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.log File
Install Troubleshooting
FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

Support Venues

Windows 98 users can save time by reading the Windows 98 Problems section below.

You may also find answers in the FAQ and in the TIPS section.

If you have a problem with FSHotSeat,  you can be helped via the FSHotSeat Forums or by email at (FSHotSFX users should use

.log File

The FSHotSeat.log (or FSHotSFX.log) file reproduced whenever FSHotSeat is started.  It's a simple text file that can be opened with Notepad and contains valuable diagnostic information.  Always include the log file when requesting support via the Forums or by email.


FSHotSeat is an advanced program that combines advanced SAPI 5.1 speech, MS scripting, DirectX and MCI sound technology in a complex flight simulation environment.  When set up correctly, FSHS is simple and easy to use. When set-up incorrectly, it can be frustrating. We've set up this special section to guide you through the process.

If you're using XP, installation should be smooth.  Windows 98, however, is frequently behind the update curve. We're not shills for Microsoft and won't belabor the point but XP is far superior Windows 98, especially while multitasking in the FS2002 environment. Since Microsoft has announced they are ending support for Windows 98 in June, 2003, it's not going to get any better.  End of sermon.

Installation Steps - The first you install FSHotSeat

  1. FSHotSeat setup is delivered in a .zip file. Always unzip the contents to a folder, never run from inside the .zip or the install will fail.

  2. The install file is the file with the .msi extension. You should keep a copy of this file on your harddrive or a CD. If your ever need to reinstall FSHotSeat or it is damaged, the installer will request the location of the .msi package.

  3. Install the .msi package by double clicking on it or selecting install form the right click menu.

  4. If you experience an error, go to the Install Troubleshooting section.

  5. If the install Welcome Screen comes up then install into the folder of your choice.

FSHotSeat First Run - The first time you run FSHotSeat

  1. Make sure FS is not running.

  2. Click on the FSHotSeat desktop icon.

  3. If this message pops up: "FSHotSeat has failed to load properly" then go to the Install Troubleshooting section.

FSHotSeat Initial Setup - Initial setup to allow FSHotSeat to detect your aircraft and flight plans

Follow the Initial Setup Instructions in the FSHotSeat Help File.  If you don't...FSHotSeat just won't fly.

Install Troubleshooting

If you click on the FSHotSeat .msi install file and you're asked what program you want to open it with click Cancel.  Then download and install Microsoft Installer. Start the FSHotSeat install again.

If you get a message that you need the mdac_typ then download it from here and install. Start the FSHotseat install again.

Most XP installations go smoothly.  Win98 installations can be troublesome if Windows has not been periodically updated.

If you start FSHotSeat and it closes with an error, go to the folder where you installed FSHotSeat and open a file called "FSHotSeat.log" with NotePad.  This is critical.  Most install errors can be overcome by locating the error in the FSHotSeat.log and following the instructions below.  Note that you should always correct the first error in the FSHotSeat.log first, since it may be causing subsequent errors.

  • FSHS_ **Error:1001 No valid MCI Driver
    Some applications, notably DVD players and MP3 players, unceremoniously replace the default MPEG drivers with their own. FSHS attempts to find a default driver but if none exists it may fail with this error. To add a default driver:

    In Windows 98: Locate the System.ini file in your Windows directory. Make a backup. Open System.ini with Notepad. Find the section [MCI] There should be the entry: MCIVideo.  If there is not, add the line MCIVideo=mciqtz.drv. If there is an MCIVideo line, add a new one with the suffix 1-4 that is not already being used, e.g., MCIVideo1=mciqtz.drv. Save the System.ini file. Reboot. Restart FSHotSeat.

In Windows XP: You will have to edit your registry. In Windows, click Start, Run.  Enter: Regedit.  Click Ok. Locate the registry key: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\MCI32  Add a new string value: MPEGVideo plus a suffix 1-5, e.g., MPEGVideo1. Click on the newly created value.  Enter: mciqtz32.dll. Close Regedit. Restart FSHotSeat.

  • Can't find FS
    If you haven't installed FS2004 the install it (doh!) otherwise, FSHotSeat expects to find the FS2004 path in the standard MS registry key: "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Microsoft Games\Flight Simulator\9.0\EXE Path"  If it's not there, then add it. FS2002 uses the same key except 8.0 rather than 9.0

  • FSHS_16 **Error:429 ActiveX component can't create object
    You need the Microsoft Script Control available here. Download and install. Restart FSHotSeat.

  • FSHS_4 **Error:429 ActiveX component can't create object
    You need the Microsoft Scripting Runtime available here. Download and install. Restart FSHotSeat.

  • FSHS_4 **Error:-2147467259 Automation error
    A specific registry in incorrect/corrupt. You need to re-register MSScript.ocx. In Windows, click Start, Run and enter: regsvr32 msscript.ocx.  Click OK.  It should come back with message: DllRegisterServer in msscript.ocx succeeded. Reboot you machine. Restart FSHotSeat.

  • FSHotSeat runs slowly or freezes
    Some audio applications, ie. Easy CD, Quicktime may alter default MS Directshow operation causing slow operation. In most cases uninstalling the offending application(s) will restore default operation. In some cases you can reinstall the software by declining any offers to associate it with MP3 files.

FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

Why won't FSHotSeat recognize my flight plan?  I can see it's loaded in the GPS.

FSHS requires you to start each new flight from the FS Create a Flight screen.  Loading a flight plan from the FS menu will not work.

If you are loading from the Create a Flight screen, check the Diag Code (in parens() next to Invalid Flight FSHS upper status area.) Look up the code in the FSHS help file for specific instructions.

Why won't FSHotSeat recognize my aircraft?

Most aircraft recognition errors are caused by missing values noted on the Aircraft Specs MFD.  There are six values that must be present for your aircraft to be recognized.

After the values are entered, you must load a different aircraft and then reload the target aircraft for changes to take effect.   This is a limitation of FS.

How do I fix an "AltHigh" error on flight plan load?

FSHS calculates your flight plan based on aircraft speed, climb rate, cruise altitude and distance. Your aircraft must be capable of reaching cruise altitude before it's time to descend. If any of these values are incorrect you'll get an "AltHigh" error.

Lowering your cruise altitude is the simple solution if the other values are correct.

  1. Check the Base Vertical Speed on the Aircraft Specs MFD. FSHS uses this value to calculate climb rate. Sometimes it's too low and FSHS believes you cannot reach cruise altitude (in relation to speed) before it's time to descend. Base vertical speed is almost never lower than 500 FPM or greater than 3,000 FPM. Check the Web for proper values or use a value from a similar aircraft.

  2. Check Speed Cruise on the Aircraft Specs MFD, make sure it's appropriate for your aircraft.

How come some of my hotkeys don't work?

Certain add-on applications and .dlls may intercept and block FSHotSeat hotkeys.  Sometimes, this can be avoided by loading FSHS after FS is fully loaded.  If problem persists, check your FS/modules directory and remove add-on .dlls until problem clears up.

In Windows 98, the shifted keys (Shift, Control, TAB) may not be properly recognized. Remap the keys to un-shifted keys.

Do I have to load the "cold panel" for each flight?

No, not if you start FS with a "cold panel" as default and successfully complete the secure checklist.  After the secure checklist, you will be fulfilling all the requirements of a "cold panel" (all systems shut off, AC on ground and stopped.)  Just select FS menu options Flight, End Flight.  You can then fly a new flight or change parameters and start a different one.

Do I have to start in the Beech Baron Demo AC at Meigs?

In the Demo Mode, yes. Once you register you can start with any aircraft in any location but you must still use a "cold panel". Load the FSHS "cold panel" and change the AC to your choice and/or location of your choice.  Then save the flight with the FS menu options Flight, Save Flight under a different name being sure to check "Make this the default Flight."   Now this combo will be your default when you start FS.

Remember, the aircraft, weather, time and location can still be changed when you Create a Flight.

Why am I having trouble with the In-Flight Menu selection?

The In-Flight Menu is probably timing out before you're making your selection. You can give yourself more time by increasing the Menu Delay Setting on the PLT 2 - Settings 1 MFD. Also, your menu selection key should be easily accessible.  In rare instances, the selection you have made is no longer valid due to real-time changes in the environment.

Where's the flight attendants?

The flight attendants are not available in the demo since the Beech Baron is small cabin class.  In the registered version, any aircraft that is commercial (has airline and flight number assigned) and is >6,000 Lbs. empty weight and is carrying passengers will have a flight attendant.

Why do the voices suck?

Suck is a relative term. Actually, text-to-speech (TTS) voices sound much better than they did year or two ago and now easily support multiple simultaneous voices.  There are some TTS voices available that sound better (as good as Microsoft ATC) but each voice costs more than FSHotSeat itself.  We expect that will change in the future.  Some day soon, pasting together voice clips to describe ever expanding environments will be passe.  TTS voices will get better with time.

We chose to use a TTS engine since it offers virtually unlimited dialog possibilities.  It's a trade-off of some quality for the ability verbalize the entire FS world and lots more--anything in fact.  We've added some background radio noise for more realism, even distorting the copilots voice a bit when the engines are running.

Remember, you can tweak the voices to get a more pleasing sound. You can also assign a random voice to a character if you like.  Just create a couple extra characters and assign *RANDOM* as the copilot's voice.  You'll never know who you'll be flying with.  You can do this with any character; just be sure you have a few extra characters not assigned to other duties.


Keeping the engine running.

When the CP does the startup, the levers will be advanced but your yoke or stick will still be retarded. As soon as you touch your levers your settings take effect. So, in the case of the mixture, wait until the CP is done with them and then quickly move them forward. Otherwise your engine may rudely die if you bump them.

Same with the throttles on CP takeoff. Once the CP has advanced the throttles to full, advance them on your yoke.

Track the CP's movements after they're completed.

Want the copilot to be a bit more formal in passenger announcements?

Assign the aircraft an airline and a flight number.   This will make it a more formal commercial flight.  This also works for the Demo.

Want to leave you machine for a while and let the copilot fly without your flight plan being cancelled by ATC or over-flying your destination?

Wait until ATC hands you off to another controller. Acknowledge the command and then don't contact the next controller.  Put the copilot in the Cpfly mode and the Setstop mode.  The copilot will keep flying until you get near your descent point and then pause FS.  When you return, unpause FS and re-establish contact with a controller.  Make sure you're well rested since you'll probably a lot to do in a short time.