It took longer than I wanted, but we’re on to beta 3. If you have X-Plane 10.40 beta 2, it will auto-update to beta 3. Beta 3 fixes a few big bugs in beta 2:

  • Crash on startup for Mac users.
  • Poor framerate on Windows with NVidia cards on prop planes when the props are on.*
  • Legacy GPS not finding airports.

Full notes with the bug fix list is here.

Normally I try to get everything new in a release into beta 1, so that we’re just debugging during beta. But some of our internal plans have changed a bit, so I think there might be more features coming in a later 10.40 beta. I’m hoping to have that sorted out by next week.

Please keep filing bugs when you find them (on the bug report form, not the comments section). Please do not:

  • File a bug and then tell me on the comments section. We already have the bug report!
  • Ask if you should file a bug report. It takes just as long to handle the actual bug as to read the “should I file a bug” email. If the email is shorter than the bug report, it’s incomplete and we don’t even know what’s going on. If your email is the size of a bug report, just file the bug report!

Linux users running the unsupported open source driver: we already have a bug that it doesn’t work – for now if you run with –no_ubos –no_array_tex you can run, but this is not a long term solution.

* That’s that new OpenGL code we’re running. The slow down is only -barely- noticeable on my dev machine with a GeForce 680; it’s a 3% hit. Fortunately Jennifer was able to reproduce the full 25%+ hit that users are seeing. This is why we have beta, and why we try to get new OpenGL code into X-Plane incrementally. It’s definitely a case of write once, debug everywhere.

About Ben Supnik

Ben is a software engineer who works on X-Plane; he spends most of his days drinking coffee and swearing at the computer -- sometimes at the same time.

41 comments on “X-Plane 10.40 Beta 3 Is Out

  1. We arre happy to know you may implement more features during 10.40 beta process. We always like new stuff coming 😀
    xplane rocks!

    1. Well, not implement, more like ship.

      At any given time we have a pipeline of code that hasn’t shipped yet in various states of functionality. I don’t think there’s any new feature that’s totally uncoded now that we’d ship in 1040’s time frame. But some of the stuff is ‘close to ready’ and might get finished and kicked out the door.

  2. Hi Ben and team,

    I must say that the 10.40 beta process is a total success in my book. The new features work just great for me and I am not having any problems.

    Increased viewing range – what can I say. Everyone is delighted, and rightfully so.

    New global airports – I start to think that this crowdsourcing idea might actually work. I see more and more people taking interest, and if the rate keeps picking up like that, wow! Happy to see some of my airports shown at the FlightSimCon X-Plane presentation (the one you guys thought was KATL Atlanta was EDDM Munich, I think!).

    Increased light size – A total game-changer for me! I am running XP at 3840×2160 and all lights were way too dim for me. Now the HIRLs are actually High-Intensity again. Cool!

    I tested a new “hidden” feature today and told Austin that it seems to work and is ready to go into the changelog for the next beta. I think this will further cement X-Plane´s claim to be a dedicated ultra-realism simulator.

    Keep up that great work that you and the whole team are doing!

    Thanks, Jan

    1. Hi Jan,

      Re: the flight sim conference, Austin sent Julian an email requesting “pics of the gateway” one night – at least in the version of the pics I saw, I think the ICAO code was not included.

      If by hidden feature you mean the fixed mag-var, that wasn’t hidden on purpose – it got lost in the release notes; fixed now.


  3. -Very- nice frame rate improvement here (+ 70 % compared to b2) in the alps using extended DSFs and UHD scenery and flying the stock King Air.
    Best regards

      1. Just out of curiosity Ben (I didn’t really use beta 2 that much so I’m not sure if my system was affected by it) do you know if there was a pattern as to which GPU’s had the 25% hit that you were mentioning vs the 3% one you saw on your 680?

        1. Well, it was all Windows, and all Nvidia…and I think it may all have been 7nn or newer, but I’m not 100% sure on that one.

  4. Are you now using OpenGL 4.0 and if so are you considering tesselation yet?

    Was reading up on the the matter here // and I began to wonder if it is version hibited or function hibited, in other words could you enable vertex processing via the OpenGL shader or would it not work with x-plane mesh rendering as it stands right now?

    1. See the comments for this post:


      There was an extensive discussion of GL, extensions, versions, bla bla bla.

      We are considering tessellation for the sim in the future – we’ve been planning for it for a while.

      I don’t know what you mean by “could you enable vertex processing via the OpenGL shader.” All vertices are always processed by vertex shaders, always.

      1. Ok, thanks Ben, seems like Vulcan will be a far better solution. Do Khronos estimate any time-frame for the release? And will Vulcan provide options for multiple GPU support in X-Plane?

        1. I don’t think there’s a “real” release date at this point…Metal and D3D12 are tied to OS releases, Vulkan is not.

          Metal, Vulkan and DX12 all allow multi-GPU at the app level, e.g. “you can do SLI if you code it yourself.”

          1. Is tesselation something that you are looking into V11 as you said you are beeb planing for it for a while?
            It seems like you are already working on a new major version , in beta 2 there was also a new folder called interface11 (which was deleted in b3 I see now).

            And on another concern , maybe looking too far ahead , will X-plane10 sceneries work with next major version?

          2. I can’t comment on what will go into the major version. The inclusion of the interface11 was an installer mistake by me – we have -lots- of new tech that is in various states (some not completed at all).

            In fact, if you look at the X-Plane 9 shaders, you’ll find little bits of real-time shadowing code, a feature that shipped in X-Plane ten. That’s because the feature was disabled but under development for a very long time before it was ready. I had the deferred renderer as a tech demo running mid-way through X-Plane 9; it took years to go from “cute demo” to “we can ship this.” We are always developing new code all of the time – some ships soon, some gets saved for later, and some ends up sitting for a while because it isn’t ready when we thought it would be. (My original target for shadows was X-Plane 9.0, but the tech I had at the time was just un-shippable.)

            The MAJOR version compatibility policy has typically been:
            – Scenery from -at least- one version ago keeps working, but artists will have to enhance it if they want to take advantage of lighting improvements.
            – Aircraft authors have to go down a check list of tweaks to “modernize” an aircraft, but the changes should be small, targeted and manageable.
            – Very very old authoring techniques may be dropped.
            The free update compatibility policy has typically been:
            – It should just work like before, if it doesn’t, file a bug.

  5. THX for the update but after this update I can’t see some objects (actually houses) from Openscenery X.

    I mean in Trabzon (a city) there were many houses near the airport in b2 but when I updated it I can’t see these houses. Is this a general problem or only my problem ?
    and is it possible to go back to b2 to understand this problem

    also the fps increased so much thx you very much

      1. Hi Ben I’m interested in the question, I’m set X-PLANE 10 is now updated to the X-PLANE 10.40 b3, and ishes one fact, why not 3d grass on lawns and green flat texture of the same type?

    1. If these crashes are specific to 1040, file a bug. If they happen in 1036, then I’d say contact the author of XSquawkBox but at this point XSquawkBox is a plugin without an owner.

    2. It was the same for me (40b3 crashed),

      after deleting ../X-Plane 10\Resources\plugins\XSquawkBox\Resources\XSquawkBox Prefs

      the problem was fixed at my system

      1. Yes, I did the same, deleted it from plug-ins, and all is working fine. What other solution do we have for VATSIM?

        1. Brett, maybe we are not talking about the same.

          For testing the beta version I made a copy of the already installed x-plane into another folder and ran the update on that new folder.

          After being faced with XSquawkBox making problems I didn’t delete XSquawkBox from plugins, I only deleted one file:
          “XSquawkBox Prefs”

  6. Took 10.40b3 for a ride around the Denali region last night using HD mesh V3. Superb up to 20, 25k or so. I would offer that the “transparent terrain” be pushed back further as that effect is still evident, giving the viewer the ability to see terrain through terrain.

    This is really nice, though, and with a very powerful system, I was able to keep detail up as well as frame rate.

  7. Hi, Please could you tell us in what way you have “Updated Magnetic Variation” in beta3? Are you now using the World Magnetic Model (WMM) or the International Geomagnetic Reference Field (IGRF) model? And have you changed/updated the magnetic variation of record for VOR’s ect.?

    1. I think the simulated real world magnetic variation is updated. So the truly magnetic instruments (like the compass) read more accurately.

    2. The IGRF model has been used to predict data for end of 2019 in 5 degree intervals for latitude and longitude. Therefore expect some error if far away from any of those nodes, and also if the variation changes quickly (it will take about 4 years for that error to disappear, only to get bigger again afterwards).

      I think the magnetic variation record for VOR´s should come with the earth_nav.dat database, the one that ships with X-Plane is fairly old and can´t be updated easily without heavy licensing costs, but you can replace it with a current one for a very small price (cough – Navigraph – cough).


      1. That is exactly how it works. VOR station declinations are part of the earth_nav.dat.
        That is by the way exactly like it is in real life. VOR stations are sometimes not updated in years. It is not uncommon to have VOR station declination being very out of sync with the actual declination at that point. I’ve seen VORs not having changed for 10 years and being as many as five degrees off.

        1. Thanks for confirming that, Philipp!

          I have just run a quick test in the Phoenix area using a present day chart – over the PXR VOR I am exactly at the 343 radial out of TFD VOR.
          At a range of 30NM any degree of error should put me about 0.5NM away from the VOR, quite noticeable.
          I am using an up-to-date earth_nav.dat that I bought from navigraph, though.

          Cheers, Jan

  8. Hi!

    Is this update available on Steam?

    I have the option beta – Public Beta selected.

    Thank you.

  9. Hi Ben, Beta3 seems an excellent improvement with the usual crashes and me filing bug reports to help refine xp. (I love beta testing things!) My question is should I upgrade my Nvidia driver 344.65 to the latest or any one after 344.65? I’ve got a GTX980 and want the most stable driver to go with the excellent work being put into xplane
    Thanks in advance for your opinion.

      1. I took the leap and updated to the latest driver. Much, much better both in the beta3 and 10.36. Only problem in the beta were stutters/micro stutters (with dsf on or off)and in .36, hd very little stutters. Overall, really good. Thanks Ben!

  10. Awesome, loving the new beta… oh and if seems youve improved scattering (raleigh scattering or whatever.) Thank you for tweaking night lighting, its awesome!

    BUT it still pops in from a distance. I know you’ve mentioned there being a limit of… 10km or something? I have an idea – if you dont or cannot increase the distance, why not have the lights blend in?

    Let me explain – at the moment if we zoom in from the cockpit at scenery far away, the autogen blends in gradually, making the experience snooth. But unfortunately the lights suddenly pop in, in large chunks of lights in an area.

    Im really sorry if I’m nagging you about the lights lol, but it kind of kills the immersion sometimes. Let me know what you think.

    Regards x

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