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Starry Night 8 Planet Display

When I select a planet and magnify, I only get a dark sphere versus a zoomable picture. This problem only appears in solar system objects, not deep sky images.

8 comments

  • 1
    Avatar
    Growflavor

    likely means that SN can not see your texture files...windows or Mac?

    You may have encountered the "texture folder name installer bug"...like I and many others did...

    if you just downloaded & installed recently I encourage you to add a reply with your install details that this bug is still present, if it is indeed causing your issue...see this post for more information:

    https://support.simulationcurriculum.com/hc/en-us/community/posts/360029501794-SNpp8-windows-installer-custom-install-option-ProgramData-folders-Bug-was-present-still-in-May-3-download 

    For windows, you can resolve this by renaming your folder in the windows hidden system folder "Program Data"

    you may also be interested in this post about adding more custom levels to Starry Nights Virtual Texture levels for Solar System 'spheres' & SN's issues relative to Celestia & Orbiter.

    https://support.simulationcurriculum.com/hc/en-us/community/posts/360028076993-4K-textures

    Kind regards, Chadwick

  • 0
    Avatar
    brianripley777

    Wow! Thanks Chadwick. I am using a current version of Windows 10. The "Starry Night 8 Prefs" folders had no data and renaming the "Starry Night 7 Prefs" to "Starry Night 8 Prefs" has solved this problem. I'm assuming that this was left over data from my previous SN7 install. So, I take it that SN8 uses the same program data that 7 used? If there were any changes or enhancements in SN8, we are now ignoring them? Would it have been better to do a complete uninstall of the SN 7 program (including program data, any app data and registry entries)?

    On a side note I noticed on your referenced post that you were able to eliminate streaming data requirements? Did you just have to remove the sub folders under "Sky Data/AllSkyImage"? I currently have two sub folders. How do you download all of the AllSkyImage data? The size has to be substantial. Both of my current sub folders have a considerable amount of data (>7 GB).

    Best Regards,
    Brian

  • 0
    Avatar
    Growflavor

    Hi Brian,

                You are welcome...us sharing issues here helps all of us find or get answers more quickly...

    What you describe are the same symptoms I encountered...

             I also just deleted the empty folder and renamed the folder that contained the data & things have been fine so far (for Path #2 described below)

             I speculate that the installer does put any new data into the old Starry Night Prefs folder...check the "date modified" on the sub folders to see if at least some changed to be the same as the date you installed (e.g. today or when ever)...some folder dates did change in my case. (I have not investigated in detail if anything actually changed with the textures between SN7 & SN8 as my understanding is that the DSO index was the primary focus at this stage.)

             I actually had done a complete uninstall of SN7 & verified that ProgramData files were deleted before installing SN8 but still the same SN7 folder naming came back but with sub folders dated with the date I installed SN8 which is what tipped me off to search for this issue back on May 3 when I upgraded.

     

              RE: your side note...be aware of my bias: I love fast access to "accurate" or at least "precise" data...and fast large capacity drives or RAM disks for comparing datasets & I hate 'slow' internet servers...so I minimized the amount of streaming by selecting the custom option during install and telling the installer to put 'entire' everything on disk....plus I add many 10s to 100s of GB of custom data...

           Starry Night will still stream the USNO star data as SimC only offers it that way for now.  However, it appears to gets cached in your %appdata% user 'Local" directory...

    on Windows 10, I have found that Starry Night has at least 5 locations it writes data (I pin these to my Windows Quick Access menu):

    1. 4.48 GB in the main install folder:C:\Program Files (x86)\Starry Night Pro Plus 8\Sky Data\
    2. in the 'windows hidden' Program Data folder: C:\ProgramData\Simulation Curriculum\Starry Night 8 Prefs\Sky Data\
    3. in your local user folder: C:\Users\[your user name]\AppData\Local\Simulation Curriculum\Starry Night 8 Prefs\Sky Data\
    4. & your saved Favorites in: C:\Users\[your user name]\OneDrive\Documents\Starry Night Pro Plus  (this machine ihas docs synced to OneDrive so it would be just the regular documents folder if yours is not synced)
    5. application settings: C:\Users\[your user name]AppData\Local\Simulation Curriculum Corp\Starry Night Pro Plus\8.0.2

            I listed the paths to "Sky Data"...in some of those paths data is also written for other items in other sub directories in that general area...

           I find it worthwhile to periodically check how much data gets cached in folders at Path #3 above and to make sure any cached data is not a duplicate of data already in folder #2...for me the 7.50 GB "All Sky Image" data resides in Path #2...I deleted the duplicate 'streamed' "All Sky Image" data that showed up in Path #3.

            For my SN8 Pro Plus Path #2 above has 31.5 GB at the moment but I have already added Virtual Texture .dds tile levels beyond what SimC provides, so your folder will likely have less data...if SN8 would draw Levels 8 & above I would have over 200 GB in that folder already...I referenced why with that last link in my 1st response and very much would like to be able to add high detail virtual texture levels 8+ to Starry Night like I have to Celestia in the past since I would prefer to just use Starry Night.

    Hopefully the above helps you clarify & sort out your data needs since as you can see from the above I would not know to which 'Sky Data/AllSkyImage" path you were referring in your side note :-)

  • 0
    Avatar
    brianripley777

    Thanks Chadwick, this has all been extremely helpful. The directory I was referring to was "C:\ProgramData\Simulation Curriculum\Starry Night 8 Prefs\Sky Data\". Based upon your information on folder sizes I expect I will stay streaming for now. Since this is a laptop with limited storage (I'm not ready to upgrade to a TB SSD) I'll have to see how it functions with a HotSpot WiFi when I'm at remote locations.

    Clear Skies
    Brian

  • 0
    Avatar
    Growflavor

    Hi Brian,

    in my experience,

    assuming you use SN8 only with one user account (since streamed data is only seen by that one user thus would be duplicated in a second user account)

    then yes deleting the ~7.5 GB of AllSky data in the "The directory I was referring to was "C:\ProgramData\Simulation Curriculum\Starry Night 8 Prefs\Sky Data\" would indeed enable you to save some of that disk space & instead stream just what you view (assuming this stays far less than the 7.5GB) to your

    AllSkyImage folder in: C:\Users\[your user name]\AppData\Local\Simulation Curriculum\Starry Night 8 Prefs\Sky Data\

    word of caution...when All Sky Data was streaming before I discovered the folder renaming problem in ProgramData...I experienced strange different resolution drawing patchwork of the All Sky Imagery in my SN8 viewer windows...despite being connected to a steady internet connection = 24/7 >12 _megabyte_ = 96 mbps per second = ~50GB per hour with no MD5/SHA hash errors in 'massive' file downloads...the issue persisted even on relaunch of SN8 after files were cached)...hopefully you do not encounter that if you choose the streaming route for the AllSky...

    some clear night skies without a risk of passing rain cells would indeed be nice ;-)  Kind regards, Chadwick

     

  • 0
    Avatar
    brianripley777

    Hi Chadwick,

    Well... This didn't work out as well as I thought. I indeed got the planet images working, but later discovered that I was now missing all of the Deep Sky images. So, instead of taking uneducated guesses on fixing the problem, I decided to start with the cleanest install I could. I deleted all of the directories you listed and removed all of the registry data associated with this program. 

    I did a custom install so that I could include the download of all planetary image data. I elected not to install the full Real Sky data since I normally only use this for educational purposes. I find that the "Default" star type is much closer to what I see with my naked eye and when using eyepieces. Once the install was complete I found two folders in the "Program Data" directory. C:\ProgramData\Simulation Curriculum\Starry Night 8 Prefs\…(empty) and C:\ProgramData\Simulation Curriculum\Starry Night Prefs\…(populated with all data files).

    Testing the software for image displays resulted in Deep Sky images, but Planet images were again not depicted. I renamed the C:\ProgramData\Simulation Curriculum\Starry Night 8 Pref directory which I surmise was the default pointer directory to an unreferenced name and found that I now have all images displayed. Bottom line, this is a real buggy install script that the Simulation Curriculum folks have left us with. 

    On a general note, although I am a relatively new user, I've already found a significant number of bugs in the application implementation. There are far too many to list here and until I see serious involvement by their developers in this forum, I'm inclined not to participate in ironing out all of the flaws. I've started two threads in the last couple of days and had no response from them on either of them. Thanks to you, I have at least eliminated one of the big ones. Why they are not involved is beyond me. I see great potential in Starry Night 8, but an enthusiastic following will be lost without their sincere support.

    Kindest regards,
    Brian

  • 0
    Avatar
    Growflavor

    Hi Brian,

           Good to hear you made some progress.  I agree star dots for the eyepiece. (I use the AllSky when using a CCD or perusing the sky in bad weather :-)

           If you encounter a major issue in SN8, I do encourage you to post it as it helps those of us who do use the 'follow' feature of the forum.  For example, Ron's posts have saved me a few big headaches. The way I (& a number of CloudyNights forum members...lol) look at it is that this is an "early adoption" period for SN8.

          I understand your observation regarding the forum.

          My sense is the best encouragement for the human beings doing the development is to see us skilled users helping each other in the forum when we can allocate a moment to do so....

           the Kerbal Space Program community forum would be an amazing benchmark for SimC to consider...I've never seen space or rocket science get so much attention or amazing technical mods like Principia (link) (&even made a full n-body gravitation model for the Trappist-1 system that I love to explore (link) )..even 'Scott Manley (link)' has been surprised with KSP (now at >800k subscribers...lol)...ok...all the above is a [benchmark] inspiration hint for us & SimC ;-)

            SimC is a (very) small business...consequently Dave's main focus on communication & Starry Night bugs with us is during the beta cycles.

             I admire Dave's work & try my best to recognize that it takes time to implement very good features or to clean up bugs due to code changes when new features are added...I appreciate his admirable post about Elmo & Persistence ;-)

    https://support.simulationcurriculum.com/hc/en-us/articles/231540167-Starry-Night-7-eclipses-and-Elmo-

    & Keiron digs through lots of requests:

    https://support.simulationcurriculum.com/hc/en-us/community/posts/360029785173-How-Do-I-Get-A-Reply-On-This-Forum-Currently-Batting-Zero-For-Two-Answer-Now-One-For-Three-

     

       I hope you get to enjoy some productive & fun observing (still stormy here!).  Kind regards, Chadwick

  • 0
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    haramayn group

    A clear night sky offers an ever-changing display of fascinating objects to see — stars, constellations, and bright planets, often the moon, and sometimes special events like meteor showers. Observing the night sky can be done with no special equipment, although a sky map can be very useful. Binoculars or a good beginner telescope will enhance some experiences and bring some otherwise invisible objects into view. You can also use astronomy apps and software to make your observing easier, and use our Satellite Tracker page powered by N2YO.com to find out when to see the International Space Station and other satellites. Below, find out what's up in the night sky tonight (Planets Visible Now, Moon Phases, Observing Highlights This Month) plus other resources (Skywatching Terms, Night Sky Observing Tips and Further Reading).

    The moon will officially reach its third quarter phase at 5:10 p.m. EDT (or 21:10 GMT) on Thursday, July 1. At third quarter our natural satellite always appears half-illuminated, on its western side - towards the pre-dawn sun. It rises in the middle of the night and remains visible in the southern sky all morning. The name for this phase reflects the fact that the moon has completed three quarters of its orbit around Earth, measuring from the previous new moon. The ensuing week of moonless evening skies will be ideal for observing deep sky targets.

    When the waning crescent moon rises in the east at about 2 a.m. local time on Sunday, July 4, it will be positioned a slim palm’s width to the right (or 5 degrees to the celestial southwest) of the magnitude 5.8 planet Uranus - close enough for them to share the view in binoculars (red circle). Try to find the planet before about 4:30 a.m. local time. After that, the brightening dawn sky will overwhelm it, but will leave the moon visible.

    During much of July Mercury will be visible in the pre-dawn sky. On Sunday, July 4, the swiftly-moving planet will reach a maximum angle of 22 degrees west of the sun, and peak visibility for its morning apparition. The best time to see the planet will come just before 5 a.m. in your local time zone, when Mercury will sit very low in the east-northeastern sky. In a telescope (inset) the planet will show a 36%-illuminated, waxing crescent phase. Mercury’s position well below the morning ecliptic (green line) will make this apparition a poor one for Northern Hemisphere observers, but a good showing for those located near the Equator, and farther south.

    For a brief period before sunrise on Thursday, July 8, the slim crescent of the old, waning moon will be positioned several finger-widths to the left (or 4 degrees to the celestial northeast monocular telescope for stargazing here) of the bright dot of Mercury. Look for the pair sitting very low over the east-northeastern horizon from the time they rise at about 4:20 a.m. local time until about 5 a.m. The moon and Mercury will be close enough to see them together through binoculars (red circle) - but turn your optics away before the sun rises.

    Several times a year, for a few hours near its first quarter phase, a feature on the moon called the Lunar X becomes visible in strong binoculars and backyard telescopes. When the rims of the craters Purbach, la Caille, and Blanchinus are illuminated from a particular angle of sunlight, they form a small, bright X-shape. The Lunar X is located on the terminator, about one third of the way up from the southern pole of the Moon (at 2° East, 24° South). On Friday, July 16 the ‘X’ is predicted to start developing by about 7 p.m. EDT (or 23:00 GMT), peak in intensity at around 9 p.m. EDT (or 01:00 GMT on July 17), and then gradually fade out. The peak will be during waning daylight for observers in the eastern Americas - but you can observe the moon in a telescope during daytime, as long as you take care to avoid the sun. The Lunar X will be visible anywhere on Earth where the moon is shining, especially in a dark sky, between 23:00 and 03:00 GMT on July 17.

     

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