What's the Difference Between "Reset" and "Clean Install"?

I recently decided to do a “clean install” of MSFS to eliminate some corrupted or absent scenery. (Of particular concern was NYC – few buildings south of the Empire State, certainly no Freedom Tower, and most bridges missing.) I was following the Zendesk instructions, but they offered me another option: “Reset.” According to Zendesk, you can try this if the Repair function did not solve your problem; it says, “This app will be reinstalled and revert to its default settings.”

So I did it. As far as I could tell, MSFS disappeared from my PC. No icon, and no files where it had been. Then I typed MSFS in the Start Menu, and got a pop-up from “MS Store Package Dependency Installer,” asking permission to proceed. I clicked Yes. Then it did what I thought was a total reinstall of 153 gigs (about 6 hours).

But guess what! On reopening the sim, the corrupted scenery remained corrupted. Also, my controls were as I had left them, not defaults.

QUESTIONS: What’s the difference between a “reset” and a “clean install”?
If a reset results in reinstallation, how can it fail to replace the corrupted scenery?
Can I get my scenery back to the default if I now do a “clean install”? Please?

(This is driving me nuts!)

Well, the Controls portion worked as advertised, believe it or not. That’s part of the personal profile tied to your XBox gaming account that’s uploaded to the Cloud. So it should come back down every time you reinstall. There’s actually a whole bunch of folks on the board who lost theirs due to a different technical problem, but that’s another story.

Did any of the instructions tell you to purge settings that might be located in:

C:\Users\YOUR WINDOWS USER NAME\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft Flight Simulator?

There’s a bunch of settings in there that have to be purged, not sure a Reinstall or even a Reset overwrites those.

But as far as missing scenery - that sounds more like a Bing Maps or Photogrammetry problem. Cycling them OFF and ON, and perhaps try switching servers (upper right, next to your name) are some of the low-effort troubleshooting steps, not a complete pull down of the sim.

Thanks CC, for your rapid response.

The Zendesk instructions for “Clean reinstall” do indeed alert you to purge all files, even after you’ve uninstalled, but the instructions for “Reset” surely do not. So I didn’t.

If a Reinstall won’t fix the scenery, I despair. I used to have beautiful scenery of lower Manhattan, including of course Freedom Tower. Than I installed a mod of Laguardia airport, and everything went wrong. The waterfront all around Manhattan lost much detail, and the superstructure on all but 2 of the bridges disappeared!

I do not know what “cycling” Bing or Photogrammetry ON and OFF means. Nor do I know what “switching servers” means, or how to do it. I just want the default scenery back, as it stood after the US Update.

BTW, except for missing Hoover Dam and Las Vegas hotels, everything else seems to be fine; so I don’t see how Bing or photogrammetry could be the problem, but I am not a computer adept.

Ok - some clues I’m cueing off on your reply. :slight_smile:

You have a Mod of LaGuardia. Did you remove the Mod from your Community folder or ensure the Community folder is empty after re-installing/resetting? Removing Mods is one of the first steps recommended when troubleshooting, to return the sim to as factory-fresh as possible. A restart of the sim is required after removing them.

The enhanced scenery you see in Manhattan is due to several things: 1. in the basic game launched in August, Manhattan was already well imagined using a combination of Bing Maps and Photogrammetry, the latter which gives you the appearance of the 3D models of famous Manhattan skyline (i.e., Freedom Tower, Empire State, etc)., and 2. it was further enhanced later on by the USA World Update which needs to be installed separately every time you re-install the Sim.

Bing and Photogrammetery are data hungry services that must be connected to the Internet to work while you are flying. The screenshot below shows you where those settings are in Options-Data.

USA Update is downloaded from the Marketplace. It’s free to all Sim Users, and you likely installed before. But the reset may have uninstalled it, I would recommend double-checking it’s status using Content Manager - screenshot below. If not present, go to Marketplace and find the update and download/install.

Screenshot shows US update installed:

Screenshot shows US Update in Marketplace if you need to download:

That’s all I can think of for now.

Thanks again, CC. I’ll check those step by step tomorrow. (I’m tired and have other things to do.)

But yes, of course I deleted the mod (which, BTW, gets 5-star ratings).

And yes, of course I reinstalled the World Update II: USA.

Bless you, CC!

IT WORKED! Oh joy. I’ve been messing with this for 6 weeks, including doing a reinstall.
Bing was off and Photogrammetry was greyed out. I learned that if you switch on Bing, PG snaps on too. So simple!

BTW, I would testify under oath that I never touched those data settings before. I used to have the full range of NYC buildings, installed a KLGA mod, and then I didn’t. Go figure.

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