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Author Topic: Outdated (Old NAM FAQ)  (Read 44696 times)

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Online Tarkus

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Outdated (Old NAM FAQ)
« on: June 26, 2008, 03:31:29 PM »

Last Updated 1/11/2010
Note:  This list is continually undergoing additions and construction.

Here, you will find answers to some frequently asked questions regarding the NAM, including common technical support issues.  If your question is not answered here, please ask the NAM Issues Thread.


Common Technical Support Issues


1. Why am I getting a red arrow, preventing me from placing certain puzzle pieces, like Avenue Roundabouts or RHW pieces?

2. What is the correct order for installing the NAM and its Plugins?

3. After installing the latest NAM, why do my Railroads, Light Rail and Monorail no longer work?

4. Why is my game crashing to desktop after placing puzzle pieces?

5. What is with all the new Traffic Plugin options?

6. After installing the latest NAM, why are there missing textures at my Road intersections?

7. What is BSC Cleanitol?

8. Should I DatPack the NAM?

General Questions

9. When is the next NAM coming out?

10. What is NAM Essentials?
________________________________________
For more questions specific to the SAM (Street Addon Mod), RHW (Rural Highway Mod), HSR (High Speed Rail), and NWM (Network Widening Mod), please see the respective threads in the NAM Creations subforum.

For tutorials on using NAM items, and for modding information, please see the NAM How-to and Tutorials section.

Also, read the Readme documentation that comes with the modifications.  That documentation can also answer many questions you may have.

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1. Why am I getting a red arrow, preventing me from placing certain puzzle pieces, like Avenue Roundabouts or RHW pieces?

The only thing which can cause the red arrow bug is the presence of obsolete and outdated "high-level" (RUL-based) transit mods in your Plugins folder, which are conflicting with the current NAM.   

What can cause Red Arrow Issues:
  • Past versions of the NAM
    (conflict will be contained in any file called "NetworkAddonMod.dat" without a number after it, or a "NetworkAddonMod_Controller.dat" file with a date before March 2009.)
  • "DatPacked" NAM files
  • Versions of the RHW released prior to June 1, 2007 (v13a and earlier)
  • NAM_Override_FencedGLR.dat (previously included with cogeo's Fenced GLR Pieces, prior to July 2008)
    • Old GLR Neighbor Connection fixes (Z_Connector.dat and Z_Connector_Jan 07.dat)
    • Transit SuperMod by DarkMatter (pre-NAM)
    • Transit BugFix by the7trumpets (pre-NAM)
    • Transit BugFix Supplement by redlotus (pre-NAM)

    To solve this issue, remove these files from your Plugins.  You can use the BSC Cleanitol program, with the included NAM Cleanitol List (included with the NAM Download), which will remove all these outdated files automatically.  Please also note that the list above is potentially incomplete.

    Another method to locate and remove conflicting controller files is to use the Plugins Analyzer tool included in ilive's Reader program.  For more details, see ebina's thread, Searching for NAM Controllers in Conflict.

    What cannot cause Red Arrow Issues
    • Stations
    • Texture Mods (i.e. SFBT Euro Road textures mod, Shadow Assassin's RHW textures, etc.)
    • Transit Switch/Underpass Lots (i.e. blahdy's Big Dig, buddybud's Underpasses, Marrast's MTEL, etc.)

    Technical Info:  why this problem occurs
    RUL files are SC4 files which control the placement of transit networks in-game, including both draggabble networks and puzzle pieces.  Some bridges are also RUL-controlled.  Each one has a specific function, and the game can only read one copy of each of these RUL files.  When you are getting the red arrow bug, it means that the game is loading a RUL file which does not reference the puzzle piece you are trying to place in game.

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2. What is the correct order for installing the NAM and its Plugins?

The recommended installation order is as follows:

  • 1. Network Addon Mod, May 2010
  • 2. Any optional NAM Components (RHW, SAM, RAM, HSR, Bridges, etc.)

(Note that the answer to this question can change over time as new NAM, NAM Essentials, and NAM Component Plugins are released.)

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3. After installing the latest NAM, why do my Railroads, Light Rail and Monorail no longer work?

This issue occurs if you have an Left-Hand Drive (LHD) version of the game (i.e. the UK and Japanese versions), and have installed the NAM without installing the NAM Left Hand Drive Plugin.  To fix this problem, simply uninstall the NAM, and re-install it, making sure that you select the Left Hand Drive plugin from the options in the Installer.  (Mac Users, simply copy the Z_Left Hand Plugin into your NAM folder.)

Alternatively, you can switch your game's driving side over to RHD--see RippleJet's tutorial for instructions.

Technical info: why this problem occurs
The way Maxis programmed the driving-side localization for SC4, they included functionality to auto-reverse Road-based paths, but they did not apply this to non-Road-based networks, like Railroads.  Instead, extra "reversed" path files are needed, referenced through the Network INI file (included in the NAM Bridge Controller).  The NAM Left-Hand Drive Plugin contains reversed paths for these items, in addition to other fixes to make the NAM look and function properly in LHD mode.

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4. Why is my game crashing to desktop after placing puzzle pieces?

This issue occurs only when a Puzzle Piece of a certain network is hovered over a TE Lot that is transit enabled with the same network.  For example, Elevated Heavy Rail Viaducts over a Transit-Enabled Rail Station. 

The issue is the result of hardcoded material in the main .exe file, so there is no way to fix it.  When you select a puzzle piece, be careful that the cursor is not located over a TE-Lot. Otherwise, the game will crash immediately without you even noticing that you hovered a puzzle piece over a TE-Lot.

It is, however, possible to avoid it, with a few simple tips:

  • Be careful when placing Puzzle Pieces and TE Lots like Stations, Transit Switches, Bus Blockers, etc.
  • Avoid using unnecessary Puzzle Pieces.  For instance, use Draggable GLR instead of GLR Puzzle Pieces--GLR Stations are TE Lots
  • Avoid using unnecessary TE Lots, especially those merely intended for cosmetic purposes--they can also cause issues with the Traffic Simulator

For more info on TE Lots, see mott's discussion on the topic.

Technical info: why this problem occurs
The SimCity 4.exe file, for some reason or another, tends to get stuck in an "infinite loop" when puzzle pieces are hovered over TE Lots.  The infinite loop causes an exception and the game closes itself automatically due to this.

Thanks to Chrisim for providing some additional information on this issue!

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5. What is with the Traffic Plugin options?

The May 2010 NAM marks the advent of the new NAM Unified Traffic Simulator, which comes in five different capacity levels (Classic, Low, Medium, High and Ultra in order of lowest to highest).  Additionally, the NAM Simulator can be customized using the new Traffic Simulator Configuration Tool (TSCT). 

The old traffic simulator options from the July 2009 release and earlier are available in the NAM Previous Traffic Simulators package.  Please note that these options are not supported.

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6. After installing the latest NAM, why are there missing textures at my Road intersections?

This error occurs if you do not install the NAM Road Turning Lane or Road Roundabout Plugins in your most recent NAM installation, but have built these items in your cities with your previous NAM installation.  Simply re-install the most recent NAM with these options selected, and your Roads will re-appear and function properly again.

Technical info: why this problem occurs
The textures/paths for these items are stored in their respective Plugins.  When these items are not installed, the game cannot reference them, resulting in blank tiles.

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7. What is BSC Cleanitol?

BSC Cleanitol TM is a program developed by wouanagaine, which is used to automatically check for outdated files (and remove them, if found), based on information it is given in .txt files.  It is also capable of assisting in searches for missing dependency files. The NAM includes a .txt file for using with Cleanitol, which will remove all outdated transit mods that conflict with the NAM.  (See FAQ #1)

Cleanitol is available here at SC4D on the LEX.

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8. Should I DatPack the NAM?

Generally speaking, no.  It can cause issues when installing future updates to the NAM, and thus, is not recommended.

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9. When is the next NAM coming out?

We honestly don't know.  And aside from a one-time exception (NAM 31.0), we've not given out release dates.  We like to surprise people.

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10. What is NAM Essentials?

NAM Essentials is a download consisting of the most recent copies of NetworkAddonMod_Controller.dat, which contains the RUL Files that allow all puzzle pieces and draggable functionality to work, and NetworkAddonMod_Bridges_Plugin_Controller.dat, which contains the INI File that allows bridges and certain Left-Hand Drive functionality to work. 

Generally speaking, unless the date on the NAM Essentials is different than the most recent version of the NAM, you would already have all the contents of the NAM Essentials by simply downloading the NAM, and do not need to install the Essentials.

The Essentials file serves three primary purposes:
1) To distribute bugfixes between NAM releases.
2) To allow Optional NAM Component Plugins (RHW, SAM, Bridges, etc.) to be released separate from a NAM Update.
3) To allow non-NAM users to utilize the optional bridges without having to download the NAM.