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The FlightGear flight simulator project is an open-source, multi-platform, cooperative flight simulator development project.


root #emerge flightgear

Commandline usage

The simulation can be started using a Window Manager's menu, however it's likely more preferable to start FlightGear via the command line as there is more control over the options (ie. Aircraft models likely cannot be chosen easily once the simulation has started).

user $fgfs

Show help messages:

user $fgfs --help --verbose
user $ less

Show a listing of available aircraft:

user $fgfs --show-aircraft

Basic commandline incantation (which is used within the Win32 build) for adding geometry (use the desired screen resolution) and timeofday options:

user $fgfs --fg-root=/usr/share/games/flightgear --fg-scenery=/usr/share/games/flightgear/Scenery --aircraft=c172p-canvas --control=joystick --disable-random-objects --prop:/sim/rendering/random-vegetation=false --disable-ai-models --disable-ai-traffic --disable-real-weather-fetch --enable-clouds3d --enable-fullscreen --prop:/sim/frame-rate-throttle-hz=60 --geometry=1680x1050 --bpp=32 --timeofday=noon

Additional aircraft

Users can download additional (unsupported) aircraft models. Once downloaded, extract the tarballs and use the following option:

user $fgfs --fg-aircraft="${HOME}/.fgfs/my-extracted-aircraft-2.12.0

Additional scenery

Users can download additional scenery or utilize terrasync.

Take note, there is currently no /usr/share/games/flightgear/Scenery folder as noted by the previous incantation.

Download the tarball scenery, extract into a local folder, and use the following option:

user $fgfs --fg-scenery="${HOME}/.fgfs/my-extracted-scenery-2.12.0/:/usr/share/games/flightgear/Scenery:${HOME}/.fgfs/my-terrasync"-2.12.0


To enable Terrasync, use the following while remembering to add the folder to the --fg-scenery list of folders, as specified above. (Unknown if specifying the additional Terrasync folder within fg-scenery is necessary.)

user $mkdir ${HOME}/.fgfs/my-terrasync-2.12.0
user $fgfs --enable-terrasync --terrasync-dir=${HOME}/.fgfs/my-terrasync-2.12.0 --fg-scenery=${HOME}/.fgfs/my-terrasync"-2.12.0

Scripting command line options

Eventually it becomes more desirable to automate much of these commands per scenario. It is nice to already have script files for different scenarios, named such as fgfs.sh, fgfs-mp.sh, and fgfs-debug.sh to respectively start in single player, multiplayer or debug modes.

For example, to start a FlightGear multiplayer session:

FILE ${HOME}/bin/fgfs-mp.sh
# Airports
# KPDX Portland Intl
# KLAX Los Angeles Intl
# PFAI Fairbanks Int
# KSFO San Fransisco, CA

# Aircraft
# 777-300
# c172p-canvas
# CitationX

/usr/games/bin/fgfs \
    --aircraft=c172p-canvas \
    --browser-app=/usr/bin/seamonkey \
    --callsign=BIGBIRD \
    --control=joystick \
    --disable-terrasync \
    --enable-game-mode \
    --enable-real-weather-fetch \
    --fg-root=/usr/share/games/flightgear \
    --multiplay=out,10,mpserver16.flightgear.org,5000 \
    --prop:/sim/rendering/multithreading-mode=AutomaticSelection \
    --prop:/sim/rendering/shaders/quality-level=0 \
    --prop:/sim/rendering/texture-compression=off \
    --log-level=alert \

Make the file executable and run it whenever. To modify your options, do so by editing the commented script file!

user $chmod u+x ${HOME}/bin/fgfs-mp.sh
user $./bin/fgfs-mp

(Omit the "./" if "${HOME}/bin" is already within the $PATH.)

Known Problems

Poor Frame Rates Compared to Win32 Build's Frame Rates

The default "c172p" aircraft model seems to cause significant frame rate loss. Choosing another aircraft model such as the "c172p-canvas" alleviates this problem.

user $fgfs --aircraft=c172p-canvas

See Also

Track IR

External Resources