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Old 24 January 2023, 06:24   #1
carlosgod
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Noob question on how one goes about "WHDloadifying" games

Hi - I've recently started tinkering with Winuae and learning how to install LHA files in the workbench (3.1) environment, as well as creating HDF files using ADF Opus. Recently, I became interested in making WHDload HDF files for Amiga games. One of the guide I looked at is this:

http://lindqvist.synology.me/wordpress/?page_id=182

So I understand that all Hard disk installed Amiga games in HDF format which have been "WHDloadified" generally have a file called "game.slave" sitting at the top of the directory structure. This file acts as some sort of an instruction on what to execute and stuff like memory allocation. When used in conjunction with WHDload.hdf, the Amiga emulator can automatically start up the game instead of having to go through Workbench and manually clicking on the executable. This is very convenient for those Android/Linux retroemulation handhelds.

My very noob question is... how does one go about "WHDloadify" an Amiga game in the first place - and why some HDF-installed games are WHDloadified and others are not? For example - T-Zer0 (which I believe DamienD converted from CD format to HDF format) does not appear to have game.slave or WHDLoad built in its file structure. Or Final Odyssey: Theseus Verses the Minotaur. Or any of the recent Amiga demos that came out. Is there a tool that makes 'game.slave' file? OR do you have to code it in Assembly and thus beyond the means of mere mortals (which means all we can is wait for these WHDloadify experts to do it for us?).

Thank you and sorry if this is a very noob question that someone has already asked previously. I know there's the WHDLoad.de page and manual but frankly I'm having a hard time understanding the technical detail, so would appreciate if someone can explain in simple terms how this works.
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Old 24 January 2023, 08:29   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carlosgod View Post
Is there a tool that makes 'game.slave' file? OR do you have to code it in Assembly and thus beyond the means of mere mortals (which means all we can is wait for these WHDloadify experts to do it for us?).
There is no tool. Somebody has to create the slave for a game. WHDLoad fixes games so that they run from HD and on faster Amigas. Some games (like T-Zero or Final Odyssey that you mentioned) already work that way and don't need to be fixed.
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Old 24 January 2023, 08:55   #3
carlosgod
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I see. So WHDload enables everything to run from HD.

One thing I didn't quite understand is that when you go to websites like whdownload.com or whdload.de, you can download LHA install files for various games. But these LHA files aren't the full game right? They are like 30-60KB each. In that case am I right in thinking that to unpack/install these LHA, you would still need to insert the original games (either in ADF or .ISO format) and the LHA self-extraction program rearrange them into HDF structure?

Regarding T-Zero example, what's you're saying is that you don't necessarily need to "WHDloadify" games to make it work in HDF format if the author of the game designed in such way that it already works right off the bat? So presumably games written more recently (for example, Alarcity or ReshootR) are unlikely to be "WHDloadified", while games written in the early 90s are?

Thank your for your patience in explaining - I am very new to all this stuff!
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Old 24 January 2023, 09:23   #4
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Originally Posted by carlosgod View Post
One thing I didn't quite understand is that when you go to websites like whdownload.com or whdload.de, you can download LHA install files for various games. But these LHA files aren't the full game right? They are like 30-60KB each. In that case am I right in thinking that to unpack/install these LHA, you would still need to insert the original games (either in ADF or .ISO format) and the LHA self-extraction program rearrange them into HDF structure?
On whdload.de you only get the patches and have to install the game using original media like you describe. On whdownload.com you get the pre-installed game.

Quote:
Originally Posted by carlosgod View Post
Regarding T-Zero example, what's you're saying is that you don't necessarily need to "WHDloadify" games to make it work in HDF format if the author of the game designed in such way that it already works right off the bat? So presumably games written more recently (for example, Alarcity or ReshootR) are unlikely to be "WHDloadified", while games written in the early 90s are?
Yep, that sums it up pretty well.
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Old 24 January 2023, 09:43   #5
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WHDLoad involves having WHDLoad system files and multiple versions of kickstart roms in your System drive in C, S and optionally other folders. Then you store each game in it's own folder with multiple game folders in a container folder or drive of your choice. The WHDLoad.DE installs patch original game disks or ADF/IPF images (with DiskImage from Aminet installed), to a game folder on your HDD as a working game using the WHDLoad system files on your System drive to run. The created game icon information tab can be used to add Tooltypes for the game to run on a system that may vary from default or may need Tooltypes anyway, such as PRELOAD or NOCACHE (for 020+Cpu's). WHDownload has complete patched games that can be added to your games folder which removes the need for original media. The ethics of Copyright are left up to you.
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Old 24 January 2023, 11:13   #6
carlosgod
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WHDLoad involves having WHDLoad system files and multiple versions of kickstart roms in your System drive in C, S and optionally other folders. Then you store each game in it's own folder with multiple game folders in a container folder or drive of your choice.

Okay I'm starting to understand how this works. Thanks for clarifying!

One question - for HDF files that hasn't been WHDLoadified (like Damien's T-Zer0) and as a result doesn't have game.slave at the top most directory, can you still boot directly into the game when you start up the emulator instead of booting into workbench and then manually click the game icon?

I was under the impression that you must have WHDload system files +game.slave to be able to do this, but now I'm starting to think that I've completely misunderstood the way these things work and what WHDload is really used for...
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Old 24 January 2023, 11:14   #7
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On whdload.de you only get the patches and have to install the game using original media like you describe. On whdownload.com you get the pre-installed game.



Yep, that sums it up pretty well.
Thanks for clearing this up for me!
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Old 24 January 2023, 11:16   #8
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Quote:
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One question - for HDF files that hasn't been WHDLoadified (like Damien's T-Zer0) and as a result doesn't have game.slave at the top most directory, can you still boot directly into the game when you start up the emulator instead of booting into workbench and then manually click the game icon?
In theory: yes I haven't looked at the HDF, but on it should be a directory 's' and a file inside called 'startup-sequence'. There you would enter the main 'executable' of the game and then it should start when you boot the HDF.
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Old 24 January 2023, 17:59   #9
carlosgod
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In theory: yes I haven't looked at the HDF, but on it should be a directory 's' and a file inside called 'startup-sequence'. There you would enter the main 'executable' of the game and then it should start when you boot the HDF.
Ah so that's what folder S and startup-sequence is for. Thanks - I'll try editing it and see if I can make it boot directly when I start up!
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Old 24 January 2023, 21:25   #10
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usally hdf games not contains startup-sequence or other file from workbench system. You have your workbench 1.3, 2.0 or 3.x mounted as dh0: and hdf is mounted as dh1:
To convert in WHD you should have HDF that contains workbench installation and the game.
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Old 25 January 2023, 04:54   #11
carlosgod
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usally hdf games not contains startup-sequence or other file from workbench system. You have your workbench 1.3, 2.0 or 3.x mounted as dh0: and hdf is mounted as dh1:
To convert in WHD you should have HDF that contains workbench installation and the game.


I see.., but this brings me to another question. For those handheld emulators using retroarch or uae4arm, usually I need to use whdload.HDF (which has boot priority) along with the whdloadified game in HDF format when I boot into the game. If the workbench is embedded within the HDF of the game itself, what does the file whdload.HDF do? I also think you need whdload.pref as well...
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