The basic interface and the way in which areas are selected and at what detail should be totally redone for the Manual Cache.
I don’t know if the person(s) who designed the manual cache interface ever used a Garmin GPS device and Garmin software and maps but the folks designing the Manual Cache should have to go take a look at how Garmin does it.
One should be able to select map regions from a Bird’s Eye View, even when one wants high detail. Select a region at some zoom resolution, click the level of detail desired, have the Manual Cache interface calculate your download size. Right now it appears there is no way at any point before or during the download to know how big your prospective download will be and if it fits in the cache size that you’ve allotted. Maybe if you knew how big the download was going to be, you’d not do it or be happy with a different level of detail. Instead one has to zoom in very close and laboriously walk up and down the map to select regions and the software spends forever fixing the addition to your download. Then you download completely in the dark as to what it’s going to cost you in Gb.
Rather than have just itsy-bitsy little blocks, regions should be nested within each other. I think Garmin uses U.S. counties, then states, then regions of the U.S., then countries. But maybe you want all of a county so you don’t have to go little block by little block. When you find a neighboring county that you don’t want all of, then you could go block by block selecting only the smaller regions that you wanted- or maybe you drop down to the level of townships or what not in the U.S.
Then comes the download. The PLEASE WAIT screen (how appropriate!) flashes up a number like 02:32. I thought, “O Boy! Just two minutes and 32 seconds!” It’s either meaningless or the first digit is in hours (I have 100 Mbps actual everyday download speed, cf. to advertised 200 Mbps) but the server(s) must be pegged with other requests or I’m eventually going to overflow my 100 Gb manual cache.
Try pausing the manual download. Once paused, the manual cache interface becomes extremely unresponsive to resuming the download. It takes just the right timing of clicks, almost like dancing, now we step, a-1-and-a-2-and-a-3-and-a-4, etc., before the software responds by resuming the download.
If the download is so slow, taking hours, why does my i9-9900K have to be cooking, CPU, GPU, and target SSD for the download the whole TWO plus hours? My CPU’s are 79 to 85 deg C, my GPU is 82 deg C (it’s normal temp when running the SIM full blast), and the SSD has gone as high as 63 deg C (and it’s in the path of the air intake!). Why does the computer have to be running full blast during the download unless the GPU has to process the download data but why not let the computer do that later so you can go away during a long, slow download and not worry you’re going to fry your machine while you’re not watching it???
There are quite a few threads on how bad the manual cache is. It’s so bad, it makes me think the Microsoft Flight Simulator had to be rushed out the door to build enthusiasm to sell Xbox Series X and VR headsets for the holiday season or something like that before the software was really finished and fully ready to go.
If you want to do your own demo, just try selecting and downloading Manhattan and the areas immediately bordering on Long Island and New Jersey in high detail and see how it goes. Try pausing and resuming the download (or even try quitting the sim once it’s paused - I couldn’t do it (don’t have a good REAL SLOW dance step cadence). IMHO, it really reflects badly on Microsoft and Asobo.
Search the forum for lots of other posts complaining about the same sort of outcome. Not too many are calling for completely redoing the Manual Cache interface (and software behind it) from the ground up - but I am. That is why I started a new topic - to call for the complete reworking, not just tweaking, the manual cache interface and guts to make it actually useable in a comfortable, not a tortuous way.
Edit_Update - 2020-09-05: Based on another poster’s suggestion in this thread, I’ve at least temporarily changed the title of the thread and am asking the moderators if they want the suggestion of optionally allowing a flight to be connected with (better working) manual caching, if desired by a user. That suggestion has garnered a number of upvotes. I’ll let the moderators decide what to do with that add-on suggestion for redesigning the manual cache.