is incrementer and decremented by the rocker switch.

  • option 1: select 2 custom commands - each command is the increment/decrement action or a single action.
  • option 2: enter a custom dataref and a value by which it needs to be incremented with each click.

2. Encoder (Incremental Rotary Encoder)

To convert a custom parameter assigned for encoder control you have only two options - your custom aircraft model is provided either with two commands (usually and preferred) for this function, or one custom writable dataref:

  • option 1: select two custom commands - one command for [+] step, another for [-] step.
  • option 2: enter a custom dataref, add increment value ( +/- step dataref value), and optional min/max value limits.


OUTPUTS

1) LEDs, Displays

NOTE: if it is a parameter keyword used for both inputs and outputs, you need to assign the LED for related input (switch/button) in the switch conversion window (see the next tab).

In most cases all you need to convert an output parameter is enter a suitable custom dataref name. Optionally you can enter the dataref value or value range for LED "ON" state:

  • option 1: Enter the dataref value for ON state.
  • option 2: enter a range for the LED, a default range [0.7 - 1] will be used (i.e. your LED will be ON when dataref value is v>0.7).
  • option 3: for some displays you can enter a specific display format (if it's differs from default).

2) LEDs paired with corresponding switches / buttons

SimVimX database includes many parameters keywords that are used for both input and output, even if the input uses commands. If default output parameter doesn't work as LED, you can add a dataref indicating the switch position or system state for such parameters.

  • 1. Assign the commands or dataref for the switch as usual.
  • NOTE: leave "default" if you do not need to convert the input, but only the LED!

  • 2. Enter the related dataref for the LED. It can be the dataref for the corresponding system state, or the dataref for ON/OFF switch position.

3) Alternate text displayed on the LCD or 7-segment indicator

Some output keywords, assigned to display, have additional options in the conversion window (the Alternate button):

Generally, every RSC/SimVimX parameter has preassigned display formats in SimVimX functions accordingly with device types, and optionally it can be changed in the converter for specific plane.

  • 1. Select the assigned display keyword. If you need to add the alternate text that replaces the dipaly data, click the [Alternate TEXT].
  • 2. Enter the text symbols accordingly with the display format, then enter the "conditional" dataref wich is used to display this text and it's two values, for example 0,1 ( 0 for main data and 1 for the alternate text).

Convertion Notes

  1. Find and select relevant keywords in the configurator maps, no need to use random keywords for custom conversion. If you can't find suitable parameter keyword to assign in the existing list of the configurator, you can ask me to add it to the configurator. Else, you can use "Generic keywords" for input/output functions that you need to test.

  2. Test assigned parameter keyword first without conversion, if keyword is working as-is it doesn't need to be "converted" even if your plane model uses custom datarefs. If you assign all the keywords correctly, many of your plane controls will work as-is.

  3. If you see that your plane model uses standard X-Plane dataref/command for some function, it's not considered as a "custom"! Every standard command/dataref that can be used as cockpit control is already included in the RSC/SimVimX database and associated with SimVimX parameter keyword.

  4. If some parameter in your plane is used with standard X-Plane dataref but is working with values other than SimVimX default, you can convert this parameter changing the default values.
    But you must leave the word "default" in the dataref name field, don't try to write standard X-Plane dataref name.


----- Custom data recommendations ---------

The list of all custom datarefs for your aircraft can be very large, but you really need only a small part of it for your cockpit controls. Search only for those custom commands and datarefs (the DataRef Tool plugin is useful for this) that correspond to the parameter that doesn't work.


While working with custom data for your aircraft model, you should remember the following rules:

  • Commands are used for actions (input controls), datarefs - for displaying data, annunciators, gauges.
  • For any input action, always try to find the appropriate command first, not the dataref!
  • If you think you can't find the command, try harder - it should be somewhere there (ask the plane developer).
  • Dataref also can be used for inputs (by directly changing its value), if this dataref is writable.
  • When using a dataref directly, you might lose some functions activated by the commands (see example below).

  • Always prefer to use commands for inputs, not datarefs. If you find that the switch position in your virtual cockpit can be changed by DataRef (writable), often this dataref can be related only to the virtual switch animation, not having effect on the aircraft systems at all or affecting them only partially.

  • If you are sure that using a dataref for a particular input control works correctly without the need for commands, and this is more convenient, you can use a dataref. For axis (analog) input only datarefs (writable) can be used.


Example 1: Your aircraft virtual panel has a 4-position rotary switch

You may have these 3 options:
  1. There are 4 commands for each position and a read-only dataref (contains the switch position number - 0,1,2,3):
    • command_pos1, command_pos2, command_pos3, command_pos4
    • dataref_switch_pos, (value = 0,1,2,3)
    • In this case the only option is using these 4 commands for rotary switch positions.

  2. There are 2 commands for up/down rotary switch actions and a read-only dataref:
    • command_pos_UP, command_pos_DN
    • dataref_switch_pos, (value = 0,1,2,3)
    • In this case you need to use the 2 commands and the dataref which is needed to monitor its current value to set switch position using the up/dn commands correctly.
      (SimVIm/X plugin will process this switch correctly, when you assign both commands and the reference dataref in the data conversion tool).

  3. There are 4 commands for each position and one writable dataref:
    • command_pos1, command_pos2, command_pos3, command_pos4
    • dataref_switch_pos, (value = 0,1,2,3)
    • In this case you can use the dataref with 4 different values instead of commands.
      But some of these commands (#1 here) can not only set the dataref value, but also initiate other functions, for example turn some annunciators, launch another system, etc. So, you may not get what you need, some function will work, some will not, so using the commands is preferable here.
      Note that this is not always the case, as datarefs can also be programmed to initiate some additional functions when the value is changed, but it's up to the developer to do it.


Example 2: Toggle switch

You may have these 3 options:
  1. There are 2 commands for each position - command_On,command_Off (or command_Up,command_Dn)
  2. It's the best option, always use it even if there is a writable dataref.

  3. There is ONE "toggle" command for the switch actions and a read-only dataref:
    • command_toggle
    • dataref_switch_pos, (value = 0,1)
    • In this case you need to use both the command and the dataref which is needed to monitor its current value to set switch position using the toggle command correctly.

      (SimVIm/X plugin will process this switch correctly, when you assign both the command and the dataref in the data conversion tool).

  4. There is one "toggle" command and one writable dataref:
    • command_toggle
    • dataref_switch_pos, (value = 0,1)
    • In this case you can use it as in the previous case, or use the dataref only, but only if the toggle command does not initiate some other function.




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