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Old 01 May 2007, 02:51   #1
Rochabian
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Ideas to do the ultimate legal CD32 comp

I am using some tricks to use all whdload games or non-whdload games that needs 2MB RAM to be run on a CD32
Of course, agreed to Wepl, you need to be registered to play all games
Does someone know how to reduce a RAD drive to the max because it just need to have a startup-sequence wich is 1K .......
My better settings are:

device:ramdrive.device
Unit=0
Flags=0
Sufaces=1
BlocksPerTrack=4
Reserved=0
Interleave=0
LowCyl=0
HighCYl=0
Buffers=1
BuffMemtype=1
Prority=99

Does someone has a new idea to free more RAM at startup because this RAD is a non volatile RAM & boot at reboot
Thanks
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Old 01 May 2007, 10:35   #2
TikTok
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Don't remember how, though I'm sure I have done it before.

An alternative might be to use a resizeable RAD disk - one that expands and decreases just like the RAM disk. It seems Statman might do the trick (readme).
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Old 01 May 2007, 12:25   #3
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Old 01 May 2007, 18:14   #4
Wepl
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I'm currently doing some research and wrote a tool to start whdload games from cd32 (because Fisken Uno tried to rewok the CD-444 for whdloadcd32).

The approach using RAD and reboot is suboptimal IMO.

Better would be the following:
  • StartTool is located in startup-sequence
  • provides a buffer and starts the menu-system
  • menu-system fills the buffer with program to start and ends
  • StartTool starts the game
  • if the game returns (for games with exit like whdload) it starts the menu-system again
the menu-system must properly free all memory and ressources

advantages:
  • only some hundred bytes for the StartTool will stay resident in memory instead the RAD
  • no reboots required

I could write the StartTool, that is not much code, but the menu-system must be compatible too.
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Old 01 May 2007, 23:38   #5
MethodGit
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rochabian
Of course, agreed to Wepl, you need to be registered to play all games
Do you mean EVERY game in the compilation, or just those ones with slaves that required a keyfile in the first place? And I thought WHDLoadCD32 eliminated that requirement problem anyhow?
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Old 02 May 2007, 00:57   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MethodGit
Do you mean EVERY game in the compilation, or just those ones with slaves that required a keyfile in the first place? And I thought WHDLoadCD32 eliminated that requirement problem anyhow?
WHDLoadCD32 does not need any keyfile and will also run all Slaves which require a registered WHDLoad.
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Old 02 May 2007, 00:58   #7
Rochabian
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@Wepl:

Great idea!!
A small resident program can be used instead of RAD
I will load games faster and could uses less RAM
The startup will be more easy to do with that system

I think your tool can be compatible with AGS as it is the most used menu-system and the most simple to use IMHO

@MethodGit
Of course it will use WHDLOADCD32 but the problem now is not here, its about
to free as much ram as possible for games
The best will be to have quite a blank RAM, to be able to use all games as you do inserting a disk in your A500........
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Old 02 May 2007, 14:10   #8
nnever2000
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Are you speaking about a *real* cd32? Because I have booted an iso cd with whdload games without any problem in WINUAE 1.4.2 (just copying whdload file in c directory and inserted in startup-sequence "whdload nomegame.slave".
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Old 02 May 2007, 14:26   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rochabian
I think your tool can be compatible with AGS as it is the most used menu-system and the most simple to use IMHO
Just thought I'd say... I've been writing a replacement for AGS as I found AGS too much of an effort to configure properly. It's not ready for release yet but it is coming along nicely.

Is there anything you can think of (or anyone else) that you don't like about AGS and would like changed?
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Old 02 May 2007, 14:38   #10
Toni Wilen
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nnever2000
Are you speaking about a *real* cd32? Because I have booted an iso cd with whdload games without any problem in WINUAE 1.4.2 (just copying whdload file in c directory and inserted in startup-sequence "whdload nomegame.slave".
You didn't emulate cd32 but ~"A1200 with read-only HD" if it booted
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Old 02 May 2007, 15:32   #11
Rochabian
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@KG:
The nombers of games displayed in AGS in a page is limited to 28 entries, no scroll down is possible, or not working good.
You have to create 3 file for each game to run it ( .start .txt .iff)
That for me the things that could be done better

The interface is quite good IMO : A description, the title, and a thumbnail for each game
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Old 02 May 2007, 16:54   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toni Wilen
You didn't emulate cd32 but ~"A1200 with read-only HD" if it booted
Oh! No! I wanted to use this trick in order to launch Amiga games in mame using the next emulation of the cube cd32 into mame! So it will not work! Argh!
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Old 02 May 2007, 16:57   #13
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Rochabian, thanks for the feedback.

My list scrolls round with no problems, the list itself is read in from a file rather than scanning the directory. (I'll create a tool to build the list from a directory later).

I've not changed much from the interface, just made the screenshot smaller and made the list itself wider so the game names can be a lot longer.

At the moment it runs from a one button joystick but it is VERY simple to add in functions for the other CD32 buttons, I'll have to think what these are but maybe the blue button could be used to go back to a previous menu for example.

Screenshots are supported from the screenshot directory, unfortunately they still need to be in iff mode, maybe one day I'll add datatype support for jpg/png.

As with AGS the menu kills itself before loading the game, but the difference here is that you can reload the menu with the same item showing as AGS remembers the item you last loaded.

The menu grabs all of it's information from a flatfile database (aka a text file) which contains the name of the game, the dir the game is in, some info about the game, the loading options for the game etc.
As it's a text file you'll be able to edit it manually if needs be.
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Old 02 May 2007, 17:18   #14
Toni Wilen
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nnever2000
Oh! No! I wanted to use this trick in order to launch Amiga games in mame using the next emulation of the cube cd32 into mame! So it will not work! Argh!
I replied to "just copying whdload file in c directory and inserted in startup-sequence "whdload nomegame.slave".

I didn't say you can't create real bootable cd32 cds
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Old 02 May 2007, 21:01   #15
Rochabian
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Ok KG, it will surely be a great app
The idea of using others CD32 buttons is great too
Just have to find their uses
BW/FWD is a great idea instead of browsing the game list to find the "previous menu" line
Assigning shortcut to them seems to be the best idea

Does you loader free the ram it has used before loading game????

Last edited by Rochabian; 02 May 2007 at 21:09.
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Old 02 May 2007, 21:57   #16
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Yeah it kills itself before loading, all RAM is freed apart from possibly...

I will have the option of storing a single file in RAM (a couple of bytes max) that will store the index of which menu item you were on.
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Old 04 May 2007, 00:45   #17
Rochabian
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I think the KG-Wepl team could be the best team to release a gem
Good luck in your projects
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Old 04 May 2007, 00:47   #18
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Cheers mate, I'll hopefully have at least some screenies soon once I've packed up this month's whdload pack
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Old 04 May 2007, 00:53   #19
Rochabian
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@KG :
Really good news!! Can't wait for screenies.....
Is you menu a modified source code of AGS or is it a totally new one???

Edit: Nice work for your packages indeed

Last edited by Rochabian; 04 May 2007 at 00:59.
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Old 04 May 2007, 01:25   #20
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It's completely new code but I did take a look at AGS to see how to use the ilbm methods. There is so little documentation on AmigaE on the net!
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