Microsoft Flight Simulator 2004 SDK Pack (All kits)

Microsoft Flight Simulator 2004: A Century of Flight Software Development Kits. Welcome to the Software Development Kit (SDK) series for Flight Simulator 2004: A Century of Flight. The Flight Simulator team is publishing this reference for developers and enthusiasts who want to customize and c...

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Microsoft Flight Simulator 2004: A Century of Flight Software Development Kits. Welcome to the Software Development Kit (SDK) series for Flight Simulator 2004: A Century of Flight. The Flight Simulator team is publishing this reference for developers and enthusiasts who want to customize and create add-ons for Flight Simulator 2004. We're publishing the SDK in installments, which will roll out over the next several weeks. This package includes all of the SDK bundles, including the following:

Autogen SDK

Through the use of automatically generated (autogen) scenery, Microsoft Flight Simulator 2004 displays buildings and vegetation throughout the simulated world. Flight Simulator 2004 creates and displays this scenery at runtime using one of two methods: a lookup table or handcrafted texture annotations that specify footprints for the objects. To define the appearance of both the buildings and vegetation that are generated, autogen uses texture sheets.

The Autogen Annotation tool enables you to edit or create annotation files for both generic and unique terrain textures. This tool opens .bmp files and allows you to place footprints for objects on the image file and to set certain properties for those footprints. Autogen then uses the annotation files to display 3-D objects (buildings and vegetation). No prior programming experience is needed to use this tool.

autogen_sdk_setup.exe (5.4MB)

Netpipes SDK

PLEASE NOTE: The Netpipes functionality has not changed from Flight Simulator 2002 -- therefore, the information and content contained in the Flight Simulator 2004 Netpipes SDK is identical to the Flight Simulator 2002 Netpipes SDK.

Terrain SDK

The Terrain SDK explains how to add new line and polygonal data such as roads, rivers, coastlines and lakes to the Flight Simulator 2004 terrain system.

This SDK also explains how to add custom terrain to the Flight Simulator 2004 environment. It covers importing land class and DEM (Digital Elevation Model) data and how to texture the data by replacing standard land-class based textures or by importing aerial or satellite photos.


terrain_sdk_setup.exe (11MB)

Weather Themes SDK

Weather themes are new to the latest version of the product and a simple way for users to experience visually appealing and challenging simulated weather. This SDK describes how to create and distribute weather themes for Microsoft Flight Simulator 2004: A Century of Flight using a special theme creation tool.

weather_theme_sdk_setup.exe ( 3.7MB)

Panels and Gauges SDK

The Panels and Gauges SDK for Microsoft Flight Simulator 2004 provides the information you need to create new gauges and panels for aircraft in Flight Simulator 2004. This SDK includes the following:

Traffic information systems such as traffic collision and avoidance systems (TCAS) and mode S transponders display information and alerts about to nearby air traffic that may pose a collision hazard. The Panels SDK also describes how to query for air traffic information from within a panel gauge to allow the simulation of TCAS, mode S transponders, or other traffic information systems in Flight Simulator.

IMPORTANT: The information included in this document is intended as a guide for programmers. It assumes that you are familiar with aviation terminology and technology, that you have an understanding of the C programming language, and you are familiar with the XML markup language.

panels_sdk_setup.exe (1.6MB)

Traffic Toolbox SDK

The Traffic Toolbox is a set of tools and utilities that allow you to view and customize the AI (“artificial intelligence” or computer-controlled) aircraft traffic in Flight Simulator. The tools in the toolbox include:

· Traffic Database Builder: Customize the types of aircraft and routes flown by AI pilots.
· Traffic Settings: Change the settings of the AI traffic system.
· Traffic Explorer: View a list of all nearby AI aircraft.
· Traffic Map: See the positions of AI aircraft on a map.
· Dump Airport List: Update the airport list used by the Traffic · · Database Builder.


· eula.rtf
· AircraftTypes.csv
· Airports.dat
· CustomAircraftTypes.csv
· CustomAirports.dat
· CustomRoutes.dat
· TrafficDatabaseBuilder.doc
· TrafficDatabaseBuilder.exe
· TrafficToolbox.dll
· TrafficToolbox.doc

traffictoolbox_sdk_setup.exe (1.5MB)


SDK ABL or "Adventure Basic Language," is a scripting language used by several Microsoft games, including Flight Simulator 2004. It provides developers of adventures and lessons access to and control of aircraft and game parameters without requiring extensive programming knowledge.


· eula.rtf
· ablguide.doc
· outstanding.wav
· sample.abl
· sample.flt

fs2004_sdk_abl_setup.exe (611KB)

Aircraft Container SDK

The Aircraft Container system organizes Flight Simulator 2004 aircraft files and attributes so that most aircraft-related files are located close together. This logical and consistent organization makes the files easy to customize. This SDK describes the Aircraft Container system in detail, explaining how the different files work together. It provides information on how to modify and share components among existing aircraft. It does not explain how to create new aircraft.


· eula.rtf
· AircraftContainerSDKFS2004.doc

fs2004_sdk_aircraft_container_setup.exe (609KB)

Note: The updated document adds parameters for "atc_flight_number=", "atc_airline=", and "atc_heavy=" in the [fltsim.x] section.

ATC Voicepack SDK

The ATC Voicepack SDK describes the tools used to design and build air traffic control voicepacks for Microsoft Flight Simulator 2004. The term "voicepack" refers to a compressed file (.gvp file) that contains all of the content (audio and text) required by the ATC system. The SDK includes the information you need to create a fully functional voicepack for Flight Simulator 2004. To create new voicepacks, you should understand how to record, edit, and insert markers in .wav files.


· eula.rtf
· ASOSPhrases.txt
· ATCPhrases.txt
· ATC_Voicepack_SDK.rtf
· MFC71.dll
· msvcp71.dll
· msvcr71.dll
· msxml4.dll
· Voicepack Configuration.xml
· Voicepack Simple.xml
· VPEdit.exe
· PilotAwav wavefiles

fs2004_sdk_atc_voicepack_setup.exe (17.9MB)


The Aircraft Editor (FSEdit) tool enables you to:
· Modify, add, or delete aircraft.
· Add, delete, or change aircraft panels, including gauges, instruments, and radios.
· Change, play, or remove sound files.
· Modify aircraft textures.
· Alter flight dynamics.

To use this editor, you need basic knowledge of aircraft and aerodynamic terms and concepts. You may also need a Pilot's Operating Handbook (POH) or similar reference material for the aircraft you want to modify, or you can use the default values provided by the editor.

This editor does not provide a visual model for your aircraft. To create a visual model, you must create a new 3-D model or edit an existing visual model with the gmax tool created by discreet and provided in Microsoft Flight Simulator 2004.

Note to Japanese Customers: A Japanese version of FSEdit, which lets you edit text using a Japanese font, is also available. (File list is below.)


· eula.rtf
· FSEdit.exe
· FSEdit.exp
· FSEdit.lib
· FSEditSDKFS2004.doc

fs2004_sdk_fsedit_setup.exe (1.3MB)

Filelist for Japanfsedit:

· FSEdit.exe
· FSEdit.exp
· fsedit.hlp
· FSEdit.lib
· eula.rtf

fs2004_sdk_fsedit_japan_setup.exe (1.1MB)

Multiplayer and Flight Instructor SDK

Flight Simulator 2004 provides support for peer-to-peer multiplayer flying. By leveraging Microsoft® DirectPlay® technology, Flight Simulator enables multiple users to share the same airspace through a connection with a modem, a Local Area Network (LAN), or the Internet. It's relatively easy for end users to connect with others using this technology.

This SDK is aimed at developers who want to build add-on products for Flight Simulator specifically designed to take advantage of its multiplayer capabilities. For example, you could use this information to create an add-on application that holds races between multiple players on the Internet or on a local area network (LAN).


· eula.rtf
· Multiplayer_and_Flight_Instructor_SDK.doc

fs2004_sdk_multiplayer_setup.exe (524KB)

Make Model SDK

MakeMDL (MakeMDL.exe) is a program that converts 3-D models you create with modeling tools, such as gmax (a 3-D modeling tool from discreet included with Flight Simulator 2004), into scenery or aircraft objects that work with Microsoft® Flight Simulator 2004. This SDK explains how to use MakeMDL and provides several tables that list the part names you can use to make 3-D models compatible with Flight Simulator 2004.


· eula.rtf
· GMax Materials.doc
· makemdl.cfg
· MakeMDL.doc
· makemdl.exe

makemdl_sdk_setup.exe (1.1MB)


The BGLComp SDK describes the latest version of the BGL scenery language compiler.


· eula.rtf
· readme.txt
· FS2004BGLCompSDK.doc
· bglcomp.exe
· bglcomp.xsd
· Generic Building Textures.xls
· LibraryObjects.xls
· Chelan.xml
· MortonWa.xml

fs2004_sdk_bglcomp2_setup.exe (857KB)

gmax Gamepack SDK

Microsoft® Flight Simulator 2004 includes gmax, a 3D modeling tool from discreet. The gmax SDK contains four separate SDKs, bundled together in one download and install. When you install the gmax gamepack SDK, you will get the following tools and documentation:


The Attach Tool included in this SDK is a MAXScript plugin that works in gmax and allows you to attach effects and other gmax objects to your 3D model. It also allows you to create landable platforms, remove crash boxes from parts of your model and attach beacons or other sim driven objects to your model.


The Animation documentation explains how to add scenery animation that you’ve created in 3ds max or gmax™ to Microsoft® Flight Simulator 2004. To use this SDK, you should be familiar with animation in gmax or 3ds max, plus understand the general concepts associated with creating and editing scenery objects in Flight Simulator.


Microsoft® Flight Simulator 2004 has a highly updated weather system including the use of realistic, volumetric clouds. These clouds were created using a special MAXScript tool in 3ds max that allows a user to define a cloud volume with boxes, which is then filled with cloud sprites. The gmax_CloudTool will document that MAXScript and show you how to use the Cloud Tool in gmax. Also, it also documents the cloud binary format for those that wish to create their own tools.


The gmax_Aircraft Creation documentation describes a set of best practices to follow when using gmax to build aircraft for use in Flight Simulator. You can create a model of an aircraft, apply textures and animations to that model, and then export the model to the MakeMDL program, which creates the format for use in the product.


The gmax_Scenery Tutorial describes how to use gmax to create a model of a building, applying textures to that model, and then exporting the model to the MakeMDL program that places the model in Flight Simulator at the coordinates you specify.


Before downloading the gmax Gamepack SDK, make sure you have already installed gmax (included with Flight Simulator 2004: A Century of Flight on disc 1 in extrasGmax).


If you’ve already installed the Flight Simulator 2002 gmax SDK, make sure to read the document “Installing the FS2004 Gmax SDK over the FS2002 Gmax SDK” immediately after running setup. This document describes the procedures you must follow in order to run the FS2004 Gmax SDK on a machine that already has the FS2002 Gmax SDK installed.


· EULA.rtf
· FS2004.lnk
· gmax.ini
· plugin.ini
· Installing the FS2004 Gmax SDK over the FS2002 Gmax SDK.rtf
· docs
◦ Animation.doc
◦ AttachTool.doc
◦ CloudToolGmax.doc
◦ gmaxAircraftCreation.doc
◦ gmaxSceneryTutorial.doc
◦ FS2002.lnk
◦ gmax.ini
◦ plugin.ini
◦ aircraft.cfg
◦ CloudArtFilesAllOne.xml
◦ fx_ChimneySmoke.fx
◦ fx_VentSteam.fx
◦ FSModelExp.dle
◦ makemdl.exe
◦ AnimHouse.gmax
◦ CumulusCongestus48-1.gmax
◦ Curtiss_Jenny.gmax
◦ EffectHouse.gmax
. exture
◦ cumulus01.tga
◦ Curtiss_Jenny_C_1.tga Curtiss_Jenny_C_2.tga
◦ Curtiss_Jenny_T.tga
◦ decals.tga
◦ decal_nnumber.bmp
◦ EffectHouse.bmp
◦ EffectHouse_lm.bmp
◦ House.bmp
◦ House_LM.bmp
◦ Prop_Jenny.tga
◦ VCRainMoving0000.tga
◦ VCRainStopped0000.tga
◦ _Panel_Jenny_1.tga
◦ _Panel_Jenny_2.tga
· ools
◦ imagetool.exe

fs2004_sdk_gmax_setup.exe (15.5MB)

Special Effects SDK

The Flight Simulator 2004 special effects system places emitter points in the Microsoft Flight Simulator world, which then spew forth particles. These particles can have rules of physics applied selectively and creatively to approximate a variety of real-world effects--from wakes on pontoons to fireworks above Las Vegas. This particle-based effects system has been improved from the previous version, especially with the introduction of the "controller effect." A controller is an effect that can emit other effects, creating a great degree of subtlety and variety. This SDK describes the special effects file format, the .fx files. These files are used by the simulator to portray various effects, playing a programmed sequence of particle emission, rather like a score of music.


· eula.rtf
· Effects Parameters.txt
· FS2004 Effects.doc
· How to Place Effects in Flight Simulator.doc
· Effects_placement
◦ ForestFire.XML
· Special_Effects_samples
◦ fx_ForestFire.fx
· READ ME.txt

fs2004_sdk_special_effects_setup.exe (693KB)

Cabdir SDK

If you create add-ons for Flight Simulator, you can use the Cabdir utility (cabdir.exe) to combine all the folders and files in a directory into a single .cab file (similar to a .zip file), simplifying the process of distributing files to end-users, whether they download the file from a Web site or install it from a CD or floppy disk. You can use a setup utility to extract and install the files for end users or explain that they can manually view and copy files in the .cab file.


· eula.rtf
· cabdir.doc
· cabdir.exe

cabdir_sdk_setup.exe (559KB)

Although portions of the SDK may prove useful to Flight Simulator enthusiasts with little or no programming experience, keep in mind that many parts of the SDK assume familiarity with XML, the C programming language, and game development.

Please note: The information in the SDKs is NOT supported by Microsoft Product Support.

The archive has 38 files and directories contained within it.

File Contents

This list displays the first 500 files in the package. If the package has more, you will need to download it to view them.

Filename/Directory File Date File Size
FS2004 SDK Pack12.08.090 B
aircraft_container_setup.exe12.08.09605.92 kB
__MACOSX12.08.090 B
FS2004 SDK Pack12.08.090 B
autogen_sdk_setup.exe12.08.095.31 MB
cabdir_sdk_setup.exe12.08.09558.44 kB
fs2004_sdk_abl_setup.exe12.08.09610.62 kB
fs2004_sdk_atc_voicepack_setup.exe12.08.0917.53 MB
fs2004_sdk_bglcomp2_setup.exe12.08.09856.94 kB
fs2004_sdk_fsedit_japan_setup.exe12.08.091.13 MB
fs2004_sdk_fsedit_setup.exe12.08.091.31 MB
fs2004_sdk_gmax_setup.exe12.08.0915.17 MB
fs2004_sdk_multiplayer_setup.exe12.08.09523.18 kB
fs2004_sdk_special_effects_setup.exe12.08.09692.94 kB
makemdl_sdk_setup.exe12.08.091.12 MB
panels_sdk_setup.exe12.08.091.62 MB
terrain_sdk_setup.exe12.08.0910.56 MB
traffictoolbox_sdk_setup.exe12.08.091.44 MB
weather_theme_sdk_setup.exe12.08.093.10 MB
flyawaysimulation.txt10.29.13959 B
Go to Fly Away Simulation.url01.22.1652 B


This mod really brings home the importance of having quality all across the board, as it puts together a wealth of excellent SDK packages into the one place. Each mod gives you something new to make the autogen system look better than ever – for FS2004 users who are feeling the pinch of the limited graphical detail, this is the perfect addition to have.

No image available.

I was hugely impressed at the massive changes that are introduced with this SDK package, giving me everything that I was hoping to see including all of the SDK bundles and packages carrying their specific improvements.

I had used each of these SDK sets before previously so it was not a huge surprise to me what they introduced; it was more impressive to see them all combined together as one. It makes a massive difference to the performance of the simulator as well as the detail, managing to find a way to give you more without reducing performance too much.

Best of all, it’s a piece of cake to use. It requires no real knowledge of what you are doing and how you will manage it, instead giving you access to an easy to manage system that includes everything you’ll need. From adding in new polygonal data like roads and coastlines, this also shows you how to add in custom terrain and various other improvement factors.

More importantly, you get access to various add-on packages that allow you to make multiple changes. For example, with the Traffic Toolbox that lets you customize aircraft types, the AI traffic systems, aircraft positions and even airport listings to make sure it’s all up to the highest standard that is possible.

Another major factor that comes from here is the weather themes and the panels & gauges SDK. All of these work in tandem to make a setting that makes sure you have aircraft that look authentic and busy.

If you want to get into the creative side of things and start editing, changing and improving the world around you in FS2004 then this is the best place to start with. It really does include everything that you could need to do this with the minimal of fuss.

It also includes major features such as the ATC voice-pack and the aircraft container SDK sets. All of these sets can be used to help you make life easier than ever before. It greatly reduces the amount of time you will spend trying to understand how to best input a whole litany of changes into your simulator.

Best of all, though, this includes an easy to manage multiplayer and instructor SDK pack which lets you provide peer-to-peer flight in your plans. This makes it so much easier to have the world fly in the way that you had wanted in the first place, making it much easier to buy into the image of the world you wanted to set.

That’s not all either; this place manages to fit in an incredible array of features and additions that you will absolutely love.

Although I’m not a major expert in flight command or change myself, I would hugely recommend this for all budding editors.

Adam McEnroe

Adam McEnroe

Adam McEnroe is a flight sim enthusiast who has been simming since the days of FS95. Adam writes all of the download section editorials after testing each of the files. Adam has extensive knowledge using various flight simulator packages and thoroughly tests the files before writing about them. Adam also like to fly real-world aircraft in his spare time and is training for his PPL.

Should you wish, you can contact Adam via email at

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Installation Instructions

Most of the freeware add-on aircraft and scenery packages in our file library come with easy installation instructions which you can read above in the file description. For further installation help, please see our Flight School for our full range of tutorials or view the README file contained within the download. If in doubt, you may also ask a question or view existing answers in our dedicated Q&A forum.


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