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Garmin nRoute is unable to open / find my map files
heyyou325
I've been reluctantly looking for a replacement for Garmin nRoute. It isn't supported anymore, and last spring I made across country trip and found out Windows 7 and MapSource didn't get along. A Beta MapSource worked OK, but when a new version came out, you couldn't see nRoute, but it got along with Windows 7. We were about 1000 mi. into a 4000 mi trip. I thought it was real simple to use, which for me is important. It does everything I wanted, when MapSource and Windows get along. Then the new MapSource. We downloaded an old version and it works for now, but I don't really want anymore surprises, and it doesn't work with Basecamp to my knowledge.

Is there a simple inexpensive, or free is better, program that will do the same thing and be reliable? Or do you think my problems were just a one time thing?

Thank you
Ken in Regina
There is no interdependence between Mapsource and nRoute. I have Mapsource 6.13.7 and Mapsource 6.16.3 (the latest) on my computer and nRoute works just fine. I could remove the older version and nRoute would still work fine.

I have both of those versions of Mapsource on Win7. Both versions and nRoute all work fine.

Can you be more specific about what sort of problem(s) you were having?

...ken...
heyyou325
The first problem (I believe) Mapsource and nRoute just shut down, and we couldn't get it back up, everything else worked on my wife's laptop. This was last May. We contacted Garmin from our Motel room, and they sent us a Beta version of Mapsource to try, and told us of problems with Windows 7. I had heard about that from another site I go to for both a forum and free Garmin compatible maps. Then it would freeze up, just nRoute and Mapsource, not the rest of her laptop. She restarted her computer and everything worked fine. This happened more than once. Garmin wanted to know of any problems with the Beta version so we told them. Nothing too serious. After we got home, the new version of Mapsource came out (6.16.3), she downloaded it, and it couldn't see nRoute. Re-installed nRoute and still nothing. We re-installed Mapsource, still nothing. Finally installed Mapsource 6.13.7 (I think), and it was back. I might have the first and second problems mixed up, but we couldn't get it going again after the first until we installed the Beta version. Our son is getting married in June, and that's over 1000 mi each way so are hoping to get it or something else going by then. My wife likes to take 2 lane roads instead of freeways.

I've been reading about nRoute in a lot of things here, so thought I'd mention our problems and get ideas about other programs or keeping this one. We both really liked it, and haven't even learned a lot of what it does.
tcassidy
Are you sure you aren't talking about Mobile PC. nRoute doesn't interact with MapSource at all unless you are saving routes in MapSource and want to open them in nRoute. You don't have to have MapSource running when you use nRoute but must save your routes as Version 2 rather than the default Version 3 if using them with nRoute. Just use the 'Save As' dropdown in MapSource and select 'Garmin GPS Database Version 2 (*.gdb)'.

The newer NT versions of Garmin maps are not compatible as presented with nRoute though.

Terry
heyyou325
I have the old gmapsupp.img files. You have to have Mapsource to run nRoute. You have to load the maps on Mapsource to have them on nRoute. We currently have the newest nRoute, but since it hasn't been updated in years it isn't very new. I'm thinking 2.7.6. Just started having problems with it last May. They may not have to both be running, but you do need both and they interact with the maps and things. We will probably be saving routes next time as my wife was taught how to geocode I think the word is with her pics. Telling exactly where they were taken at by matching time on the camera with time and place in nRoute. Sure helps in knowing where they were taken at.
tcassidy
nRoute looks in the same place in the registry as MapSource for available maps. What you do with gmapsupp.img files I have no idea as they are not usable directly with MapSource or by extension, nRoute.

Terry
heyyou325
All the maps I have purchased or downloaded are *.img files. The ones that didn't come with an installer I put in Mapsource with mapset toolkit, one of many programs I have downloaded to use, but one of the few I have figured out how to use. Even the OSM maps came as *img and they are the routable tiles. I have an old US Topo CD or DVD bought from Garmin years ago and they are *.img files. I can't open any of them anywhere except Mapsource. If this isn't as it should be no wonder it didn't work. I don't mean to be sarcastic or anything, but this is what I've been taught. I am not too good on new fangled things, and the more I read up on them, the less I seem to know.
tcassidy
The name gmapsupp.img is specific to a secondary compiled map format for Garmin handhelds, PNDs, Mobile PC and possibly XT. The folders I see for uncompiled maps for MapSource have a bunch of img files with 8 digit names plus other ancilliary files ending in mdr,trf, etc.

Terry
heyyou325
You mean like this one that came from a Northwest Topo map 01451221.img . And in Northwest Topo there is also 1 .TDB file and 1 install uninstall. And a whole bunch of 8 digit .img files. I've been reading Garmin changed it's file type recently, but I'm not sure what to. As I say I'm just learning. Sometimes I think the best way to learn is to make big mistakes. Where would I look to find the .gdb files. I can't find them in any of the map files I have. I do have a handheld device, a GPS76CS Which I bought for fishing and have used it for several other things, including my unsuccessful attempts at mapping the trails and roads on the mountain right behind me.
tcassidy
The new files appear as a folder with a name like 'City Navigator North America NT 2011.20.gmap'. This folder, or a shortcut to it, must be placed in a specific location for MapSource to 'see' it. They have no registry reference and are not usable by nRoute unless converted to the older style and added to the registry.

Terry
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tcassidy
gdb is the extension of files you create when you save information from MapSource such as waypoints, tracks and routes in any combination. You would want to save them somewhere you could find them later for use with nRoute or MapSource. I usually create a folder called something imaginative like'Garmin Maps'! You could also save as gpx as that format is more versatile and supported by nRoute as far as I remember.

Terry
Ken in Regina
nRoute will import vers. 2 .GDB files, .MPS (really old Mapsource format), .GPX and .LOC files.

As Terry said, nRoute will not use GMAPSUPP.IMG files. Also, Mapsource will not use GMAPSUPP.IMG files. Mapsource will create those files to load on a handheld device like a Nuvi or GPSMAP or eTrex, etc. But it cannot read them .. only creates them.

nRoute and older versions of Mapsource (6.13.7 and older) use maps like the Northwest Topo you mentioned. They have to be installed so that the correct entries are in the registry. You can do this manually. OSM maps that you are using either come with instructions how to manually add the necessary registry entries or they come with an installer that will add the correct registry entries or you run MapsetToolkit, which puts the necessary registry entries in place.

Mapsource does not even have to be installed on your computer for nRoute to work. nRoute wants to see the same registry entries that the older versions of Mapsource need. Many people confuse this with thinking that it means Mapsource has to be installed. It doesn't.

Many of Garmin's map products are called "Mapsource" products because they install Mapsource as well as the maps when you run the installer from the CD/DVD. They install Mapsource so you will have a program to compile and load the maps (GMAPSUPP.IMG) into your handheld device, like the Nuvi, GPSMAP, etc.

But nRoute does not need to have a compiled mapset (GMAPSUPP.IMG). It won't use one if it's there ... doesn't know how. It looks for the same maps that Mapsource uses, not the ones it creates.

If you had any problems with nRoute in Windows 7 it had nothing to do with Mapsource incompatibilities. If it couldn't find any maps, the only reasons would be that the maps were not installed at all or they were installed improperly, e.g. the Registry entries were wrong so nRoute was looking in the wrong place.

...ken...
heyyou325
I'm getting an education in Garmin I guess. I knew Garmin had changed their map files, I guess I just mixed up what was what. However nRoute's own promotion page states "Because you have to have MapSource to use nRoute" at http://www.gpsinformation.org/penrod/nroute/nroute.html

So I still think they must interact. All the maps I have are in the old format, I'm trying not to have to change, although I have (I think) a tutorial from another site explaining how to change either way, if I need to. It will take me awhile to find where these other files are on my computer. I don't have much time during the week to do this sort of thing.

While I have decided to stay with nRoute for now, in my first post I asked if there is another free or inexpensive program that is as easy to use as nRoute? I had everything mixed up and it still worked for me. It takes me a long time to get maps downloaded as I have a bandwidth restriction on my satellite internet. There is no high speed where I am, cable or broadband. Not even cell phone access at my house.
Ken in Regina
Thanks for that link. It's a great resource to contribute.

It doesn't say you have to have Mapsource installed to run nRoute. It says you need a Mapsource product . Please go back and read the couple of paragraphs near the middle of my previous post where I explain the distinction.

If you are truly trying to understand this stuff, it's crucial that you do not confuse the program named "Mapsource" with the map products that carry the "Mapsource" brand name. You can have, and use, one without the other.

...ken...
heyyou325
It's doing it again. The night before a 400 mile round trip in one day. At first it wouldn't open maps. Restarted program then it opened some of them, didn't try but 2, both opened, but couldn't move anything on them. Restarted computer and the maps worked properly. This is what it was doing with the beta mapsouce. Oh and mapsource behaves the same way.
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