Starting with X-Plane 11, all aircraft must be installed in a folder within “Aircraft”.* We’re taking this opportunity to normalize where Aircraft are installed (all other files have to go in ‘the right’ folder, e.g. Weapons, Airfoils, Custom Scenery, etc.). This will let us search a much smaller footprint of files to find installed aircraft, which speeds up the UI.

Our aircraft are in a folder called “Laminar Research” within Aircraft; my suggestion is that vendors (and a lot of you are already doing this) have your own folder in Aircraft  where aircraft go.

The goal is to have a file structure where it is not necessary to reorganize where files live or deconflict, so that automatic updaters (ours and third parties) can find the files they installed. The old folders-with-categories-of-aircraft are now gone.

You can make any set of folders within Aircraft you want, and when you search in the UI, you can search by folder names. But we also provide a bunch of other ways to find aircraft, e.g. type, studio, number of engines, or file name search.


*If  you thought X-Plane already required it, well…nope – X-Plane 10 will load an aircraft anywhere in the X-Plane folder. This is only true for Aircraft – everything else has to go in the right bucket.

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.

19 comments on “X-Plane 11: All Aircraft Must Live in…Aircraft

  1. Do you know at this stage whether or not symbolic links will work in XP11 for aircraft and scenery folders as well as they do in XP10?
    Up till now its been an easy way for me to organise these between multiple copies of the application (the current version and the beta version for example).

    1. There should be no change. Symbolic links in custom scenery is officially supported; everything else is “maybe you get lucky, don’t file a bug if it doesn’t work.”

      1. Symlinks work fine on Mac and dynamic links work fine on Windows (mklink). Haven’t checked Linux yet, but the X-Plane 11 Dev Beta has been luvvin’ my X-Plane 10 Global Scenery where I’ve been using a just one Global and one Custom scenery folder for all my X-Plane installs.

  2. I’ve been wondering this since I saw the presentation of 11 / 10.50-beta:

    The airline identifiers added to starting positions affect static planes, but the presentation said static scenery is just a step because it’s static.

    Is there any intention to pick liveries/skin of AI aircraft by the start airline identifiers, or have ATC send AI traffic with an airline skin go to it’s airline’s starts at an airport? If so, do the airline identifiers impose any livery file naming?

    Also, if I pick a livery in the new flight or chose global airports dialogs, will it consider my plane’s livery (or alternately provide an airline filter for starts)?

  3. Speaking of aircraft, I submitted a bug about a week ago related to FPS dropping every 10-20 seconds (actually, it would cause the screen to freeze at the same time). After hours and hours of troubleshooting, I think the culprit was the Carenado Cirrus SR22 GTSX; not sure if it was the aircraft itself or more likely the 3GB database one is forced to download in order to use the G1000. After removing these, along with the preferences, and all plugin’s, then using the X-plane re-installer file and re-installing everything (except the Cirrus), it is working fine now. Too nervous to install that database again.

  4. If we want to fly as a team in multiplayer, do we still have to compare our addon-aircraft folder names within this “aircraft”-folder, to be able to see each other?

    Thank you very much!

  5. I wonder whether the reason of merging all aircraft subdirectories in one folder (this is how I interpret the message) was due to the fact that the structure was too complicated, or (what I think) navigation with the X-Plane UI was too complicated.
    For a flat structure, I’d wish an additional mechanism like adding user-definable tags or maybe even a “star rating” to the planes for quick access to what you want. I don’t know yet how many planes X-Plane 11 will ship, but I have a quite big collection of planes going back to older X-Planes. I like some of them a lot, while I don’t like some of the recent additions.
    So please let the user decide how to locate the planes he/she wants. Of course it’s not very much an issue if you only have a hand-full of planes to choose from…

    1. It’s _not_ a flat system – it’s still a hierarchy. Here’s the situation:
      – The file system on disk for airplanes is a hierarchy.
      – It starts at ‘aircraft’ – the motivation is to not have to search the entire x-plane folder and it’s extra 40,000 files for airplanes put in silly locations.
      – The UI presents a flat grid of airplanes with filters.
      – When you use search to filter the grid, typing a file path will filter, so if you have a folder called “cool stuff” WITHIN aircraft, typing “cool” will pull just that stuff, plus any airplane with “cool” in its title, plus any airplane with “cool” in it’s authors name, etc.

  6. In the video “This one goes up to 11” Austin said end of this year – and he is the boss.
    Knowing all problems associated with a major release, I expect the downoads are available December 42rd – the usual interpretations about 42 are allowed.
    Rest assured, every second wait is worth it.

  7. Just wondering if there is a chance to try the betas before final release? But this would need a v11 installer which cannot be bought yet. So I guess the answer is no.

  8. Well there goes organizing them by manufacture. if I’m understanding right now I’ll have aircraft/laminar/boeing/737-80o. Vice Aircraft Boeing/737-800 LR. With the way the installer is insistent on things being installed in the stock fashion and only the stock fashion this just made things, worse. I realize that right now it will be hard to do but can we please at least look at making the installer more flexible when it comes to name conventions

    1. Hi,

      You can’t reorganize the LR-provided resources -at all- – this never worked well and is not going to work well in the future. The situation is no better or worse than in v10 – if you move our planes out of our scheme, the installer installs a new copy.

      What I have tried to do in all cases is give you ways to cope with our content without moving it. That’s why you can disable and re-prioritize scenery packs, and you can search and filter the airplanes.

      In the case of by-manufacturer, there is a manufacturer tab right in the UI – if you want to see boeings, pick “Boeing”. 🙂

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