Need Assistance With External Views Please!

Pro Member Trainee
Steve (LTCSZ) Trainee

Here I sit in front of my computer as frustrated as Elizabeth Taylor's eighth husband on their wedding night...I have been trying to set up some exterior views to no avail...Here's what I have been trying to accomplish: Starting out simply, I want to program a key on the keyboard to give me the cycle of views that the "S" key used to provide on FSX and before: Cycle through Left Exterior, Right Exterior, Rear Exterior and Front Exterior...I can get more complex later...Can someone give me the step by step directions to accomplish this? Probably once I become familiar with how to do this simple process I will be able to build on it and go from there...I really appreciate any help provided! Thanks a lot...

Steve in Kansas

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Pro Member Captain
Ian Stephens (ianstephens) Captain
Ian Stephens is an expert on this topic. Read his bio here.

Hi Steve in Kansas,

I totally understand your frustration! Switching between external views in Microsoft Flight Simulator (2020 release) can feel a bit different compared to FSX, but rest assured, I'm here to help you out.

In MSFS 2020, you'll want to use the 'End' key to cycle through the basic external views (SmartCam, Fixed, and Showcase). But since you specifically requested a way to mimic the "S" key functionality from FSX, I'll show you how to create a custom key binding. Here's a step-by-step guide to achieving this:

  1. Open Microsoft Flight Simulator and navigate to the main menu.
  2. Click on Options, then Controls.
  3. Make sure you're on the Keyboard tab, which should be the default.
  4. Now, click on the search bar in the upper-right corner and type "view". This will filter the list of commands to only display those related to views.
  5. Look for the command group Camera and find the Quickview Left, Quickview Right, Quickview Rear, and Quickview Front commands.
  6. For each of these commands, click on the corresponding + button to create a new binding. Assign a key that you'd like to use for cycling between the views. You can use the same key for all four commands, or you can assign different keys for each view.
  7. Click on Validate after you've set up the key bindings for each command.
  8. Finally, click Apply & Save to confirm your new key bindings.

Now, when you're in the simulator, you can press the key(s) you've assigned to cycle through the Left Exterior, Right Exterior, Rear Exterior, and Front Exterior views. As you become more familiar with the control settings, you'll be able to customize and fine-tune them to your liking.

If you need more information on camera control customization, you can check out the official MSFS 2020 camera guide from Microsoft at the following URL:

I hope this helps, and enjoy your flights!

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