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Updated 0930 Tuesday 31st March 2009 UK Time

see "configuration of GPSSppc" below for the Pocket PC version of GPSS.

introduction to GPSS Configuration files ...

There are many 'hidden' facilities within GPSS. Many of these facilities are 'switched on' by simply including a file with the right name. If GPSS sees this file on startup, it does not read the contents, but simply 'switches on' that feature.

METRIC.CFG - makes GPSS start up in metric units (default is miles/yards).
NAUTICAL.CFG - makes GPSS start up in nautical units (default is miles/yards).
DIALS.CFG - makes GPSS start up with the instrument panel on (default is OFF).
CHASE.CFG - switches on "chase" mode (default is OFF).
AUTORESO.CFG - GPSS will zoom bitmap to fit screen (default is ON)
STOPZOOM.CFG - GPSS will not zoom through maps when GPS data first received (OFF).
ONLYRMC.CFG - reduces processing on slow PC by GPSS ignoring other than $GPRMC GPS data.
NOCHKSUM.CFG - suppresses checksum checking for checksum after * at end of NMEA message.
GPSS.LLF - switches on the GPSS.LLD/LLF protocole described on SMS page.

Some .CFG files must have the right contents. e.g. GPSS.CFG below.

This page explains a few CFG files which are not documented in more specialized pages of this site. Not all CFG files are documented on the site.

GPSS.CFG - main GPSS configuration file ...

Here is GPSS.CFG from the GPSS Baseline:

SU 92220 68810          Destination Location (can also be lat/lon)
ascot.wav               Destination sound
512382N0003960W         Home Location in lat / lon
COM1                    Primary com port. e.g. local GPS (or modem for GPSS)
NULL                    Second com port. e.g. local GPS for chase mode.
NULL                    Traffic data port
 0                      GPS correction metres East - should be 0
 0                      GPS correction metres North - also 0
 0                      Platform 0=Car,1=Balloon,2=Aircraft
 5                      Speed in kmph before heading update
No                      Text to Speech Available
\JAPANESE\              Path for Japanese - replaced by LANGUAGE.CFG
                        Path for extra maps BMP files (not needed)
09-21-2005 10:01:17     Last update
The above lines configure GPSS and should
only be edited with great care !
Allowed formats for position, such as "SU 92220 68810" and "512382N0003960W" are documented on the addmaps page. The second line is the destination name that will appear on the GPSS screen. However, if it is "NULL" there is no destination (Ctrl-D hotkey also clears any destination). "COM1" is the default com port to which the GPS may be attached. This may need to be changed. e.g. COM5. The next line, normally NULL, is available for a secondary com port.

Note difference between GPSS and GPSSppc: when used in "chase" mode, GPSS requires the modem to be the primary port, with the local GPS being on the secondary port. With GPSSppc for the Pocket PC the reverse is true.

GPSS.COM - configuring COM port and GPS data timeout ...

GPSS.COM was introduced way back in 1996 for a military contract for GPS communications over radio. It was needed to set lower baud rate of 1200 baud and slower GPS timeout. Here is an example GPSS.COM, with baud rate still at standard 4800:


This is file GPSS.COM used to change GPSS from 4800 baud to 9600
first 5 lines hold data; this and following are comments.

speed,parity,data bits,stop bits
timeout in secs for "I'm not receiving GPS data"
time threshold in seconds for calculation of speed (NOT USED)
distance threshold in metres for calculation of speed (NOT USED)
speed threshold for update of heading (NOT USED)

All 5 lines must be present, but only first 2 are used.

GPSS.COM is still used to set a non standard baud rate (4800 is the NMEA standard for GPS devices). That second line of 5 can also be changed to alter the GPS timeout ("I'm not receiving any GPS data").

You can't simply double click on GPSS.COM, because (in recent years) Microsoft assumes is a command file. But you can open it with Notepad. e.g. File-Open (then the path and GPSS.COM).

configuring GPSS sound ...

NOSOUND.CFG - will switch sound off completely (contents not read by GPSS).

SOUNDS.CFG must have data read by GPSS such as this:

0, 60, 20, 60, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1, 60, 1

The top line is read by GPSS and these are comments.
parameters in SOUNDS.CFG control sound combination:
0 or 1 to suppress all sounds
60 secs between saying Where are we. 0 for none.
20 secs between direction and distance to destination.
60 secs between direction and speed moving.
1 to say Route Guidance Instructions
1 to say when on a new road
1 to say when near a landmark
1 to say when changing map - if the map has a sound.
1 to say when GPS signal status changes.
60 secs between saying Expected Time of Arrival
1 to say traffic information (when implemented)

HISTORY.CFG controls the history trail ...


 255, 255, 255

0       how often ? -1=none, 0 = every point, 
        1 = 10s, 2=60s, 3=300s, 4=900, 5=3600
255, 0, 255 colour as Red,Green,Blue colour of history 0-255
        e.g. red=255,0,0  yellow = 255,255,0
5 radius in metres - typical accuracy of GPS
1 radius in metres if DGPS data
100 max radius in pixels of history circle
(subject to change)

configuration of touch icons ...

When you click (or use a touch screen to touch) on the bottom of the GPSS screen, a row of icons will appear. These can be touched (or clicked) to perform GPSS functions also achieved by keyboard keystrokes.

Please visit addmaps2 for details of CONTROLS.CFG and CONTROLI.CFG
Note: this is a very old feature we expect to phase out, in favour of the GPSSppc touch interface.

configuration of GPSSppc ...

GPS Software on a Mio Pocket PC GPS

GPSS is now available for the Pocket PC and many of the files are compatible with the full Windows GPSS.

These files are the same, for use by GPSS or GPSSppc:

These files are specific to GPSSppc:

Here is GPSSFIND.TXT from a GPSS baseline...
BUTI.BMP,$LNTEH.WAV,$LNTEH.GTX,interesting place
$E.BMP,$E.WAV,$E.GTX,eating place
$S.BMP,$S.WAV,$S.GTX,sleeping place
$LPOP.BMP,$LPOP.WAV,$LPOP.GTX,population centre
$FS.BMP,$FS.WAV,$FS.GTX,filling station

Note: if you change GPSSFIND.TXT you should delete WHATMENU.BMP which is used by GPSSppc for faster display of the "what menu". GPSSppc will make a new WHATMENU.BMP (slowly) when the what menu is next displayed. You can do this with File Explorer, or by tapping in the top right corner of the what menu.

Here is an extract from the end of PPCHELP.TXT from a GPSS baseline ...
9,2,BZOOMIN.WAV,,"ZOOMIN - zooms in to the most detailed map."
9,1,BZOOMOUT.WAV,,"ZOOMOUT - zooms map to a bigger area."
This is file PPCHELP.TXT which controls the online help
within GPSSppc - GPSS for the Pocket PC and Smartphone.
(c) Robin Lovelock, Sunninghill Systems.
The lines with END,END terminates the data read by GPSSppc.
This file is read when the help button is tapped.
It may also be read at other times by GPSSppc, like GPSSppc startup or powerup.
The parameters are:
menu page number, button number, WAV sound, BMP image, text spoken in WAV.
e.g. 0,0,BMENU.WAV,,"the menu button changes the buttons."
page=-1 means give help on startup
e.g. -1,9,BHELP.WAV,HELPHELP.GIF,"the HELP button gives you this help."
page=-2 means give help on power up, with GPSSppc already running.
e.g. -2,9,OK.WAV,,"the HELP button gives you this help."
button=-1 means don't point at anything
e.g. 1,-1,BDIAL2.WAV,,"... or switch off by tapping on dial."
button=-2 means point to top of the page
e.g. 2,-2,RECFTXT.WAV,,"... filename ... green when replayed"


The details of configuring GPSSppc for Automatic Route Planning (ARP) and Turn By Turn Guidance (TBTG) will only be of use to Solution Providers who have the required data. For an introduction to this subject, see the LINKMAN page. If GPSSppc detects the presence of a file named RGICFG.TXT on startup, it will read parameters listed below. If not, it will use the default example values given.