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#1 RichF

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Posted 05 February 2012 - 08:39 AM

I am new to the train sim hobby, which you will quickly realize as you read my questions! I have an older machine, pentium 4, 2.66 MHz, XP pro, 2GB ram, and MSTS along with VSC's ON and A&O routes residing on a 80 GB ATA (I believe) hard drive. The machine is a Compaq Evo d530c (convertable tower). Unfortuneately, I don't know much about the interworkings of PCs, and just get by using them. I just love anything trains, particularly the steam thru 2nd gen diesel era. I haven't spent much time with the MSTS standard (included) routes due to the fact VSC has spoiled me! I did read the thread regarding "grass growing over the tracks" and I think that explains most of this first question: In the A&O route, I believe it may have been some distance beyond Poker Bluffs, running just the switcher (is it an S2?), the engine was going under the hills/landscape and disappearing. I was a bit humorous to see the thick Alco smoke blowing up through the grass!. However, the track soon afterwards just stopped and the engine derailed- is this what happens when you hit the end of the line? Not sure if VSC routes just end, or do they loop? Second question; In the ON program, my mouse cursor runs sluggish and choppy, i.e. to click OK on the pop-up boxes although the program runs pretty smoothly. Is the choppy mouse performance due to my machine being under-powered? Thanks, Rich :wacko:

#2 laming

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Posted 05 February 2012 - 12:24 PM

Hi Rich! Welcome! I was in the process of answering your other post when I noticed this one. I'll try to offer some input on this post first, then I'll finish the other. Your machine is a bit dated, but should handle most of my products okay. From your discription of your machine, I assume you're using the onboard (i.e. integral with the motherboard) video graphics system? If so, that will be a choking point. As for what you're describing on the A&O: Something sounds amiss. The scenery and landforming is complete the entire length of the line, including enough surplus track to prevent you from ever seeing the end of developed areas provided you operate within the confines of the "finished" route and the activity parameters. At this point I am at a loss to explain why you have un-formed terrain and derailing. Can you take a picture of what you're experiencing and post it here? You can take a picture in MSTS by pressing "Print Screen". Your picture will be saved inside the main MSTS folder as a scrgrb.pcx file. You should be able to open the resulting pcx files with any paint program and save as a jpg. I suspect a corrupt download resulting an incomplete installation. Perhaps consider RE-DOWNLOADING the entire A&O sub file. Completely uninstall the current A&O and its equipment. (There is an "uninstall" routine within the A&O folder as I recall.) Once you have all the old out, then reinstall the new. Hopefully that will fix any anomalies that may exist in your installation. As for the ON and slow mouse cursor movement: The ON is my most intensive route that I offer. By "intensive", I mean the scenes are heavily populated with more trees, structures, details, textures, etc, than either the StLNA or the A&O. It WILL be more taxing on your computer system. But no so much that it should come to a standstill. Most of us with older machines will stop any programs not essential to the running of MSTS before we start to "play" MSTS. This frees up needed computer resources to allocate to the business of running MSTS. Hopefully, some of the above will help in your situations!

#3 RichF

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Posted 05 February 2012 - 07:57 PM

Hi Rich! Welcome! I was in the process of answering your other post when I noticed this one. I'll try to offer some input on this post first, then I'll finish the other.

Your machine is a bit dated, but should handle most of my products okay. From your discription of your machine, I assume you're using the onboard (i.e. integral with the motherboard) video graphics system? If so, that will be a choking point.

As for what you're describing on the A&O: Something sounds amiss. The scenery and landforming is complete the entire length of the line, including enough surplus track to prevent you from ever seeing the end of developed areas provided you operate within the confines of the "finished" route and the activity parameters. At this point I am at a loss to explain why you have un-formed terrain and derailing.

Can you take a picture of what you're experiencing and post it here? You can take a picture in MSTS by pressing "Print Screen". Your picture will be saved inside the main MSTS folder as a scrgrb.pcx file. You should be able to open the resulting pcx files with any paint program and save as a jpg.

I suspect a corrupt download resulting an incomplete installation. Perhaps consider RE-DOWNLOADING the entire A&O sub file. Completely uninstall the current A&O and its equipment. (There is an "uninstall" routine within the A&O folder as I recall.) Once you have all the old out, then reinstall the new. Hopefully that will fix any anomalies that may exist in your installation.

As for the ON and slow mouse cursor movement: The ON is my most intensive route that I offer. By "intensive", I mean the scenes are heavily populated with more trees, structures, details, textures, etc, than either the StLNA or the A&O. It WILL be more taxing on your computer system. But no so much that it should come to a standstill. Most of us with older machines will stop any programs not essential to the running of MSTS before we start to "play" MSTS. This frees up needed computer resources to allocate to the business of running MSTS.

Hopefully, some of the above will help in your situations!

Andre,

Thanks for your help with my questions in both posts. I found the document folder and manual which is a great help! If I venture into "no mans land" again on the A&O, I will be sure to do some screen shots and post, just not sure exactly where it happened, but if so I will un & re-install.

I think your Alco add-ons may be my next purchase. Would I be able to run them on the A&O Sub route?- Thanks Again!

#4 laming

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Posted 05 February 2012 - 08:40 PM

Hi Again Rich!

Yes, please take pics of the trouble area you mentioned and describe accurately where it's located. Don't go to the trouble of uninstalling until you can bring some visual clues here and let me try to help understand what happened first. From your additional comments concerning your incident, it sounds like you did indeed kept running your train until you reached an "end of track" somewhere!

I think the Alco add-ons that you refer to are the work of Gaetan Belanger, of "Belanger Locomotive Works". I helped Gaetan get started in the commercial side of MSTS and he offered a few equipment packs through my VSC site. Very soon after that, he was able to launch out on his own and has done a terrific job of creating product for MSTS enthusiasts. Here is a direct link to Gaetan's web site that includes both free and commercial offerings:

http://www.valleypass.com

Note that he has a "Public Page", and "Members Page" (requires registration) and a "Sales Dept". The freeware items are available at the Public and Members pages. The commercial products are available by clicking his "Sales Department" graphic. You are going to be OVERWHELMED with how much excellent content Gaetan has created!!

Yes, any functioning MSTS locomotive, steam or diesel, will operate on any MSTS route. Though you likely won't want to, you can even run narrow gauge on standard gauge track and vice versa!!

To navigate a route, MSTS reads the "Track Data Base" (tdb) file of a route. The rails are only visual eye candy and not functional in the sense of being functional as in model railroading or on the prototype.

Have fun and remember: There's a LEARNING curve in adapting to V scale railroading. Be patient, ask questions, but most of all... have fun!

#5 erdnay

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 11:04 AM

Rich,

Consider joining OVS, Ohio Valley Virtual Rails.

http://www.ovsrails.com

We feature all of Andre's routes. It's free.

Alex