Difficulties installing Custom POIs using POI Loader


I've used BaseCamp Ver. 4.7.0 to create many waypoints for an upcoming trip. Each waypoint has a text description in the Notes to remind me of what will be found at that waypoint. I have then collected related waypoints in Lists named things like "Castles," "Distilleries," and so forth, then exported each list as a GPX file into a 22 uniquely named folders. Next I use Garmin POI loader to install the Custom POIs to my Garmin DriveSmart 61 (16 GB internal storage and 16 GB external storage on an SC card).

All goes well with this process except for two things:

1) I can only get a few custom POI files to load. When I attempt to load all 22 POI files, they seem to be appearing in the Garmin>POI folder on the Device as I monitor the upload through POI Loader, whether I put them on Internal or External storage. But when I go to the Device and try to view the Custom POIs in the shortcut, only a few appear there.

Why am I not able to load all 22 POI files?

2) The descriptions of the Custom POIs are duplicated in the waypoints when I open them on the DriveSmart device.

Here's an example of the Description for a Waypoint in one of the Custom POIs:

"Ancient cliffs resembling a kilt on Scotland's second largest island emit an entrancing sound. Ancient cliffs resembling a kilt on Scotland's second largest island emit an entrancing sound."

All the descriptions look fine in the BaseCamp waypoint Notes tabs. What could be causing them to duplicate on the Device?

Thanks for your consideration!

I note several things

I note several things in your description of the issues you are having. First off, POILoader works on a single folder or directory at a time. In your case it probably would be better if you had a single folder and each of the points included in that folder.

Secondly, your Garmin will display a maximum of 22 characters on the banner line or top line of the display. Anything more than 22 characters, including spaces, is not converted.

As you do have different categories like Castles and Distilleries you can keep these categories within your primary folder. Your top level folder may be something like "Scottish Trip" wit a subfolder for castles or distilleries and the like stored within that top level folder. POILoader would be told to load the top folder, your trip and the others would then come under it. You are limited to a maximum of 32 second level folders in a top level folder.

Any proximity alerts assigned to the top folder carries through to the sub folders.

You are also aware POILoader creates a consolidated file for your Garmin with the default name POI.GPI. You can specify POILoader to create a different name though. All the different POI files when converted to GPI files reside in the POI folder of your Garmin.

Alternatively you can store the GPX files in either the POI folder or the GPX folder in Garmin memory. The issue here is housekeeping. You can tell POILoader to delete any and all GPI files but GPX files in the Garmin have to be deleted manually using the Garmin user interface.

"In order to be old and wise, one first must have been young and stupid."

Only the 50 closest POIs are displayed

Only the 50 closest POIs are displayed in the GPS. To view the others, do a "set location" elsewhere, and the 50 POIs closest to that location will be displayed. Trust me, all the POIs that were loaded are really in the GPS.

I don't know about the duplications, but it seems that the descriptions are very long.

dobs108 smile

Replies and Clarifications

Hi Box Car and thanks for your reply. Let me clarify some things that I didn't make very clear in my post.

I do have separate folders for each set of related POIs; e.g., I have six distilleries in a GPX file along with a 24X24 BMP file all in one folder called "Distilleries." I think that is what you were suggesting.

I don't think your second point has any bearing on my situation. I'm not exactly sure what you are referencing by what you call "banner line," but I can tell you that the name of any particular POI is either less than 22 characters or shows enough characters that I don't have any problem identifying the POI.

Let me understand what you're saying about the folder hierarchy: I already have a top level folder called "Scotland 2019," and under it are subfolders named for common characteristics of the POIs contained therein; Distilleries, Abbeys, Ferries, Monuments, etc. Are you saying that I could just tell POI Loader to load Scotland 2019 and it would load all the POIs contained in the subfolders, creating POI Categories based on the names of the subfolders? If so, that's a big time saver.

Thanks again for your reply and consideration of this follow-up.

50 closest POIs and Duplicate Descriptions

Thanks for your reply, dobs108. Here's an update on my situation.

As for 50 closest POIs, technically, my location in Central Indiana is about 3,500 miles from the location of my POIs in Scotland. However, I do see the first five or six categories of my POIs loaded through POI Loader. That said, I would be interested in doing a "set location" on my device. Where is that located in the menu structure of a Garmin, generally speaking? As I mentioned, I'm using a DriveSmart 61, but I can navigate the menu to find this set location if I have some idea where I might find it.

Subsequent to posting my original message, I did a little viewing of an example of the GPX files that are producing duplicate descriptions and find that there are two fields in the GPX file that are likely merging to cause this. On field name is and the other is and they occur one on top of the other in the GPX details. If I could find a GPX editor, I could just go in and do a delete of the data in one of those fields to fix the problem. Any suggestions for a GPX editor would be appreciated, unless given this additional info you have another idea about how to keep one of the two fields mentioned from collecting the same information and making it display all in the same place on the POI on the device.



DrivesLikeJehu wrote:

Let me understand what you're saying about the folder hierarchy: I already have a top level folder called "Scotland 2019," and under it are subfolders named for common characteristics of the POIs contained therein; Distilleries, Abbeys, Ferries, Monuments, etc.

I can't help with most of your questions but will advise you to remove any numerals in file or folder names being used by POI Loader. You could change it to 'Scotland Twentynineteen' to avoid any problem since numerals in a cvs or gpxfile or folder containing the csv/gpx files are thought to be speed alerts.

set location

My Garmin DriveLuxe 50 software is probably similar to your DriveSmart 61.

To do a set location, first activate the GPS simulator. Touch Settings / Navigation. Scroll down to GPS Simulator. Check the box to turn it on. This will stop the GPS from getting a satellite fix and preventing the manual "Set Location."

From the home page of the GPS, touch Map. When the map is displayed, scroll and zoom to the location you want. You can scroll as far as Scotland if the correct map is loaded and enabled.

Long-touch any selected point on the map near the POIs you want to check. A blue flag icon on a circle will appear. Long-touch the blue icon. A Coordinates popup will appear. Scroll to the bottom of the pop-up to a rectangular Set Location button. Touching it will put your car icon on the blue flag. That shows the GPS thinks it is there.

To check the 50 nearest Custom POIs, on the home page, touch Where To? / Categories. Scroll down to touch Custom POIs. They will be in the categories according to the folder names used to load the POIs.

dobs108 smile

set location

Got it, thanks! Worked the same in the DriveSmart 61.


Thanks again! I thought about the numeral thing after our last messages and decided that was not a good thing to have in a folder or file name. Will adjust accordingly.

Use alphabetic characters

DrivesLikeJehu wrote:

Thanks again! I thought about the numeral thing after our last messages and decided that was not a good thing to have in a folder or file name. Will adjust accordingly.

If you need to differentiate some points, add A, B, C, etc instead of 1,2,3.


I can't speak directly to

I can't speak directly to your issues, but maybe if I tell you how I have set mine up, it may help.
1st - All of my POIs are CSV downloads from the factory. I modify most files because a POI can only be 4 columns in an Excel file. I have a 3597, a 765, and a 1490. The displays are similar. There is a limited amount of characters available on the index line displayed (column 3). Additional info is available if you select it (column 4).

2nd - I set it up so column 3 contains a very abbreviated place name like KFC or WM (for WalMart) with the address following. I put each group (csv, wav, bmp) in a folder labeled for the topic (discount stores, fast food, alerts, restaurants, etc.).

3rd - additional info that I do not need to find the place I put into column 4 - (phone number, open times, etc.)

What I have is this folder structure:
....Auto Parts
......Advance Auto
....Discount Stores
....Fast Food
..Load to GPS

Then I run POI Loader to save to computer to the "Load to GPS" folder
then I select #All folder and run.

NOTE: This is processing ALL the folders under #All. You do not have to process each folder separately.

All the folders under #All are processed and saved as 1 gpi file in "Load to GPS" folder.

I then copy that file to each of my units POI folder.

When I go to POIs on my units, under Custom POIs I have the names of the topic folders:
Auto Parts
Discount Stores

If I select Auto Parts I have
..Advance Auto

If I select O'Reilly I have showing on the display
O'Rly, 131 High House Road, Ca... 0.6mi SE
O'Rly, 620 N Main St, Holly Spri... 8.9mi S
I think all of them are available if you want to scroll that far. I may combine them all since I have a short name for each and it would appear like this:
O'Rly, 131 High House Road, Ca... 0.6mi SE
Zone, 101 High House Road, Car... 0.6mi SE

If I select the first one I get a map and address block with "Press for more". Pressing that brings up the additional information like phone number and the useless store #. I haven't deleted that yet. But since no one but me seems to think there is a problem with the files, I guess I won't be uploading them and they are for me only so I don't need that, so maybe it is time to delete it. There appears to be plenty of space there for lots of info like your notes, but it may be different for each unit.

Now all you need do is to name and arrange the folders and places the way you want to see them on your unit display.

Unfortunately, none of the masters of most of the POI files have figured out that the arrangement of the files is pretty much useless to use when you are driving. The names alone take up most of column 3 so that you must navigate to the "Press for more" to get any info. The files also have a lot of stray commas and typo errors which creates a mess.

It is not too difficult to restructure and correct a lot of things, but it is a PITA to do it for every release especially long files and files with typos and stray characters like Starbucks, Costco, Walmart/Sams/Murphy's <==> and why are those all together? There are a very few files that are very clean.

Just my pet peeve.

BTW, the number in the file name is not a speed setting. It is a distance setting. EG, 53 in "Rest Areas_53.csv" will alert at approx 5300 ft. The 5 in "Redlight Cams_5.csv" will alert at 500ft. An entry IN the file preceded by an @ will alert at a speed == a line from the Speed Cams file ==> "R/Speed 40 - Mesa & Broadway @40" <== will alert at 40MPH

We don't have any speed cams around here so I can't verify that one. The other 2 are my settings and they function exactly as I stated.
The _ preceding the number is in the spec as required, but it may work without that in the filename. The _ may only be needed in the file entry line to differentiate from the @ for speed. I have not verified that.

good luck.

Great post! Thanks for

Great post! Thanks for sharing. This will take awhile to digest, but I can see some very useful tips here.

One thing you might clarify for me is, unless I modify speed and/or proximity alerts in the POI file itself, these will function based on the device defaults. Correct?