Mod Manager - Why Use It

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At first glance, you might be intimidated by the Mod Manager because you don't understand the syntax used in the .cfg files or your don't think mods are the way to go for customization, but you should consider the following as to why you might want to use the Mod Manager rather than maintain your changes or customizations to the TNG code manually:

  • the Mod Manager config file provides the documentation on what target and location you are changing
  • the Mod Manager will alert you whether the target and location code has changed on a TNG upgrade

The capabilities of the Mod Manager eliminates:

  • the need to manually keep a file to track all your changes to TNG, including changes made to configuration, styles, and templates, if you create Mod Manager config files to install those changes
  • the need to manually compare files on a TNG upgrade in order to make the change you wanted

What is a config file

The Mod Manager cfg file is a code description file that contains the code for the customization and additions that documents

  • what module is being change (the %target:)
  • what location of the code that is being changed within the target (%location:)
  • what is being changed (%insert: or %replace:)
  • what is being added to TNG (%newfile, %copyfile, or %copyfile2)

See Mod Manager Syntax for additional information on the syntax used in the config files.

Ease of Installation

Most often the Mod Manager can re-install the mod from a previous version on a TNG upgrade without any change in logic. For example, several mods were quickly installed on the TNG V10.1 beta test environment with no logic changes. The cfg files and mod versions should only be renamed if a new version is required. The first 3 digits of the mod version should indicate the minimum TNG version that the mod supports. See the Mod Guidelines version section for examples.

Note that when you maintain changes manually, you have to verify where the code changes were made previously, find the logic that has changed in the new module, since the line numbers no longer match, and manually apply the changes.

The Mod Manager automatically verifies the code insert or replacement points.

  • If the code has not changed it shows an OK to Install with an Install button.
In TNG 10.1, the Install button is in the expanded status, which you can see by clicking on the right arrow or anywhere on the mod summary line
  • If the code has been changed in the TNG Module, then a Bad Target error message is displayed for the location that contains a code logic change and an Cannot Install status.
In TNG 10.1, the line number for the location/action section is shown for the Bad Target

See Mod Manager - Installing Config Files for additional information on how to install the .cfg files.

Ease of Tailoring

The Mod Manager provides the capability to Edit parameters, so that the user does not need to manually change the .cfg file if the mod developer provides the capability.

See Mod Manager - Edit Parameters for additional details.

Mod install status

The Mod Manager status screen provides a quick review of modifications you have made to the TNG code

  • The Mod Manager provides an easy way to document the changes you make to the TNG environment and code

Mod Clean Up

On a TNG upgrade, if the TNG mod was only partially regressed or removed, the Mod Manager Clean Up function will most often restore the code to the original module that was not replaced in an upgrade.

If you make changes both manually and through the Mod Manager while testing a mod, then the Mod Manager Clean Up does not always work, but that should only apply to the mod developers, or if you are trying to code your own mod.

Cannot Install

TNG version: 9.0
The Clean Up button is no longer displayed in TNG V9 and above, if the config file contains Bad Targets or Missing files, since the Mod Manager Clean Up operation never fixed these issues.

See Mod Manager - Interpreting Status for additional information.

Related Links

Mod Manager

Mod Manager Controls

For Mod Developers

Other Uses of Mod Manager: