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ColumbusCSV Plugin for JOSM


This plugin allows the direct import of proprietary CSV files recorded by the Columbus/Visiontac V-900 into JOSM.

Visiontac VGPS-900 front

Icon JOSM Version Plugin Version Maintained By Date Maturity
ColumbsCSV-Icon.png 4549 29179 OliverW January, 7th 2011 Stable

Please report bugs or annoyances to me by either


Open JOSM and select from menu Edit > Preferences, then choose the tab Plugins. Check ColumbusCSV in the list (see picture 1), then press Update. JOSM should then download and install the plugin (see also JOSM Plugin Manager).

(1) Install the plugin

Finally restart JOSM, that's it.


! Make sure that the microSD card is in the slot before you go logging :-)

After the plugin has been installed successfully you should find an additional entry in the Type combo (see picture 2). Of course you can select multiple files; each file becomes a separate GPX layer then.

(2) Import a V-900 CSV file

After the import you will find two additional layers per file (one for the track and one containing the way points). The map should look similar to picture 3. The V-900 is able to record audio files; they are saved as separate WAV files and are referenced by the CSV file. After the import you can play the audio file by pressing the marker button.

(3) Imported GPS trace with audio markers


In some cases some audio files 'get lost' - for unknown reason. This means, that there are audio files which are not referenced by the CSV file. The plugin 'rescues' these files and mark them with a '*'. Please note that the GPS position is guessed in this case.

Switch to 'Professional Mode'

By default the V-900 runs in simple mode, i. e. only the most important signals are recorded:

  1. DATE
  2. TIME
  6. SPEED
  8. VOX (name of the audio file)

But there is also a professional mode, which issues additional information on the GPS signal quality:

  2. VALID
  3. PDOP
  4. HDOP
  5. VDOP

To make your V-900 record this good stuff, just put a file named config.txt on the microSD card. The content of the file is

1 Professional mode
000 Over-speed tag 
001 Spy mode timer

Sure, the log files become larger then. But as long as you are not hiking along the Transsib route this should not be a problem.


(4) Settings (dontZoom -> zoom)

ColumbusCSV supports the following settings (see also picture 4).

They are accessible via F12 (Windows) or Strg + , (Mac). Then choose tab Advanced Settings.

Setting Description Default
columbuscsv.import.showSummary Show summary box after import false
columbuscsv.import.zoomAfterImport Auto zoom after import (set to 'false' on slow machines) true
columbuscsv.import.ignoreVDOP Ignore hdop/vdop/pdop entries false
columbuscsv.warn.missingAudio Issue warning message on missing audio files false
columbuscsv.warn.conversionErrors Issue warning message on conversion errors false

Known Bugs and Workarounds

Unknown - there are currently no open TRAC tickets as far as I know.

  1. User mdk reported problems with case-sensitive file systems. This has been fixed in 26821.
  2. User mdk reported IOException playing a marker: This is after the end of the recording. A workaround has been provided in 27119.


  • [1] Very comprehensive Wiki page on the V-900 (german)