New Google Earth 4 beta – 16-December-2006

Google has just released the latest beta for Google Earth 4 today (December 16th). Windows and Linux – version 4.0.2693, Mac – version 4.0.2694. Here are the release notes posted by ‘ink_polaroid’ at the GEC. Note: there are some great improvements in here. Also, the new touring feature mentioned is really cool. It will automatically pop up placemark description bubbles as you tour through each placemark. This gives you an almost script-like presentation capability.

Release notes:

  • Progress indicator for loading network links and models
  • Real-time GPS tracking using NMEA (Plus, Pro and EC)
  • Greatly improved performance for collada models (textured buildings)
  • Tours can display balloons (Tools->Options… then “Touring” tab)
  • Driving directions and touring allow a greater range for typed values
  • Mac movie-maker supports many more compression formats

KML notes:

  • Icon palettes are deprecated (no more root:// for the styles)
  • Improved performance on network link hierarchies

Major fixes since last beta:

  • Improved compatibility on shared memory architecture ATI graphics cards with
    older graphics card drivers

  • Improved success rate of log in over unreliable connections
  • Fixed offline mode in Pro
  • Numerous GPS fixes (including GPX import)

The bug which affected the Blue Marble Add-on has been fixed. I will be posting a new version which won’t require the little hack I had developed to fix the bug.

About Frank Taylor

Frank Taylor started the Google Earth Blog in July, 2005 shortly after Google Earth was first released. He has worked with 3D computer graphics and VR for many years and was very impressed with this exciting product. Frank completed a 5.5 year circumnavigation of the earth by sailboat in June 2015 which you can read about at Tahina Expedition, and is a licensed pilot, backpacker, diver, and photographer.


  1. What about Linux’s version?

  2. There are two very nice fixes to network links!
    First, previously, if a network link was set to refresh on a time interval, unchecking and rechecking the network link would also trigger a refresh. Thankfully, the latest version simply hides and then shows the contents of the link.
    Second, previously, if a network link was set to refresh on a change of view, and if you moved the earth while the refresh was happening, GE would download the data for the first screen position. You would not get any data for the final screen position. Now, if the earth is moved during a refresh, GE stops the refresh and then restarts it when the movement stops. The result is that you always get the data for the screen you are looking at.
    These changes are most welcome.

  3. Apparently they still haven’t fixed the anisotropic filtering bug with overlays… so I’m not very impressed 😉

  4. Seamlessly installed in GE+4 but now the main screen no longer shows either the Globe or the Navigation Bars. Just a field of stars. A bug perhaps?

  5. John Sapyta says:

    I don’t see where to download the new beta 4 verison, it just shows June 12 update.

  6. I am having issues while printing. While printing, rectangular areas are left blank in the printout????

  7. John Ritland says:

    I have tried downloading the latest beta version of Google Earth (4.2.xx) several times from several sites and all I see is a field of stars. I can’t get the earth to appear. Appears to be similar to the problem that John Sapyta described above.
    Can someone help me with this?
    Thanks much.

  8. Hi,
    How do I see rout without the driving instructions?

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