Megastar Sky Atlas

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  • #575159
    Alan Snook
    Participant

    I’ve been using Megastar for 20 years, lately running on a Windows XP virtual machine. It recently stopped working and I doubt I can fix it. My new laptop doesn’t have a CD drive so I can’t even attempt a simple reinstall. So, I figured it was about time I migrated to a modern software package. I’ve spent most of today trying out KStars, Carte du Ciel and Stellarium. I feel I have wasted the day. I don’t want pretty, I don’t want zodiacial light, I don’t want constellation mythology in 40 different cultures. These modern packages don’t seem to be a patch on Megastar. I feel they are tailored to a different customer. What are astronomers using? Is there a ‘proper’ competent bit of software out there, without all the frills and frippery? Any advice gratefully received.

    #585233
    owen brazell
    Participant

    Alan with the demise of Willmann-Bell Emil made Megastar free to use and made a 500Mb download of the program available. It has been hosted here https://www.ladyandtramp.com/megastar/

    When you try and access this it may give a certiicate error but I believe you can proceed to the site with no issues.

    #585232
    Paul Leyland
    Participant

    Alan, I have a USB DVD drive you cound borrow if required, depending on where you live.

    I’m back to La Palma on Friday, all being well, so logistics might be a problem but surely a solveable one.

    Alternatively, perhaps you could ask someone with a drive to image it onto a USB thumb drive for you and then re-install from there.

    P.S. I very much like Stellarium because it can show the positions of even minor satellites of the planets. Perhaps I am weird.

    Added in edit

    I forgot to mention https://aladin.u-strasbg.fr/AladinLite/ which is my atlas of choice for anything outside the solar system. Searchable, goes down to mag 21 or so, precision astrometry and photometry from Gaia, stars, clusters and fuzzies — what more could a deep sky observer want?

    #585235
    Alan Snook
    Participant

    Much appreciated Folks, that’s all most helpful. Certainly Stellarium seemed the most promising (least worst?) of the 3 packages I tried initially. I spent a half-day on it yesterday trawling through the 420-page instruction manual and so far I’ve moved the output to about half-way to where I’d like it. I found the planetary satellite displays you mentioned, I can see that being useful.  It would be good to keep Megastar going if possible so I’ll try Emil’s dowload, and check out the Aladin link too. Much appreciated. Alan.

    #585236
    Daryl Dobbs
    Participant

    The link below might be useful as the Stellarium handbook is certainly heavy going.

    Stellarium Handbook (B&W).indd (sas-sky.org)

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