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Rural map

Maps for Garmin based on OpenStreetMap

Urban map

Known issues

Garmin maps format is not public, so map generation process (done with mkgmap) is based in reverse engineering. As format has not been completely deciphered yet, there's still a number of problems affecting the maps. They have the advantage that data on them are most probably more up to date than commercial ones, although in some areas coverage is lower. Another great advantage is that anyone can complete or correct missing or wrong data. Below there is a list of known issues regarding the use of the maps.

  • Address search: in order to find a given street using 'Search by address' option of the GPS it is necessary to type the name of the street exactly as it is on the map, e.g. 'Calle de los Derechos Humanos' (Human Rights Street). It may be a problem for languages like Spanish or French, in which the name of the way is preceded by the type of way: Avenida de América, Paseo de la Castellana, etc. as it will be difficult to know how the name of a street is in the map: it may be Calle Derechos Humanos, C/ de los Derechos Humanos, Avenida América, etc.
    To avoid this, some changes are introduced that let you omit the type of way and also particles before the main part of the name. For the examples above, typing “Derechos Humanos”, “América” or “Castellana” will be enough. Some irrelevant words common at the end of street names, like Avenue, Street, Road (English), Strasse, Weg (German), kalea, bidea (Basque), etc. are also removed.
  • Roundabouts exit number: if a way entering a roundabout shares a node with an exiting way, that exit is not taken into account for the 'Take exit # to the right' instruction, although on screen it is correctly displayed. In fact, it is caused by errors in the data used to generate the map, and must be fixed on OpenStreetMap data.

Correct and wrong roundabouts

  • Advanced functions: some advanced functions, such as lane indication, on screen speed limit display, crossing search, etc. don't work.
  • Topographic maps on MapSource: contour lines behavior in MapSource is quite variable, some times they are displayed and some times they are not, without a known motive, just showing the number that indicates the height but not the line. However, although they are not seen, they are there and can be used, for example, to calculate a route profile (Edit menu->Route Properties->Show Profile...). On BaseCamp and QLandkarte GT this problem doesn't occur.

If you detect any other problem in the maps, other than those due to errors or lacks in OpenStreetMap data, please use the comments at the en of this page to report it.

You can leave your comments on this page below:

Comments (35)

Topic: Problems
4/5 (17)
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Christoph Jungkurth (Dornstetten, Germany)
My newest problems:
1. Basecamp MapInstaller (newest version) doesn't work. How can I proceed? I tried to reinstall an earlier version, but it doesn't work anyhow. Meanwhile I downloaded the "gmapsupp" directly on the device. We'll see how it works using the route from the laptop.
2. Map and nature: There is an official working border crossing from Botswana to Namibia in Mamuno(BOT)/Buitepos(NAM), but the routing tool determins it as closed?
Regarding problem 1, the only solution is using previous versions of BaseCamp which does work and reportin the issue to Garmin, so that they fix in future versions.
Regarding 2, I have tried routing in MapSource, and it works for me (car/motorvehicle mode).Anyway,  there were some tags in the roads crossing border that could be causing the problem. I have removed them. Please try next version of the map and report back.

22nd August 2018 3:19pm
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Erik Lee (Taiwan)
Hello, I'm quite impressed by your efforts especially with topo maps. Yet I'm wondering if it is possible to help make topo maps for areas like Taiwan or China with language code of either 936 or 950, which will greatly help people like me to read maps of those areas in native language instead of latin characters. Thanks for your help in advance and my sincere apologies if this comment sounds too contextual insensitive. Your site literally brings life back to my old garmin machine!
I would really like to build maps with Chinese characters, so your message is welcome. I did some tests to build such maps time ago, but was not able to test them on my computer/device and didn't receive any feed-back about them either. If you could test maps and report about them I would be pleased to work on them again. If you want to collaborate, please send me an email using "Contact" link.
19th August 2018 5:35pm
Khoo Lup Seng (Shah Alam, Malaysia)
I've downloaded the Malaysia topographic map for gps/navigator device. It is great map but the contour lines are not accurate. The lines seem to deviate about 100 meters to the North-East direction. It is not the error for some places but the entire map was deviated. I'm very sure the map has error because all the mountains/hills peak was not at the highest point in the contour line map.
I'm aware of such problem in some countries. I started to correct it, but updating contour lines requires a lot of time. I'll try to update Malaysia contour lines next.
7th March 2018 6:44am
Ivars Brencis (Christchurch, New Zealand)
I noticed that those buildings on OSM that have the "house" tag on OSM are not saved into this map. The commercial buildings and others show on map but in places where there is residential house outlined on the OSM map, the garmin version shows blank space.
Hi Ivars
That's intended. Most buildings without any special information (no name, no public use, etc) in residential areas are removed to keep the map clearer. I guess you are familiar with OSM, so you'll have noticed the high increase in buildings presence in the map. That was leading to maps really cluttered in some urban areas.
25th January 2018 12:21pm
Ueli Streuli (Wil, Switzerland)
I tried to install Contourlines and OpenStreetmap Finland, but contourlines are not properly installed (Windows10). Basecamp doesn't start with the message that there was a Problem mith VP Finland , in mapsource contour lines are missing.
With other countries e.g. norway there is no such Problem.
Thanks for your help.
You are right, thanks for reporting the problem. I'll fix it and update files.
21st January 2018 6:21pm
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