November 2021 – LRM Client v5 (the biggest update to LRM since 2017!!)

Good afternoon and for those who celebrate ThanksGiving – I hope you all had a fantastic day of celebrations yesterday and for everyone else, I hope you have all managed to grab a few bargains in the Black Friday sales!

I have a great Black Friday deal for you too… (you’ll have to wait a few more days) but the best part is, is that it is totally free of charge! πŸ™‚

Bad dad jokes aside, I am super excited to announce that for the last four weeks (consisting of many, many long hours of development and test time) that LRM Client v5 is now in the final stages of internal beta testing (by myself, the FsHub support team and our “Test Pilot” group over on our Discord server) and is due to be released on December 1st 2021!

I would personally like to thank the following FsHub users for their testing and feedback to me Caspy1Uk, Phil, vchristie/CIVA006 and Ryan ensuring that I have been able to fix up any issues during the BETA phase and have them retest.

I would also like to make a special mention to my close team members – clorix and thunfischbaum of whom have been doing extra testing and helping with other aspects of this particular release.

LRM v5 builds upon the solid foundations of LRM v4 and the versions prior to that, the client has been further optimised and various optional, new (and in my opinion, game-changing) features have been added (but disabled by default – you can choose if and what new features you would like to use) hopefully all of them though!


Although the main LRM client look and feel remains the same – a sleek, simple and totally “not getting in your way” interface, as per the user survey (users feeding back that they love how lightweight and unobtrusive it is) – I want to reiterate that these features are completely optional and unless you enable them from the “Preferences” window, the client will continue to run as it always has done – a super lightweight and easy to use ACARS client.

There are however several new features (which, if you’re worried about performance at all… during testing, with all new features enabled, the LRM typically only consumes up to a maximum of an additional 10MB of RAM) – Taking LRM client’s total memory footprint up to about 25-30MB of RAM in total…. which is insane given the new features that have been added and especially when compared to other products that compete with LRM/FsHub!

Here is a quick high-level list of new features and improvements which you can expect from LRM v5 (being released on December 1st):-

  • The EFB – Using the new “data connector” feature that is baked into LRM (again, fully optional and must be enabled through the preferences window) that I developed for LRM v5, has enabled me to develop the EFB system which can now be installed and/or viewed remotely on your main simulator PC or any other network connected computer or tablet/mobile device in your home. The EFB comes with a bunch of apps out of the box including a live GPS app (yes, realtime) and ability to view and navigate airport gates and taxiways with ease, view your airport charts, get airport information and weather reports! The EFB is also “duty airline aware” and can automatically change it’s style/logo to match your “active” virtual airline’s branding (if you use Virtual airlines and your FsHub VA owner has set custom branding up!).
  • Screenshot geotagging – You can now configure LRM to “watch” a screenshot folder on your computer and whilst you are flying, if LRM detects any new screenshots having been taken it will automatically tag them with your aircraft’s position, speed and altitude, which, if you choose to then upload any of these screenshots to your flight report on FsHub, FsHub will display where your screenshot was taken on the flight report map and present information about the screenshot (speed, alt and location -nearest city or airport name) in a details panel. Although I could have added the ability to have LRM automatically upload these screenshots to your FsHub account I understand that most users like to edit their screenshots first!
  • Ability to customise landing score parameters for specific aircrafts (maybe you don’t agree with the default FPM and G-Force limits that determine the LRM Client “Landing score”) – you can configure specific setting through the a new “Aircraft Manager” window otherwise LRM will continue to use the default settings.
  • Ability to set a tail number for specific aircraft liveries (and have them sent to FsHub with your flight reports) – Enabling you to filter and group “multi-leg” flights such as “Around the world tours” or on the new “pilot stats” page, be able to see which (very specific) aircraft you fly the most.
  • Easily add and customise a whole host of cabin sound effects through a new “Aircraft Manager” window, the Aircraft Manager interface also has options to “Export” and “Import” packs so you can share with your friends or VA members.
  • Using one of our core EFB apps that is included in LRM v5 (that I have called Cabin Manager) you can remotely play any of the cabin sound effects that you have configured for the current aircraft (such as boarding music, safety annoucements, seat belt signs, prepare for landing etc from a seperate tablet/computer device) – You can setup custom cabin sounds for different airlines/aircraft with total ease!
  • Ability to sync your collected “My flight case” airport charts to your computer and view them through the new EFB (or any other apps that you may install or develop in future).
  • Retrieve real-world METAR and TAF reports directly from LRM Client.
  • A new “LRM Data Connector” feature, which, if you enable it will allow other third-party applications running on your computer or your home network to retrieve data about your current flight, active duty airline, aircrarft and other aircraft position infomration (nearby airports etc) through a standard JSON REST API enabling for endless possibilities for developers to build amazing applications that can be used with ease with LRM client. – I could talk for hours on what this means for developers and other tools/apps that can be developed, this really does open up endless possibilities!
  • A simple to use plugin/app system for the EFB enabling pilots, developers and virtual airlines to create their own “apps” using HTML and Javascript that can be installed into the EFB through our own free “App store” (i’m working on that documenation at the moment)
  • Users who choose to use LRM Client offline (you can enable this too if you fly on FsHub also) can use an new “Landing rate logbook” which, when your aircraft lands, will store basic landing rate details to a file (CSV) on your computer which you can either open through the LRM client or using a tool such as Microsoft Excel.

In addition to these new features, further updates and optimisations have been made as follows:-

  • Adding a pilot token to LRM Client is now fully automated with the use of a “Login” box – you no longer have to generate, copy and paste an API token from FsHub into LRM client as it’s now fully auomtated!
  • Better prevention against users being able to accidently close LRM (and thus leading to loss of flight data) – LRM will now warn and ask for you to confirm closing the application if your aircraft is airborne or yet to send the final flight report.
  • Discord Integration – If you link your LRM client to FsHub and fly online, your current flight details (location, elapsed flight time, speed, altitude and tail number or, your flight number, departure and arrival airort if you use flight plans) can be presented on Discord (if you’re running and logged into Discord, this can optionally be disabled if you don’t want your boss seeing you fly when you should be working :D)
  • Users now have the ability to “force” a new flight from the “Help > Advanced” menu (if, for whatever reason they feel they want or need to do that – LRM is pretty good at figuring this bit out auromatically for you ;))

In addition to these features and improvements, the new data that is provided by the Screenshot Geotagging feature will enable me to make some amazing new features to FsHub (assuming you like flight simulator screenshots that is :D) such as the ability to display screenshots on the airport information pages (a new tab called “Screenshots” has recently been added) – these will display screenshots that had been taken at that airport (on the ground) or within close proximity to that airport – enabling users to “scout” out airports and the surround area’s before they decided to fly in. I also have plans to add a new “area drag” search feature to FsHub whereby, you can drag your mouse over the world map (creating a circular search area) and FsHub will return back all screenshots taken in that area!

For plugin developers and/or power users:- With the addition of the new LRM Data Connector (REST API) and EFB plugin system, I will be working hard on documentation leading up to the 1st of December release date with full API endpoint details a ton of example code and guidance as to how to build and share EFB apps or external apps (in your programming language of choice) and how to share with the LRM/FsHub community.

This post could go on for ages as I’m so excited about the new (again, fully optional and disabled by default) features that are coming in version 5 and especially the new “Data Connector” but I appreciate that you guys probably won’t find this as cool (geeky) as me so I’ll rein it in for now πŸ˜‰

In the next update to LRM (5.1.0), I plan to have real-world weather overlays added to the EFB Live GPS map too, this specific release has turned out to be pretty major and I have to stop adding features at some point and let you guys play with it πŸ˜€

For now, though, I wanted to share progress and let you know what we have in store for you and we cannot wait to release this new version in just a matter of days now!

As always, if you have any questions, comments, or concerns you can contact us on our Discord Server, our community forums or send me a private message using the FsHub Contact form page.

I wish you guys a great weekend and I will look forward to updating you with further information soon!

Appreciate the work that I do and haven’t donated as yet? If you fancied it, you can donate here – all donations go towards the hosting bills but rest assured that this does do me a massive favour as it means that I might not have to dig into my own pocket for the hosting bills this month πŸ™‚

October 2021 Updates (Pt.2)

Hey, I hope you’re all well?

I wanted to post up another update post to let you all know about more updates and changes to FsHub again this month.

Following the recent user survey, I have taken on board your requests and feedback and am pleased to announce and demonstrate various new features that have been released in the last couple of weeks and are accessible now.

I guess *most* features have now been added into FsHub/LRM client as the number of responses to the User Survey this time around was significantly lower than the last two user surveys – I guess I should take this as a sign that generally users are happy/content with the features that now exist (have been added in the last year) but remember – if you think we are missing a feature or want to make a suggestion, please contact us!

Anyway, on with the list of updates and improvements that have been made over the last couple of weeks…

MSFS 2020 airport database update

As of today, I have now “merged” our existing airport database of which has been a labour of love since I originally started FsHub back in 2016 with the latest airports that can be found in MSFS2020 and which didn’t already exist in our database – this has been a requested feature/improvement that was voiced in the user survey recently.

I’m so pleased this process is over – this was one feature/improvement that I was not looking forward to (as I know how much time it consumes to do it properly) and to say that I have spent MANY hours working on these new merge scripts and testing would be an understatement πŸ˜‰

With the merge now completed, this now sees the inclusion of an additional 10,709 airports and 23,350 runways – Wow, I honestly didn’t think there would be so many new airports!!

Going forwards, this should be much easier now as I have now developed a new “import processor” that will enable me to partially automate the “merging” of new airports every few months to ensure that our database remains up to date with those airports that appear in MSFS 2020!

In case you’re wondering what this means if you use XP11, P3D or another simulator… it simply means that our database supports more airports and this certainly will not break the experience for other users that are not using MSFS2020 so please don’t worry this won’t impact your experience and if anything will actually make it better!

LRM Client v4.3.2 is now released!

Earlier this month I released LRM Client 4.3.1 which came with a whole host of new features and performance optimisations but whilst this was released and passed our internal testing (and testing by our community of “Test Pilots” over on our Discord Server) it appeared that *some* users experienced issues with this release.

We initially found it hard to pinpoint what these issues were that affected a handful of our users but eventually (through the use of email and their bug reports) I was able to identify the issue as being a “regional setting” issue – essentially, it would seem that users in countries such as France (and other countries that Microsoft Windows would default decimal characters to a comma (,) instead of a dot/full-stop (.) would prevent the client from starting on their computers.

I have since added a fix for this situation that affects those users and as a result, have released LRM Client v4.3.2 which is available to download now from the LRM Client website.

There also appeared to be some users that experienced other issues with the client not running but these appear to have been resolved by the user adding an exception to their anti-virus system as their computer must have detected a false positive – this generally happens when new installers “hit the internet” that are not digitally signed (something that I don’t do due to cost implications) but over time, these non-signed applications are accepted by automated systems and Windows Defender/anti-virus systems then acknowledge them as being safe.

Ability to filter your logbook flights by country (not just ICAO code)

You may recall that recently I added the ability for pilots to filter their logbook entries and whilst users could choose a specific to/from ICAO airport code there wasn’t an easy way to filter all flights to or from a specific country (encompassing all airports in that country) well, that has now been added.

The logbook filter now supports the ability to search for flights to/from specific countries in addition to being able to specify specific airport ICAO codes πŸ™‚ – I hope you enjoy this new feature!

Countries visited page now enables you to click on a flag…

As per the above new feature, by me implementing the new logbook filter option to filter flights by country it was then relatively easy for me to add the ability for users to now click on a “visited” flag from the “Countries visited” page to then automatically take them to a filtered list of the airports that they have visited.

Therefore, it is now possible when viewing the “Countries visited” page to click on a flag which will then automatically show a list of the airports visited within that country!

LRM Client website updates!

It’s been a while since the LRM Client website received much love from me… probably mainly due to the fact that LRM Client (v4.0.0) was stable for several years and changes that I had been making to FsHub didn’t require any LRM client changes but given all the recent new features (based on user suggestions or feedback) meant that I had to release newer versions of the client with more advanced features.

Up until now, however, the website remained with the same old screenshots from several years ago which didn’t accurately reflect all the new and advanced features that have been added to LRM and FsHub in recent months.

I have therefore updated all of the screenshots (and added more) as well as updated the list of features on the website too.

Feel free to check out the screenshots and page updates to see what’s now possible with LRM Client and FsHub – Personally, some of my new favourite features is the ability for Virtual Airlines to customise the LRM Client GUI interface (with their own colour scheme and logo) as well as being able to add “optional” flight route information either manually, imported from a “Virtual Airline Company Route” or from SimBrief and even LittleNavMap!

Improved FsHub homepage

It has been fun updating the FsHub homepage this last week, the homepage in recent years has been neglected a little as my time has been better spent adding and improving actual features of FsHub but I’m pleased to announce that I have made a few homepage updates recently and added video backgrounds.

Thanks to Cody (clorix) and Uwe (thunfischbaum) for supplying me with some video clips of their flights too.

The new FsHub homepage now has three random videos (one from each of us) that will play when you visit the site – ok, maybe not so interesting for you guys but I personally think the homepage now looks pretty awesome in comparison to the older static image πŸ™‚

New “Flights by Simulator” stats on the platform stats page

This is an interesting new statistic that I’ve added today too – From the platform stats page, scroll to the bottom and you can now see the number of flights by simulator version (eg. MSFS2020, XP11, P3D, FSX etc).

This is a really good statistic (especially for me) as I can see how flights are flown with which simulators and as such will be able to help me make informed decisions and improvements in future πŸ™‚

New exclusive features for FsHub donators

In addition to the above features, there are also some new “non-essential” features that I have added that are enabled for “supporters” of FsHub as my way of saying “thank you” to those people who help me out personally by helping me cover the hosting costs of running such a service.

The new features that are exclusively available to “Supporters” of FsHub are as follows:

  • Supporters can export/download their entire logbook to a CSV/Excel file (from the Pilot Logbook screen) enabling them have an offline copy or use their own Excel (or Google Sheets) knowledge to generate charts and other such cool features! – Remember that if you’re not a supporter you can still use our API to download your logbook but this is a far easier way of grabbing the data and takes only a few seconds!
  • The ability to update the landing rate (FPM and G-Force) for their flights using the “Edit flight” button on the flight report page.
  • A new private Discord room for providing priority support and guidance (if you would like access to this room and have already donated please Contact Us with your Discord username and we’ll send the invite)

I’m sure you will all agree that whilst these features are “nice to haves” and that they certainly do not limit your experience of using FsHub (as a “free” user) and I am keen to ensure that the bulk of features are and remain free to all users but I wanted to provide some additional functionality to those who really do help me personally by ensuring that I don’t have to keep footing the hosting bills each month out of my own pocket!

I will also be adding some other small features for “Supporters” of FsHub overtime (when I can think of non-essential but worthwhile features that I think they would benefit from) but don’t worry – this is not a sign of things to come I just wanted to provide the very kind people that help me out with a few extra perks to make it more worth their while and to show my appreciation!

As a reminder, if you would like to help out and become a “supporter” of FsHub, you can find more details on the donations page.

Survery question: Why do we use FSUIPC?

One question that I want to address here as the original question was asked/feedback to me in the recent user survey was “Why do you still use FSUIPC and why not switch to SimConnect now that MSFS 2020 is out” and yet, the user (all submissions on the Google Forms are anonymous) did no voluntarily provide his or her email address for me to respond back to but, I can confirm as follows:

I continue to use FSUIPC in the LRM client software simply due to the fact that FsHub (and LRM client) aims to support and work with all major flight simulators – As you can see from the new “simulator” stats section on our “Platform Stats” page, there is a large number of X-Plane users too and X-Plane is a platform that I too love and want to ensure is supported for our community. If LRM client solely used SimConnect this would not be compatible with the likes of X-Plane and other users running older versions of FSX, FSX:SE and P3D could also be affected and, in my opinion, would give most people (except those running MSFS2020) a headache trying to install SimConnect correctly.

Whilst I could write separate clients for MSFS and X-Plane based clients and whilst this is something that I *may* do in future that will leverage their own APIs (eg. MSFS2020 would use SimConnect) and X-Plane would use the X-Plane DataRefs the truth of the matter is, is that I am the sole developer working on FsHub and LRM client and ensures that I do not have to maintain multiple versions of a client which would take my attention away from improving the core functionality of FsHub.

Reiterating that I will be keeping things simple and platform performance is the key!

Another thing that was evident from the user survey is that users of FsHub, whilst are enjoying the new features voiced their opinion that, one of the main reasons why they love FsHub is the simple and non-cluttered interface and experience that it provides to users.

This is something that I have always been keen on keeping and I want to reassure users that simplicity (from a users’ perspective at least) and speed and stability of the platform is my top priority and so you guys need not worry!

Scheduled outage for FsHub Forums and the Blog this week!

On Wednesday 27th October between the hours of 08:00 and 16:00 (UK time) I will be performing maintenance on the servers that host the FsHub forums and blog site, this process could take up to 8 hours.

The main FsHub platform, LRM client website and our discord servers will remain online during this process and will not be affected – it’s just the blog and forums that will be affected during this time window.

Remember that all outages planned or not are always reflected on our Status page.

Would you like to feedback on anything or ask questions regarding this update?

If you would like to provide feedback or ask any questions with regards to this update specifically and instead of me opening up another Google Forms survey, I have created a new thread in our official forums which you can reply to – I will then read and respond accordingly πŸ™‚

Video clips of your flights wanted!

As you may have noticed, there have been a few minor updates to FsHub this week, one of which is the new video background on the homepage (if you haven’t seen it yet, please go and check it out – you may have to refresh your browser cache if it doesn’t immediately show up!

With so many people uploading amazing screenshots to FsHub (which are visible on both flight reports and in our discord server), I thought it might be nice to involve the community too in helping to create a number of short intro sequences for the FsHub homepage – the idea being that one of these video sequences will be randomly shown when someone visits the FsHhub homepage.

So, what am I after and how can you get involved?

Well, if you are using MSFS 2020, XP11 or later versions of P3D (the quality of other simulators like FSX etc is just too outdated though for the video quality that I’m after) and, if you would be happy to record some sections of your flights (ideally using OBS) then I’d love for you to upload and share them with me so that I can edit them together and make short intro sequences that will be included in the randomly selected pool of background visuals for the FsHub website.

What kind of video clips am I looking for?

  • Landings/touchdowns etc.
  • Rotation (take off) clips
  • Wing views showing beautiful scenery and weather formations (maybe sunsets too)
  • Window views (looking out)
  • Transitioning through clouds
  • On-approach (nearing the runway)
  • Taxiing
  • Pushback
  • Ground services working around the aircraft/baggage loading etc.

Note: I don’t really want a ton of in-cockpit views (as us simmers see enough cockpit views whilst we’re flying anyways :)) and therefore ideally all of the above would be external views of the aircraft!!

Note: There is no limit on the types of aircraft that I’m looking for and I would ideally like a selection of all types of aircraft (to demonstrate that FsHub is inclusive of all types of aircraft)

In return (if your clips or part of your clips are used), I will ensure that a full list of credits (usernames and links to your profiles) are credited and linked to on the website. For those that go far and beyond (eg. amazing high-quality footage, great scenery, liveries etc and really have spent a ton of time/effort making great clips/panning in etc) I will also send them several “FsHub” vinyl stickers (to anywhere in the world) – I recently got a load done on Stickermule!

I’m hoping to make about 10 videos (all being under a minute long) and will be cutting between various phases of the flight from startup, taxiing, take off, mid-flight to the landing.

I think it could be a fun little “community project” and I hope many of you can get involved and help contribute video clips for this project!

Hopefully, all video clips can be submitted to me BEFORE this coming Thursday (October 28th 2021)!

You can use this page to upload your video files (screen recordings) – please upload as many video files as you want! Just pay attention to the 1GB file upload limit (per file) and I would therefore recommend that you record multiple files and then upload them separately – don’t worry as I will edit them all together anyway πŸ™‚

If you have any questions about this or want to run an idea past me then please join our Discord server and ask in there, you could also post a message somewhere in the forums or, alternatively use the built-in Contact Us page (if you don’t have or prefer not to create a Discord or forum account) and I will get back to you as soon as possible!

Happy recording and I look forward to seeing all of the wonderful video clips you guys upload and editing them together into some great video sequences for the FsHub homepage!

October 2021 – LRM Client v4.3.1 release and new “Countries visited” feature

It seems like an age since my last update post but things have been happening behind the scenes and testing of the new client (that has been released today) have been in the process for several months now! – I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our “Test Pilots” on our Discord server as well as Cody (clorix) and Uwe (thunfischbaum) for the many test flights they have personally performed too!

LRM Client v4.3.1 has been released!

I’m super excited and pleased to announce that LRM Client v4.3.1 has today, been released and can be downloaded from the LRM Client website.

The new release comes with a ton of new features and improvements over the older LRM Client 4.0.0 release.

You can read about the new features on the LRM Client website or you can see below for a quick summary:

  • Improved support for Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020.
  • G-Forces now captured at landing and it contributes towards the landing rate “score” (G-Force recording not currently compatible with XP11 though).
  • New “Route Planner” feature added – You can enter route plans manually, import from a virtual airline saved route plan or from a SimBrief or LittleNavMap plan file.
  • Virtual airlines can now style the LRM client interface remotely (for virtual airline flights) – This can be done throught the Virtual Airline Management screen using the “Logos” tab.
  • Extra sound effects/cabin announcements (bad landings, pushback, arrival).
  • Ability to disable all sounds effects/cabin announcements for light aircraft (< 3 tonnes OEW).
  • Ability to “ignore” touch and go landings from automatically reporting as a flight in FsHub (can be enabled from the Preferences Window).
  • New in-client issue/bug reporting feature (with debug logs).
  • Updater system to automatically migrate your LRM client settings on LRM client version updates.
  • New in-client links to our newΒ support forumsΒ andΒ Discord server.
  • Performance and stability improvements.

Update:- Please be aware that a handful of the 200+ users that have already downloaded and installed this version have reported issues following upgrading (they are unable to launch the LRM) – whilst this is only happening for a handful of users, if this happens to you too you should uninstall the new version whilst we work out what is causing this and re-install the previous version (v4.0.0) you can download the older version here.

You can download the latest version of LRM Client from the LRM Client website at:

The new “Countries Visited” page/feature

Over the last couple of years, I’ve had requests from some users to add a page that includes all the flags/countries of the world and to highlight which counties a user has already visited (landed at) as well as the outstanding countries that he or she has left to explore.

Whilst I felt this was a great feature it had been put to the bottom of the list for a while and other more important updates have taken priority but I’m pleased to announce that as of yesterday this feature is now available for all users and can be accessed from their dashboard screen by clicking on this button:

or from any user’s public profile page (by clicking on the “Countries visited” link above the flags like so:

Once you open the page, you will notice that countries that you (or the pilot’s profile that you are viewing) have visited will show the countries’ flag in full colour and the country name in bold – countries that you have yet to visit will be greyed out.

Ok, the feature isn’t a new “next level” or “groundbreaking advancement” but I think that many will enjoy this feature and will give them some ideas as to where they may wish to fly to next in order to add some more flags to their profile.

Loving the updates?

If you appreciate the updates and new features and are able to comfortably help the project by donating, please consider doing so, you can find out how to donate here.

August 2021 – thunfischbaum joins our team!

I would like to officially announce that thunfischbaum of whom is a very regular user of FsHub has, as of yesterday officially joined the FsHub support team!

thunfischbaum has already been helping a ton of users over at our Discord server and also in the community forums.

I’m super pleased to have him join our support team working alongside myself and clorix!

Welcome to the team Uwe (thunfischbaum) – it’s great to have you!

In other news… it’s been nearly a month since my last post and it’s been a super busy month for me, I’ve had less time this month but the EFB is nearing completion.

The latest BETA release of LRM client has continued to be beta tested by our “test pilots” over at Discord and the feedback has been great, if I’m not able to complete the EFB by the end of the month then I’ll look to officially release the latest version of the LRM client without the EFB so that those users of whom would like to play around with the newer features can!

July 2021 Updates – More new features!

Hello all, I hope you are well and enjoying the summer months!

I wanted to take the time to update you today on the new changes and features that have been released recently as well as what I’m working on next and what you can expect in the next couple of weeks…

The overview of improvements made recently are as follow (but detailed descriptions are included further down this in this blog post):

  1. New logbook filter and sort features
  2. GPS Tracker improvements
  3. New global stats and leader board feature
  4. Pilot menu updates
  5. Your “flight map” now appears on your public profile page too and so, you can now show off to your friends all of the amazing destinations you have visited!
  6. Webhooks now outputs a GeoJSON flight path (allowing webhook users to generate and create flight maps on their own websites etc)

New features

With regards to new features on the FsHub website and since my last post, you may have noticed some improvements to the GPS tracker, these being:

* The checkbox options for enabling/disabling “auto-centre” and “range rings” are now persistent (these states now are now saved to your personal settings) and will restore your previously used state when you next open the GPS tracker.

* The GPS tracker will now reposition your aircraft elegantly when you start the sim (previously this would “jump” your aircraft from your last known location to your new (simulator) location causing a direct line to appear on the GPS map).

In addition to the GPS tracker improvements, there is now a “global stats” and “leaderboard” page that can be accessed from the homepage of FsHub. You can access this page using the link titled “Want more stats?” but alternatively (and whilst you’re reading this blog post) you can use this direct link. The new leaderboard/global stats page shows many interesting statistics such as current users (by name) online, recent flights, top pilots by distance, flight hours and a total of flights this month as well as the top-ranked virtual airlines. In addition to these stats, the page also shows the top ten flights by aircraft type and the busiest airports by departure and arrival too!

As I continue to improve FsHub based on the user feedback gathered earlier this year, one of the main requested features was the ability to be able to filter and sort your pilot logbook and whilst up until now, I’ve been prioritising many other features and improvements (as well as the recent setup of our forums and discord server), I am pleased to announce that as of yesterday a new logbook filter feature has now been released and can be used.

You may also notice some small updates to the pilots’ menu too (top right-hand side of the browser screen) to help make it easier to access and filter your logbook entries without having to go via. your public profile page.

If you would like to try out the new logbook filter features, I have prepared some screenshots below that to explain how to access and use the feature (it should, however, be pretty self-explanatory):

Click on the “Pilot menu” from the top right of the FsHub website and click on “My Logbook”.
Click on the “Filter this logbook?” link to display the filter and sort options…
You can then filter and search your logbook as you desire (you can now also search by a date range too – despite the screenshot being a few hours old!)

Although there have probably been many other smaller and backend-specific improvements to FsHub over the last month that I have developed, released and subsequently then forgotten about, the aforementioned features and improvements are the most notable and user-facing πŸ™‚

What’s next?

The major features that I will be working on next are centered around a new release of the LRM client (detailed below) but in addition, I will also be adding the following features to FsHub website too:

  1. Personal stats tab on your pilot profile (eg. stats about your flights by aircraft type, most flown routes, top landings by FPM and many more)
  2. Clicking on an aircraft on the radar to automatically shown the previous path it has already flown (instead of just where it is currently)

If you’ve been watching the forums or you are a member of our discord server, you will have noticed that I have been releasing several new beta releases of the next FsHub client (this is effectively to test “rolling” changes for the upcoming major new release of the LRM client).

Clorix (our Head of Support) has also organised a new team of volunteer “test pilots” on our Discrod Server to help test and feedback on the new and upcoming LRM Client (v4.3.0) which I shall be heavily concentrating on over the next couple of weeks, the features that have already been implemented into the latest “development” version are as follows:

  1. G-forces now recorded at landing.
  2. Ability to add a flight plan through the client (optional)
  3. Ability to import a flight plan through the client using a SimBreif XML plan file (optional).
  4. Ability to import a flight plan through the client using a LittleNavMap file (optional).
  5. Ability to import a flight plan through one of your virtual airlines company routes (optional).
  6. Selecting a VA route to import will now display a pop-up windows and containing any route notes that your VA owner has added to the specific choosen company route (if applicable) – This is a nice way to give information to your pilots before flying the route!
  7. More (optional) sound effects (eg. pushback safety message, arrival message, screaming on “bad” landings).
  8. Ability to automatically disable cabin sounds for light aircraft.
  9. All known bugs and issues resolved.

Other new features (that I have yet to complete) but will be worked on and completed in the next couple of weeks prior to the next and final BETA release of LRM v4.3.0 and finally being publically released as “stable, are as planned:

  1. When selecting a virtual airline as your “duty airline” the client will “transform” it’s visual style to use your virtual airline’s icon and colour scheme (if an icon and colour scheme has been setup by your VA owner).
  2. The long awaited **EFB** – The majority of this is actually already completed but there is still have a few things I need to finalise. As a reminder, this feature will allow you to connect your tablet, phone or other computers to your main simulator and will be able to get your aircraft’s LIVE (instant) GPS position (unlike the web-based GPS which updates only once every so many seocnds) updates as well as access your charts that you have been uploading and been “collecting” in your FsHub “charts bag”. The moving map will also allow you to see taxiways and runway numbers too (making for easy navigation at airports). It will have an integrated notebook, chart browser, METAR and airport lookup facility too!
  3. Ability to “set” your aircraft’s ICAO designation (if it cannot be automatically matched) – Previously you could only do this AFTER you landed by editing the flight report!
  4. Ability to “set” a custom sound pack for your aircraft (eg. if you have an EasyJet sound pack, you can specify (and assign) it to use that specific sound pack for that aircraft/livery through an easy to use window in the client.
  5. Ability to switch which sound pack you want to use via. the client (if you haven’t already specified and “set” one for the current aircarft.

That’s it guys – that’s all the news and updates I have for you this month and I hope that my next post (due out at the end of July or early August) will be full of great news and hopefully the BETA testing of LRM 4.3.0 will be well underway by that time and a public release date for LRM 4.3.0 should be set!

If you are keen to keep up on the latest news (which is less formal than the format of these blog posts) please be sure to join our new discord server and forums too – there is already a handful of very friendly and regular users that are happy to help with any questions you may have on Discord πŸ™‚ – We also find it super fun to share and show off our in-sim screenshots too πŸ˜€

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend and as normal, if you would like to contact us with feedback, questions or suggestions you can contact us via. our forums, discord server or via. private message.

June 2021 Updates – FsHub welcomes a new team member and we have launched a community forum and public discord server!

It’s only been a week since I released LRM Client 4.2.1 for beta testing but I have some new and exciting news to announce…

Firstly, the FsHub team has gained it’s first team member – following an earlier blog post, Cody (Clorix) of whom previously headed up the support team for a similar service that closed a couple of years ago (some of you may remember “SimBuddy”?) answered the call for “Volunteer Support Staff” and has, this week officially started his role with FsHub.

Cody is now responsible for managing user support and the new support/community channels (the forums, Discord etc) in addition to helping manage platform data changes.

Cody has been a user of FsHub since SimBuddy closed and has racked up a ton of flights and is very well versed in the features and how FsHub works and is keen to help new and existing users, he has also contributed a ton of amazing screenshots too on his user profile too πŸ™‚

So over the last few days, I have, between working on other features and my other work commitments, have been working with Cody to provide him access to the various administration systems and third-party services that we use at FsHub.

Cody will most likely be the first port of call for new airport requests, airport chart approvals and general help and support queries but will escalate any advanced support requests or issues to myself.

With Cody joining the team as the Head of Support this will free me up to concentrate more on the development and further improvements of FsHub and the LRM client.

I hope you can join me in officially offering a warm welcome to Cody, the very first member of the FsHub team other than myself πŸ™‚

We added a new community/support forum and a public Discord server too!

Another requested change following the User Survey 2021 we have now added a new public Discord server and community forums that are open to all users of FsHub and the LRM Client.

Please feel free to join these platforms (links below) which I am sure will be a great way for new and existing users to ask questions, talk “all things simming”, share resource packs (such as custom LRM sound packs), seek other like-minded people, advertise your virtual airline as well as request new features or raise issues.

Join our new community forums

Join our public Discord server

The forums and Discord are a little sparse at the moment (they officially went live last night but we’re only now officially announcing them as open!)

…it would be great to see some of you guys there – even if it’s just to say “Hi!”.

The Search engine has been improved!

Previously, the search engine inside FsHub would allow users to search either airports or VA’s not only was this a limited scope but also rather annoying that you had to define what you were searching for.

In the last couple of weeks, you may have noticed that the search engine has been massively improved in terms of speed, scope and ease of use.

From a technical standpoint I have implemented a new search indexer and storage engine, this sits as a new separate micro-service and thus, as like the geospatial services I implemented and discussed in an earlier blog post (that made the new GPS and flight tracking features possible from a technical and stability standpoint by reducing the load on the main cluster) this is a massive improvement over the last version.

I’m pleased to announce that the search engine will now search Airports, Flights, Virtual Airlines and even pilot profiles from a single query in a much faster and more efficient manner.

The ability to search and filter on flight report tags too are 85% completed too and will be finalised in the next couple of weeks!

LRM Client 4.2.1 still in beta!

Although the feedback has been great so far, LRM Client 4.2.1 remains in BETA (we just want to be sure that there are no strange issues for various edge cases) but assuming all goes well, we are planning for an official release at the end of this month!

Are you enjoying the new features in LRM Client 4.2.1? Let us know on the forums πŸ™‚

Various other site improvements

You may have also noticed that there has been even more improvements to the FsHub platform this week (mainly content page updates) but as I’ve been busy with Cody and getting the forums and Discord sorted no major new features to the platform have been added in the last few days.

What’s next?

Whilst LRM Client 4.2.1 remains in BETA and once Cody and I are happy that he has all the information/access required to assist users much faster I will return my attention back to the GPS tracker and complete/finalise the display of airports and correctly render the types of Nav aids (render the correct icons on the map) and then take these two features out of “beta” too.

Other than the list of other features that I’ve posted in recent blog posts (I won’t re-list them here), I plan to complete these before moving onto the V5 version of the LRM client – I am super excited to start work on LRM Client 5 as I have so many great features planned that I’m sure you’ll all love.

Anyway, this was a rather short and sweet update, I hope you’re all keeping well and I look forward to announcing more updates to you all very soon!

LRM Client 4.2.2 BETA is now available for testing!

Version updated to 4.2.2 following more user feedback and a couple of bugs.

Version updated to 4.2.1 following a user reported bug – I have now fixed this and updated a new download link below!)

I know that it’s only been a couple of days since I released LRM 4.1.0 for beta testing but I knew I could add more features into version 4 and thought I’d implement some of the features that I did have planned for the next major release (v5) earlier and before I start work on the new and much improved LRM Client v5 of which, for many users will be happy to know that this will include the “Realtime Data Connector” for the *optional* EFB which is pretty much the “last piece of the puzzle” for the EFB to be released.

Let me be clear that the current major “stable” release (v4.0.0) of the LRM client that is available on the LRM Client website (and that many of you already have installed and have been using for a long while now) will still continue to work long into the future so there is no need to upgrade once this version is released but you will be missing out on some great additional statistics and features – so don’t worry, you won’t be forced to upgrade!

You can download and try out the 4.2.1 beta release now if you’d like, this can be downloaded from here.

You can download and try out the 4.2.2 beta release now if you’d like, this can be downloaded from here.

A new forum thread has been opened on the forums – please report any issues or feedback in that thread.

To install, simply download the ZIP file, extract the installer and run in… it will automatically upgrade your existing LRM client version (no need to uninstall your older version)

Given that I have not had the time to overhaul the software client documentation (which I will do before it is released as “stable”) I wanted to document and briefly go over the features of this release here so, in summary:

New features in v4.2.1

  • Recording of G-force’s at the landing and attached to FsHub flight reports(since 4.1.0)
  • Landing G-force now contributes to the landing summary score (since 4.1.0)Read the logic/details in my earlier post here.
  • Aircraft payload weight (Cargo, PAX and baggage) is now detected and added to your FsHub flight report allowing you to view the gross weight of your aircraft at departure and landing.
  • Aircraft ZFW (total aircraft weight minus fuel) is now sent to FsHub and displayed on the flight report.
  • Improvements to how “touch and go” landings are handled – there is a new option for you to ignore touch and go landings in the client – see below for further details (essentially you can flight circuits, touch and go’s as well as “mission-style” flights without a new flight report being logged (until you are on the ground for more than 30 seconds)!
  • You can now automatically disable the “cabin applause” sounds for small aircraft – yeah, whoever heard a ton of people clapping from the back of a Cessna πŸ˜‰
  • Added a new “cabin screaming” sound option that, as you might expect, does the opposite of the “cabin applause” and therefore on very hard landings will play a burst of passenger screams from the cabin.
  • Added new “pushback sounds” – This enables you to use your own recorded (WAV sound file) which, shortly after push back, will play the recording (eg. a welcome aboard/safety message).
  • Added new “arrival sound” – This will play your own recorded (WAV sound file) shortly after landing.
  • All “cabin sound effects” can be automatically disabled for small aircraft.

Other improvements

  • Automatic “settings” upgrade when you upgrade the client – you no longer have to go in and re-configure your FsHub token and other settings – these will automatically copy across and “merge” with any new application settings.
  • Improved client multi-threaded support.
  • Cleaned up some of the backend code/logic chains (basically just optimisations).

So lets’ look at the new options that appear in the Preferences window and talk more about what they do:

New options screen

First up lets’ talk more about the “Combine ‘touch and go’ landings into a single flight report” which can be seen in the section panel.

The Combine “touch and go” landings into a single flight report option

This is a new option and is enabled by default when you upgrade to this version, in essence, this feature will now ONLY send flight reports to FsHub once the aircraft is on the ground for more than 30 seconds after a landing has been completed and therefore, whilst there is a short delay for your flight report to appear in your pilot logbook in FsHub and you only get the “final” landing details recorded in your logbook, this is, I guess more realistic in terms of what a pilot logbook would contain and for the vast majority of users should be enabled by default.

This feature has been added following user feedback, and will really benefit those users that fly mission types of flights and generally may “skim” the surface (such as ariel firefighting) of which, in the past would trigger multiple flight reports and cause strange flight reports. This feature however will equally be useful for users that want to fly circuits and practice their landings whilst not filling up their log book (yet still logging the total flight time etc.)

To be clear – when this option is enabled, your landing statistics for each “touch and go” will still output to the simulator screen (as long as you have the “Show landing information” option enabled in the “Sim Notifications” panel and will also show in the LRM client window but individual landings (touch-and-go’s) will not be logged as separate flights in your FsHub log book – The final flight report will only be sent if you remain on the ground for more than 30 seconds!

As always though – some people may want to record and store each individual landing in FsHub (to automatically keep a record of the stats of each touch and go landing) and if so, simply un-check this option and the LRM client will continue to work and log flights as it did prior to 4.2.0 but as I said, this is less than ideal for the vast majority of users.

Personally, and if you’re wondering if you should or shouldn’t have this feature enabled, I would advise using it (having it enabled/checked) BUT be aware that your flight report will ONLY be created once you have been on the ground for more than 30 seconds so please, remember to keep your simulator open for at-least 30 seconds after you land otherwise your flight report will not be sent to FsHub.

The Cabin screams on “bad” landings option

LRM Client has had the “Cabin applause” sound feature for a long while now and whilst previously I wasn’t really trying to create a sound environment to add immersion when flying airliners, it was just an added audio cue as to if the landing was good or not but, I’ve received user feedback and I too have personally grown to like this feature as more of an ambient sound environment (especially when flying the A320 etc) so I thought I’d add some more optional cabin sounds πŸ™‚

So, this setting as you might expect does the complete opposite of the cabin clapping sound affect – on hard landings (remember, this now takes into account g-force and the landing FPM rate) will cause a burst of cabin screams.

Don’t worry though – there is some middle ground coded in, whereby the “mid-range” landings won’t trigger any sounds at all!

The Cabin announcement pushback and Cabin announcement arrival options

As I mentioned before, I know a lot of users actually like the sounds effects and therefore why not add more (given that people don’t have to enable/use them anyway)…

The logic for these two features and unlike the applause and screaming which are pretty much instant/reactive to the situation – is that I have added some randomness into when these two new sounds are played (so it is more realistic I guess)… my logic here is that you don’t always get an airline safety message immediately after you start pushing back and sometimes, the cabin crew aren’t always available (maybe they’re still collecting rubbish ;)) to give the “we have arrived and thank you for flying message X airlines” immediately after touching down at your destination.

So, pushback announcements will play between 5 seconds and 20 seconds when you initiate a pushback (I have personally tested this in MSFS using the “PushBack Helper” tool).

You might be thinking… What happens if I push back, need to stop and then start pushing back again, does it play the recording twice? – Well no! I’ve added some logic into the code to ensure that the pushback (safety/welcome aboard message) is only played once prior to take-off which a reset timer of five minutes too.

Arrival announcements will generally play once the aircraft landed and has vacated the runways and is taxing to the stand… I’ve made it so following a successful landing (touch and go’s don’t count ;)) the arrival sound effect/message will trigger between 20 seconds and 1 minute.

Yes, the default recordings for these two announcements are me speaking and telling you where to move your custom sound recording too! – Obviously, everyone is different and in the simulator, they fly for different airlines – I personally like to fly the AirBus A320 (when flying airliners) and generally fly the EasyJet livery/common routes so I would use, say for example an EasyJet safety message recording and an EasyJet stlye (or maybe recorded on my phone) or an actual easyJet “ladies and gentlemen we have arrived, please remain seated until the aircraft has come to a complete stop, thank you once again for flying easyJet, on the behalf of my myself and the rest of the crew we wish you a safe and pleasant onward journey etc.”

Want some inspiration to download and record “real world” cabin announcements? – Using a free tool (OBS) you can record your desktop, so maybe you can find a YouTube video (obviously get the required permission from the uploader) and then record it using OBS, you can then convert the recording to a sound file – this MUST be in WAV format and each file should be named ‘active.wav’:

Once you have your custom audio recordings you can place them under the appropriate ‘sfx‘ directory as shown here:

The trick to making these audio recordings sound good is to ensure that audio levels all match, sometimes you want to strip a bit out of a recording file or add a fade-in and/or fade-out, for that (and if you want to get creative such as add muffles – so it sounds like you’re hearing the announcements through the flight deck door) you can download another great and free tool (Audacity) to enable you to edit these sound files and then export them as a WAV file.

It would be great to start making a community-contributed collection of “tuned” sound recordings and I hope that together we can build some “download packs” that other users can download in the future – I’m planning on setting up a forum soon so that we can share these kinds of resources but hey – If you’re good with sound editing and fancy helping me out by providing a generic set of recordings for the pushback and arrival messages that I can include in the “final release” that would be great – contact me here!

In the next major version of LRM client (v5) and as long as the user feedback is good on these new cabin announcements I will also look at adding in two other optional sound recordings (passing 10,000ft – seat belt signs are off you may leave your seat and one for on final approach etc. eg. “we will shortly be landing, please return to your seats a member of cabin crew will be round to collect rubbish shortly”)

The Disable cabin SFX for small aircraft option

If you’re still reading this post (and you haven’t got bored just yet haha) you may recall that I noted above that previously the “cabin applause” wasn’t so much to mimic an airliner cabin atmosphere, it was more just an audible cue to say “weldone chap, good landing” but, as the cabin sound effect has become so popular and would seem that people like it for the reason that (well, I guess for those flight passenger airlines) it adds another level of immersion, I thought I’d cater for other such sounds but equally it doesn’t really feel right that these sounds playing in smaller/GA aircraft.

I know some users (myself included) fly both GA (light aircraft) and airliners – I thought why not add a feature that will automatically disable the playing these very airliner-specific sounds for smaller aircraft so yeah, this feature was born…

What does it do then and how does it work? – Well, it’s pretty simple actually, it simply checks if the aircraft is heavier than 3 tonnes (3,000kg), if it is then it will play the cabin sounds if it’s not, these sounds are all automatically disabled for the current flight.

Did you know that you can customise and use your own sound recording for ANY of the cabin sounds?

I’ve specifically ensured that these audio files can be switched out (replaced) with your own files, all you have to do is open the sfx folder under the LRM client installation directory and then replace the active.wav file under the associated event folder with your own file!

If you always fly GA aircraft and still want sounds (I don’t want to leave you GA folk out) – why not replace the cabin appaulse with a simple recording of “great job man, perfect landing!” or a “woooo – that hurt my ass” for a bad landing?! πŸ™‚ – Just an idea!

What else do I have planned for the sounds effects?

Well, depending on the feedback, I could easily add multiple recording files of clapping, screaming and the departure and arrival messages and therefore, each time these are triggered it can allow for a random version to be chosen (such as louder claps, fewer claps, claps and whistling, clapping and cheering etc) and played and as such, giving you a more unique experience each flight.

Maybe add an option to have a “random chance” that screams and applause will NOT be triggered regardless of a good or bad landing – not all passengers on aircraft are always open to give the pilot a round of applause even if they think he’s done a good job or not and equally, some flights I guess have more conservative passengers who are less likely to show their emotions no matter how scared or shocked they may be following a very bumpy landing!

I could also add the option to have specific recordings (or a group of recordings that could be chosen at random by LRM client) based on the current aircraft label (aka. model and livery) – This would allow for you to have “company-specific” sound recordings – a bigger task for me for sure and would require you to manage and upload multiple files but maybe this might be a feature you guys want? – Let me know πŸ™‚

Found an issue or want to give feedback?

As always, if you discover any issues please log a “bug report” here and be sure to let me know what flight simulator you are using (eg. FSX, XP11, P3Dv5 etc.

If you have any questions or want to feedback anything to me, please drop me a message πŸ™‚

I’m going to be busy the next few weeks with actual “paying work” πŸ˜‰ so updates to the main site and the client will certainly now be quiet for a few weeks whilst I work on that project but I would really appreciate if you guys could do some testing and feedback in the meantime and before this version is officially released as “stable” – from my testing in MSFS 2020 and FSX it’s been flawless with all features working as they should. I’ve done some testing in XP11 too but not as much as I’d want.

LRM Client 4.1.0 Beta is available for testing!

I’ve been hammering away with many more site updates and features to FsHub (that you may have already noticed) and this evening I am pleased to announce a new BETA release of LRM Client (v4.1.0).

This release adds support for capturing the g-forces, improving the “Landing Analysis Summary” as well as some other general optimisations and improvements.

As you might expect, the landing g-force is also captured and recorded on your flight report now too (that is, if you have configured LRM client to save your flight reports to FsHub and not just using LRM client in a “standalone”/offline mode)

Here is a screenshot of where the landing g-force now appears in your flight reports:

In addition to adding the g-force to your flight reports and the LRM stats window, it also contributes to the landing score summary and affects what is a “good landing”.

After doing some investigation around the internet, it would appear that:

  • g-forces < 1.6 are generally as you would expect/good and therefore the normal flight score logic will therefore apply based solely on the aircraft’s landing (FPM) rate.
  • g-forces > 1.65 is generally a very hard landing and apparently when (commercial) pilots exceed this value are pulled up by the air safety department. With this in mind, LRM will automatically trip the “Hard landing” score regardless of the vertical landing rate (FPM) value.
  • g-forces > 2.5 is a super hard and therefore a very concerning landing, that said, apparently Boeing’s specifications can safely handle up to this rate and therefore will automatically trip (regardless of the FPM) the “Concerning” score as this could be deemed as very dangerous.

The above “logic” is based on what I have found online from searching about, if you feel that this should/could be tweak to better provide a more realistic landing analysis score please do let me know and I can make the changes prior to releasing this version as “stable”.

As for what testing I have done on this beta release – I have tested this on many aircraft inside Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 on over 50 short test flights and should equally work as expected in the other simulators that FsHub supports such as FSX, FSX:SE, XP11 and P3D etc; I plan to test this over the next few days in the other simulators regardless but wanted to offer the beta release to you guys too so you can help me test πŸ™‚

I would really appreciate it if you have the time to test this new release, you can download the “beta” client from here.

To install, simply download the ZIP file, extract the installer and run it – this will overwrite your existing LRM client version (don’t worry though, you can always re-install the older version again if you want/you have issues) – You do not have to uninstall your existing client and I would recommend that you simply “upgrade” by just running the installer. You *may* have to re-add an FsHub API token however and re-configure your settings once you have installed the new update (so just be aware of that!)

If you discover any issues please log a “bug report” here and be sure to let me know what flight simulator you are using (eg. FSX, XP11, P3Dv5 etc.

As always, if you have any questions or want to feedback anything to me, please drop me a mesasge πŸ™‚

May 2021 Updates (Part 1)

This post is titled “Part 1” as I plan another large update later this month and so I will give further details of that in due course.

Good morning! So following yet another (pretty major) release this morning, I wanted to share many new features and improvements with you – I’ve been working tirelessly the last couple of weeks to add, what I feel are some great new features and improvements to the platform (hopefully I won’t start getting charged a ton from Google Maps haha) and again, is also down to you guys for suggesting these great features in the User Survey recently.

So let me give you a quick rundown of what I have added or improved upon…

Flight plan/route entry

As you will see further down in this post, this feature was essential in being added to ensure that other features as part of this release would work.

You will notice that there is now a new menu item in the user dropdown list:

Whilst this feature is ENTIRELY optional (I know a lot of you didn’t want me to overly complicate the user experience of FsHub) – If however, you enter a flight plan before taking off you can load the route into the new GPS (mentioned further down) this will then show your planned flight path in the GPS in addition to your “already travelled path” (for want of a better phrase ;)). The route information as part of the flight plan that you enter will also now show your planned route on the main Radar page too if a user clicks on your aircraft!

As you can see, It’s pretty simple and straightforward to use, you only need to enter a flight number, cruise level (or altitude) as well as your planned flight route.

In addition to this feature, this also enables the addition of functionality to the GPS and the main radar page as any route information added on this page, your flight number and planned CRZ level will also automatically transfer to your flight report when you land!

As you may discover (if you check out the new feature), the “Import” button is not yet functional but will enable you to import a route from a SimBrief OFP export (XML) file, load a published virtual airline route or select and import a previously entered route – the “import” feature will be fully implemented this coming week but for now, you can copy and paste a route into the route box. – These features have now been released and are live πŸ™‚

Improved GPS functionality

The GPS has been updated with a fresh new design and some “big buttons” which make using it on an iPad a joy… It is no longer just a simple “see where I am and how high or fast am I flying”….

The new functionality includes optional range rings around the aircraft (at 20nm increments up to 80nm).

Loading in an optional flight plan (pressing the clipboard icon -see below) will overlay your route, show a flight progress bar, an ETA (based on you current aircraft speed) and remaining distance to the destination airport – it will also pop up two buttons allowing you to quickly and easily get your most important departure and arrival airport information.

There are two new “toggle” options which are “Enable airports” and “Enable Naviads” and whilst I’m still improving these two features (hence they are labelled “BETA” they are fully functional. When selected they will display airports and/or navaids up-to 80nm around your current location, you can click on any of these icons to then display an information window about the airport or navaid, they are flagged as “in beta” as although it fully works I really need to do some improvements to the icons and better distinguish the type of navaids and airports. At the moment however, the “logic” is simple – airports without an IATA code are shown in pink/magenta, those that do have an IATA code (generally larger airports) are shown in blue. I also need to add additional icons for the different types of navigational aids but yeah, apart from the icons this feature is fully working!)

Several buttons have been added that make zooming, entering and “restarting” the GPS much easier. An overview of these buttons are as follows:

Improved Radar page

The radar page has been overhauled too and is more interactive – clicking on a flight that has a flight plan filed will now show information about the flight and it’s progress in addition to displaying the planned route – if you didn’t file a flight plan (and you want to continue to use FsHub without any interaction prior to your flight – that’s fine too and it’ll simply fall back to what it used to do (simply show your name, aircraft type and general statistics) but will now display your pilot avatar too!

If you are flying for a virtual airline and the airline owner has uploaded a “banner image” – this will show above your pilot card too (this is discussed further down in this post).

Pilots can now upload custom avatars!

Previously, pilot avatars simply used Gravatar, from today you can now customise your pilot avatar (by default it’ll still use Gravatar though). If you want to do this you can head over to the settings page (My Profile) where you can now upload a custom avatar image!

User avatars now appear on the main radar page too (when clicking on an aircraft)

Ignore the fact that I was flying off-route – I was just testing something else πŸ˜‰

Virtual airline banner images and logos

Some future updates that I’ll be working on will utilise these icons and banner images and logos – if your VA has a “banner” uploaded, any flights that are flown for your VA will also have this banner image appear over the top of the pilot information on the radar screen.

Although I have a ton more features and improvements planned for the coming weeks and months – Virtual airlines will also get a big overhaul and I will be massively improving how they appear on the site, the interactivity, customisations to their “microsite” (another new feature panned) and adding “live chat” for VA members – these new features that have been added under the Virtual airline management panel will be utilised heavily in these features to enable VA owners to really customise and brand their VA.

Overhauled weather system

Previously, when METAR or TAF information was requested through the airport’s page, FsHub would go and “retrieve it” from NOAA on a per-airport request basis and then cache the information for a small number of minutes (to ensure we were providing as near real-time information as possible) whilst this worked well it meant that occasionally there was some delay to the user (whilst waiting for our servers to connect to and retrieve the information back from NOAA).

Given that the new GPS updates enable you (if you have “Enable airports” checked) to click on an airport and very quickly see the airport information (weather conditions and radio comms) having any delay in this information coming back would seem sluggish and to that end… I wrote a separate service that now very efficiently “syncs” weather changes to our own separate data storage system that is independent of the main FsHub system and therefore does not affect performance on the main servers at all.

The result of which is that weather (METAR and TAF) lookups are now pretty much instant.

In summary

This truly was a massive update (in terms of coding time spent and additional cloud hosting service requirements) and I hope that you enjoy these new features – even if you don’t use them all – as I’ve said in the past (and what I keep too), my main priority of the system is to ensure that it is simple to use and above all… stable!

These features introduced a lot of potential bottlenecks such as loading in the airports and navaids (in real-time) to the GPS map and therefore, in order to combat these potential issues – nearly all of the real-time functionality for the GPS is now hosted as a separate microservice taking the processing and calculation burden off the “main system”.

As you can probably imagine, it is super hard for me (as the only developer) to fully test every situation with real flight simulators so whilst I do my best with two computers and a separate test environment (one running XP11/MSFS2020 and the other running FSX:SE at the same time) – Issue *may* occur following this release but rest assured that as soon as any are reported or I notice any myself I will reactively work to resolve them. I’ve purposely held off releasing until this time as the daily backup has been completed – so worst-case scenario is what we can roll back.

If you have any strange display issues on the GPS or radar page – try refreshing your browser cache… this is most likely going to be the issue (it’s all working fine for me it would seem)

Please, let me know what you think!

I’m honestly interested in hearing what YOU think of the new features and maybe what you’d like to see in future – If you want to send a quick message to show your appreciation or buy me beer that would be great but equally, if you don’t like these new features… let me know too – I wouldn’t want to think that I am wasting my time adding features that people don’t like or that they feel get in the way so I won’t take any offence…

I generally gauge what to do in future based on what you guys want or would like to see get added… obviously, though, not all requests can be implemented due to certain constraints such as “the data” not being available or is commercially licensed and ultimately if certain ideas stray too far off what FsHub is designed to do best/concentrated on.

Things I’m working on next

Over the next couple of weeks my plan is to work on and improve the following areas of FsHub:

  • Complete the implementation of the “import flight plan” features (from SimBreif, VA routes and previously flown routes). Now completed and pushed live as of 17:20 17/05/2021!
  • Catch up with airport and aircraft designation requests/fixes – I’ll be adding and amending some data as per your requests.
  • Build out an entirely new Search system – Completely overhaul its design and functionality and again, changing out the backend search technology to provide typo tolerant, faster and more relevant results as well as access to all kinds of data from a single search query (no longer will you need to search for airports or VA’s separately). This will also encompass flight report tags (of which, in the past have not been “searchable” through the website front-end at least) – So get tagging those flights πŸ˜‰
  • Logbook filters – You’ll be able to filter down your logbook list on various filters such as aircraft type, flight duration, tags, to/from specific countries etc.
  • More pilot, global and VA stats (I will be adding a new “My stats” page, “VA stats” page and “Global stats” page) – As per the user survey, you guys asked for more stats, charts and other related topics… Now that aircraft are “designated” to types (from my last update) I can now, more easily query the backend data storage systems provide these kinds of additional statistics.

Those are my plans for the next couple of weeks at least – still, on my long list of things (other than things I’ve already mentioned in the past) I want to sort/get added are:

  • Runway and taxiway map overlay in the newly improved GPS tracker (when on the ground at airports) making it easier to navigate around etc.
  • A new version of the LRM client – A fresh new look and as well as recording landing g-force and other more advanced parameters, if and when you select a VA from the virtual airline dropdown to fly for it’ll download the VA logo and colour scheme that the VA owner has set up in the “Manage” section of FsHub (this will make the LRM client automatically branded to your VA’s colour scheme and logos etc) – Pretty sweet right?! πŸ˜€
  • A new and improved “v4” Web API allowing you to get even more data from your flights and VA’s as well as better endpoints for iterating records etc.

Would you like to help out?

Although the development of the system is something that I want to remain within my control as having worked with others in the past on other projects, mistakes can happen and lead to disastrous situations and the systems that make up FsHub are far from “simple” – at the end of the day, I want to make sure your flight reports are safe and the system is always available!

With the above said, I do get a lot of requests for data changes (airport updates and addition of aircraft types etc) and therefore I am toying with the idea of getting a small group of the more established users (that have many flight hours and therefore experience and a vested interest in the platform and it’s data accuracy) to help me handle these requests – The plan would be (if there is enough interest) that I’ll build a nice admin panel that this small team of volunteers can access and help me with user requests such as amending runway numbers, adding airports etc. – I’ll set up a Discord server too so we can stay in touch and lend a hand/answer questions if needed. (I’m probably looking for a close-knit team of three people that I can really trust and work with)

If you’re interested in helping out drop me a message via the contact page on the main site.