The Viva Multiplayer Server is an FSHost server. FSHost is a freeware server program for Microsoft Flight Simulator 2002 and 2004. Users of either sim can fly together on the server. Hopefully any questions you may have will be answered here, if not be sure to either email Bob – firstname.lastname@example.org or make a post on the forum in the multiplayer section.
Viva Multiplayer Server Guide
The Viva Multiplayer server is great for both VFR and IFR flying. There aren’t any rules on how to fly here, you can do aerobatics, fly 50 feet AGL through the mountain passes, or you can do a full IFR flight with and SID and STAR. Just please don’t use offensive language in the chat or harass other players such as by flying into them to make them crash. (BTW it’s recommended you turn off aircraft collisions anyways, since a crash can happen when the other aircraft is 50 feet or more away, so if you want to fly in formation be sure to disable collisions)
Logging on to the Viva multiplayer server is very easy. Start up Microsoft Flight Simulator, click on the multiplayer menu, and log onto the Viva server via the Viva IP address which is available on the front page of the Viva website, or via the Viva Spy program. For more information on how to use the Flight Simulator Multiplayer windows, refer to the excellent learning center within FS. Please be aware the IP address for the server may change from time to time.
Once you are logged on a chat window will appear with a welcome message. Congratulations you are now logged on!
You absolutely MUST lock your frame rates to 25 fps or lower when flying on the Viva server. Flight Simulator sends packets over the network at the same rate as your frame rates, so if you get higher frame rates, which can jump to over 100 fps when switching view sometimes, it will flood the server and cause your connection as well as that of others to disconnect. Please lock the frame rates when flying on the Viva server.
Important Note! Please read before logging on to the server!
Some users have been reporting that while they can connect and fly on the server while they are alone on it, once another user logs on they get disconnected. It appears this is related to routers, and specifically uPnP. It appears that you must disable uPnP to prevent getting disconnected if you are running behind a router. I do not know what consequences this will have for other programs though, and I do not have a router myself so I will be unable to help you with this. You can get more information on enabling and disabling uPnP here http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/using/windowsmessenger/expert/dlinkdi604.mspx (This is for a specific router so you may have to search for information specific to your hardware).
(Thanks Brian and Dan for information on this!)
Viva Spy is a small program Ken wrote that will show you when people are flying on the Viva server. It runs in your system tray, right beside the clock on the windows taskbar and a pop up balloon will appear to notify you when users have logged on. You can download it here, a manual is included
Users with FSNavigator can log FSnav onto the server to show where others are flying right on the FSnav map. Open FS and FSNavigator, put FS in windowed mode (press alt enter) and click on Settings->Multiplayer. Type the Viva address into the IP address section and click join. Please be aware that this will work for some users, and not for others. It will not work for myself and often causes FS to crash if I try. I have no idea why that is, but unfortunately if seems that if it works it works, if it doesn’t it won’t.
Using FSNavigator with the Viva Server
FSHost has several “commands” that you can enter to receive information on the players around you. To use these commands simply open the FS window and type them in and press enter. The results will appear in the chat window. Here are some basic commands and their descriptions.
?fp - Displays help about how to file a Flight Plan.
?help - Displays help about some of the available commands.
?hophelp - Displays help about some of the Hop List chat commands available.
?info - Displays whatever was entered for the Session Comments. You can set the Comments in the Options / Session window.
?planes - Displays a list of players and which aircraft they're currently flying.
?start - Displays help for new players connecting to an IP game for the first time.
?where - Displays a list of players and which airport ID (i.e. KLAX) they're nearest to.
(courtesy of the FSHost help page)
A hoplist is a list of airports that users fly in sequential order on the multiplayer server. To use it you simply log on to the server and type “?hop” in the chat window, and instructions will appear indicating which airport to start at. Then you type “?hop” again and you will be given instructions on which airport to fly to next, including heading and distance information.
You do not need to fly the entire hoplist at once. The server will remember the last hop you flew the next time you log on. Just make sure you use the same call sign when you log on again as this is how the server remembers you. When you are on the server you can type “?hophelp” for more hoplist commands.
Information on the latest hoplist is available on the forum in the multiplayer section.
Viva uses a free program called “Ventrilo” for voice communications among pilots flying on the server. If you don’t have a microphone it is still recommended that you get the program so you can hear the other pilots talking and then just respond to them by chat. Typing can be a bit difficult while flying so it is a good idea to get a headset if you can. You can download Ventrilo here. http://www.ventrilo.com.
To connect to the Viva Ventrilo server, use the Viva server IP (available on the website’s front page) and select port 3487 with no password.
For more information on FSHost servers, you can check out the FS Host website here. http://www.chocolatesoftware.com/fshost/