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How is the colors and seasons features found in SAM 2 supposed to work?


I'm using Ortho4XP all over Europe and I tried pressing the 'Enable' button next to Ortho4XP and the 'Enable' button next to Winter but can't see any difference.


What exactly are these features supposed to do?


If I would be able to get a winter look now with that season coming in many parts of Europe, it would be quite cool! At the same time I'm a bit scared when I don't know exactly what these features do and how they may affect my Ortho4XP tiles. I have almost 800 tiles/6 TB Ortho4XP ZL17 which took me quite a while to build. So I think it goes without saying I don't want to perform any actions that will screw up my tiles in any way...


Reading the SAM documentation, I understand I need to download SAM Seasons extension?


These are the features I'm talking of:



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yes but also in the Seasons documentation there is described how the Features work.

Left side: Colors.

This only makes a SAM compatible Airport better adapt to the environment like Ortho4XP , OrbX True Earth (if installed) .......

Right Side: The Seasons also only work with SAM compatible Airports and with the X-Plane 11 default terrain.

For example (self made) Ortho4XP photosceneries SAM cannot change at the time.


Many Airports will be updated the next time to make them SAM compatible.


To test the Seasons install the Seasons Library too as described in my Installation Post after you have correct installed SAM.


Then go to an Airpoprt (default) or SAM Compatible (for Example our St. Tropez) with X-Plane 11 default Terrain around.

Then start the SAM Seasons Plugin and choose (see your above picture) Deep Winter (click on enable).

Then all goes to white.


Greets Heinz

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vor 1 hour , Heinz Flichtbeil sagte:

For example (self made) Ortho4XP photosceneries SAM cannot change at the time.


Now they can (but currently deep winter only):


O4XP Seasons - X-Plane.org




vor 3 Stunden , WebMaximus sagte:

If I would be able to get a winter look now with that season coming in many parts of Europe, it would be quite cool! At the same time I'm a bit scared when I don't know exactly what these features do and how they may affect my Ortho4XP tiles. I have almost 800 tiles/6 TB Ortho4XP ZL17 which took me quite a while to build. So I think it goes without saying I don't want to perform any actions that will screw up my tiles in any way...


The O4XP Seasons script is pretty simple and save but working through 800 tiles is a lot and this requires double the disc space - but technically this is all possible to do. Maybe just create winter textures for some select tiles where snow really makes sense as for example in the alps? This would then look like below (BI, ZL16, with modified X-Europe 3).


If this is not for you there is still the winterizer approach (not that beatiful but it works and does not need much disc space):


Tutorial - SAM Seasons with Ortho4xp and Winterizer - FlyAgi.de















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Using the first approach isn't an option for me when you say it will require the double amount of space.


I might try out the second approach. Is there anywhere I can learn what exact modifications are done to my tiles using that Winterizer program? 

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Winterizer moves some files around, creates a library.txt and new winter .ter-files using special decals to get the snow into the textures without the need of modifying the actual textures - also it has a revert function so you can reset all tiles easily (worked for me).

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@Heinz Flichtbeil


Will pressing the enable buttons for colors and seasons do any changes to standard X-Plane 11 files if you don't have the seasons pack installed?


Reason for me asking is I did that yesterday night just to see if there would be any changes. I got this message telling me a scenery reload was required. I chose to allow that and it then took quite some time for it to finish.


What happened (if anything) during that scenery reload when I didn't have the seasons plugin installed?


I think I'll just skip all this for now but before putting this behind me, I want to make sure I don't go on from here with any modified files without knowing about it.


I guess I could find out by launching the X-Plane 11 installer and allow it to replace any modified files. But only if necessary.

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The Colors and Seasons don't modify anything, selecting a color or season just triggers some (custom) DataRefs - it does not modify anything. The scenery reaload is required because textures can't be changed in any other way - those texture are build into supporting sceneries already (SAM Seasons for example is such a scenery), they just have to be triggered and reloaded so there are no changes to X-Plane, any Scenery or anything else.


If you don't want to use the seasons just switch them all off in the SAM Colors + Seasons menu - then everything will be default. As the SAM plugin is required for many other things than seasons I don't recommend to uninstall it just to get rid of the seasons. You don't even have to uninstall SAM_Seasons but if you don't need it deleting will spare you some disc space - just head on, you won't destroy anything.


There are no modified files to worry about.



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  • 4 months later...

Hallo Agi,


zunächst einmal viel Lob, denn Deine Beiträge sind immer sehr interessant und bereichernd!


Aktuell möchte ich gerne die Jahreszeiten im X-Plane darstellen und bin auf diesen Beitrag gestoßen.

Ich verwende z.T. Ortho4XP mit Mesh/Höhendaten sowie Overlays von Alpilot.

Ich habe das SAM plugin für die seasons installiert und für WoldJetways. Dann bin ich genau nach Deinen Beschreibungen vorgegangen

und habe entsprechend einen neuen OrdnerF:\ Ortho4XP\Tiles_Deepwinter angelegt und nur einen zOrtho4XP_+48+011 Ordner für die Gegend des Münchener

Flughafens mit dem Winterizer konvertiert. Eine Verknüpfung dieses neuen zOrtho (Deepwinter) Ordner zu X-Plane habe ich nicht gemacht. Bei mir liegen

sonst alle Ortho-Dateien auf einer extra F:\ Platte und sind mit dem Custom Scenery-Ordner in X-Plane verknüpft.

Dann habe ich die library.txt umbenannt, allerdings manuell (s.Anlage).

Aktiviere ich nun im SAM Plugin Deep Winter und Trees covered with snow in deep winter, so bekomme ich nur einen leichten Reif an den Bäumen (s.Foto 1)

Lösche ich nun die zOrtho4Xp_+48+011 aus dem Ortho4XP\Tiles \-Ordern und ersetze sie durch den neu erstellten zOrtho4XP_+48+011 Ordner us dem \Tiles_Deepwinter-Order, 

so bekomme ich eine schon ganz anschauliche deep winter Darstellung (s.Foto 2+3)

Ob ich das bei aktuellen Plusgraden mache oder mit historischem Wetter aus 12/2018 mit Minusgraden, scheint keine Rolle zu spielen.


Wie mache ich das, dass ich mit dem SAM Plugin und Deep Winter gleich die "richtige" Schneelandschaft bekomme ohne vorher die z-Ordner tauschen zu müssen.

Im Weiteren, wie dynamisiere ich das Ganze, damit die Jahreszeiten und Schneefall etc. in Abhängigkeit vom Kalender und den Temperaturen, Niederschlag etc.,  automatisch

eingestellt werden?

Das ganz rechte Foto 4 habe ich bei historischem Wetter vom 11.12.2018 in München gemacht.

Ich habe SkyMaxx, RWC und das FSGRW installiert.


Oh, sorry, habe gerade bemerkt, dass ich im englischen Forum bin - soll ich es übersetzten?


Vielen Dank im voraus!


b738 - 2020-04-17 19.14.01.png

b738 - 2020-04-17 19.21.58.png

b738 - 2020-04-17 19.22.10.png

b738 - 2020-04-17 19.40.22.png


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In English again now!


Hello Agi,


first of all a lot of praise, because of your contributions are always very interesting and very enriching!

Currently I would like to see the seasons in X-plane and came accros this post. I use the SAM plugin for the seasons and for WorldJetways.

Then I proceeded exactly according to your descriptions and created a new folder F:\ Ortho4XP\Tiles_Deepwinter and only one zOrtho4XP_+48+011folder for the area around Munich airport

with Winterizer.exe coverted. I did'nt link the new z.Ortho(Deepwinter) folder to X-Plane. Otherwise all my Ortho4XP folder on an extra disc (F:\Ortho4XP) and linked to the custom scenery folder in

X-Plane 11.

Then I renamed the library.txt, but manualley (see attachment). If I activate the SAM plugin deep winter and trees covered with snow in deep winter I get a slight frost on the tress only (s.photo 1).

If I delete the zOrtho4XP_+48+011 from the Ortho4XP\Tiles\-folder and replace it with the new created zOrtho4XP_+48+011 folder from the \Tiles_Deepwinter folder, so I get a very clear deep winter representation

(s.Photo 2+3). It doesn't matter whether I do at current plus degrees or with historical weather from 12/2018 with minus degrees.


How do I manage it, that I get with the SAM plugin the "right" snow landscape without having to swap the z-folder first?

Furthermore, how could I dynamize the hole thing, so that the seasons and snowfall etc. depending on the calendar and temperatures, precipitation etc. will automatically be set?

I took the very right photo 4 in historical weather conditions at December 11th 2018 at Munich airport.

I use SkyMaxxPro, RWC and FSGRW.


Thanks in advance!



Photos see above please.



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Well... for the ortho4xp tiles the best results are given if you winterize the tiles using the O4XP Seasons tool. The download has changed so it's currently only available from my website:


O4XP Seasons - FlyAgi.de


The O4XP Seasons tool creates a library structure and a duplicate of the summer textures for the ortho tile. You then have to use XnConvert (or whatever color editing tool you like with batch functionality) to change the textures in the tile's deepwinter folder and once this is done your tile will show winter textures if deep winter is selected in the SAM colors + seasons menu.


There is a more detailed guide at the O4XP Seasons download page which explains every single step you have to perform. The method explained there creates fully functional SAM Seasons ready orthotiles so there is no further need of editing library files, link or disable scenery folders or else, just switch to deep winter in the SAM menu, reload textures and that's it.




The trees on your pictures seem to look right for the most part, the only thing which is a bit irritating to me is some of them seem to cast shadows - they actually should never cast shadows. Did you modify the trees or are you using outdated version of FlyAgi Vegetation or sceneries using outdated versions of my trees?


Automatic or dynamic seasonal changes are currently not supported by the SAM plugin so the only way to change seasons is using the Colors + Seasons menu and choose one season there.











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Thank you for your fast reply!

Ok, I'll try this new way. Otherwise I thought about it, that I could the converted parts link to X-Plane simply, then I noticed (astonishingly) that I'm able to select with SAM spring, summer and autumn and naturally deep winter now, but not winter.

In relation to the trees I noticed maybe only a little bad Outfit e.g. at the mountains 

of LOWI and it's looking much better, full off and at my opinion a little bit more trees at all arrears with trees if I enable colors Ortho4XP in SAM.



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Winter is not working for you? Snow only occurs in deep winter, this is by design.


Regarding the trees coverage there is nothing we can do because the trees and forest placement is not affected by the seasons, only the textures are changed but all the placement depends on your actual scenery. If you're using ortho4xp created overlays they will not match the ortho ground and are off - when flying in Europe you should have a look at simHeaven's X-Europe scenery which uses OSM data for more accurate positioning of everything including trees and forests.


Neither the SAM Seasons nor the SAM GlobalTrees do anything regarding trees placement, they both are just libraries replacing assets.







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Would you say that the result will be better if I use for the ortho4xp tiles the O4XP Seasons tool to winterize it or will I get the same result with Winterizer.exe?

And will there be something missing if I delete the e.g. zOrtho4XP_+48+011 from the Ortho4XP\Tiles\-folder and replace it with the new created zOrtho4XP_+48+011 folder from the \Tiles_Deepwinter folder (converted with winterizer.exe), because I'm able

to change the seasons in SAM obviously?


Are there a possibillity to link simHeavenX-Europe from an external disc to the custom scenery folder of X-Plane?


And (sorry) my fourth question. If I use Ortho4XP and alpilot HD Mesh v.4 to get better elevation data and extract overlays at the end of the whole Ortho4XP-process as an batch build process and install https://simheaven.com/simdownloads/x-europe-4/ as a supplement will there be a problem of e.g. double overlays and then forced drop in performans?



My OS: Win10, X-Plane11.50b4, 32GBRAM, i9 9900k, NVIDIA Geforce RTX 2080 Super 8GBVRAM, 2x 1TB SSD

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Well... deleting summer tiles is no good idea. If you use the O4XP Seasons tool you will get one single tile which includes a summer and a winter version and responds to SAM controls. If you used a different method resulting in two different tile folders you will have to enable or disable them manually and the tiles will not respond to SAM controls. A tile modified by O4XP Seasons will include a summer and a deepwinter folder (and more seasons if you like) so everything is stored in this tile's folder and nothing should be deleted. If you want to revert a tile to default there is a reset script included with the O4XP Seasons tool which will delete everything but the default summer textures and reset the folder structure for you so your tile will be as it was never touched. If you don't understand the library system and the ortho tile's file structures I strongly recommend not to delete anything manually - it's very likely you want to get it back later on or you tile won't work anymore causing scenery loading errors or else.


Regarding this winterizer tool all I can say is I did have a look at it, tried it out on some of my tiles but the results looked weird to me and very much blueish overall so I don't use it. The O4XP Seasons approach results in larger file sizes but also it gave me much better visuals, also this approach supports the other seasons (spring, autumn, non-snowy winter) as well.


Further, if you are using ortho4xp tiles you can't use HD Mesh tiles for the same region, they are both mesh tiles and you will either see the one or the other depending on scenery order but you can't enhance ortho4xp tiles by installing HD Mesh in addition, this just has no effect at all. The only thing you can do is extracting overlays but it's much better to use X-Europe instead because X-Europe really places objects, trees and other stuff where it belongs resulting in 3D scenery matching your orthophoto textures very accurately. There are some youtube videos explaining how to extract some elevation data from HD Mesh and use it with Ortho4xp but this only helps with minor elevation issueas and does not give you HD Mesh elevation quality in your ortho4xp tiles.


Using X-Europe and the ortho4xp overlays usually does not break anything, I'm doing this myself and there where no issues so far so I recommend to always create ortho4xp overlays just for the case you need them later on.


Linking addon scenery always works, not matter what scenery it's about. Make sure you link the original scenery folder (and not some subfolders) to your Custom Scenery folder and they will be recognized as a normal scenery. If you put X-Europe onto a seperate drive you have to link all the 'simheaven_X-Europe-XX-YYY' folders into your custom scenery folder, regarding ortho4xp tiles it works the same way, the tiles usually are in the 'Tiles' folder and named like 'zOrtho4XP_+XX-YYY' so you have to link all these folders into your Custom Scenery folder as well.



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A last question please. I installed the SAM plugin at X-Plane11\Resources\plugins and the seasons_SAM in the custom scenery folder - is that oK? I ask for that, because the updater for OpenSceneryX would like an indication of e.g. Four seasons plugin or SAM plugin and will it be usefull to incorporate HD forests by OpenSceneryX?


Thank you very much for all your help and time! Maybe there will be another question in future.

First I'll use the O4XP Seasons tool as you recommended. SimHeaven X-Europe I just downloaded, too and study the manual.




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The OpenSceneryX HD Forests are the same as SAM GlobalTrees and they are also part of the latest SAM Seasons version, the trees are all the same and they don't interfere whith each other. It's okay to install the SAM extension into Custom Scenery but if you do so they are not recognized by the SAM Suite software which is the only way to get further updates for any SAM extension so I recommend to use the standard installation path for SAM extensions which is X-Plane 11/Resources/plugins/SAM/libs.



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Sorry, but I can't find the contents from the folder zOrtho4xp_Tile comming with O4XP Seasons into your zOrtho4xp tile folder (for example zOrtho4XP_+47+012).

There is no 04XP Seasons folder inside my folder zOrtho4xp_Tile.

Furthermore I can't find the python script O4XP_Seasons.py.

I downloaded Python 3.8.2-amd64.exe and can't find the needed script under lib or scripts etc.

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