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ACARS2 released

Started by Chris Liu, Apr 22, 2014 11:41

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Chris Liu (1001)

That's right guys 'n' gals (for we have the fairer gender on our roster too, at last!):

Intercity ACARS2 has been released!
You can download it by clicking here.

Important! You must uninstall any previous versions of Intercity ACARS before installing ACARS2. ACARS2 requires Microsoft's .NET framework v4.5.1 and FS UIPC (which most people will already have), you can find a full list of pre-requisites and instructions by clicking here.

About Intercity ACARS2
Intercity ACARS2 is Intercity Airways' exclusive flight logging tool, unique to us and developed entirely in-house to meet our exact requirements. ACARS2 is a complete rewrite of the original Intercity ACARS that retains all previous features and adds several new ones.

New features:

  • Completely rewritten for Microsoft .NET Framework v4.5.1, which improves compatibility with the latest Microsoft operating systems
  • Tabular interface with a logical progression through tabs and fewer pages and dialogue boxes, for easier use and navigation
  • Modern colour scheme with higher contrast for better readability and an integrated appearance
  • Fully automatic updating
  • Enhanced smart monitoring: ACARS2 unobtrusively checks the controls are manned and if sim-rate has been used, to ensure everyone logs their hours fairly.
  • Flight resume: If flight sim crashes, restart it somewhere near where it crashed and you can then continue logging your flight
Existing features:

  • Airline news feed
  • Flight search that supports multiple criteria
  • Minimal input required, no lengthy forms to fill: Tell ACARS who you are and what flight you will fly, that's it!
  • Set and forget: Once you have selected your flight, ACARS needs no further input until you have shut your engines down
  • Preflight briefing (via SimBrief)
  • Flight map, altitude graph and position log generated for your Intercity pilot logbook
  • Live map on the Intercity website showing present position, altitude and speed, flight progress, phase of flight, track flown and track predicted for all current flights
  • Free-text remarks/comments section for each flight report
  • Touchdown rate recording
  • Supports Microsoft Flight Simulator 9 and X, Lockheed Martin Prepar3D 2.2 (via FS UIPC) Laminar Research XPlane 9 and 10 (via X UIPC)
  • No framerate impact
  • Remote running: You don't need to run ACARS on your flight sim computer (via WideFS and LAN)
  • Majestic MJC8 Dash 8 Q400 compatible

Steve Prowse (1046)

Well I've just had my first flight using the new ACARS2 and I can say all went well...and that I think the new system looks great.  Well done to all those involved with it.  I think I've just had one of my best flights in the  Q low cloud rain and at night I loved every second of it. Give this flight a try EDDL- LEBL (ICX700) for the weather and route check my logbook, I promise you all it will concentrate your minds ;D

But anyway all looks good so far with the ACARS.

Chris Liu (1001)

Thanks Steve, I would say you've had the honour of filing the first ACARS2 flight report but the truth is I've been using it for two months now  ;D

Graham Woodley (1054)

ACARS2 looks great and worked well for me last night as well.

Not sure about this statement though Chris? -

  • Set and forget: Once you have selected your flight, ACARS needs no further input until you have shut your engines down.
    I still had the 'Are you flying the Dash' question to click away and still the Off Blocks button to click.
    Or am I misunderstanding?  ???

    But yeah, well done and thanks to everyone putting the hard work in.

Chris Liu (1001)

The Majestic Q400 is the exception to that rule because it doesn't report fuel flow information to FSX, so there's no way for us to tell if the engines are running; this is why there's an off/on blocks button for that aircraft only.

We could use geographic position or the beacon/taxi light to calculate off/on blocks times but we found those were inaccurate, hence the buttons (sometimes the simple ways are the best!), even if that does mean you have to make one additional click in ACARS before you can fly. To my knowledge, Intercity's ACARS is still the only one that works reliably with the Majestic.

To be honest, the Majestic Q400 doesn't report much to FSX at all and until Majestic release their SDK there's no way for us to query it directly. As you may know, the Majestic Q400 is effectively slewed through the FSX world by Nasa's JSBsim engine and most of the systems live entirely within the gauges, which means beyond the graphics and clickspots there isn't much of it within the FSX ecosystem.

Bill Ant (1076)

Hey, this is great news!  :)

I haven't flown in a while, but will try to do a flight in the next few days!

Visit my Flight Sim Blog! http://deskpilot518.blogspot.com/

Sean Donno (1110)

Great work and thanks  :)

Sean Donno (1110)

Just flown with it and all good  8)

Chris Liu (1001)

Glad to hear it's working well for everyone, we did quite a bit of testing with it because I know it's incredibly frustrating when these things don't work properly. Has anyone tested the flight resume yet, that's the most complicated feature Chris added?

Petr Witt (1124)

Did  a six-leg duty in a row and I have no issues to report. Great piece of software, working like a charm! Thank you very much for your hard work.
You've got my respect!  8)