Getting started - pilot guide

Some basic information for new pilots can be found below.

Connecting to the Network

The following section will show you how to install the required software and connect to the network for your first online flight. We do recommend that you read the manual that comes with IvAp as this will explain all its features, something which this guide does not do.

IvAp

The first thing you need to do is download our pilot client, IvAp, which will allow you to connect to the network. This can be downloaded from the software development pages (http://www.ivao.aero/softdev).

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FS2002/2004 users should download “IvAp (for FS2002 and FS2004
FSX users should download “IvAp V2 Public Beta” (If you already have Teamspeak installed, download the “without Teamspeak” version).

Once you have downloaded the program, you should run the executable file and install the program.

When it has been installed, you should visit the configuration settings (Start Menu --> All Programs --> IVAO --> IvAp – IVAO Virtual Pilot Client --> IvAp – Configuration) and set the required options. (Check the IvAp manual for a detailed description on each of the settings).

MTL

FSX Users – The MTL package is included in the IvAp download and will automatically install itself when installing IvAp.

FS2002/2004 users – You need to download the MTL Installer from the software development pages.

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MTL (Multiplayer Traffic Library) will enable you to “see” other aircraft around you by installing hundreds of aircraft and their liveries into your flight simulator.

Once you have downloaded the MTL installer, you should run it from you start menu (All Programs --> IVAO --> IvAp – IVAO Virtual Pilot Client --> MTL Installer)

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Press the green “Full Install” button to install all the MTL aircraft. Alternatively, you can select the MTL you wish to install from the list.

If you are installing all the MTL, there are over 3000 models to download so this may take some time. Once the aircraft have been downloaded, an MS DOS window will open – do not close this window. Allow it to complete its tasks.

You may notice that Flight Sim takes long to load up due to the amount of MTL installed. You can reduce this time by hiding the MTL. This can be done by visiting Start Menu --> All Programs --> IVAO --> IvAp – IVAO Virtual Pilot Client --> MTL Hide Aircraft. The following program may take a number of minutes to complete so even if it looks like your PC isn’t doing anything, it is. Eventually, the MS DOS window will open up again.

Teamspeak

We use the Teamspeak program for voice communication. (Text communication is permitted but voice is preferred). Teamspeak can be downloaded from the Teamspeak website (http://www.goteamspeak.com). Please note - TS2 is the only version that will work on the IVAO Network. TS3 will NOT work.

Once you have installed and have run Teamspeak, there are some settings you must change. Open Settings --> Sound Input/Output Settings

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You should select the “Push to talk” method and select a key by pressing “Set”. Here you can see that Mouse btn 2 (mouse scroll wheel) has been selected as the push to talk key. Now, every time you want to transmit to the controller on the frequency, you must first press the push to talk key, speak and then let go of the push to talk key. Avoid using the “Voice Activation” method as this opens your microphone whenever noise is picked up so background noise and even you breathing, may set it off. You could then be transmitting over the channel without realising it.

 

First Connection

The following steps are based on FS2004. FS2002 and FSX users should still be able to follow the guide.

Load Flightsim and create a flight.

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You will notice that a new menu has appeared in the flight sim task bar called “IVAO”. Select this menu and then press “Start IvAp”. The IvAp program will now load and you will see an icon made up of green and red dots load in your taskbar, near to your PC’s clock.

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You may see various things loading in flight sim (IvAp program/multiplayer connection), just leave these to complete what they need to do. When you see 3 green dots and 1 red dot, like in the image above, the program has finished loading.

You will now see the IvAp window in the top right hand corner of your Flight Sim.

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To connect, press the “CONN” button. You will then be presented with a new window.

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Enter the details:

  • Callsign (The callsign of your aircraft, this could be your aircraft registration or flight number for example).
  • Real Name (Your full name that you registered with IVAO)
  • VID (Your IVAO VID that was assigned to you when you joined)
  • Base Airport (An airport close to where you live, your VA base, or any airport you would class as your “base airport”).
  • Password (The NETWORK password you were assigned when you joined IVAO).
  • Aircraft Type (The type of aircraft you are flying).
  • MTL Model (The aircraft and livery you want other people to see you as).
  • Server (The server you are connecting to – for best performance, use the one auto selected)
  • Port (Leave this box as it is)
  • If you can transmit and receive on voice, select that option. If you can receive voice but cant transmit voice, select that option. If you are text only, select no voice

When all of the above details are correct, press the “Connect” button.

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When you have successfully connected, you will receive a welcome message in the IvAp dialog box and all the dots in your taskbar will have turned green.

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Some important things to do before connecting to the network:

  • Make sure that when you are connected, your aircraft is parked at a gate. Do not connect on the runway. When choosing your airfield within the Flight Sim menus, it automatically places you on the active runway so ensure that you have selected a gate in the appropriate drop down menu.
  • Do not use the slew option in flight sim to slew around the airport once you are connected. If you have to change gates just after you connected, use the options within flight sim to load your aircraft at a new gate.
  • If connecting with an airline callsign, you must use the airlines ICAO code followed by the flight number, i.e. BAW123 not BA123.

Flight Planning

The airspace over the United Kingdom is very compact and gets very congested. In order for aircraft to operate safely in the skies, a large number of “motorways” in the sky have been created called Airways and Upper Air Routes. It is important that aircraft follow these “motorways” as much as possible.

There are many different sources for routes in and around the UK. The best place to get routes is from the IVAO Route Database (http://www.ivao.aero/db/route). The routes found in this database are the routings that real aircraft follow through the air. Routes can also be found at the external website, routefinder (http://rfinder.asalink.net/free/)

You will need to have enroute and aerodrome charts at your disposal – Controllers use these charts and will expect you to have them. Charts for the UK can be found within the UK AIS (http://www.ais.org.uk/aes/pubs/aip/html/ukaip.htm - login and password = ivaouk).

ATC Interaction

The purpose of IVAO is to fly online with virtual Air Traffic Controllers guiding you through the skies. You should therefore have an understanding of how to communicate with controllers. The following page (http://ivao.co.uk/pilot/guidelines) will give you an idea of how to communicate for a VFR and IFR flight.

The primary form of communication with ATC is voice however, text communication may be used. When communicating via voice, there are some important things you should remember:

  • When a controller or another pilot transmits on the frequency, wait until the other station has acknowledged and replied to the transmission before you transmit something.
  • When you first connect to a new frequency wait for a few seconds before transmitting. You may inadvertently interrupt a conversation.

Unicom

If there is no ATC online in the area where you are flying, you should tune to the Unicom frequency of 122.800 (a text only frequency) and broadcast your intentions. When flying on Unicom, keep a good look out for other traffic that may be operating in your area.

Unicom is not to be used as a chat channel – It should be used for operational chat only. You should use the private message feature within IvAp to chat to people.

When you first load flight sim, the default frequency is 122.950. If there is no ATC at your departure aerodrome, please remember to first of all tune to Unicom 122.800 or you may transmit your intentions on the wrong frequency.

Training

If you would like to further your understanding with regards to online flying, you may find it beneficial to request a training session from our training department. This can be done via the training section of our website (http://www.ivao.co.uk/training)

Further Information

You may find our division forum incredibly helpful. You can use it to ask any questions or post about any problems you are having. There are lots of people willing and able to help you make the most out of your online flying experience.

And Finally…

Have fun! This is an incredibly addictive hobby – As soon as you start flying online, you will never go back to offline flying and will wonder why you didn’t do it sooner.


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