FSX on Windows 10

First – my apologies for the nasty video

There is a first time for everything, including using Camtasia. The video itself is just a demonstration to show that I installed FSX using the steps below and have resolved the issues I originally had when I tried installing FSX in Windows 10.

I experienced lack of airplane preview, black screen, inability to display full screen, random and frequent crashes.

After I installed the files below in a methodical and logical order – I now enjoy a fully functional program.

Install these files in this order – (I repeated this twice in Windows 10, and once in Windows 8.1 – same positive results)

Make sure that you’re running Windows 10 10240 RTM plus the latest point release (I noticed that they already have a new point release from the 29 July RTM version, and that’s the version that I reproduced these results).

1) MS XML Core Services (Version 4.0 Service Pack 2)
You will have some choice, but you want to download the file msxml.msi (this file includes the core services and the SDK)

2) DirectX 9.0c 2010 Runtime
(you can also find the Directx 9.0c install files on FSX Install Disk2 in a folder labeled as such)

3) Microsoft Visual C++ 2005 Redistributable Package (x86)
Install for the 32bit or 64bit Windows OS.

4) Microsoft Visual C++ 2005 Redistributable Package (x64)
In addition, Install this as well for a 64bit OS

5) Install FSX. Activate it.
Let it run – and go to a black screen and wait for disk activity. The screen may flicker as it tries to render.
Press Ctl-C and exit the program.

Navigate to your FSX folder, find the fsx.exe file, right click and run the compatibility checker. Accept the values, test it, and it should work.

Exit the program. Accept the test results and accept the compatibility settings. The next time you start the game (with compatibility settings) you will see and be able to run full screen without issue.

The Bull Creek Studio (MARS) machine is running Windows 10 Professional, using an ASUS Sabertooth 990FX R2.0 running an FX-8350, with an NVidia GTX 480 video card.

Good luck! I hope this helps you resolve the same issues that I had running the FSX under Windows 10.

Published by J.W. Spencer

JW Spencer is the lead technical architect and developer at the Digital Dream Team. He has over 25 years of technical experience in private industry and government in support of development, management, project management, and executive technical leadership. JW has the unique ability to understand complex technical problems and synthesize viable solutions. A veteran of the USMC, JW took his undergraduate studies at Southwest Texas State University, with graduate work at Texas A&M and the University of Texas at Austin. "Always go to other people's funerals, otherwise they won't come to yours." - Yogi Berra

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  1. Thank you for your comments. My problem is that when I add , add on airplanes , the FSX does not recognize it. When I was using windows 7, the add on airplanes immediately were seen. I do not have any issues with native FSX airplanes,with windows 19, and they work good. Thank in advance.

    1. That’s a very strange and odd behavior Robert. I agree with you. FSX add-ons generally are not a problem. In your case, I suspect your game – and not necessarily Windows 10. I use the 727 Captain add-on, the 757 Captain add-on, and the 767 Professional add-on. All three add-on products work fine. If I were in your shoes, I might look in the Airplanes directory and make sure that the add-on aircraft directories and files exist. You might also try right clicking on your installer (on your DVD, or file) and run it as an administrator. I’ve never had an issue with installing manually either (creating directories myself and dropping in the necessary file). If the files are in the right place and they are built for FSX, and FSX is running fine otherwise – I’m not sure what to tell you. I know that my old FS 2000 aircraft didn’t work in FSX.

  2. Jeff I just did a new build. I7 5930k 3.5 OC to 4.4. My problem is concerning having Windows on a 256g SSD and FSX on a separate 1TB ssd. I have crash to desk problems. My PMDG NGX will not stay activated and my yoke and throttle quad will not work right. I had these problems on my other box and until I just reformatted and put everything on the same drive it just would not work right. It seems FSX is trying to save data at exit but can not. What am I missing concerning the separate drives? Sure would appreciate any advice.

    1. David, Thanks for the good question. I just went through this issue myself and I found something very interesting. The initial RTM build, and the in-place upgrade to build 1511 has all sorts of issues. I went tot he microsoft website and use the disk creation tool and burned the latest WinX DVD. I installed WinX on a primary 256g SSD and the program files for FSX on a second SSD. My rig is an FX-8350 with a GTX-970 card. All of the problems that I had with the RTM build and the in-place upgrade disappeared after I reformatted and reinstalled with the new DVD created. Everything. Homegroup works and I can change my password. I didn’t have to install any of the four files in this post to make FSX work, and Battlefield now actually pins to the start menu! AND – I got my Corsair H110i to install properly, as well as an old scanner.

      Also – one thing you NEED to do if you reinsall – the sdd drives should be reinitialized before you reinstall the OS. I used Acronis “add disk” tool and just “added” the drive without any partitions or formatting…. it basically blanks the MBR sectors of the hdd/sdd. I found that if I didn’t do that…. then I had legacy permission issues on the second drive and WinX wouldn’t act right until I reset the drive and it could reassign permissions “cleanly”

      Hope this helps!

  3. Thanks Jeff,

    This worked for me in getting FSX to work on WinX and PMDG747 works also. However, my MCPPro does not work with PMDG as I cannot get the .key file to install to register the driver. Any ideas? GoFlight are somewhat slow to respond.

    Also, SLOW is not the word. As the first program installed on a WinX 64bit clean install was FSX Acceleration, disk 1 took five hours to install and disk 2 took another three hours, but all was well after running FSX in compatibility mode. I thought my DVD drive would wear out before the installation completed.

    Anyway, thanks again.

    1. Hello Dokta,

      You stated in your comment that you used a WinX 64bit clean install – so my initial reaction is moot, as that would be my suggestion. Having already done that – I’m more inclined to believe that it’s related to something else, like a running anti-virus application. Norton is notorious for being the root cause of many Windows applications acting weird. If you have one running – try turning it off and installing the add-ons. If you don’t have an antivirus application – I would then look for some other hardware issue. I once had a hard disk that was “good” but the motherboard that I was using at that time had some really buggy HDD IO drivers. If me, I would check that all of your drivers are updated. Other than those common suggestions that most people will tell you – I’m at a loss.

      I have to say that the .key issue sounds like a HDD permission issue to me – you might want to boot into safe mode and copy it into the correct directory using single user mode.

      Just to be clear – clean install to me means using a utility like “boot and nuke” to wipe the hard drive, and then installing the OS. If you just delete partitions and then install Win 10 – you’ll have permission issues because the system directory still has hashed the hard drive. I ran into that issue myself. I cleared up mine by nuking the drive and starting over with a clean HDD. Your mileage may vary, as it could be something else.

      Hope this helps. Regardless, I would be interested in knowing how you resolve it. It sounds like a troubleshooting challenge – for sure.

  4. Thanks Jeff,
    I’ll give your suggestions a try. I started with an all clean machine, newly partitioned, newly formatted before installing WinX.

    My main problem is time, I’ll let you know the results of any issues that I manage to resolve when I can.

  5. Hi Jeff,

    GoFlight got back to me and told me where to copy the *.key file (into the FSLabs folder under FSX) and everything works PERFECTLY. Even better than under Win7 where I had a few minor issues.

    Thanks again.

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