Planet texture packs


This site hosts the new texture sets for the Orbiter 2015 Beta installation. They are not compatible with the current Orbiter 2010 release.

Orbiter 2015 Beta is using a new planetary texture format, including higher resolution surface and cloud maps, and surface elevation data. Currently, the new format is used for Earth, the Moon and Mars.

The texture packs on this site are subject to frequent changes, to fix bugs and visual artefacts, incorporate file format modifications, and include new source data. New beta releases may require the download of updated texture packs, so you may want to check periodically for updates.

The size of the texture downloads for these planets is significantly larger than for previous Orbiter versions. Therefore, the texture files have been split into individual components:

  • A global low-resolution surface pack. This is required to run the latest beta.
  • For Earth, a global cloud layer pack. This is required if you want to activate the cloud layer.
  • The high-resolution surface packs. These are optional.

The high-resolution packs are very large. Therefore we have provided a choice of options to download them:

  • Download a high-resolution pack for a small area of the planet surface, by clicking on a tile of the planet map.
  • Download the complete pack. For each planet, the high resolution texture pack is provided as a single compressed file. For Earth and the Moon, this file has been split into several 4GB fragments, to keep individual download sizes reasonable. These files must be unpacked using 7-zip as they utilise its compression format. You need to download all fragments for a planet before the file will be extractable. The zip fragments are also available via the peer-to-peer bittorrent protocol, allowing faster, distributed downloads with pause and resume functionality.


To run the Orbiter beta, after checking out the beta distribution from the SVN repository at svn://, you need to download and install the texture packs for Earth, Moon and Mars below.

You need at least the low-resolution packs, and the cloud pack for Earth. The high-resolution packs are optional.

Download the texture packs, and move the downloaded zip or 7z files into your Orbiter root directory.

Unpack them in that directory, using a zip manager such as 7-zip or the native Windows zip support.

The files should be extracted into


If your unzipper drops them instead into


see the trouble-shooting section below.


If the textures do not show up in your Orbiter session (in particular, if planets look like featureless white balls), the texture packs may have been installed incorrectly. Most often, the textures may have ended up in the wrong location, and Orbiter can't find them.

Sometimes, zip extraction utilities will create a new folder named after the name of the archive file. For example, extracting may create a new folder EarthLo in your Orbiter root directory, containing the contents of that archive. This leads to an incorrect Orbiter folder structure. Some unzipping tools offer a choice for the unzipping behaviour. For example, with 7-zip you should choose to "Extract here" rather than "Extract to EarthLo". If your unzipper doesn't offer that choice, you may have to move the extracted contents manually:

After unpacking, say into EarthLo, step into EarthLo. You should see a folder "Textures". Move that folder into your Orbiter root directory. Windows may ask if the folder contents should be merged with the existing Textures folder. Confirm that. Finally, you can delete the now-empty EarthLo folder. It works the same way for other texture packs as well, of course.

Bug reports and feature requests

Please use the dedicated thread on