NoaaCharts References OnlineStore HelpInfo
Installing Files From Your DVD

The method of installation of files on your DVD will vary slightly, depending upon the version you purchased. The basics of installation, however, are fairly similar for all versions.

"RNC ChartMaster"...

Raster Navigational Charts (RNCs™) and Electronic Navigational Charts (ENCs®) are simply data files for use by your Electronic Charting Software (ECS) application. In order to be used, chart files need to be placed where the application can find them. In essence, a digital chart file is no different than any other data file. A Microsoft Word document (.doc extension), for example, requires Microsoft Word application to open it, and an MP3 music file (.MP3 extension) needs iTunes or some other MP3 application to be played as music. And just like any other data file, the application (your ECS software) needs to be able to find the files (your charts).

While most ECS applications will allow to change the default chart directory to allow direct reading from the DVD drive, this is not the most efficient approach, since DVD drives are relatively inefficient compared to a hard disk. The most efficient method is to copy the chart files to your hard disk... preferably in your ECS application's default chart directory. There are many different ECS applications and most can be configured to change the default directory.

It's beyond the scope of these instructions to describe the installation for every ECS application. Suffice to say that you need to copy the desired chart files to the appropriate directory. For example, a common initial default chart directory setting is C:\\ChartKit\BSBChart.

In all likelihood, you already know the location of the default chart directory. If not, consult your application software's instructions to determine the location of this directory. Alternately, do a filename search to locate the directory by finding other, previously installed charts. For NOAA Raster Navigational Charts (RNCs®), search for files with the extensions ".KAP" or ".BSB". If you're installing NOAA Electronic Navigational Charts (ENCs™), search for the extension ".000". (ENCs also use the extension ".TXT", but thousands of other files will carry this extension.)

Once you've successfully located the chart directory, you can begin to transfer the files. Open a window displaying the contents of the chart directory. Then open a second window displaying the contents of the DVD. If you ordered a DVD with RNC or ENC charts alone, simply drag the contents of the desired chart directory from the DVD to the application's default chart directory (the open window) of your hard drive. Copy only the Area(s) you wish to access at any given time. If you copy all of the charts to your application's default directory, it will probably decrease the efficiency of the application. If have the disk space, you can copy the rest of them to a secondary directory and move them in and out of the chart directory as needed.

Copying Index Files and/or Reference Files

The Chart DVDs, the Reference DVD and the Premier DVD each contains one or more on-disk web site with an index of included charts. In the case of the Reference DVD, the Index includes all of the support reference documents, in addition to the index. While this can be used directly from the DVD, you will find it more efficient to copy these directories and files to your hard drive. Select an appropriate location for the files and copy them to your hard drive. To access them, simply open the file "index.hmtl" from the folder with your favorite web browser. (Depending on your system settings, you may only see the name "index" and not the ".html" extension.)

That's all there is to it. If you have problems or questions, don't hesitate to contact us.


Following is an example of installation instructions for SeaClear, a Windows PC navigation program...

Installing BSB charts

The BSB/KAP file format is licensed from Maptech. BSB/KAP version 1-3 is supported. Projections based on Mercator, Transversal Mercator, Polyconic, Lambert Conformal Conic, Sinusoidal and Orthographic are currently supported.

Charts are available for most areas of the world from Maptech, NDI and many other sources. The actual chart is in a KAP file, while the BSB file only contains data regarding coverage and similar. As SeaClear keeps it's own database, the BSB files are not needed. (NOTE: For simplicity, copy them anyway... they are very small files.)

Before using BSB/KAP charts in SeaClear they should be registered: Start MapCal and make sure all KAP files are in the chart path. From the top menu select "Tools-> Autoload list-> Scan for New Charts". The KAP files will be scanned for name, coverage and other data and listed in the SeaClear autoload database.


What they don't tell you here is that the charts first have to be copied into SeaClear's default chart folder. The location of this folder is described on page 22 and is simply a directory named "Charts" which lies within the main directory of the SeaClear application. If you read "Installing to hard disk" on page 22 in the manual, it should be fairly clear...

Installing to hard disk

If you install from a .ZIP file, create a base directory and extract the program files. You also need to create directories for the charts, routes and tracks, and set up your .INI file to match. Default directories are "CHARTS", "ROUTES", "TRACES" and "WAYPTS" in the base directory:

<Base Dir>:
SeaClear_2.Exe
MapCal_2.Exe
Datums2.Ini
 <Base Dir>\Charts:    <---- NOTE: Copy charts here
   World.WCI
   Med.WCI
   USA.WCI
   Sweden.WCI
<Base Dir>\Routes:
   (Put routes here)
<Base Dir>\Traces:
   (Traces will be saved here)
<Base Dir>\Waypts:
   (Put Positions files here)
In addition, SCAINDEX.BIN and SEACLEAR_2.INI is automatically created.

You can copy the entire folder named "NOAA RNC Digital Charts" on the Chartmaster DVD into the "SeaClear\Charts:" directory. Alternately, you can copy only the subdirectories you wish to use (such as "Area 05 - Pacific NW, Puget Sound, San Juan Islands", etc.)

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