Beginning in X-Plane 10.40, Plane Maker added support for a variety of extra “metadata” information in ACF files. X-Plane 10 did not make use of this metadata, but X-Plane 11 uses it extensively. For your aircraft to take advantage of the new filtering & search support in the Flight Configuration screen’s aircraft grid, you’ll want to make sure you include this information.
To add aircraft metadata, open your aircraft in Plane Maker, then go to Standard > Author. There, you can set the following fields used by the X-Plane 11 user interface:
- Name for X-Plane UI: The name as displayed in the aircraft grid, and the aircraft’s Customize screen. This should be short and sweet—prefer “F-22 Raptor” or even just “F-22” to “Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor.”
- Design Studio: The group producing your aircraft. You want the design studio to stay consistent for all the aircraft your group produces. This is in contrast to the “aircraft author” field, which credits the actual people involved in the plane. So, for instance, your studio might be “Amazing Sim Planes,” while your “author” field might be something like “Jane Doe, flight model; John Doe, 3-D modeling; Jack Jones, texturing.”
- Manufacturer: The real-world manufacturer of the aircraft you are modeling. (E.g., Boeing, Cessna, etc.—not related to the team creating the X-Plane model.)
- Classification (checkboxes): An aircraft may fall into zero, one, or many categories (airliner, general aviation, experimental, etc.). Your aircraft will appear in the UI section corresponding to each category it belongs to.
All the fields above are also available in the text search field. So, for instance, if your aircraft has the following fields:
- Name: F-22
- Manufacturer: Lockheed Martin
- Studio: Amazing Sim Planes
- Classification: Military
…your aircraft would show up in all of the following searches, based on matches or partial matches for words in those fields:
- “sim planes”