Online Help > AlpineQuest 2.x > Maps & Layers

How to use file-based maps?

Which file-based map formats are supported by the application?

The application can read maps from various file formats. Some formats can also be imported in the application native *.pgd format to allow a faster display. Please check notes and requirements for each formats.

Supported file-based map formats Read on-the-fly Import in *.pgd Read elevations
AlpineQuest Map (*.aqm)
Raster map format that can be created with
MOBAC (free and multi-plateform map creator, see a tutorial here) and
MAPC2MAPC (able to convert a wide range of map formats, free and commercial versions available)
Yes No No
AplineQuest Map (*.pgd)
Fast raster map format created by the application when importing maps from other formats.
Yes No No
OGC GeoPackage Map (*.gpkg)
Open source and non-proprietary raster map format, supporting multiple layers and map projections.
Yes1 No No
MemoryMap QuickChart Map (*.qct)
Commercial and proprietary widespread raster map format.
Yes2 Yes No
OziExplorer Map (*.ozf2, *.ozfx3)
Commercial and proprietary widespread raster map format.
Yes3 No No
MBTiles Raster Maps (*.mbtile)
Open source raster map format.
Yes4 Yes4 No
XYZ Zip Maps (*.zip)
Zipped raster tiles following the OpenStreetMaps tile server specification.
Yes No No
TMS Zip Maps (*.zip)
Zipped raster tiles following the Tile Map Service tile server specification.
Yes No No
RMaps SQLite Maps (*.sqlitedb)
Simple raster map format using a SQLite database to store image tiles.
Yes Yes No
Google Earth Overlays (*.kml, *.kmz)
Raster map format that can be easily created from geo-positioned images using Google Earth.
No Yes5
see here
SRTM data file (*.hgt)
Binary format containing elevation data for an area of 1 square degree.
Both 1-arc-second and 3-arc-second resolutions are supported.
No No Yes
see here

1. Vector features are not supported.
2. Newer *.qc3“ maps and encrypted maps are not supported.
3. Some *.ozfx3 and newer *.ozfx4 maps are not supported (compatible with Img2Ozf 3.03 and older, MapMerge 1.15 and older).
4. Vector tiles are not supported.
5. Android 3.0 or more required.

How to copy your maps on your device?

The easiest way to put map files on your device is using your USB cable and connecting your device to your computer as a mass storage device. On your computer, browse your device like any USB key using the file explorer.

You can put your maps at any location, including the external SD card.

Be sure that your maps have been entirely copied before un-connecting your device.

How to select your maps from the application?

Once you have correctly un-connected your device, you can start the application.

  • Tap on the Maps menu and on Available maps to open the maps explorer;
  • By default, the application lists the on-demand maps ;
  • Tap on the left drawer menu ;
  • Under the File based maps section, select the folder in which you've put your map file. For example, if you've put your maps in a sub-folder of you external SD card, select SD Card .


When selecting a folder from the drawer menu, the application will list its content . If you maps are in a sub-folder, just select it. When a folder containing maps is displayed, they will be listed. Click on a map to display it and close the maps explorer.

By default, maps are sorted in two categories. The In-bounds maps are maps covering the area currently displayed, whereas Out-of-bounds maps are maps covering an area far away. To change this sort:

  • Click on a maps category menu icon ;
  • Select the desired sort from the Sort by .

When selecting a map from the out-of-bounds group, the application will ask you if you want to slide the view over the area covered by the selected map.

When sliding the view out of the covered area, the application will automatically search for another map covering the new area in the last displayed folder. If one is found, it will be automatically selected.


How to deal with multiple maps covering continuous areas?

file-based-continuous.jpg Some file-based map formats store large areas as multiple maps covering smaller and continuous areas (as displayed in the screenshot on the right). It's often the case when the maps are created from scanned paper maps.

If you put all those continuous maps inside the same folder, the application is able to deal with them in various ways. The maps can even be in different formats.

Using continuous maps auto-loading

When you select a map from a folder containing multiple continuous maps, this one is displayed .

As you slide the displayed area, if the screen center moves over an area which is not covered anymore by the current map, but which is covered by another map from the same folder, this other map will be automatically loaded and displayed .

For the continuous maps auto-loading to work, only one file based map must be displayed at the same time.

An auto-loading is also available if you have multiple maps covering the same area with different scales. When using the ”+“ and ”-“ zoom buttons, the application will auto-load the best scale matching map.


Using the multi-map selection

In order to create a virtually large map areas from small continuous map areas, you can display multiple maps at same time:

  • List a folder containing multiple continuous maps ;
  • Tap on the file-based maps header menu ;
  • Select ”Display all.

The maps are all displayed at the same time .


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