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Author Topic: NAM 42 Now Available  (Read 2009 times)

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Offline Tarkus

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NAM 42 Now Available
« on: August 24, 2021, 10:47:16 AM »
The NAM Team is pleased to announce the release of the 42nd edition of the Network Addon Mod, NAM 42.



Download Link

LEX (Cross-Platform)

RELEASE NOTES

In memory of Paul Pedriana, Lead Programmer for SimCity 4, who passed away in July 2021 from a sudden heart attack while cycling. Thank you, Paul, for everything--we wouldn't be here without you.

Before you run off in excitement to install the new NAM version, please make sure to read this (short) document first, to ensure the best Network Addon Mod experience.

Note that without the 4GB Patch being properly applied to the game by Windows (and Linux/WINE) users (or the use of the "Low RAM/No RHW" Controller option for users on lower-spec systems/32-bit operating systems), the game will crash to desktop. The installation for the NAM on Windows has changed, as there is now a batch file (NetworkAddonMod_Setup_Version42.bat) that users should run to begin installation, which will automate the 4GB Patch process. macOS users should continue to use the .jar file, and since the macOS version is a 64-bit application, the 4GB Patch is not required on macOS.


REQUIREMENTS


 
  • Java Runtime Environment (available from AdoptOpenJDK--a 64-bit Windows copy of JRE 11 is enclosed in the download)
  • [For Windows Users running the 4GB Full NAM Controller and RealHighway (RHW) System]: NTCore 4GB Patch (included in download (4gb_patch.exe) with new automated installation (NetworkAddonMod_Setup_Version42.bat), or available from NTCore)
  • A copy of SimCity 4 Deluxe/Rush Hour. Windows/Linux copies must be updated to at least Version 1.1.638. (GOG and Steam digital copies are already at Version 1.1.641 and ready to use with the NAM.) Only the Steam version of the Aspyr macOS port is supported on macOS 11 (Big Sur) and later, as the App Store version no longer supports mods, due to Big Sur's sandboxing changes.


INSTALLATION AND GENERAL NOTES
Before beginning the installation process, if you have used a previous version of the NAM, make sure you remove it before proceeding further.
To install the mod, if you are on Windows, open NetworkAddonMod_Setup_Version42.bat to begin the installation process. This will begin with the process to install the 4GB Patch on the game, and then move onto the actual NAM installation process.

On macOS, open NetworkAddonMod_Setup_Version42.jar to begin installation.
On Linux, open NetworkAddonMod_Setup_Version42.sh to begin installation.

Note that the NAM is packaged in an installer, and simply dumping the contents of the download into the Plugins folder will not install the mod. Doing so will only slow the game down, and none of the NAM's menu additions will appear.

Note that the NTCore 4GB Patch is REQUIRED if you are running the Full NAM Controller ("4GB Full" options in the installer), which is required to use the RealHighway (RHW) system. If the installation procedure is begun via NetworkAddonMod_Setup_Version42.bat, as is the new recommended procedure, the 4GB Patch should be automatically applied to the game. Otherwise, the patch can be found inside the download, or downloaded directly from NTCore here, where further instructions on use of the patch can be found. Also due to this installer change, the NAM Controller Compiler is no longer run as part of the installation process.

Users will have an option to install one of two pre-built NAM Controller options, the Full "4GB" option, which has a substantial size and requires the 4GB Patch and a 64-bit operating system, or a "Low RAM/No RHW" version that does not require the 4GB Patch, and does not include the code for the RealHighway (RHW) system, the most expansive feature in the mod. The "Low RAM/No RHW" version should be used by those with 32-bit operating systems (i.e. Windows XP), less than 4GB RAM, and/or by those not using the RHW. Users wishing for further customization of NAM Controller size can still run the Controller Compiler manually, as it is available in the download.

Users wishing to simply use the NAM's Traffic Simulator improvements should skip the main NAM Installation and instead load up the Traffic Simulator Configuration Tool (TSCT), which is in the folder of the same name. The tool itself is "TSCT.jar", though may be easier to open using the batch file ("TSCT.bat"). Note that the TSCT also requires the Java Runtime Environment.

COMPATIBILITY

The Network Addon Mod, in its current form with the full slate of installation options, is designed to run on systems with a 64-bit operating system and more than 4GB RAM. Most modern PCs should be able to comfortably run the mod. It is possible to run the NAM on 32-bit operating systems, and/or systems with 4GB or less RAM, by selecting a smaller feature set (minus the RHW) and the "Low RAM/No RHW" NAM Controller option, or manually compiling a smaller NAM Controller using the Controller Compiler.

At least 1.2GB of hard drive space is required, in order to fully unpack the installer, but actual installation size may run from as little as 1.7MB to as much as 850MB, depending on the options chosen and if one selects to manually run the Controller Compiler after installation.

The Network Addon Mod is compatible with the following versions of the game:
 
  • A) Retail Windows disc copies of SimCity 4 Deluxe OR SimCity 4 with the Rush Hour Expansion Pack, updated to at least Version 1.1.638.
  • B) Retail Windows digital copies of SimCity 4 Deluxe OR SimCity 4 with the Rush Hour Expansion Pack (Version 1.1.641), from all digital retailers except Origin (i.e. GOG.com, Steam, Amazon).
  • C) Digital Windows copies of SimCity 4 Deluxe obtained redeeming an existing CD key (not purchasing) through Origin Customer Support.
  • D) Retail Mac digital copies of SimCity 4 Deluxe, purchased through Steam, or, if on macOS 10.15 (Catalina) or earlier, the App Store. (NOTE: Platform-specific technical support for the NAM on macOS is extremely limited).
  • E) Retail Mac disc copies of SimCity 4 Deluxe, running on macOS/OS X Version 10.6 (Snow Leopard) or earlier. (NOTE: Platform-specific technical support for the NAM on macOS is extremely limited.)


The Network Addon Mod is NOT compatible with the following versions of the game:


 
  • F) Retail disc copies of SimCity 4 Deluxe OR SimCity 4 with the Rush Hour Expansion Pack that have not been patched (Version 1.1.610 or 1.1.613).
  • G) Retail Windows digital copies of SimCity 4 Deluxe purchased from Origin
  • H) Copies utilized as part of EA Play (formerly Origin Access)/Xbox Game Pass.
  • I) The App Store version of the Mac port, if running on macOS 11 (Big Sur) or later.
  • J) Retail disc copies of non-Deluxe SimCity 4 (sometimes marketed later as "SimCity 4 Classic"), without the Rush Hour Expansion Pack (Version 1.0.272 or earlier)
  • K) Pirated or cracked copies of SimCity 4 Deluxe OR SimCity 4 with the Rush Hour Expansion Pack.

What should I do if the NAM installer rejects my copy of the game?


The new NAM installer (introduced with the NAM 37 Release Candidate) no longer runs a version check. However, it is strongly recommended that users check the version they are running, as unpatched copies can be unstable. Version 1.1.610 and Version 1.1.613 are NOT supported. In Case F, the solution is simply to install the EP1 Update 1 patch, which can be downloaded from from Simtropolis here or SimCity 4 Devotion here. To determine the correct SKU version for your copy of SimCity 4, find the installation directory, and look in the subfolder named sku_data. Alternatively, one can simply try all the SKU versions of the patch, until one works.

For Case G and H, see the section about Origin here.
For Case I, changes Apple made to the "sandboxing" system with macOS 11 (Big Sur) have effectively made it impossible to play the App Store version with any kind of mods or plugins. We recommend you seek a refund and instead purchase the Steam version of the macOS port. Users still running the App Store version on macOS 10.15 (Catalina) or earlier should still be able to install the mod, though with more difficulty than the Steam version, due to the reliance on sandboxing.

For Cases J and K, it is recommended that you purchase a digital copy of SimCity 4 Deluxe (NOT from Origin).

New Features for NAM 42
 
  • The long-awaited 3-Level Crossings for the RealHighway (RHW) system have been added.
  • The Network Widening Mod (NWM) networks now have vastly improved stability, including in tight situations. Note that some intersections have been rotated as part of this process, and may appear to be in the wrong position upon loading. Simply clicking these situations with the appropriate network tool with re-orient them.
  • RHW FLEX Width Transitions (FLEX-WTs) are now available, supporting over 200 possible network configurations with only 5 FLEX Pieces, with vastly improved slope tolerance. To use the FLEX-WTs, simply connect the desired networks into each end of the transition.
  • The RHW FLEX Height Transitions (FLEX-HT) have been expanded to include a new 1-Level 90 Curved version, which presently supports L0-L1 RHW-2, L0-L1 MIS, and L0-L1 RHW-4.
  • RHW FLEX Neighbor Connectors (FLEX-NCs) are now available, supporting every RHW network, including the L1-L4 elevated networks.
  • An RHW Basketweave FLEX Piece has been added, allowing for ramp crossings in tight quarters, presently for L0 and L1 RHW-4.
  • An RHW FLEX S-Curve has been added, allowing support for L0-L2 RHW-2 and L0-L4 RHW-4.
  • Draggable Smooth Diagonal S-Curves have been added to the Road, One-Way Road, OWR-1, RHW-2, and MIS networks, along with the ability to make a Street version via the existing Diagonal Street FLEX/Helper Pieces.
  • The Road Roundabouts have been overhauled, with revamped textures, a new center island prop, and support for new intersection combinations with Road, Street, One-Way Road, RHW-2, and MIS.
  • The NAM's Bridge system has undergone a revamp, with a new file architecture, a new OWR-3 Thru Truss bridge, various cosmetic fixes for bridges at various lengths, and pathing corrections to the RHW-6S Compact Box Girder.
  • Several new large, multi-line stations for the Hybrid Railway (HRW) and RealRailway (RRW) networks have been added.
  • The Diagonal Streets textures have been revamped.
  • Stop-controlled "rural" intersections have been added: Road x Road +, Road x Road T, Avenue x Road +, Avenue x Road T (Avenue-Thru/Road-End), FTL Type 110 x Road +, and FTL Type 110 x Road T (FTL-Thru/Road-End). To add stop control, transition a Road to Street one tile before an intersection, and then cross/intersect it with Street. Limited support was provided for these in previous recent releases, and any such existing intersections will need to be rebuilt.
  • A long-standing issue with the RHW-8S Type E1 ramps, when overridden from the bottom of the ramp, has been corrected.
  • The Canal Addon Mod (CAN-AM) now has improved automata generation, as well as improvements to station functionality.
  • The RRW Slope and Tunnel Parameters section now has three options: Maxis Default (which now changes the tunnel models to match the RRW), Moderate (the new default), and Strict (the only option previously).
  • Various stability issues with the ERRW Viaduct crossings with RHW networks have been addressed.
  • A shell script has been added to the installation package, to improve the user experience on Linux (thanks to Durfsurn.
  • Various LHD path fixes for the RRW and Avenue Roundabouts have been incorporated.
  • The draggable form of the RHW-8S Type D2 Wide ramp has been stabilized.
  • An option to remove "legacy" RHW menu buttons from the Highways menu has been added, along with general Highways menu improvements. The "Compact" RHW-6C-to-4 Transition Puzzle Piece has been disabled from the Legacy Width Transitions menu, due to conflict with other items.
  • The Single-Tile Roundabouts have undergone revision, and may need to be rebuilt in existing cities.


DOCUMENTATION

For more information about NAM installation and this release, please see the "Read First" document, enclosed in the download (0-read-first.html) and available online.

The remainder of the documentation can also be consulted online at: sc4devotion.com/namdoc


Please note that NAM 41 and earlier have been discontinued, and are no longer eligible for any form of technical support.

Thank you all for your continued support--hope you enjoy!

Offline Tarkus

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Re: NAM 42 Now Available
« Reply #1 on: August 24, 2021, 09:02:24 PM »
Also a quick note--if you downloaded it more than about an hour ago, the compression algorithm used on the .zip file was such that it had some issues when trying to extract it with Windows' built-in tools or with WinRAR.  7-zip opens it fine, however.

I did go ahead and recompress and reupload it--slightly larger file now (north of 900MB), but it seems to be less picky about what you use to open it now.

-Alex

Offline grossmanbr

Re: NAM 42 Now Available
« Reply #2 on: August 25, 2021, 06:23:27 PM »
As always, great work from the NAM Team!

Offline AsimPika3172

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Re: NAM 42 Now Available
« Reply #3 on: August 25, 2021, 08:13:00 PM »
IS time for enjoying NAM 42!!!!  :bnn: :thumbsup: &apls
I loves Sim City forever!

Offline djp

Re: NAM 42 Now Available
« Reply #4 on: August 26, 2021, 03:16:19 PM »
Thank you Alex and all the NAM teams &apls

I'm hoping to find time to get back into SC4 in the near future as I am really impressed with the recent developments.

I'll happily take on any LHD testing if required...


Take care people ;)

David

Offline Jack_wilds

Re: NAM 42 Now Available
« Reply #5 on: August 27, 2021, 05:59:11 PM »
awesome and a super well done 10/10....

 &apls

 down loaded yesterday...

 :bnn:

as that was officially NAM day, wishing all a great NAM week...

 :thumbsup:


have fun unpacking new toys...  :popcorn:


 :satisfied:


Offline deanva

Re: NAM 42 Now Available
« Reply #6 on: August 27, 2021, 09:45:19 PM »
Alex you need to ad that 7zip or similar is needed to extract the NAM files using Windows 10. I had deleted my first 7zip from my computer and was not able to get the NAM working until someone in the discord chatroom said it was needed. There is nothing in your documentation stating it was required.

Offline Tarkus

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Re: NAM 42 Now Available
« Reply #7 on: August 28, 2021, 04:39:15 AM »
Thanks for all the kind words, everyone!

Alex you need to ad that 7zip or similar is needed to extract the NAM files using Windows 10. I had deleted my first 7zip from my computer and was not able to get the NAM working until someone in the discord chatroom said it was needed. There is nothing in your documentation stating it was required.

I repackaged and reuploaded the file shortly after you downloaded it, so 7-zip is no longer required.  It was not intended to be a requirement, which is why there's no mention of it anywhere, and why I repackaged and reuploaded it. 

With the initial go, I made an attempt to try to get the file size down below 900MB by using LZMA compression on the .zip file, which succeeded, but it turned out that 7-zip was the only extractor tool out there that really seemed to play nice with that compression.  The file's about 60MB larger with the less efficient (but more compatible) compression that's on it now.  We're probably going to hit the 1GB mark with one of the next couple releases.

-Alex

Offline ArduousCynic

Re: NAM 42 Now Available
« Reply #8 on: September 13, 2021, 12:45:49 PM »
Y'all's work and love is astounding. Thank you so much.

I have been using NAM since V.39 on a Mac version purchased from the AppStore, running OS 11.5.2. Couple small issues, but overall Awesome Opossum. (the target folder is a little different from the documentation, but I was able to find it. Sometimes I need to reinstall when a couple pieces begin to degrade.)

I notice in this newest release a statement that NAM will not work with this OS. I am curious if this is specific to the newest version 42? I have been able to use it so far with 41.

Thank you for any clarification.

Offline Tarkus

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Re: NAM 42 Now Available
« Reply #9 on: September 13, 2021, 11:02:35 PM »
Thanks for the kind words, ArduousCynic, and for your details on your setup with macOS.  While there are a couple of us on the team (myself and mgb204) who have access to the Mac version, we're both on Steam, so pretty much any information we get about the App Store version and its compatibility is what we hear from other users, not the result of firsthand experience. 

We had a user over at Simtropolis (tonyfv) who was trying to run NAM 41 with the App Store version on macOS 11 (Big Sur), and we were unable to help them install it. Due to the various changes Apple made with the sandboxing system, our previous instructions no longer worked, and several alternate solutions we attempted were also unsuccessful.  That user eventually switched over to the Steam version and created this thread, which led to us adding the warning about Big Sur and the App Store version in the NAM 42 documents.

The incompatibility warning was solely based on the premise of the Big Sur sandboxing changes making the App Store version unmoddable, so if you've managed to get NAM 42 operational with macOS 11.5.2 and the App Store version, it's obviously still moddable.  If you'd be willing to share just how you installed it, it would be extremely helpful for us, and would allow us to update the instructions for NAM 43's release.

-Alex

Offline mgb204

Re: NAM 42 Now Available
« Reply #10 on: September 14, 2021, 11:47:47 AM »
Ultimately the NAM installer (since NAM37), has been unable to directly install NAM for the AppStore release of SC4. This is because the app is distributed as a Packaged file, which 3rd party apps simply can not have access too, due to sandboxing restrictions in-place in MacOS. Up until Catalina, it just required that you install the NAM in documents (or somewhere), then move the resulting Network Addon Mod folder, into the correct Plugins folder, inside the Package (App) file. Just find the SC4 App, right click and select "Show Package Contents".

Sadly, no one has yet to provide the correct path within the package, so we can't pass this information onto others. Yet I'd be surprised a little if no Mac users who play SC4 had got this to work, or that all of them who'd updated to Big Sur used the Steam edition. The Steam version still uses Documents\SimCity 4\Plugins, just like the Windows editions do for mods. If the new rules under Big Sur are preventing AppStore releases from being edited completely (a possibility), that effectively kills off Modding support for the AppStore version of SC4 completely.

But, I suspect someone a bit more familiar with how these App Packages work, could find a way to access the relevant location to copy the NAM (or other) mods to it. Then it's a case of does the edited app still work or does that cause a security block. As Tarkus states, we'd really like to know, so we can help anyone else with the same issue. But the developer notes I linked to state that users can modify these, so unless it's out of date, I have to assume it is possible. Under Catalina I edited mine to change the background PNG files to a modded version and even swapped the intro videos for 1-second trimmed versions to speed loading, neither change cause me any problems.

Offline ArduousCynic

Re: NAM 42 Now Available
« Reply #11 on: September 14, 2021, 12:58:57 PM »
Thanks Tarkus and mgb204

It's been a minute since I did the 41 install, but how I did it was to first find the plugins folder, and then write out the path in the installer.

Opening a new finder window, a user must hold down Command, Shift, Period keys. This unhides all folders. Then the path is - Users/(username)/Library/Containers/SimCity4 Deluxe Edition/Data/Documents/SimCity4/Plugins.

I assume it works without unhiding the folders first, but that's what I did to find it. It took me a minute because I was looking for the folder com.aspyr.simcity4.app and just couldn't find it. Then I happened to scroll down further and saw the SimCity4 Deluxe Edition folder. "Why not?" says I. And there it all was.

Before you update the instructions, let me try installing the 42. I'll let you know if it works.

Thanks Y'all!

Offline ArduousCynic

Re: NAM 42 Now Available
« Reply #12 on: September 14, 2021, 06:00:12 PM »
Alrighty then!

I haven't spent any time playing yet, just kind of scrolled through a couple of menus, but I was able to install! Saw the 3 level intersections and I'm super excited to start using them! To satisfy my sense of aesthetics, I tend to build 2 T intersections in close proximity. I'll be playing around with cloverleaf ideas using those triples for sure!

Follow the instructions for Mac install in V.41. The difference is - when manually moving the Network Addon Mod folder, open a new finder window, hold Command and Shift and Period keys to unhide folders, then move Network Addon Mod folder to the location; Users/{username}/Library/Containers/SimCity4 Deluxe Edition/Data/Documents/SimCity4/Plugins.

The Library folder in this path is typically hidden. A user won't see it until they unhide their folders. After the move, simply hold Command and Shift and Period again, and all those unhidden folders get hidden again.

Looking in the App Package doesn't reveal anything that I can truly understand. I don't code, so I'm not sure what I would be looking for. But maybe the path with the unhidden folders could open opportunities with the .jar installer? You know better than me.

I consider myself a good 40% luddite. So if this actually helps other Mac users install your most awesome mod, I might have to buy myself a beer.

Thanks again y'all. I'm not much of gamer, but somehow SimCity4 with the NAM does it for me. Y'all Rawk.

Offline mgb204

Re: NAM 42 Now Available
« Reply #13 on: September 15, 2021, 05:50:22 AM »
Thanks so much for coming back on this.

So the information on opening the package file is probably irrelevant, You'd only need to edit the package to get at the Install or GameData, something which rarely needs modding. I had erroneously thought that the User data was part of the same package, however it's clear now this is in the following folder:

Users/{username}/Library/Containers/SimCity4 Deluxe Edition/Data/Documents/SimCity4/Plugins

So this is effectively the AppStore equivalent of Users/{username}/Documents/SimCity4/ for Steam users. The Plugins and Regions folders therein contain all your mods and save files/cities respectively.

It will likely still be necessary for users to install the NAM elsewhere, then move the resulting folder. But now we know where this folder is, we can better inform other users. But without access to the same version, it's impossible to know where they are. I'd say you've earnt your beer mate :).

One last tip, if you've yet to do so, you should DATPack the resulting Network Addon Mod folder, this effectively reduces the number of files/folders used by NAM. This is important on a Mac, because having beyond a certain number, which I can attest a full NAM install itself is beyond, SC4 becomes quite unstable and crashes a lot.

Quick update
So I think I can now see what's changed in Big Sur that's caused all the confusion. If we look at your screenshot, inside the Containers folders, everything is named like the apps themselves:



Whereas, if I compare that to Catalina, you can see everything uses the old com.apple.XXX naming system:



Therefore, it seems the location is different for OSX and OSXI users, so those on Catalina still need to use the old location, whereas those using Big Sur (and presumably newer) versions should use the new one.
« Last Edit: September 15, 2021, 06:22:44 AM by mgb204 »

Offline ArduousCynic

Re: NAM 42 Now Available
« Reply #14 on: September 15, 2021, 09:23:38 AM »
Yup - I will datpack it all. I had 41 datpacked just couldn't resist launching 42 before doing that.

Regarding the folders in Containers - I still have all those com.apple folders (as well as a couple others), just have never seen the com.aspyr folder. I got lucky that I scrolled down when I was first trying to install 39 and saw the SimCity4 folder. I was close to giving up.

And thanks for that edit. But you can call me Scott if you want.

Peace and Love

Offline dyoungyn

Re: NAM 42 Now Available
« Reply #15 on: September 30, 2021, 08:24:55 PM »
Thank you for the entire NAM team hard work.

Can anyone tell me how to draw FA Oneway Roads?

I know I have done this before, but have forgotten.

Offline Tarkus

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Re: NAM 42 Now Available
« Reply #16 on: October 01, 2021, 04:36:27 AM »
Thank you for the entire NAM team hard work.

Can anyone tell me how to draw FA Oneway Roads?

I know I have done this before, but have forgotten.

And thanks for the kind words!

FA One-Way Road doesn't exist outside of a limited few old-style puzzle pieces.  The One-Way Road network does have Draggable Wide Radius Curves and Multi-Radius Curves (WRCs and MRCs), as well as FLEX piece versions of the latter, but that's not true of Fractional Angle functionality.

-Alex