Trainz/AM&C/Third Party Content

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Trainz Assets & Content Management Fundamentals

Acquiring and Managing Data from Third Party Sources
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DLS 3rd party content was used as a sweetener in Trainz 2004 to wet the appitite and advertise the newly established DLS. Unlike later Trainz, early version ContentManager.exe programs served solely as a download manager, adding to but not managing the data base.
 Mouse use

What is 3rd Party Content edit

Third party content is any Trainz compatible asset made available by private communications or publicly available channels that you have not written the software for (created) yourself nor which is offered by N3V Games as official content in one release or another. Third party content is the magic in the box, since there are thousands of us contributing to the rich panoply of resources, most of it freeware, that enrich and make the Trainz modeling experience untouchable relative to the occasional short-lived competing product. Other simulators run faster, have less quirks, better graphics, but none offer either the huge asset library that is the Download Station, the community camaraderie nor the world building ease and capabilities of Trainz Surveyors toolset in any version since UTC.

Using the DLS website edit

If you are a Wikibook reader, and not a registered Trainz owner, the next (https:// secure hyper-linked) link will likely not be successful for you

The TRS2004 pre-release days (2003) saw the establishment of the first DLS facility, a shopping cart based website with search tools which many of us still find to be very useful to search out and explore the Content on the Download Station without CM getting between us and the lists, which are more like typical web-based shopping sites.  

Auto-ContentManager Downloading edit

Why ContentManager's name won't change

Trainz releases ever since UTC beta tested the nascent DLS have made two or more data ownership (.cdp, cdpa, and .cdp2) entries in the Microsoft Windows registry which allow the Download Station's shopping cart via your browser (which can see the registry) to open and use the installed local computer installation's downloader, the FTP protocol handler parts in post-CMP ContentManager.exe modules.

  • Further, in August 2015, Auran/N3V Games has instituted 'appropriate version' checks into the Trainz download sequence and the DLS itself is now limiting the downloads to appropriate TBV versions.
If running Multiple Trainz versions, see Changing CDP entries in Windows
  • Which ContentManager.exe is linked by the registry entries is the CM the DLS shopping cart will attempt to wake. If you are running multiple versions of Trainz and desire to select and download using the shopping cart facilities, you must make sure these data keys point to the desired ContentManager ..\bin folder.

Downloading From 3rd Party websites edit

Downloading 3rd party content from strange websites has it's risks, but the tight knit Trainz community provides a measure of protection for if mal-ware or spy-ware resides in any of these links, the community would be messaging about it on the forum as soon as suspicions arose and warning others of the possibility. Consequently, even hackers find hijacking a Trainz based site difficult as they get a fair amount of traffic from older experienced computer savvy Trainzers who sniff out such hacks.

good practices when using new websites
  1. Some of these sites are funded by the new download 'utilities' looking to have you also install 5-6 other items, so verify the url of the link and the meaning of each stage of installing--the Decline Offer button tends to be a minimal hyper link well off the main sight-line.
  2. This list is not comprehensive and it is recommended to all that when browsing unknown sites to keep your machine free from possible malware you should only access them from a Windows user account which is not a Window administrator account on a machine that has automatic windows update enabled, and a good online protection package such as Mal-ware bytes or Advanced System Care. Most Anti-virus software has some form of web browsing protection software these days, but the two prior are known to have stopped hostile attacks repeatedly in their tracks before harm could be done. These sites ranged from sources in China, Indonesia, the Middle East, Great Britain, Eastern Europe, Russia and the US--multiple blocks observed in each--even some seen when accessing websites such as this work or Wikipedia. This 'running your browser' as a non-admisistrator user identity is the opposite setup of how you want to Run Trainz, so plan your browsing accordingly. It is however one of the few reasons to have multiple user accounts in Windows cluttering up a personal computer. You should be able to set up Trainz under such an account to run Content Manager as an administrator for such sessions using the properties of the shortcut or exe programs. Note the problem is not Trainz, but the general lack of protection in the internet.
  3. Google Chrome or the latest Firefox with the 'noscript addon' and 'ad blocker' offer better protection than IE.
  4. Turning off Adobe Flash so it can only run when you let it is another very good strategy—many malware attacks occur using holes in flash, and it cuts down the roar of auto-running ads considerably. If you still must see that video, then a mouse click re-enables it for that browser session.
  5. Turning off cookies will prevent using many of the listed sites and in particular handicap your use of N3V Games/Auran administered web pages and web boards.
  6. NoScript (download) is available on Mozilla based browsers.
  7. Adblocker Plus (download) can be added to most modern browers.
  8. Note Google's Chrome browser enables Flash by default, and is not recommended for secure browsing—which again, ought only be done from a non-administrative User name on any machine.

See also: Trainz/External Links which also contains some other links to 3rd party sites.

  • These pages will be merged at some point in the future.

Process edit

  1. Find something you want browsing non-Auran websites. Chances are you already downloaded a route and need missing assets for it, or it's sessions. A general Google search on the kuid will often find many highly popular assets.
    In mid-2014, an new Trainz site consolidated such searching into one convenient bot assembled site and finding a kuid there often links you directly to the download page of your quarry. Highly recommended if you're just searching for missing assets!
     • If you want to see tutorials and other offerings by Trainz enthusiasts, then by all means browse the links below.

    1. For your security, many Trainz sites will require a registration and some login and validation cycle like TPR and Jointed-Rail. Recommend making a user name and password different for such browsing than any email, financial (PayPal, etc.) and even the Auran websites. (Use of the same Auran web handle on these—many have forums too!) is fine, but DO use a DIFFERENT password!)
    2. Do their sign-up dance two step and where necessary use a shopping cart if necessary. (These are security measures, so be glad!)
  1. 3rd Party sites will bundle offerings by zip, RAR, and package cdp files as a rule. Some will offer a FTP download managed link.
  2. If the site is payware, we're sure you'll figure it out. If freeware, some will nonetheless suggest a donation.
    1. Given that a simple house asset likely represents 2-3 hours work to develop, a SpeedtreeTM model upwards of a couple days as have many assets and a well modeled locomotive or passenger car with animated actions and interiors likely over six months, a modest donation is a reasonable request.
    2. The above times are one reason to not be upset when an asset shows up with errors in a newly changed data model. Upgrading hundreds of assets when N3V does a poor job of conveying what has changed so a CC can plan updates ahead of a sudden flurry of inquiries and complaints is a daunting task, and only rarely a possible one.

Third Party Trainz sites edit

See also Trainz/Where to find non-DLS assets and External Links (These pages eventually to be merged)
Editor's note: In 2014 a Trainz enthusiast with applaudable web skills wrote a Bot and scanned the web for kuids, which have subsequently been entered into a data base of his own creation. The site ' provides a easy search utility which will list multiple sources for kuids of all eras, including listing those on the DLS, just in case you didn't look there first. So for the price of registering at the site, one can find most kuids with far less trouble than searching oneself by Google, Ask, Yahoo, or Bing.


  1. — Steam locomotive models and period vehicles on various US railroads. Both payware and some
  2. ac-monkeywrench-models
  20. uzd-life.ucoz
  21. trainz-trs.ucoz
  28. US Railroad Works —Home of Auran Trainz Simulator Routes and Equipment
  29. charlie/trainzchron/
  32. — (Canadian Pacific RR)
  33. Virtual Railroader ChristmasGift
  34. Dave-Snow-Freeware
  37. N3V's TrainzOnline-HowToGuides
  39. freight_cars @LA river
  40. thread My-choo-choo-is-broke
  41. Northbay County.html
  42. banal catalog.html
  43. Forum: Davesnow Freeware
  46. Shaneturner tutorials
  48. projects-view
  50. For Russian assets — Author Kuid:#
  51. TrainzProRoutes — Author Kuid: Various, 5,000+ members last viewed, Lots of freeware
  52. — Author Kuid:#
  53. — Author Kuid:#
  54. ac-monkeywrench-models — Author Kuid:#213782 American_connections (Kent Carter)
  55. Trunda's assets KUID:71619 — Author Kuid:#71619
  56. — Author Kuid:#
  57. MBC Canadian Pacific project — Author (Ian) Cayden Kuid:#431633 Nice routes in the Canadian Rockies, great pics and writing. Take the time!
  58. Jytte's Trainz Index— Author Kuid:#386158; 6 skills building tutorials (e.g.: HOW TO MAKE A REGION FILE (and how to use it), Step by Step, By Jytte Christrup. and free content. Link is a hyperlink list of Trainz TRS-era pages. Newer releases pages???


Notes, Footnotes & References edit

Config.txt files are endemic and ever present in Trainz assets, for no asset can be defined without this type of Computer Science container. The keyword-value_of_key pairing must always be kept in mind in editing or creating Trainz content. The TrainzBaseSpec contains values and containers which are most common in asset defining config.txt files.