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Installing PS1 with Win XP (and later)
(text updated in 2007)

How to install PS1 under Windows XP
(text updated in 2002)

Many of you know Thorbjørn Olsson‘s installation guide for PS1/WinXP users already. He’s been maintaining a private web site on this subject, but a while later he decided to remove his entire site. Now, thanks to his friendly support, he has given permission to re-release his documents here on this page.

His installation guide has been of great help to both WinXP users as well as Win2000 users. Using the freeware program “VDMS”, PS1.3 may run even better than under Win95, 98, ME -- including continuous engine sound, analog or USB joysticks, and add-ons like Broker, Squawkbox747, Visual744, SimWX etc.

Check also these two links for additional help on joystick issues:
CH Products Guide for PS1 (from Robin Kraak)
General tips on VDMS and PS1 (from Peter Clark)


1. Preparation
2. Making a shortcut to PS13.EXE
3. Configuration files
4. Installing the VDMS joystick module
5. Trouble shooting

 1. Preparation

First, download the program “VDMSound”.

Then execute the downloaded file "VDMSound-2.0.4-WinNT-i386.msi". This will install VDMSound. The default folder is "C:\Program Files\VDMSound". This guide will assume you installed it in the default folder. If you have installed it in another folder, just replace any references in this text accordingly.

To keep your old PS13 installation as a backup, install PS13 once again in another folder, or just copy your existing PS13 folder on your hard disk to another, separate PS13 folder. If you use just a copy of your existing PS13 folder, you have to delete the file 747PS13.CFG in your new PS13 folder (default C:\PS13). This will delete the old PS13 settings for sound and joystick, which may cause PS13 to hang during start-up. Don’t worry, PS13 will automatically create a new 747PS13.CFG file.

The actual order of these first steps is not important.


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 2. Making a shortcut to PS13.EXE

Now create a shortcut to PS13.EXE anywhere you like, e.g. on your desktop. Right-click the new shortcut and select properties. Your settings should look as follows:

a) “General” tab: Leave as is.

b) “Program” tab: See picture below.

c) “Font” tab: Bitmap only.

d) “Memory” tab: See picture below.

e) “Screen” tab: See picture below.

f) “Misc” tab: See picture below.

g) “Compatibility” tab: Uncheck all (do not use compatibility).

I previously noted that VDMSRun.bat should be placed in "Batch file" on the “Program” tab. This is not necessary when modifying the configuration files (see the next step). Now you may ask if it wouldn't be easier not to modify the configuration files and just use the VDMSRun.bat. The answer is no, because some of the prescribed changes, that doesn't relate to VDMSound, are not in the default configuration files (such as emm=RAM).

However, if you don’t want VDMSound to run every time you start a DOS program, you may exclude "dosdrv.exe /i:VDMS.INI" and "set BLASTER=A220 I7 D1 H5 P330 T6" from the AUTOEXEC.NT and still put VDMSRun.bat in the "Batch file" path (in the example below the default path "C:\Program Files\VDMSound\VDMSRun.bat").

Click here to download a collection of icons.


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 3. Configuration files

Go to the Windows subfolder “System32” and make a backup copy of the files AUTOEXEC.NT and CONFIG.NT (default path to both files c:\windows\system32). Open the original files with Notepad and edit the files to look like this:

You may copy and paste from below for easy editing:


dos=high, umb


set classpath=
set include=
set lib=
set msdevdir=
lh %SystemRoot%\system32\dosx.exe
dosdrv.exe /i:VDMS.INI
set BLASTER=A220 I7 D1 H5 P330 T6


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4. Installing the VDMS joystick module

Download the joystick module files. Unzip all files into your VDMSound folder (default "C:\Program Files\VDMSound"). Answer yes to overwrite.

Open the file VDMS.INI in the VDMSound folder with Notepad. The last line should look as follows:

mapFile = ; allows you to pick from various joystick configurations

I changed this entry to for my Microsoft Sidewinder Force Feedback joystick. Open the files joy1, joy2 and in Notepad to see which file may suit your joystick best.

I had to reverse the entries, because my rudder was throttle and throttle was rudder. The original lines looked like this:

analog.3 = A.analog.Z
analog.4 = A.analog.R

I simply replaced Z by R, and R by Z. See picture below.

From here I booted up PS13 and calibrated the joystick as described on page 19 in the PS13 manual. Sometimes, when PS13 has just been started, my elevator axis may have the “OFF” flag on the blue calibration page in the FMC. Reloading the calibration file solves this (see also “Trouble shooting” section below). So please do remember to check you controls before taking off :-)


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5. Trouble shooting

As soon as the PS1 setup screen asks me "Throttle is hardware controlled?”, the sim hangs and I have to alt-tab back to Windows and close PS13.


This problem may occur on some systems for unknown reasons. There are two possible solutions: Answer NO to the “Throttle” question and re-enable the joystick in the blue FMC pages as explained in the PS13 manual page 19.

If this does not work, you have to physically disconnect your joystick from your PC. Run PS13 setup again and answer NO to "Throttle is hardware controlled". Close PS13, reconnect your joystick. Then start PS13 as usual (no setup screen) and enable the joystick in the FMC.


PS13 hangs during program start-up or when I try accessing the blue “Calibrate Throttle” page in the FMC.


Your file may be configured incorrectly. Perhaps you have, for example, only a TWO-axis joystick (or a yoke with the pedals disconnected) and you use a file with FOUR axes. Unfortunately, there are several possible configurations and since they differ from joystick to joystick, it is not possible to give a definitive answer here. The best advice is to experiment with the different options in the file.
One user reported he fixed the problem by exchanging the X axis (throttle) in the fourth analog entry with the third entry.
Otherwise you may try asking in the Support Forum if anyone else has got a similar joystick like yours and has found a good configuration for it.


Not all of my joystick buttons work in PS13.


First, your joystick buttons must work in the "Game Controllers" of the Windows control panel. If they don’t, then VDMS will not be able to find the buttons. This problem is likely to appear if there are no suitable XP drivers for your joystick (as far as I am aware, CH products have not made XP drivers for all their yokes, yet). You can try fixing the problem by adding a custom controller. Secondly, you have to add the correct amount of buttons in the file.


Shouldn’t the “SET BLASTER=A220 I7 D1 H5 P330 T6” command specify the actual IRQ of my soundcard?


No, that shouldn’t be necessary since it is a specified "virtual" device (namely VDMS sound). Important is that the settings in the VDMS.ini and in the config files are the same. If you use the default settings and the settings specified in this installation guide, you shouldn’t have any problems.


Will USB joysticks work in PS13?


Yes! That is one of the great side effects of using VDMSound. Please note that VDMS runs only on Windows NT, 2000 and XP. VDMS can not solve USB problems if you use Windows 98 or ME.


I am getting a runtime error 005.


There are two possible reasons for this error.

1) If PS13 files are write protected and the sim wants to overwrite such files during runtime (e.g. 7 minute auto backup situations), a file write error 005 will occur. Such write protections may be activated when the PS13 files have been copied from an old Windows 98 partition or from a backup CD.

Solution: Open your Windows Explorer and right-click on the PS13 folder (default "C:\PS13"). Select "Properties", uncheck "read-only" and click "OK". A dialog box will appear. Check the field "Apply changes to this folder, subfolders and files" and click "OK" again.

2) If you use the NT File System (NTFS) for your disks, the last-modified time stamps of all files on your hard disk will be changed on the daylight savings change over (see Microsoft Knowledgebase Q129574 for further info). This also applies to CD-ROMs. One particular file is sensitive to changes in its timestamp. Check if the file 747HUMAN.FAC has the correct timestamp, modified: 19. November 1999, 12:00:00. If it’s incorrect, you have to replace it with a backup. Make a backup by reinstalling PS13 to another directory and move the file manually. Moving the file directly form the CD does not work. If the above sounds too complicated, just re-install PS13.


All joystick axes have the “OFF” flag on the blue joystick calibration page.


This problem may occur on some systems for unknown reasons. Solution: Press the RELOAD key on the FMC in line 6/right (see also page 19 in the PS13 manual). This will reload the joystick settings stored in the file 747PS13.CFG.


From time to time, I notice a short time acceleration in PS13, particularly after task switching or when a screen saver has been activated.


Avoid task switching as much as possible and disable screen saver in the "Misc" tab in “Properties” of the PS13 shortcut (see “Making a shortcut”). When the acceleration occurs, hit the ESC key twice to open and close the instructor’s page for a second (or try the “P” key twice for a quick pause/unpause).


At times, I notice small pitch modulations in the sound (e.g. the voice of the first officer may be deeper or higher).


This may happen in VDMS because the PS13 sound files are recorded at different sample rates. VDMS performs the original sample rate only when the sample rate of the next sound file deviates more than 10% from the previously played sample rate.


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