Installing addons for X-Plane 11 is a relatively straightforward process, most addons will be provided as a compressed folder but some addons may use an installer application.
Executable Installer (.exe or .msi)
Some addons designed specifically for Windows may be provided as an executable installer, in which case, simply double-clicking the provided .exe or .msi file will run you through the installation process.
Compressed Folder (.zip)
For those addons provided as a compressed folder, you will need to decompress the contents and copy them to your X-Plane installation. This can be accomplished using tools built into the operating system:
Windows - double-clicking the .zip file should open the contents in a File Explorer window like below, from here you can drag and drop the product folder (it will automatically be decompressed) to the correct destination.
Mac - double-clicking the .zip file should extract/decompress the folder at the current location, for example in the Downloads folder if that is where the .zip file was when you double-clicked it. You can then drag and drop the product folder into the correct place within your X-Plane installation.
Linux - for Ubuntu you should be able to double-click the .zip file to open the compressed folder in Archive Manager. From here you should be able to extract the contents to the correct place within your X-Plane installation.
For all three operating systems you will need to know where your X-Plane installation is prior to installing addons. The X-Plane folder you're looking for will contain an Aircraft folder, a Custom Scenery folder alongside other folders that make up an X-Plane installation. One way to find your installation path is to run the X-Plane installer and choose the update option, when you get to the Pick Destination screen it will show the locations of any X-Plane installations on your computer.
Once you have the X-Plane folder location simply copy the product folder, either by dragging & dropping, copy & pasting, or selecting the relevant extract location:
- Aircraft addons should be copied to the Aircraft folder
- Scenery addons, such as airports, should be copied to the Custom Scenery folder.
Make sure to copy the top-level folder rather than the subfolders or you may find the addons won't work correctly, as an example copying an aircraft addon should result in your Aircraft folder looking like so:
Start X-Plane and you should be able to use your new addons.
Note. Some addons may require further steps to activate before being fully usable. Some non-aircraft or airport addons may require additional installation steps, we advise checking for installation instructions where a product manual is included.
Compressed Folder (.7z or .rar)
If a product is delivered as a .7z or .rar compressed folder you will need to install additional software to be able to extract the contents.
For Windows we recommend 7-Zip which can be downloaded from https://www.7-zip.org/
For Mac we recommend Keka which can be downloaded from https://www.keka.io/
For Linux (Ubuntu) we recommend either installing additional packages (p7zip and rar) for Archive Manager or installing the Xarchiver package.
Once you have the software installed to allow you to open the compressed folder the instructions above for .zip files should be followed - opening the compressed folder may work slightly differently depending on the software used but after that the steps are the same.