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Maps for Other Countries

Started by Entreat, August 21, 2018, 02:22:13 AM

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This happens to be my first visit to this forum.

I realized some countries(eg: Ghana) is not included in the selective list.
How can I download the map of Ghana or countries that do not appear in the
drop down list.

Thank you.


Hi Entreat,

when I add a map to this site, I can select countries, which are covered by it. But there is only a predefined set of countries, from which I can choose. I publish a full map of Africa, but because of above limitation, search doesn't show it all.

See my maps here:


Hello Popej,
Thanks for the attachment.Quite a huge file though .

The truth is I am trying to install a garmin map on a Navigational  system in a Toyota 4runner.
The original map format  that comes with the Toyota is in BMP file format.

So Iam thinking of the possibility of converting the openstreet maps (in img or osm) into BMP file format.

I dont know if this is possible.


You could get hold of a Mapsforge map (e.g Open Andro Maps), use Mobile Atlas Creator to render sections as a PNG then use an image editor to make a BMP.

But, to me, that doesn't seem the right thing to do for a navigation system, not least because the file will be vast.


I'm guessing that the .BMP files are something proprietary and have nothing to do with .BMP image files. Seems very unlikely that a built-in automotive navigation system would use raster imagery. Companies often make up their own file formats, for example Garmin .IMG files have nothing to do with "images". ;)

Sorry, but IMO you are wasting your time unless you have found an actual specification that explains exactly what these so-called .BMP files are.


Thanks Boyd:
I think you have a strong point though because from my researches companies like Tomtom and Magellan have proprietary base file formats.

So logically how do you think I could load a Garmin map onto my toyota Nav System? :D


I'm sorry, but like I said above, IMO you're just wasting your time. If it were possible then you would need a thorough understanding of their proprietary map format. It might be possible to reverse-engineer this by dissecting an existing file with a hex editor. But that would be a big project and your posts suggest that you don't have the needed skills. And even if you could figure it out, there is probably some kind of copy protection scheme that would also have to be defeated.

Seriously, I think you will end up with nothing to show for whatever time to devote to this. But Android tablets are inexpensive and there are many apps that should give you what you want. IMO, it would be a much more productive use of your time to get one of these and fabricate some kind of mount for your vehicle.


I appreciate your explanations.
I shall look at the android options. Otherwise I will have to try and get a dedicated
device like the Garmin Nuvi.

Thanks once again.


Take care when choosing an Android tablet. Every Android phone has GPS inbuilt but not every tablet.


True, I ended up returning one because of that a few years ago. But you can also use a bluetooth GPS receiver, which should also be much more accurate and allow mounting in a better place to get a signal. I have a Garmin GLO that I sometimes use for this and it's very nice.

However, as I learned a few years ago, if you buy a tablet without a GPS chip, Google Play won't even let you download some navigation software, since it detects you don't have an internal GPS. This is apparently up to the developer, because many apps did allow download while others claimed to be incompatible.

I have an 8" Samsung tablet with an internal GPS chip. But it's terrible, takes a long time to get a fix, regularly loses it and is generally not very accurate. The GLO works really well with it though.

An iPad is another option, although you  need to get the cellular (LTE) version because the regular wifi iPad doesn't have an internal GPS. But you could also use a bluetooth GPS receiver with an iPad, and Apple has built-in support for bluetooth GPS devices unlike Android, which requires a "hack" to use one.

Then of course there are dedicated Garmin units, I recently got a DriveSmart 61 which is some of the nicest and most reasonably priced hardware I've seen from Garmin. Very pretty 7" screen with almost no bezel and a processor that is noticeably faster than their older devices.

You can install any kind of map on it and topo maps work but will not display many of the POI that you would see on one of their outdoor devices.

I'm sure Garmin would recommend their GPSMap276cx, a 5" device that everyone was initially really excited about. Then they discovered how poor it performed in actual usage and Garmin ended up alienating many of their biggest fans. Many people returned them. Not sure if they ever sorted this out, but it was a major embarassment for Garmin. Not what you might expect for a $600 device...


I use an iPad with a GNS2000 Bluetooth GPS and it works well.


You guys are really helpful with your suggestions. Following up with your recommendation in the previous posts.

I made some few researches concerning the Android Head units(for (Vehicles).The specs and functionalities look pretty convincing since one can easily download GPS maps such as Sygic or NavFree and they also run on offline modes.

Do you guys know of any Universal brand(can fit in all cars) that I can purchase Or I will have to look for the one one that specifically fits my car.


Sorry, no experience with head units, only tablets/phones. Just be careful, because I know that built-in nav units have some serious restrictions that prevent you from using many of the features while the vehicle is moving. Don't know about third party head units. Make sure they are compatible with the app(s) you want too. Like I said, if they don't have a built-in gps you may not even be able to download some apps.