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+6 votes
asked by (43 points)
closed by

Currently the only known workaround is to manually tweak the file "./resources/settings.txt" which is ugly because it means messing with XP internals which will get overwritten with each update and is likely to break other things at some point.

See also this forum topic about the tweak and this dev blog for technical background.

In XP10 this was an official option in the rendering settings and I think this needs to be brought back.


closed with the note: discussion is getting off topic
commented by (66 points)
I still found XP11 very very  lacking preference options. the ExtDSF is one of them. Please add an advanced tab for the advanced users so it will be possible to tweak the sim on specific configurations.
The way it works now is uneffective, and requires too many lua scripts or manual editing to setting files to have an efficient sim.

1 Answer

0 votes
answered by (19.3k points)
This option is always on in X-Plane 11 by design. I'm curious why you want to turn it off. Is there a specific use case? Hacking the settings.txt file is not recommended and is never supported.
commented by (43 points)
edited by

IMO the main purpose for this is better support for orthophoto and HD meshes, which are getting increasingly popular due to community-provided tools like Ortho4XP and G2XPL. It is proven that in those cases extended DSF can cause a dramatic FPS impact and stuttering while transitioning between tiles due to significant increase of VRAM usage and swapping overall.

Here is just one example of a user that reported huge improvements after applying the tweak.


commented by (87 points)

I totally agree with Henry. I use ortho4xp sceneries a lot and flying in photo sceneries was the main reason to switch from FSX to X-Plane 10, where one was able to switch off extended dsf. This was a great function since it satisfied all users who wanted extended dsf or not.

Now in X-Plane 11 this choice was taken away from us.  :-((

My system comes to a complete standstil every few minutes while it tries to reload photo tiles. Due to the extended dsf the computer simply gets overwhelmed. It is really annoying having to wait for the sim to recover for a minute or so while the tiles are being loaded. This makes online flying almost impossible.

I am not asking to remove the extended dsf. All I ask is that you give back the choice of using extended dsf to the user.

Thank you for your consideration!
commented by (43 points)

Ben Supnik himself has provided a reason for why this was made optional in XP10 in this comment:


commented by (19.3k points)

In X-Plane 10 you could turn off some options to "dumb down" the sim and see performance "improvements," for example with the extended dsf option. For X-Plane 11 we focused on making the default sim the best it could be. 

The thing about the dense meshes and orthophotos is that some of them are REALLY inefficient in terms of their perf cost. If your machine isn't a beast, you'll really feel the cumulative effects of all this in X-Plane 11.

commented by (43 points)
IMO turning off extended DSF's has nothing to do with "dumbing down" the sim. It is a simple, deliberate and totally justifiable trade-off for allowing the efficient use of more realistic and detailed base meshes which are considered essential by an ever increasing number of users (myself included).

Add to that the facts that more and better quality DEM/DSM/orthophoto data sources are becoming increasingly available and that extended DSF's are a pretty useless feature for people wanting to fly mostly VFR and thus rarely exceeding altitudes beyond 4000-5000ft AGL.

Also I believe that flying realistic VFR pretty much requires the use of a realistic orthophoto mesh instead of the default (plausible) one.
commented by (11 points)
If you have a laptop or graphics card with only 2GB of VRAM (or even less, because officially you only need 1GB), you'll automatically get some serious problem and have to reduce texture quality just because of extended dsfs. How stupid is this?

Example: I've a laptop with 2GB GDDR5 VRAM and I'm using a ZL16 Photoscenery with "high" texture quality.
In XP10.51 no problem, but in XP11. Loaded textures: 2,3GB, (Main-)RAM usage: 4GB.
Without ext. dsfs in XP11: Loaded textures: 1,7GB, (Main-)RAM usage: 2,7GB.
Disabled the ext. dsfs in this way:
I've less stuttering and performance is maybe a bit better.

The same problem is also in the non existent graphical options. There really aren't any. World details MUST be at least "high", otherwise XP11 looks extremly poor, like FSX. And the rest? Standard options where you can't really reduce something without an extreme loss of visual quality which would look poorer than XP10. Only reflections and shadows are worth to reduce.
Currently XP11 is made exclusive for high end PCs and not for midrange PCs because of missing graphic options.

The minimum system requirements are a fraud. A Geforce 420 1GB is ok if you only want to fly above the Atlantic or Pacific Ocean. Below a Geforce GTS 450 2GB you'll get some serious problems.

The recommended specs are fine and very realistic.