ArdSimX Interface for home cockpit builders

Started in 2016, still supported X-Plane Interface for Linux, PC, Mac.
Precursor of latest SimVimCockpit Interface.

Please note: Although ArdSimX© is still active, you should know that we are launching the new SimVimCockpit Interface©, which is our primary project now.

SimVimCockpit is going to replace our previous interfaces, since it offers much more control and output capabilities and requires less efforts and costs to use. Check all news and development status on our Patreon page or blog.

ArdSimX© project was developed as successor of our previous interfaces, and it provides control for your cockpit without Arduino coding.

ArdSimX interface is a composite system consisted of the firmware for the controller (Arduino) and plugin, which cannot work separately and are used together only!

Arduino is used only as convenient controller platform for ArdSimX firmware and not supposed to be programmed by user. You can use up to 8 boards connected, with LAN and USB firmware uploaded, in any combination.

Note: You may encounter problems in some systems when multiple boards are used.


- Get Arduino IDE software from the official Arduino website: IDE Releases.
- Download ArdSimX.zip archive and save it in some folder.

Start Arduino IDE, open menu -> "Sketch" -> "Include Library" -> "Add .zip Library"

In the opened dialog select ArdSimX.zip file, and ArdSimX folder will be added to Arduino libraries folder.

If you have previously installed ArdSimX and you download a new firmware version you can manually replace the old ArdSimX folder in the libraries folder.

ArdSimX Plugin Installation:

Unzip the downloaded ArdSimX_Plugin.zip file "AS-IS" into your "X-Plane/Resources/plugins/" folder. The "ArdSimX" item in X-Plane "Plugins" menu should appear after X-Plane start.

ArdSimX - Getting started

--- Latest update - June 6, 2018, v 1.32 (see Versions history here)

When updating ArdSimX, make sure you have both the plugin and the library of the latest versions.

All you need to start - upload the ArdSimX sketch to your Arduino and configure inputs/outputs pins. In the ArdSimX Configurator configure your input controls and outputs, no need Arduino programming and other libraries using.

Upload ArdSimX "firmware" to Arduino

Connect your board to USB, open ArdSimX_USB sketch from Arduino IDE "Examples" menu, select board type, USB port (if needed) and click "Upload button:

If LAN connection will be used, use the ArdSimX_LAN sketch.

What you need to start:

  • Connect a toggle switch to pin #5 to test digital input.
  • If Ethernet connection will be used, attach Ethernet module to Arduino board.
  • Connect your Arduino to your X-Plane computer USB port

Testing communication for ArdSimX© firmware

  1. Start X-Plane, open ArdSimX "Status" screen. You can see connection status (the plugin scans the IPs and USB ports).
  2. When Arduino responds and configured the message "Connected to" appears with the list of devices and the number of inputs/outputs configured.
  3. When you toggle a switch you should see how the Pitot switch toggles in the on-screen panel and the on-board LED of your Arduino switches On/Off accordingly.

In the screenshot you can see two boards connected with USB and LAN:

When you've made sure that your ArdSimX is working with your Arduino, you can start configuring it for your own inputs and outputs.

Please note: To upload firmware code to Arduino without exiting X-Plane, first press the "PAUSE" button in the "Status" window. After uploading the code, press "Reconnect" button.

If your board has not connected after more than 30s try using "Reconnect" button and wait for connection. If the plugin still didn't find your Arduino board, see troubleshooting (or contact us).


Please read the "Terms of Use" before download

- ArdSimX Firmware, v1.32 - ArdSimX Plugin, v1.32

ArdSimX - Troubleshooting

Follow these steps if ArdSimX plugin didn't find your controller boaard after "Getting started" steps.

    1. General guidelines:

  • Make sure you have correct version of ArdSimX used when uploaded base sketch to Arduino board.
  • Check your Arduino powering in case you have many devices connected to it. See this page for instructions.
  • 2. LAN communication:

  • Check your LAN, router settings, make sure you're using the right cable.
  • Check your firewall settings (port 5080) or admin settings and access rights.
  • Make sure Arduino is connected to the same network that the plugin detects
  • If Ethernet module has a sticker with MAC address, try to use it, adding the line in the "setup" section of Arduino code (see the "ArdSimX_LAN_Options" example sketch)
  • If you still have no connection, you can try to define your Arduino IP and/or X-Plane IP addresses, see the "ArdSimX_LAN_Options" example sketch.

3. USB communication:

  • Some serial drivers on Windows and MasOS Sierra systems are known to cause problems. Trying different drivers might work.
  • If X-Plane crashes just after the flight loading, try to remove other USB devices that communicate with computer using virtual serial port (like those bluetooth usb connectors used for smartphone communication programs etc.).
  • The length and quality of USB cable can be a problem sometimes. Use a good cable.
  • Use external power supply for all additional deviced connected to Arduino.
  • In your Arduino IDE, check the name of the port your Arduino uses. ArdSimX for Mac supports port names starting with "/dev/tty.usb..." and "/dev/tty.wchusb...", for Linux supports port names starting with "/dev/ttyUSB" or "/dev/ttyACM". ArdSimX for Windows checks ports from COM1 to COM64. If your Arduino is using a different port name, please contact us and tell us the port name so we can make the appropriate changes in the plugin.

ArdSimX Interface History


June, 5, 2018

Main NEW feature!
Now you can have separate data config files for each plane you fly. You can make data file for any plane and put it in the aircraft folder. If the plugin don't find data file in the plane folder it loads those file in the plugin folder.

- Some small bugs in the plugin has been corrected.

1.30 - 1.31

May, 18, 2018
- Encoder processing algorithm for different types of rotary encoders is finished.
- Now you can point out specific detents type for each single encoder in the data file.
- Acceleration sensitivity can be set for any encoder (from strict single-step to maximum acceleration).
- Fixed all cases of incorrect encoder processing (acceleration and fine-step movements).
- Independently from acceleration curve and type of detents phase, an encoder always makes one step when rotated slowly to the next detent position.
In ver 1.31 (use this version instead of 1.30):

- Added option for using two +/- buttons instead of any encoder.
- Corrected "Reconnect" issue with Ethernet (and USB, possible)
- Some small bugs corrected. If you notice something please report.

NOTE: format of ArdSimX base sketch was changed! "BoardNumber" is no longer used, and instead of "ArdSimScan" the ArdSimX(#) function is used in the loop, where # is the board number. Please correct your working sketch!

Plugin 1.22
Library 1.26
- Changes in "Skip steps" option for encoders.
- Smooth needle/card movement when encoder accelerates ("animation").
Problems noticed:

- not all of the arduinos can be detected.
- sometimes dubbled arduino number.
- serial output can fail if several registers used.

1.21 ... 1.25 - Library performance improvements, several bug fixes.
- Some fixes related to reconnection and serial ports.
- Fixed X-Plane event-based inputs reset for USB.
- Matrix Inputs corrected.
- Fixed a bug with analog precision over 100 not working properly.
- Encoder processing algorithm with rotation speed acceleration (still beta).
- Encoder acceleration accounts for frame rate.
Added version control for plugin/library compatibility. An error will be displayed in the Status window if a connected Arduino has an older library version than required by the plugin, and this Arduino will be ignored.
Problems :

- still unstable, consider all tese as temporary versions

1.15...1.20 Transitional temporary versions
Plugin 1.14
Library 1.14
- Fixed the bug with Serial LED non-range condition not working.
- Output config lines sharing the same ID will all be active again by default, unless an output parameter switch for them is present.
1.13 - Fixed the problem with detection of certain custom datarefs.
- Expanded communication with SimVim Panel. Future support for Raspberry Pi GPIO.
- Buttons can act as output parameter switch (no configurator support yet).
1.12 - Fixed the bug with Programmed Input values not being accepted correctly.
1.11 - Fixed the crash with LAN connection in Windows version.
- Support for inputs from SimVim Panel (v2.3).
- USB_FIX now enabled by default in Windows version.
- Fixed the dot not disappearing when integer exceeds the number of digits on a 7-segment display with "Reverse" flag.
- Experimental quadratic function support for analog input (Q A0 A1 ... line under [A] config section) Update 1.11a: Fixed a bug related to multiple USB connections in Linux and Mac versions.
1.10 - "ardsimx/starter_ignition" command no longer requires "Press-and-hold" functionality configured.
- Added optional step skipping for encoder input (experimental feature).
- Added an option for config.ini - "USB_FIX = 1" (only use if you experience the rare bug with USB communication stopping after "Scanning" finishes).
Update: Fixed a USB-related crash on Mac introduced since v1.9
1.10d for Mac: Fixed inputs not working.
1.9 - Output byte array type datarefs to Arduino (NAVAIDs) - will not work until the Library is updated
- Fixed a bug with press-and-hold commands also executing a momentary action on start
- Implemented custom commands for Starter+Ignition (included in the configurator)
- Optional limits for dataref values controlled by encoders or increment buttons (config - third value in line, example: "1+,500"). Datarefs only.
- For Mac: Added support for USB port names starting with "cu."
1.8 - Press-and-hold for buttons on analog inputs now works properly
- Fixed a crash caused under certain conditions by datarefs with Press-and-hold function
- Inverted Serial LED order on each register to reflect the new connection scheme
- Supports "d" and "b" config identifiers for differentiating between rotary switch digital positions and ordinary digital buttons
1.7Fixed a bug with continuous commands (such as engine ignition) and test buttons. Could potentially lead to crashes.
1.6 - More options for Indication Test button (7-segments, direct and serial LEDs)
- Added custom dataref for blinking LEDs (autopilot)
- Added Servo support
1.5cFixed issue with Analog inputs not working when precision is configured between 51-100.
1.5bFixed typo in Stepper initialization code.
1.5aFixed a crash when connected to network router with broadcast support.
1.5 - Internal code optimizations. More unification between input and output config
- Added reverse digits order for 7-segment display
- Cyclic mode button can now be configured with the number of steps to increment
- Sends individual number to connected devices
- Modified "Repeat" function for commands
- Fixed Encoder mode output to LEDs
- Added Encoder mode output to Serial LEDs and Programmed Output
- "Test 7-segment display" button
Hotfix: Fixed crash when connecting to Arduino with no config for this Arduino present
1.4Fixed crash if array number is specified as "0" in config file.
1.3Multiple-mode encoders fixed
1.2- Added cyclic toggle buttons support
- Changed repeat button config - now listed in [A] section
1.1ArdSimX Release

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