How does the MSTS community provide an answer to this?

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How does the MSTS community provide an answer to this?

Post  rufuskins on Tue 10 Dec 2013, 9:57 am

This is a link to a post on the UKTS forum here.

How do we prevent this outcome, if at all possible?


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Re: How does the MSTS community provide an answer to this?

Post  mikehendle on Tue 10 Dec 2013, 10:48 am

Hi Alec,
I usually have a look at the date they joined,and I usually suggest they get a couple of community cd\dvd to get them started it seems some people jump in at the deep end, and also I'm afraid they don't read the readme about what is needed extra.

I think these days people are so used to play and go games they don't understand that MSTS isn't like that,and the same goes for TS2014 as well,even with that sim you will find a lot of routes and stock rely on having other routes and stock before it will work,so it is not just a MSTS problem.

I can't really think of any thing we can do to stop this happening only try and help,but try and keep the instructions we give short and straight to the point,

Mike


Last edited by mikehendle on Tue 10 Dec 2013, 11:32 am; edited 1 time in total


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Re: How does the MSTS community provide an answer to this?

Post  Scampispeedway on Tue 10 Dec 2013, 10:58 am

Hi Mike, as the person named in your post I object to saying that my replies are long winded and confusing.
I keep my replies as short as possible but covering all possibilities so that the originator can follow what
they must do to get the problem solved.
I've had loads of messages back thanking me for helping them get through and will continue to do so in the
future.

Bob
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Re: How does the MSTS community provide an answer to this?

Post  mikehendle on Tue 10 Dec 2013, 11:33 am

Hi Bob,
I've deleted the offending portion
Mike


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Re: How does the MSTS community provide an answer to this?

Post  Scampispeedway on Tue 10 Dec 2013, 1:01 pm

Hi Mike, thank you for doing that, I think the best way out of this problem is ask the poster who is a beginner
that they should get more experience before trying to do things that they don't know how it is done.
I bought a few Community CD's which as you say are excellent value for money when I first started out and
then as time went on gained more knowledge by reading the forums on all sorts if things.

Bob
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Re: How does the MSTS community provide an answer to this?

Post  j3801 on Thu 12 Dec 2013, 7:47 am

Hi Guys,

If I may stick my nose in here, the difficult thing is that there is no “one definitive answer” for all of MSTS’s wonderful habits.

I suppose the biggest omission from the MSTS resources is a “modernised” trouble shooting guide for the various “new additions” that have been made to MSTS. In a way, that is what the HFL section has been created for, to point people to the right spots for knowledge, however a “heavy help” section has not really be brought into action yet. What I mean by this is: Q. I have just started MSTS and I received an error “unable to load sms file …/…/common.sounds/XXX/ZZZ.sms”, to be followed by a simple step by step walk through of how to check if that file is there and what to do from there.

I mean no disrespect when I say this but some of the tutorials on Steam4me, whilst being a great help, can sometimes be a little out-dated as newer was of fixing things have been found but the tutorials haven’t been updated. Also they do require a good working knowledge of MSTS and a good technical understanding. I remember reading one for a task that I was trying to do and the information in the tutorial was at a level that I was not at. I had to resort to hours of research on how to do what the tutorial suggested. (un)Fortunately I have a higher patience level than some, and if I can’t get something to work I don’t just go “stuff this, I give up”, I fight with it until I can get things to go right.

Having said that, I do agree that a lot of people expect that MSTS will be plug and play (which it can be), however sometimes MSTS requires an advanced level of knowledge to get that one pesky bit of stock to run. I personally have some across, in the distant past, files that required so much work to get running in MSTS that it felt like I had just downloaded shapes and textures and created everything else myself. I have found files that were so bad that I even had to fix the shape and texture files!!! (Keep in mind that these file have long since vanished from the old upload sections of there host sites, which in turn have closed down).

So my idea (if I have one) is that we should pool our troubleshooting knowledge and create a guide to help new/not so new users of MSTS make the most of the sim. The only thing that we can’t provide for people is the patience required to get the ‘old girl running smooth again’.

Justin


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Re: How does the MSTS community provide an answer to this?

Post  mikehendle on Thu 12 Dec 2013, 9:29 am

Hi All,

I think another problem some times is we all have our own ways round problems,I have the lazy approach,when it comes to cabs,I just stick the cabview folder into the loco that needs it and then just change the eng file cabview line to it.

Mike


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Re: How does the MSTS community provide an answer to this?

Post  slipperman12 on Thu 12 Dec 2013, 10:57 am

Hi Justin,
I'm with you on those comments Smile
However, I feel that, especially with newcomers, they don't know how to use the relatively simple Operating System commands, Copy, Cut, Paste and Delete. Add to that, the difficulty in identifying different file types. Recently, I was 'talking' with Alec about adding a part to the HFL section, but haven't got very far with it! It would consist of a mini-primer for each of the relevant Operating Systems, but I'm not sure if HFL is the place for them!

Cheers,
Ged

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Re: How does the MSTS community provide an answer to this?

Post  rufuskins on Thu 12 Dec 2013, 5:21 pm

I am heartened that the community seem to be of a single mind in this respect, although having recently thrown my dummy out of the pram I'm not sure that I am best placed to comment on the how and where.

Whether it was the Route Directory, Mark's standard links or Helpful Facts and Links (with all its faults), TSSH has attempted to bring many facts, etc. together in one place.

It will be interesting to see whether this area of the forum can be taken forward again, and certainly Ged's ideas on mini-primers for Operating Systems and their affect on MSTS is a positive and useful move. I recently had a problem with a new widescreen monitor and getting the system to maintain aspect ratio; i.e. displaying MSTS in its 4:3 format on my monitor with its 1920 x 1080 native resolution. I experienced significant frustration at my inability to resolve it, and hence can understand that there are times when you want to call it a day, but thankfully Ged gave me a link and I was able to sort it in a relatively straightforward way.

I had started something to describe the Route folder content - along the lines of that for the MSTS folder content - which I had intended to send to Ged and/or others for their comments, additions and correction of my errors. I also recently posted on UKTS on how Route Riter could be used to list all the stock for all the activities for a single route. I believe that a very useful primer could be produced on the basic uses for Route Riter, which with all of its routines can be extremely daunting to new starters in MSTS, and was on the "to do" list for the infamous HFL thread.

Where the HFL thread may have gone off piste so to speak, for which I hold myself fully responsible, was that it lacked structure and clear paths. Let's hope that TSSH can push this forward.


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Re: How does the MSTS community provide an answer to this?

Post  mikehendle on Thu 12 Dec 2013, 7:20 pm

Hi

I have noticed on UKTS some times we make suggestions,only for some people to say I don't like route writer,I have suggested how to keep track of your stock down loads for your route is either put it in a note book or in Microsoft notebook,The stock you have for a certain route,then when you go to down load a new activity you can just check against your list to see if you have the items,that way you only have to down load the items not in your note book.
After down loading just add the new item to your note book.

Mike


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Re: How does the MSTS community provide an answer to this?

Post  slipperman12 on Thu 12 Dec 2013, 7:53 pm

Hi Mike,
With large capacity hard drives being relatively cheap these days, it's just as easy to save everything you download into a backup folder. If stock is saved as downloaded, or unpacked, they will be stored in file ID order. If you write the details down, there's the problem that, unless you're very, very organised, they won't be in any order, and subsequently difficult to check if you've got an item or not! There would need to be a lot of writing to make it useful.

I have about 3,800 stock, cabviews and sounds downloads which, unpacked, take just short of 28GB of hard drive space. Of course, it's advisable to keep a back-up on a separate hard drive, but, to me, it's much more convenient than a notebook!!

The only "fly-in-the-ointment" with my system is that if an author upgrades his stock, but uses the same file ID, you are not necessarily aware of it. But, thinking about it, the same would apply to a written list.

Cheers,
Ged

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Re: How does the MSTS community provide an answer to this?

Post  rufuskins on Thu 12 Dec 2013, 8:11 pm

Perhaps many of the "experienced" MSTS users have reached that stage in their MSTS life when it's better the devil they know!

It's becoming increasingly obvious to me that we might as well continue in the same manner here and on UKTS where we offer our own individual solutions and hope that the newcomer can work with one or other. That such a solution could be considered acceptable would of course be disappointing.

One question that could be asked is why do some simmers not like using Route Riter for example? Is it that they prefer using Train Store for error discovery, or is it that they find Route Riter confusing? If the latter couldn't its use be explained in simple step by step article? This last paragraph is added as an example of the sort of questions that ought to be asked.


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Re: How does the MSTS community provide an answer to this?

Post  Markh5682 on Thu 12 Dec 2013, 8:22 pm

I have had route riter installed since pretty much when it was released, but I still don't use all its functions which can be daunting, for me route riter is pretty much a last resort when all else fails, I really should try and use it more and find out what all those functions do, so I can imagine how confusing it would be to a newcomer.


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Re: How does the MSTS community provide an answer to this?

Post  mikehendle on Thu 12 Dec 2013, 9:01 pm

Hi
I must admit I only use probably just 2 of route riter functions,and they to check a new route,to make sure it's OK and the other is to change a loco to make it either a static loco or a AI loco. scratch 

And with train store I'm afraid I only use easy mode to run a route,sometimes I might run it in explore the route mode if I want to use a different consist,then I use additionally from activity and tick the AI box and loose stock box. Duh! 

As due to brain damage I can't seem to grasp the Instructions that come with these utilities,the same goes with making activities with MSTS editors and tools,I can make a activity OK, and I can add static items,but I'm blowed if I can get my head round making a AI train to work.  Embarassed 

Mike  rendeer santa 


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Re: How does the MSTS community provide an answer to this?

Post  35005CP on Thu 12 Dec 2013, 9:45 pm

Personally for me the HFL section is a great idea? Not sure how Justin feels, but is it worth adding this to the main section of the forum for all to see and labelled 'MSTS Helpful Facts and Links'.
I feel this is a great source of Information and if all users can follow it and the links to other sites, then it should go without a 'hitch' - But as we all know sometimes things can go wrong and inevitably will! But this is why we are all here, to help each other out and to suggest new ideas and solutions! Sure they aren't all going to work all the time.... But we can all but try!!......

As for Route Riter, I use all the time now when I install new Act's or Routes and always check most thing - Not necessarily Cab's and Sounds (When they are not required)
I also use Conbuilder (Free) as this sometimes throws up different problems.....Anyone else noticed this?
Also I use a Hard Drive Caddy - they only cost about £10 on Ebay and you can put in a SATA or a IDE Hard Drive and backup what you need to on a separate Hard Drive. This s what I do.... Amazing how quickly a 500GB Hard Drive diminishes with storage over time....

One problem I do have currently and unable to resolve is an issue on Line 4 of a consist and it all looks fine to me.... And yes MSTSBin is working and running fine..... It's just an error with 1 Consist...
The Consist error in Trainstore when going to Activity Editor is as follows;

Error Reading Train Database File

File: Trains\Consists\MT Green 416 2 CAR.con
Line: 4

Which reads; TrainCfg ( MT GREEN 416 2 CAR

Cheers

Andy


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Re: How does the MSTS community provide an answer to this?

Post  Scampispeedway on Thu 12 Dec 2013, 10:09 pm

Hi Andy, sometimes I got errors in R.R. where it complained that the TrainCfg.
line did not exactly match the name of the consist.
Try changing the part of TrainCfg line to read Green instead of GREEN, then
save the consist.

Bob
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Re: How does the MSTS community provide an answer to this?

Post  slipperman12 on Thu 12 Dec 2013, 10:11 pm

Hi Andy,
I was going to suggest the same as Bob!
Another point - as there are spaces in the consist name, the whole thing should be in quotes.

Cheers,
Ged

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Re: How does the MSTS community provide an answer to this?

Post  35005CP on Thu 12 Dec 2013, 11:23 pm

Hi Bob and Ged,

I bet you are both wanting to know what the outcome was weren't you........  Wink Razz 
Well something else I feel to put in the HFL Section Alec.... It is your baby after all. We just need to promote it better!  Wink 

Basically as Ged has said any errors such as I've encountered with a consist name and with spaces.... That/those lines should have Quotes at the beginning and at the end!

There you go we all learn new things all the time..... I guessed it would be something simple.... I'm not going to forget that one! Thanks Ged!  OK 

Cheers

Andy


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Re: How does the MSTS community provide an answer to this?

Post  mikehendle on Fri 13 Dec 2013, 12:18 pm

Hi
I use convoi for making new consists and for checking activity consists,to see if any stock is missing,it's free from activitysimulatorworld,if Im lazy if something is missing then I just replace it with something similar,or I download the missing item from the library.

Sometimes I might have to use a different item of stock or loco especially if the item needed is from a commercial route,which I haven't got. I can't see the point of spending £15-20 for a route just for a couple of items of stock,when there is some thing in my trainset folder which is similar,and sometimes if it is fairly new it can be actually better than the commercial version.

Mike


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