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Fundamentals for Trainz Trainees
Trainz | Introductory Trainz | Trainz AM&C | Creation | Appendixes |  References • Containers • Kinds • Tags • Index
 Mouse use

Trainz Notations[edit]

This special glossary page will assist the new reader in getting the gist of Trainz-speak. It is a terse set of other terms that are usually more fully elaborated on in the Glossary and at times, given topic pages all their own for in depth exposition.

Keypress notations[edit]

Many Trainz functions are accessed using the mouse or hotkeys. The later change depending upon which module of the software suite is active, though commonality of purpose is preserved from application to application when there is overlap. Mostly there isn't.

Standard Abbreviations[edit]

  • in this book —means may see elsewhere, but this is what is meant here.
  • general shorthand —means seen often on the web forums too.
  • Kc:, Kd:, Ks: Keys, usu. Hotkeys respectively in CM, Driver (DVR) or Surveyor (SUR)

Terms and Acronyms[edit]


Term Meaning Comments, clarifications, or notes
  ..\pathspec    path from
reference folder 
 usually used to signify a sub-folder (the 'local root directory') of the Trainz install directory so '..\TS12\bin and '..\bin would mean the same in usage context.
'..\TS12' means what ever the '..'=initial_pathspec is the way you installed Trainz (i.e. where TS12 is installed on your computer). See also pathspec and namespec below.
  ALCO        a popular prototyped locomotives - engine manufacturer
  Asset-X        Freeware asset fixing tool when used with TARDIS scripts to update and fix assets in conjunction with PEVtools freeware.
  baggage car        when rails were king, luggage and freight carrying cars.
  carriage        a popular prototyped passenger traincars - usu. by a manufacturer
  CM    Content Manager Utility data manager, Trainz Windows application to download, upload, archive, sort, and manipulate assets, including cloning and editing. CMP became CM 2.0 in TRS2009, and CM 3.3 later in it's 4th service pack - since that upgrade, all CMs display the new asset Trainz-build tag version (v#.#) in the title bar.
  CMP    Content Manager Plus   Older initial all in one CM Windows application introduced in v1.5 and up versions of TRS2006 and the 3 Trainz Classics.
  CSAR    Computing  term  Conditional Search and Replace. See SAR in the glossary for details and distinctions.
  EDR    Extended database repair   Selecting EDR from the CM ALT+F7 hotkey or options menu launches the big brother of the QDR, which forces a full thorough database self-audit, including checking installed assets, and record like ..UserData\Originals, backups and etcetera.
  • It takes quite a while as a result, so if tempted, make sure you have no plans for the computer for up to half a day; comparatively the EDR takes a much greater time, even with no added content on a system, for it not only rebuilds the assets.tdx index file but also rechecks validity of content, looking for faults.

In particular, disable anti-virus and Mal-ware checking and especially disable any auto updates which might reboot the system with disastrous results to Trainz. Best run overnight, verify your scheduler apps don't interrupt and that your scanning security utilities are disabled--the EDR is internal, and no scanning of files is in any ways useful, but just slow things down stealing resources and processor cycles from Trainz--which will be pushing your processor to the limits!.

  • [Ed-note:' Disabling internet connectivity has been reported to speed the process considerably.]Ø
  EMD        a popular prototyped locomotives - engine manufactured by General Motors Electromotor Division
  Error Fixing        Process, usually of running PEVtools to update some extractable data types and upgrade an asset with concurrent edits to the assets config.txt files.
  enumerated    strictly
 Enumerated types strictly define legal values, and proscribe undefinable values, which generate an error. category-region tag and category-classes are data fields which must satisfy enumerated values checks. Boolean values must only be a 1 or 0, or similarly generate errors.
  filenamespec     Operating
system path  
 reference to folders hierarchy in Windows; C:\TS12\UserData\editing\$dummyScreenshot.jpg for example has a pathspec, a filename and is when all together a 'filenamespec' combining both.


Term Meaning Comments, clarifications, or notes
Abbrv: HKey  
 A Hotkey in computing is also known as a keyboard shortcut, and are usually a Key-press combination where multiple keys are pressed at the same moment, or a Operations key that is built into the software and changes or accesses some other mode. One 'almost' universal sequence ALT+F+something in Windows Apps will bring you to the File drop down menu to Save..., save As..., Open, etcetera. So Hokey gives FILES (a mode change, launch mode entry to file operations). Another two well used: Win+E - Opens Windows Explorer; ESC suspends browser page build operationa... canceling loading that link you really didn't mean to click.
  kuid reference     enumerated data type   KUIDs data field of a tag listing a sub-asset (dependency) used to build the current asset in a config.txt file tag or container. Specific data key-words (tags) will specify a kuid reference, which must then also be listed in the asset's kuid-table (identifying independent asset dependencies).
  image file     graphics files   data in image form, Trainz handles BMP, JPG, TGA, and GIF types.
  mail car     A class of rolling stock    when rails were king, valuables and small freight (Sears and Roebuck Mail-orders!) carrying cars commonly the target of robbers like Jesse James and his crew, since they frequently carried money or bullion!
  minimap    Ks: CTRL+M 
 Kd: M 
 In Surveyor, opens a map less than full screen size that one normally sizes and positions in the lower LH corner as preferred using LMBHd. It shows the surroundings from the centered-cursor/camera position, and a key feature is it selectively allows one to see labels not otherwise displayable in Surveyor or Driver (e.g. Names of triggers) Alternatively, also M in Driver, only.


Term Meaning Comments, clarifications, or notes
alt: PEV-tools   general use, Asset updating freeware suite that in later Trainz can fix many error conditions, generate shadow meshes and convert old fashioned v1.x PM to IM mesh files. See Setting up PEVtools and PEVtools pages.
  QDR    Quick Database Repair   Selecting QDR from the CM ALT+F7 hotkey or options menu launches the little brother of the Extended Data Base repair, which forces a quick partial database self-audit, including cross-checking installed assets, filenames, and inventory check it's references to the record like ..UserData\Originals, backups and etcetera.
  • It takes a short while (10-30 minutes) but may reconnect files in Assets.tdx, 'open for edit' or those you may have added in other folders as a result; comparatively the EDR takes a much greater time, even with no added content on a system.
  pathspec     Operating
system path  
 reference to folders hierarchy in Windows; C:\TS12\UserData\editing\$dummyScreenshot.jpg for example has a pathspec, a filename and is when all together a 'filenamespec' combining both.
 fm SAR 
Term (Jargon) 
 lit.:Conditional Search and Replace and Search and Replace, (aka, 'Find and Replace'); variant GSAR=Global Search and Replace (all or nothing, more risky that you may change something you shouldn't than one by one. Use REGEX to narrow risk significantly.
 Set notation
{xxx: val-0, val-1, val-2, ..., val-nn}  
 list of 'xxx' typed things are:... values list   example: {tag: category-era-0, category-era-1, category-era-2, ...}


Term Meaning Comments, clarifications, or notes
  TAD    Trainz Assets
 Where all the goodies bundled or off the web are kept in your Trainz Installation to feed CM, Driver, Surveyor and Railyard.
  TBS    The TrainzBaseSpec   Fundamental parent data KIND which every self-defining asset or element needs to bootstrap itself in Trainz.
 Trainz CC
or TCC  
+ 'Routes'
 Trainz Complete Collection — an omnibus 3CD collection with TRS2004-SP4, TRS2006-SP1 and Trainz Routes (extra content CD).
  Trainz 1.x    Trainz 1.3   The 2001 simulator which wouldn't quit despite Microsoft's wishes. Surveyor looks much the same with a different skin and improved Surveyor tools options like layers.
  Trainz UTC     Trainz UTC    formal release name of 'UTC', Trainz: Ultimate Trainz Collection, version bundled and upgraded Trainz 1.3, with scenarios introducing TrainzScript and some extra routes and content. Scenarios scripts lead to Scripting and Trainz interactive features (railcars and industries).
  Trainz Routes        A 2006 or 2007 CDROM extra content release of numerous small routes when Auran, impoverished by Fury was desperately trying to raise cash.
         in this book, shorthand
  TR04     TRS2004    in this book, shorthand, often also T'04
  TR06     TRS2006    Seen some on the forums since TS10 and TS09; in this book, shorthand; often also T'06
or TC1
or TC2  
  TC1&2    general shorthand, most widely distributed together so grouped; means Trainz Classics 1&2 release with a North American flavored Railroading Theme.
  TC3     TC3    in this book & general shorthand for Trainz Classics 3 release with a British Railroading Theme.
  TS09     TS2009    in this book & general shorthand, also:
TS2009: World Builder Edition
  TS10     TS2010    general shorthand also:
TS2010: Engineer's Edition
  TS12        general shorthand also:
TS2012: 10th Anniversary Edition


Term Meaning Comments, clarifications, or notes
  UTC    Trainz v1.5 Ultimate Trainz Collection   general shorthand for the important version that introduced scripting in Trainz, which in TRS2004 gave Trainz interactive railcars and industries.

File Types in Trainz[edit]

Animation, for example a steam locomotive's connecting rod movements, or water movement on a river or lake.
Bookmark. Used to note the current camera position in Surveyor (?).
Content Dispatcher Pack. A file used by Auran and some other content creators to distribute additional assets. A CDP file can contain one or more assets.
Content Dispatcher Pack 2. A new version of the CDP format, used by Auran and some other content creators to distribute additional assets for Trainz Classics.
Used to store the program's configuration details. This is a widely used file type, but the format is specific to each program.
Cache file.
The terrain file that contains the topographic details of a map. This is the file that is produced and replaced when creating a map from DEM data.
GameScript source file.
GameScript encoded file.
GameScript library file.
GameScript template file.
Indexed 3D mesh.
Jet Archive. Contains compressed copies of multiple assets.
Kinematics. Associated with animations such as pantographs.
Progressive 3D mesh. Obsolescent after TRS2004, but still in many older DLS assets.
A 2D texture which can be applied to a surface of a 3D object. Generally BMP, JPG, and most often the preferred TGA file types.
Usually found with a .GND file, contains information about the trackwork of a layout.
Trackside Object. The variations in a layout that are required for a specific scenario, for example extra trackmarks and triggers.


Notes and Footnotes[edit]