Using OSM On Garmin

When I look for POIs on a Garmin that us using OSM, does it get them from OSM or the Garmin database?

At least some POI’s are on the device itself:

reg. POIs: You wrote yourself that the list is generated by the device. I think
that’s correct and thus it doesn’t have an influence on the map size.

Source: Re: [mkgmap-dev] Garmin eTrex10 Map - POIs

Also helpful: OSM Map On Garmin/POI Types

Hi, It could well depend on what Garmin device you are using. On my old GPDmap 60csx I have the original Garmin POI and, via the OSM map, I have the OSM POIs. I also have various lists of POI compiled and added to the device, (Bus Stops, Farm Shops, Fruit Trees and personal POI), these can have note as well. I then have a Geocaching list of POI compiled by myself which also includes note/hints POI.

The process tends to be like this:

  • The person who is creating the Garmin map from OSM downloads some OSM data in .pbf format for an area from OSM.
  • They run a program that comes with mkgmap called “splitter” on that data (but we don’t need to worry about that bit).
  • They then run “mkgmap” with it. The configuration files for that program control how OSM data is changed into Garmin data.
  • They then make the resulting Garmin maps available for download.

An example of a line in a configuration file is here:

amenity=post_box [0x2f15 resolution 24 default_name 'Post box']

That means "convert every amenity=post_box in OSM into Garmin feature 0x2f15, and if it doesn’t have a name, name it “Post Box”. The person creating the map chooses what goes in the configuration files, so essentially the answer to “where do POIs on Garmin devices created from OSM data come from” is “they’re created based on rules defined by the person who made the map that you are installing”.

Various lists of Garmin features exist; this one here is quite useful. The one in the OSM wiki is a bit out of date in some respects - it doesn’t look at newer Garmin devices.

When I’ve created maps I’ve documented (for my own use) what OSM feature is converted to what Garmin feature in the code and also where OSM features appear on search menus when using that Garmin map style, but that won’t help you with other Garmin maps I’m afraid.

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