These notes on GPS Software are a summary of the programs I found useful; the original list was at: gps-practice-and-fun.com

Useful Interactive Web Sites

GPSVisualizer is an on-line tool that creates SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics) maps and profiles from GPS waypoints and tracks. The output from GPS Visualizer can be viewed in any Web browse that has Adobe's free SVG Viewer plug-in.

Useful Waypoint Managers

Useful Waypoint Mapping Programs

Not very useful for my purposes

Here is a list of programs that didn't work well for me; your mileage may vary. Problems varies from "couldn't get it to talk to my Foretrex 101" to "couldn't figure out the user interface". I list these not to give them a "bad review"---they may be great for your purposes---but rather so that I won't spend time downloading a program a second time that I've already evaluated and found not very useful.

Some workarounds for software that I use

GPS Utility

Not Yet Reviewed

The descriptions below are unmodified from the original web site where I found them.

DRGMapCal is Shareware GPS software which automates the process of generating map calibration files for Digital Raster Graphics (DRG) map images and generates OziExplorer calibration files (.map) for Canadian NTS Toporama topographic map images and Landsat 7 ortho-images, as well as MapQuest "street maps". The program will also generate JPR calibration files for the Toporama map images and Landsat 7 ortho-images for use with Fugawi and Memory-Map Navigator.

GPS Manager (GPSMan) is reported to be an open source Linux/FreeBSD type tool. Haven't checked it out yet..

MapMan is a free map generating tool. But you need to start with a JPG image. Once you do, you can export waypoints to the GPS. Might be useful if I wanted to scan paper maps and input GPS coordinates from there.

Trailgauge is accurate map route planning software for Windows. It can use any bitmap image as a map e.g. scanned paper maps, images from internet map sites or commercial GIS raster data. The program supports hundreds of map projections and datums and can download tracks from a Garmin GPS receiver to analyze on your map. Full support for track logs, routes and waypoints.

GPS Pilot’s Tracker for Palm PDAs is a navigation system with tracks logging. Track logs can be exported to a PC for exploitation in GIS applications. Maps can be loaded from anywhere from topo maps, marine charts, satellite images to street level or site plans. Included in the price is one year subscription to Vicinity maps, which have full coverage to house number location for USA, Canada and 18 European countries and city-to-city coverage for almost 40 other countries. The program supports wireless (or via modem) web access for map downloading. The program offers full support for the Garmin iQue and rotating screen on the TapWave Zodiac and Tungsten T3.

GPS Pilot’s TripPilot for Palm PDA’s is a route planner with driving direction on interactive maps. Fulfill departure and destination address by typing a specific address (Full integration of the Palm Address Book), choosing a POI or locating yourself with GPS co-ordinates. The program supports 11 languages. For on-line cartography: Smartphone, wireless connection, land modem or PC-Internet gateway (MocchaPPP, SoftickPPP). For maps and device support: see Tracker above.

With Fugawi GPS software you can easily create accurate digital maps from any scanned map or existing map database (i.e. BSB marine charts or USGS topographic maps).Then, in real-time navigation mode, your exact position is displayed on the map as you move and new maps are automatically loaded as you travel to new areas. You simply position waypoints, routes and tracks on your map with a click of the mouse and then upload them to your GPS receiver. For PC, pocketPC and Palm PDA.

GPS Map Explorer is a simple, but powerful program for PC to use with your Garmin GPS receiver. The main focus is on viewing and analyzing track logs in various ways. You can use your own scanned maps (GIF/JPG). GPS information can be imported/exported to/from Map Source, Ozi, Gardown and G7ToWin. The program can control an Auto Pilot for your boat. With this free program you can run multiple tracks on scanned maps.

Touratech QV (TTQV) is GPS software for the PC and Palm PDA (not pocketPC). It displays your own scanned maps or you can select from a large number of ready calibrated map CD-ROMs / DVDs which Touratech QV can open directly. Just by using the mouse you can create waypoints, routes and tracks, which you can upload to your GPS receiver. It has powerful search functions and supports most NMEA equipment for navigation.

PathAway is a moving map navigation program for Palm PDAs. It has added support for expandable Hi-res screens for OS5 devices like the Sony NR Series. You can ipmort your own maps using PathAway Tools or Touratech-QV. Maps can be obtained from mapping web sites, CD-ROM, scanned or digitally photographed. The program supports most popular Map Projections and Datums. Your track can be recorded and creating routes is simple by clicking points on the map. Data can be transferred from and to Garmin and Magellan receivers. Support for the Garmin iQue 3600 is now implemented in the program.

MapCruiser is an electronic map viewer for marine and land navigation for PC that easily integrates with a GPS receiver for real-time navigation on digital charts and maps. The program has advanced chart printing and chart quilting. It is compatible with the following types of charts and maps: NDI (BSB), Maptech (BSB, Topo, RML, Tiff Data), SoftChart (NOS), ETopo (JPR), USGS (DRG) and GeoTiff.

QuakeMap is a powerful GPS mapping program for PC that displays aerial and topo maps from Terraserver-USA and relief maps of the world. You can draw your route, print aerial and topo maps and see waypoints (including geocaches) on the map. Routes and waypoints can be loaded to a GPS receiver. Track logs can be loaded from the GPS receiver and analyzed. QuakeMap fetches earthquake information from several public ‘recent’ lists and overlays it on the map.

Topo-Fusion is GPS Mapping software for Windows. It downloads maps (Topo and Aerial Photo) automatically from Microsoft’s TerraServer and stores them on the hard drive. Topo and photo maps can be combined, using alpha blending, to visualize both at the same time. Can be used as real-time navigation software for your notebook. We played several hours with the demo-version of the program and it is really fantastic, but as TerraServer has degraded to USAServer a couple of years ago, there is no real use for it outside the USA.

VITO SmartMap from VITO Technology is a program for working with high resolution color maps for the pocketPC, that is compatible with CF and serial GPS receivers. It detects automatically the GPS receiver and supports vector and raster maps. The recorded track can be exported to a standard ESRI Shape file. The software package includes the free MapManager program for a desktop PC. MapManager allows a user to make a digital map from various data sources: ESRI Shape File format, scanned maps in the JPEG format and the tracks, recorded by SmartMap. MapManager converts maps to the VTM format to accelerate the working on a pocketPC.

GSAK (Geocaching Swiss Army Knife) is the successor to Geo2Ozi. Some of the many features include: -Multiple cache Databases. -Direct upload/download of waypoints to GPS. -Add and edit your own waypoints. -Import Individual GPX files or a whole folder. -Intelligent merging of multiple GPX files….and many more.

Geocaching is the name of a program by Robert W. Benjamin, which allows you to keep detailed records of each cache you find and those that you have already located. This program is very user friendly, you can easily TAB through each data field, or use the mouse. You can also print out each record for a hard copy.

Pieter’s GarTrax is an easy-to-use free tool that has 2 main uses. It can exchange data between some of the more popular applications and devices (E.g. MapSource, OziExplorer, Garmin devices, Magellan devices) used by GPS users and it can download and store geocache information from the official geocaching web site. The main features are: Reading and writing files, Communicating with a GPS receiver, Working with waypoints, routes, tracks and logs. Merging of waypoints, routes and tracks. GeoCache functions are: download geocaches, extract local geocaches from a GPX file, create and view an index on the local geocaches, create and submit logs, create or remove a subset from the local geocaches.

The Big Sky Cachers from Montana created the free Geocaching Database Software i-cache. It has the following features: Geocache database search, Password protected Multiple User Capability, each with the ability to select their own customer interface, Add pictures to files, Export files to share with friends, Import files from others, Customized skins, Save and access favorite websites. Import LOC and GPX files.

CacheMaps is an Excel application made to simplify import of GeoCache information and show online maps. In this way you can find your way to nearby the cache easily and fast. The program also connects to applications like EasyGPS and OziExplorer, thus supporting more specific functionality.

EasyMPS is a tool that imports .loc EasyGPS files as downloaded from GeoCaching.com, .gpx TopoGraphix files as saved by EasyGPS, and .mps MapSource files, and exports them as MapSource or EasyGPS file format, allowing a few tweaks to the file along the way. What EasyMPS allows the user to do is import several .loc, .gpx and .mps files alongside each other, then export them as a single .mps or .loc file. Thus EasyMPS acts as either a file merger, or a file converter, or both.

Clayjar’s Watcher is a viewer for geocaching.com’s GPX files. It allows filtering, sorting, merging, offline viewing of cache information, and much more.


For Palm
MapAdvisor transforms your PDA into a high-tech tool for geocaching, treasure hunting, hiking and travel. You will use highly accurate satellite images to get to wherever you are going as quickly and efficiently as possible. The program comes in two versions: a Standard Edition and a GPS Edition. Maps can be obtained from the MapAdvisor website or you can prepare your own maps with the companion Windows PC program QuakeMap.

CacheMate is a database for tracking GPS cache hunts. You can store information about caches or benchmarks, decode hints, and transfer data between CacheMate and the MemoPad application. Registered users can import .LOC and .GPX formatted XML files, which are available from GeoCaching.com.