Open Rails

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Stable Version 1.5.1 (recommended *)


Other versions

Two other versions are available.

Installation Questions from the FAQ

Which platforms does Open Rails run on?

Open Rails works well on Windows PCs from Windows 7* onwards (including Windows 11). It does not work on Windows XBox, Windows Phone or non-Windows platforms.

* Windows 7 requires Service Pack 1 (SP1).

32-bit or 64-bit Windows?

Open Rails is an "AnyCPU" program which will run as a 32-bit program on 32-bit Windows and as a 64-bit program on 64-bit Windows.

Programs compiled for 32-bit Windows are always limited to using a maximum of 2GB of memory.

What hardware does Open Rails require?

  • Processor : 2.0 GHz (32 or 64-bit)
  • Memory : minimum = 0.5 GB, recommended = 4 GB
  • Hard drive : 50 MB (but models require lots of space. The 6 routes in Microsoft Train Simulator require 1.4 GB)
  • Graphics : any compatible with Windows 7 upwards. (more than 0.3GB graphics RAM recommended)

Do I need Microsoft Train Simulator installed to use Open Rails?

You do not need Microsoft Train Simulator installed in order to use Open Rails.

If Microsoft Train Simulator is installed, then Open Rails can safely make use of all the Microsoft Train Simulator content as it does not change any Microsoft Train Simulator files.

Most non-Microsoft Train Simulator routes, activities and rolling stock make use of some Microsoft Train Simulator content, usually sound files, textures and cab interiors. If products designed for Microsoft Train Simulator are used on a PC with Open Rails but not Microsoft Train Simulator, then they are likely to work but some sounds and textures will be missing. Such files will be listed with warnings in the Open Rails log file.

How can I recognise add-on products for Microsoft Train Simulator that require Microsoft Train Simulator files?

Add-ons designed for Microsoft Train Simulator may rely on files from the Microsoft Train Simulator product. For instance:

  • Routes provided with an Install.bat file that copies shapes and textures from the routes on the Microsoft Train Simulator CDs.
  • Locomotives that re-use cabviews or sounds from the locomotives on the Microsoft Train Simulator CDs (see folder TRAINSET).
  • Rolling stock that have sound management (SMS) files that refer to wave files from the Microsoft Train Simulator CDs (see folder SOUND).

If I install Open Rails, will it change my Microsoft Train Simulator files?

No, Open Rails does not modify any Microsoft Train Simulator files.

Does Open Rails suppport RailDriver?

Yes; this cab controller from P.I.Engineering is suitable for Open Rails and support for it is built in to the simulator. Installation instructions are included in the installation download (and also from this webpage). Eric Conrad has posted a detailed review on his MSTS Roundhouse blog which provides valuable advice for using this product.

Does Open Rails report data back to its creators?

Not at the moment. Data on how Open Rails is used will be very helpful for the project but, if we wish to collect usage data, we will inform you beforehand and you will always be able to opt out.

* Privacy Note

On first use, Open Rails reports the version that has been installed. You can configure subsequent reports using Options > Update - see the Operating Manual.