Continuation of the "Wind Socks Blowing the WRONG way" thread

Continuing the discussion from Wind socks blowing the WRONG way:

I may be wrong on all the following discussion (especially since I did notice a change to windsocks in I think it was in the current SDK (might have been 11), and I still had to turn it 180 degrees for it to work right), but, the following is my interpretation of the windsock saga based on the discussion from the last SDK Q&A. I can’t say I’ve seen actual directions on how to place windsocks, or explicit directions on how to fix old ones, in the SDK, but I may have just missed it. But, apparently the process is spreading by word of mouth (telephone game anyone?)?

Well, yes. Rather than rewrite the code so it doesn’t matter which way the object is placed, they apparently just reversed the way the object works in how it interacts with the wind, so people who place them from now on don’t have to turn each one 180 degrees, they can just place them and move on.

Which means all the windsocks that were placed correctly in the past are now reversed, and developers have to go back in, fix their windsocks to the new direction, recompile them, and re-release them. This is according to Alyssa (sorry if I butchered your name) from Asobo from the last SDK Q&A.

It’s never a good idea to let a software developer come up with a solution to a problem (I’m not blaming anyone in particular here, this is just a grossly hyperbolic statement because well, I’m a little upset :expressionless: Not much, just a little. No, seriously, just a little).

Yes, it might make sense on the surface, it kind of fixes the immediate problem for future work, kind of, but, really? Did they really think this through?

It takes me forever to package releases, and the process is fraught with ways to make mistakes. The solution should have been that the simobject doesn’t need to depend on the orientation of its placement, (from day one in fact). And that this change HAS to be backwards compatible, IOW, the code recognizes windsocks, and does the right thing.

I can’t say I’m really all that psyched to go through my old releases and fix them, especially when there’s a good chance they’ll implement the above change since it was discussed in the last SDK Q&A.

Anyway, my sceneries do kind of need work, I’ve learned a lot along the way (but I still can’t figure out how to get my water runways to say “water” instead of “surface undetermined” (it does say (water) next to the runway orientation), so I’ll do it. But, it’s going to be a problem across the board if I understood what Alyssa said correctly.

But, then again, I might be all wrong on this, because it seems like the windsocks on my sceneries are still blowing in the correct direction. So, to top it off, I’m a little confused.

Don’t get me started on those times I landed in a crosswind, and my plane was blown into the windsock, and the windsock was facing in the correct direction. Winds on the ground at airports seem to be a bit better now, but I still get this really weird “POP” to the left on takeoff, suddenly, right at 70 knots, in the Just Flight Arrow III. It’s strong, though a rudder dance can overcome it, real Cherokees experience nothing like this. So I think there’s still work to do, likely on both sides, flight dynamics on the ground and ground winds in general.

I swear these problems happen because they try to dumb things down for new users, and instead it bites them in the but. Whereas if they just did the real thing, everyone could learn how to deal pretty quickly.


I agree that in regard to wind direction in the sim there is more than one apparent problem.
It would be nice to have all the flags behave as windsocks - not sure why they aren’t just designated as that and given the same (but proper) behavior as the windsock objects…instead of just being static as they are

There are other priorities for the flight sim and that’s ok - it just would be nice to see gusts of wind blowing across tall grass and tree tops occasionally as that is what you look for if you need to land ‘off-airport’ as it were in an emergency or just as a general practice in the outback

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Great post FusionHorse.

Do you know if those ideas have been posted in the Wish List section? Those are REALLY good suggestions. As you stated, there are more important issues right now, but it sure would be great to have those suggestions queued up.

I don’t know if it has been posted there - but I do know that this guy was able to do just that WRT to flags and his windsock objects - you just place them without having to ‘orient’ them - and they blow with the wind as they should apparently.
I have not tested this as I am not familiar with the SDK or versed in scenery building…
Windy Things » Microsoft Flight Simulator

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I use Windy Things all the time, and you do not need to worry what direction you install any of his objects. And all his simobjects go with the wind, and he’s got a ton of flags from around the world in his package. I highly recommend it. I will say, I’m having an issue with scaling his objects since SDK 12 (it worked fine before). I imagine that’s an Asobo thing?

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I want to echo this for the airports that I have created.

After the apparent fix for windsocks blowing the wrong way mine continued to react appropriately to the wind.

I did subsequently edit one airport, where on the initial placement of the windsock, I changed the orientation 180° to ensure it would point the correct way. I did not edit that windsock as part of my edit. I rebuilt the bgl for the airport and when I was testing it I found the windsock continued to blow the correct way.

I have a suspicion that the orientation of the windsock, when placed as a simobject, has no effect any more on the direction the windsock blows but is more related to the visuals as to how the windsock pole is orientated. However I may be incorrect in that.

TL;DR for me I haven’t had to change anything with my windsocks for airports where I initially changed their direction 180°. They seem to continue to work, even when editing the airport.

So, like you, concerning the answer given in the SDK Q&A

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I visited the official SDK support portal and found this interesting post, with confirmation that a ticket had been created:

Flying Racoon: I have created a ticket about this. Makes sense to have the windsock not taking any local orientation into account.

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I think they mentioned they would do this when somebody suggested it during the SDK Q&A.

Fixed in Oceania update

Doorgaan met de discussie van [Release] World Update XIII: Oceania is Now Available:

What does “Fixed” mean?

To me “Windsock heading issue fixed on generic airports” means the problem wasn’t actually Fixed. It only says, and therefore only means, it was fixed for generic airports, and the problem with windsocks is still a problem.

Hopefully, the Windsock objects were actually fixed, and what should have been written is “Windsock objects are now orientation independent and will work properly everywhere. Nothing needs to be done to other airport packages”.

The debugging team asks users to be completely clear on how to reproduce bugs. And rightly so. I hope that we can expect the same from updates.

“Windy Things” windsocks can be placed in any orientation and they work properly.

I don’t know if default Windsocks work this way, I don’t use them anymore. But I still fly into airports that use them. I want to know that they are fixed everywhere.

Do SDK Default Windsocks now work correctly no matter which orientation they are placed?
Or did they fix it by processing all ‘generic’ airports by reorienting the Windsock objects to whatever direction makes them blow properly with the wind, thereby, any other airports that use default windsocks potentially still have issues, and we can’t trust that Windsocks are correct?

I hope what they did was fix the default WIndsock object(s) so it is orientation independent. This is the only way it is backwards compatible and actually fixes the original problem across the whole sim.

If they didn’t do this, if they just reoriented a few windsock objects to align to the proper direction, this issue is not “Fixed”, it’s just “Well, we just left the real problem, but it kind of works a little better for some airports”.

Please don’t just tell us issues are “Fixed”. We, as developers and users, need to know what was done to “fix” the issue. Too often, the “fix” just creates more problems, thereby, as developers, we can’t trust anything, and we still have to spend hours testing what was actually done. And then report the results someplace, at which point problems continue to happen because not everybody can read everything everywhere.

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Erm… have you checked the windsock direction? To me it looked right…

I haven’t. But, I have to ask… Where?

The underlying problem is that, from day 1, the Windsock had to be oriented at -180 degrees for it to register the wind direction properly.

Some devs, not knowing this, rotated the windsock in their scenery, usually to 0 degrees, so, of course the windsock blew 180 degrees wrong.

So, if all Asobo did was go through all their “generic” airport files, check that the windsock was -180, rebuilt them and released that as a fix, there could still be a ton of airports out there where the windsock is registering the wind direction wrong.

Yes, I can figure it out by spending some time adding a windsock to an airport and rotating it, then going flying with wind and see if there’s still a problem. But why do I have to do this? That’s literally nearly an hour of time I have to spend just to investigate this. Why can’t they say “We fixed the windsock simobject so it works correctly (so it’s not limited to a single orientation)”? I’d rather they said up front exactly what they did, instead of some basically cryptic response.

If they haven’t actually fixed the simobject, why did they say the problem is fixed? And why did they waste their time like that, rather than fixing the underlying problem (which is the simobject, not their orientation on a few airports)? Do I now have to wonder every time I fly into an airport if the windsock is blowing properly? How am I supposed to know which are the “fixed” generic airports and which aren’t?

As I pointed out, the freeware addon “Windy Things” object library windsocks and flags do not depend on their orientation to work properly. So it’s possible.

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