vStrips is a flight strip bay plug-in designed to provide a realistic system for the management and control of virtual aircraft at an aerodrome, for Air Traffic Controllers (ATC) using the EuroScope Controller Client on the VATSIM ATC Network. vStrips tries to emulate the real-world electronic flight strip system - which replaced the original "paper strip" system - which is used in many UK aerodrome control towers. vStrips is therefore only intended for usage for Air Traffic Control positions at Aerodromes up to the Tower (AIR) position.

The vStrips project was originally started as the Electronic Flight Strip System (EFSS) project in May 2014 by Matt Middleton who first thought of the idea of bringing a realistic electronic flight strip application to VATSIM controllers in the UK. Matt then teamed up with Dave Ramsey who started to program the application in C# and before long the first prototypes of the EFSS application were ready and volunteers were found to act as beta testers for the quickly improving versions of the EFSS application.

On the 21st of August 2014 the name of the project was changed to vStrips after two weeks of careful consideration, then on the 9th of September 2014 a second developer (Sam White) joined the development team to help allow communication between multiple controllers at the same airport running vStrips. At the same time Sam started developing the vStrips website - the first version of which was completed on the 30th of September 2014, although it has been undergoing continual improvement ever since.

On the 14th of November 2014 the Microsoft style of version control was first used for the vStrips application, and on the 23rd of December 2014 the first versions of our Privacy Policy and Copyright Notice were created and published.

On the 8th of February 2015 we changed our web-hosting due to downtime issues and Dale Brooksby joined the web and marketing teams and started creating a completely new and improved design for the website.

On the 1st of March 2015 we started to record the vStrips log files on the web-server instead of locally on peoples computers to aid with the debugging process of the vStrips application.

On the 31st of March 2015 Dave and Matt started to develop and implement a realistic airport specific view for Heathrow based on the real world Heathrow EFPS system.

On the 18th of June 2015 the majority of the vStrips application functionality had been completed, so we announced that vStrips would be ready to be released on the 31st of July and have spent the time before the release date intensively testing the vStrips application and fixing bugs while also upgrading the security systems in place on the website.

On the 9th of July 2015 Dave and Sam finished and released the first version of a new system to allow users to be notified when a new update for the vStrips application is available and allow them to easily download the new update without leaving the application.

On the 31st of July 2015 the first public version of the vStrips application was released.

On the 28th of November 2015 a new method of communication between vStrips application using a central server was publicly released in order to remove problems that users experienced with the Peer to Peer (P2P) communication method that was previously utilized.

On the 23rd of December 2015 all of the vStrips services had been migrated over to a new server to increase their reliability and enable new systems to be developed.

The Team

  • Head of Project: Matt Middleton
  • Technical Services: Dave Ramsey, Sam White
  • Marketing: Aliaksei Pilko, Dale Brooksby, George Newton
  • The Experts: Johan Grauers, Michael Benson

How vStrips started...

Opening Specification