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Problems editing '65 setups.


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#1 Saiph

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Posted Apr 17 2009 - 07:07 PM

Hi all,

Does anyone else get this problem?

After Kanzo's recent efforts to get himself negative '65 GPL Ranks, I thought I would jump into the '65s and try to improve my times. However, whenever I try to edit my '65 setups from GEM, GPL Setup Manager v1.0.3 refuses to load most of the files properly. It keeps coming up with a message which says:

"GPL Setup Manager cannot determine whether this is a 1966 or 1969 Mod setup file, but it appears to be a 1966 Mod file.
Is it a 1966 Mod file?"

Of course, it doesn't matter if I choose "Yes" or "No", as the files don't get loaded properly either way. I've tried loading them as '66 and '69, and then changing the "Mod Year" selection at the top of the editor page back to 1965, but that doesn't reset the values correctly. Once a setup file has this reloading problem, there doesn't seem to be any way to get the correct values loaded into Setup Manager, and I've effectively lost the file.  :(  (Ok, there is the method of loading it in GPL, going to the setup page and writing down all the values, then re-creating the file from scratch, but that is so slooooow!)

I've done a little experimentation, and it seems that this problem only occurs when a setup has been changed and saved in-game, i.e. inside GPLC65.EXE. If I load the default '65 setup in Setup Manager, then adjust all the values to the right settings and save the file under a new name, I can reload and edit it again with no problem. However, if I go into GPL, select the new setup and go to the setup page, then make a change (for example, changing one gear ratio) and save again, then Setup Manager will have a problem loading the file.

Anyone have any tips on how I can avoid this problem in future? Is there a fix, or should I just avoid making setup changes in-game, and just rely on Setup Manager alone?

Thanks for any help.

#2 Lee200

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Posted Apr 20 2009 - 07:24 AM

View PostSaiph, on Apr 17 2009, 08:07 PM, said:

Hi all,

Does anyone else get this problem?

After Kanzo's recent efforts to get himself negative '65 GPL Ranks, I thought I would jump into the '65s and try to improve my times. However, whenever I try to edit my '65 setups from GEM, GPL Setup Manager v1.0.3 refuses to load most of the files properly. It keeps coming up with a message which says:

"GPL Setup Manager cannot determine whether this is a 1966 or 1969 Mod setup file, but it appears to be a 1966 Mod file.
Is it a 1966 Mod file?"

Of course, it doesn't matter if I choose "Yes" or "No", as the files don't get loaded properly either way. I've tried loading them as '66 and '69, and then changing the "Mod Year" selection at the top of the editor page back to 1965, but that doesn't reset the values correctly. Once a setup file has this reloading problem, there doesn't seem to be any way to get the correct values loaded into Setup Manager, and I've effectively lost the file.  :(  (Ok, there is the method of loading it in GPL, going to the setup page and writing down all the values, then re-creating the file from scratch, but that is so slooooow!)

I've done a little experimentation, and it seems that this problem only occurs when a setup has been changed and saved in-game, i.e. inside GPLC65.EXE. If I load the default '65 setup in Setup Manager, then adjust all the values to the right settings and save the file under a new name, I can reload and edit it again with no problem. However, if I go into GPL, select the new setup and go to the setup page, then make a change (for example, changing one gear ratio) and save again, then Setup Manager will have a problem loading the file.

Anyone have any tips on how I can avoid this problem in future? Is there a fix, or should I just avoid making setup changes in-game, and just rely on Setup Manager alone?

Thanks for any help.

Hi Saiph,

It looks as if the setup file you are attempting to load is in the extended '66/'69 file format versus the '65/'67 file format.  That is why Setup Manager is telling you that it can't determine if it is a '66 or '69 setup.  This is easy to determine by checking the file size.  The '65/'67 setup files are 264 bytes and the '66/'69 setup files are 272 bytes.

Actually, Setup Manager doesn't look at the file size to determine the file type; rather it looks at a specific byte within the file.

Attach one of the bad setup files here and I will take a look at it.

Lee

#3 Border Reiver - guest

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Posted Apr 20 2009 - 08:45 AM

I am pretty sure that updated 65 mod uses the newer 66/69 mod file format. The updated 65 mod exe will read both old and new formats in, but will now only save newer format out.

I don't particularly know what the differences actually are, but I am sure that Nigel had a good reason to do it this way.

Rob

Edited by Border Reiver, Apr 20 2009 - 08:47 AM.


#4 Saiph

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Posted Apr 20 2009 - 09:42 AM

View PostBorder Reiver, on Apr 20 2009, 03:45 PM, said:

I am pretty sure that updated 65 mod uses the newer 66/69 mod file format. The updated 65 mod exe will read both old and new formats in, but will now only save newer format out.

I don't particularly know what the differences actually are, but I am sure that Nigel had a good reason to do it this way.

Rob
Unfortunately, it looks like that decision might have made Lee's Setup Manager incompatible with the updated GPL '65 mod.

Attached are two sample files. The "5x" file loads into Setup Manager ok, after asking me if it's a '65 file, or a '67 file with extended gears.

The "5y" file was created by loading the "5x" file into GPL '65, changing the fuel load by 1 gal, and resaving under the new name. This will not load properly into Setup Manager, it asks me if the file is either a '66 or '69 mod file.

I hadn't notice the file sizes before, as Explorer usually rounds things to the nearest 1kb. Interestingly, I seem to have a complete mixture of 264-byte and 272-byte files, but both of the attached files are 272 bytes.  :blink:   :confused:

Attached Files



#5 Border Reiver - guest

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Posted Apr 20 2009 - 09:58 AM

View PostSaiph, on Apr 20 2009, 04:42 PM, said:

View PostBorder Reiver, on Apr 20 2009, 03:45 PM, said:

I am pretty sure that updated 65 mod uses the newer 66/69 mod file format. The updated 65 mod exe will read both old and new formats in, but will now only save newer format out.

I don't particularly know what the differences actually are, but I am sure that Nigel had a good reason to do it this way.

Rob
Unfortunately, it looks like that decision might have made Lee's Setup Manager incompatible with the updated GPL '65 mod.

Attached are two sample files. The "5x" file loads into Setup Manager ok, after asking me if it's a '65 file, or a '67 file with extended gears.

The "5y" file was created by loading the "5x" file into GPL '65, changing the fuel load by 1 gal, and resaving under the new name. This will not load properly into Setup Manager, it asks me if the file is either a '66 or '69 mod file.

I hadn't notice the file sizes before, as Explorer usually rounds things to the nearest 1kb. Interestingly, I seem to have a complete mixture of 264-byte and 272-byte files, but both of the attached files are 272 bytes.  :blink:   :confused:

Odd that you have that mixture of file sizes, and that sometimes the 272 byte is read as 65/67. Hopefully Lee will be able to add in some extra functionality to accept both old and new settings in his program as GPL does already and then save out to the current format for long term compatibility.

He has already been able to add all sorts of other new bits for handling the Sportscars etc., and since it can already handle the 66 and 69 setups, hopefully this is just another identifier that might even make it easier for his program to detect that it is a 65 mod setup.

I haven't tried setup manager with 65 mod settings lately, is this maybe already implemented in v1.1.3 Lee?

Rob

#6 Saiph

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Posted Apr 20 2009 - 10:45 AM

View PostBorder Reiver, on Apr 20 2009, 04:58 PM, said:

Odd that you have that mixture of file sizes, and that sometimes the 272 byte is read as 65/67. .........
I tend to do a lot of experimentation and tweaking when I'm hotlapping or working my way through rankings. If a settings change is fairly simple, such as adjusting the fuel for better weight, or changing a tyre pressure by a pound or two, then I tend to do it in-game to save exiting and reloading. However, if it's something more subtle, like a gear ratio change, then I prefer to use Setup Manager so that I can check the results graphically. I also use it when it's something that needs a fine adjustment which isn't available in-game. That mixture of editing methods is probably why my files are different sizes.

#7 Lee200

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Posted Apr 20 2009 - 11:34 AM

View PostBorder Reiver, on Apr 20 2009, 10:58 AM, said:

I haven't tried setup manager with 65 mod settings lately, is this maybe already implemented in v1.1.3 Lee?

Rob

Rob and Saiph,

I wasn't involved with the new '65 mod patch so this is all news to me that the setup file format may have changed.  I'll query Nigel about this.

Out of the box, Setup Manager can handle the original '65 mod setups without problem.

Lee

#8 Lee200

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Posted Apr 20 2009 - 11:45 AM

View PostSaiph, on Apr 20 2009, 10:42 AM, said:

Attached are two sample files. The "5x" file loads into Setup Manager ok, after asking me if it's a '65 file, or a '67 file with extended gears.

The "5y" file was created by loading the "5x" file into GPL '65, changing the fuel load by 1 gal, and resaving under the new name. This will not load properly into Setup Manager, it asks me if the file is either a '66 or '69 mod file.

I hadn't notice the file sizes before, as Explorer usually rounds things to the nearest 1kb. Interestingly, I seem to have a complete mixture of 264-byte and 272-byte files, but both of the attached files are 272 bytes.  :blink:   :confused:

Saiph,

As I expected, these two files are not standard...at least for the existing mods.

The "X" file type byte is set at 3 which indicates it is a '65/'67 setup; however, it is 272 bytes long which is totally incorrect.

The "Y" file type byte is set at 4 which indicates it is a '66/'69 setup.  It correctly is 272 bytes long.

So it appears that the new '65 mod patch has changed the setup format to the same as the '66/'69 mods.  I'll check with Nigel to see what's going on.

Lee

Edited by Lee200, Apr 20 2009 - 11:54 AM.


#9 Saiph

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Posted Apr 20 2009 - 01:20 PM

Thanks for taking the time to investigate this guys. I hope it's not too a big a can of worms.  :unsure:

#10 Lee200

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Posted Apr 21 2009 - 07:56 AM

View PostSaiph, on Apr 20 2009, 02:20 PM, said:

Thanks for taking the time to investigate this guys. I hope it's not too a big a can of worms.  :unsure:

No problem and thanks for pointing out the issue.

I've gotten with Nigel and the new patches indeed will use the newer setup file format.  This is good news and bad news I guess.

Actually, I can't think of any good news as now all the setup files will have the same format and it will be impossible to tell which mod the setup belongs to (except for the '69 mod which will have some wing settings).

So, when opening any setup file with Setup Manager, there is no way for the program to know which mod the setup is for.  This is important as each mod has unique limits on the settings.

This issue will also occur when using GEM+ as that program only passes the path and setup file name to Setup Manager.

I will reprogram Setup Manager so that it will open any and all setup files.  The downside will be that you, the user, will probably have to tell Setup Manager which mod to use each time you open a file so that the proper limits are used.  This will be a big pain in the you know what.

If anyone can think of an easier solution, let me known.

Lee

#11 Border Reiver - guest

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Posted Apr 21 2009 - 08:27 AM

Again pros and cons there too I guess Lee.

I see your point about having to select which season it is each time, which could get annoying, although choosing some item from a list isn't too hard, even if you have to do it for each setup.

Here is a thought, although I don't know how practical it is; could you make another auxiliary file which lists the player folders you have installed and allows you to assign which mod each folder is for? That way if it knows the setup was loaded from the Rob_Hunter65 folder, I will have told it that is a 65 mod folder so it will know it is a 65 mod setup.

On the plus side it does maybe make it easier to lie and open a 66 mod setting and then resave as a 65 mod one perhaps since the formats are now the same I guess? I am thinking here of transferring chassis settings between the 65 and 66 mod Lotus 33 or BT11 Brabham chassis for example, or indeed going between 67 and 66 for the BT19 and 312 for example.

Rob

#12 Lee200

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Posted Apr 21 2009 - 08:33 AM

I've thought over this problem a bit and while it will still be a pain to the user, I can program Setup Manager to recognize automatically some of the setup files.

The new sports car mod will have unique file suffixes.   :D

Some of the '66 mod cars have unique file suffixes.

Most '69 mod setups have non zero wing settings.

That leaves the '65, some of the '66, the '67, and possibly a few '69 setups that look alike and the user will have to choose which mod applies.

Lee

#13 Lee200

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Posted Apr 21 2009 - 08:41 AM

View PostBorder Reiver, on Apr 21 2009, 09:27 AM, said:

Again pros and cons there too I guess Lee.

I see your point about having to select which season it is each time, which could get annoying, although choosing some item from a list isn't too hard, even if you have to do it for each setup.

Here is a thought, although I don't know how practical it is; could you make another auxiliary file which lists the player folders you have installed and allows you to assign which mod each folder is for? That way if it knows the setup was loaded from the Rob_Hunter65 folder, I will have told it that is a 65 mod folder so it will know it is a 65 mod setup.

On the plus side it does maybe make it easier to lie and open a 66 mod setting and then resave as a 65 mod one perhaps since the formats are now the same I guess? I am thinking here of transferring chassis settings between the 65 and 66 mod Lotus 33 or BT11 Brabham chassis for example, or indeed going between 67 and 66 for the BT19 and 312 for example.

Rob

Thanks Rob for the input.

I'll look into the aux file idea with a list of player directories.  That might work.  Of course, there are a lot of users out there who don't have separate player directories for each mod (which I highly recommend doing).

In hind sight, the best solution would have been to have unique setup file suffixes for each mod as we are doing with the Sports Car mod.  That makes it easy to recognize one setup from another.

See previous post, but I think I can narrow down the number of times the user will have to select manually the mod year.  This should help some.

Lee

#14 Saiph

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Posted Apr 21 2009 - 01:14 PM

Hindsight is a wonderful thing for making people feel frustrated. All you developers who create tools and mods for GPL, my advice is never worry about hindsight. It's good to learn from experience, but the sim that we have now, to drive and enjoy, is one of the best sims available on any platform, and all of you should be proud of your part in that.

My personal view is that I would welcome the facility to choose, at load time, which mod I am using. Provided that Setup Manager could load files and interpret the values correctly for a particular mod, that would fix all the problems I am having at the moment. It would be my responsibility to ensure that I am trying to use a suitable setup file for the mod that I am driving.

I would not expect Setup Manager to convert or translate values between different mods. That would open up a completely new and complicated kettle of fish, and I would not want to hang that millstone around the necks of the developers. Anyone who tries to load (for example) a '69 setup into the '66 mod should not expect GPL, nor Setup Manager to deal with the situation. It should be the responsibility of the driver/user to make sure that they use appropriate files for each mod.

In a perfect world, it would be nice if GPL and all its associated tools could spoonfeed us and safeguard us against making any mistakes. But as GPL has so many different mods and tools now, I think this goal is unrealistic, and everyone who drives GPL should realise that they have responsibilty for how they use GPL. Therefore, I think the GPL developers and tool-makers should give us the choices we need, and then the responsibility for those choices rests with us.

#15 Lee200

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Posted Apr 21 2009 - 01:54 PM

View PostSaiph, on Apr 21 2009, 02:14 PM, said:

My personal view is that I would welcome the facility to choose, at load time, which mod I am using. Provided that Setup Manager could load files and interpret the values correctly for a particular mod, that would fix all the problems I am having at the moment. It would be my responsibility to ensure that I am trying to use a suitable setup file for the mod that I am driving.

Hi Saiph,

I've already got a new version up and running and I'm testing it now for bugs.  Basically, it will auto detect about half of the '66 mod setups, the '69 mod setups if the rear wing is set greater than 0, and the upcoming sports car mod setups.

This leaves the '65 mod, the upcoming '67 patch, the other half of the '66 mod, and perhaps a few '69 mod setups where Setup Manager is clueless and the user will have to select the mod year.

Your idea about the user selecting the mod year at load time (or through the existing drop down list) deserves a look.  I'll check into doing that.  Integrating that with GEM+ may prove cumbersome though.

I had a fleeting thought about blowing off the mod year and just using the same setup limits for all the mod years, but then the GEM pics wouldn't be right nor would the torque/hp curves.  I think these are pretty neat features so getting the mod year right is important.

Lee




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